I want you to look at this number: $5,900,000,000,000.00 Can you say what it is in words? Does it trip off your tongue? $5.9 trillion dollars, “the total the US has spent or is obligated to spend through FY2019.” A number that large is an abstraction. $5.9 trillion dollars, how much infrastructure, how many hospitals, how possible universal healthcare, how many bridges, tunnels, how many homeless could be housed… how much work could be done to prepare for climate change, and on and on?
The United States of America chose to spend $5.9 trillion of its people’s dollars, an amount of money most people can’t comprehend and it was used essentially to destroy Islamic societies and enrich the military-intelligence-industrial community. Terrorism is very good business.
The United States has appropriated and is obligated to spend an estimated $5.9
trillion (in current dollars) on the war on terror through Fiscal Year 2019, including
direct war and war-related spending and obligations for future spending on post9/11
war veterans (see Table 1). This number differs substantially from the Pentagon’s
estimates of the costs of the post-9/11 wars because it includes not only war
appropriations made to the Department of Defense – spending in the war zones of Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and in other places the government designates as sites of “overseas contingency operations,” – but also includes spending across the federal government that is a consequence of these wars. Specifically, this is war-related spending by the Department of State, past and obligated spending for war veterans’ care, interest on the debt incurred to pay for the wars, and the prevention of and response to terrorism by the Department of Homeland Security.
If the US continues on its current path, war spending will continue to grow. The
Pentagon currently projects $80 billion in Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO)
spending through FY2023. Even if the wars are ended by 2023, the US would still be on track to spend an …