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Old 06-20-2006, 06:31 PM   #31
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Originally posted by STING2

As for taxpayer dollars, lets keep in mind that what the United States is currently spending on the US military, operations in Iraq, Afghanistan, as well as aid to those countries, is currently a smaller percentage of US GDP than what was spent on Defense during the Peacetime of the 1980s or in any period before that going back to the start start of World War II.

i'll respond tomorrow, but for now, all i've got time for is this:


[q]Unforeseen Spending on Materiel Pumps Up Iraq War Bill
Senate to Take Up Measure as Military Fights to Keep Guns, Tanks Working

By Jonathan Weisman
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, April 20, 2006; Page A01

With the expected passage this spring of the largest emergency spending bill in history, annual war expenditures in Iraq will have nearly doubled since the U.S. invasion, as the military confronts the rapidly escalating cost of repairing, rebuilding and replacing equipment chewed up by three years of combat.

The cost of the war in U.S. fatalities has declined this year, but the cost in treasure continues to rise, from $48 billion in 2003 to $59 billion in 2004 to $81 billion in 2005 to an anticipated $94 billion in 2006, according to the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments. The U.S. government is now spending nearly $10 billion a month in Iraq and Afghanistan, up from $8.2 billion a year ago, a new Congressional Research Service report found.

Annual war costs in Iraq are easily outpacing the $61 billion a year that the United States spent in Vietnam between 1964 and 1972, in today's dollars. The invasion's "shock and awe" of high-tech laser-guided bombs, cruise missiles and stealth aircraft has long faded, but the costs of even those early months are just coming into view as the military confronts equipment repair and rebuilding costs it has avoided and procurement costs it never expected

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...041902594.html

[/q]



and let's keep in mind that the 1980s saw huge increases in military spending -- funny to call it "peacetime" -- especially on nuclear arms.

Bush's 2007 budget includes a request of $439 billion for defense -- that does not include the cost of the Iraq-Afghanistan conflicts, which have ranged from $4.4 - 7.1 billion per month since 2003.

current U.S. defense spending is more in real terms than during any of the Reagan years and surpassed only by spending at the end of World War Two in 1945 and 1946 and during the Korean War in 1952
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Old 06-20-2006, 10:10 PM   #32
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Quote:
Originally posted by Irvine511



i'll respond tomorrow, but for now, all i've got time for is this:


[q]Unforeseen Spending on Materiel Pumps Up Iraq War Bill
Senate to Take Up Measure as Military Fights to Keep Guns, Tanks Working

By Jonathan Weisman
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, April 20, 2006; Page A01

With the expected passage this spring of the largest emergency spending bill in history, annual war expenditures in Iraq will have nearly doubled since the U.S. invasion, as the military confronts the rapidly escalating cost of repairing, rebuilding and replacing equipment chewed up by three years of combat.

The cost of the war in U.S. fatalities has declined this year, but the cost in treasure continues to rise, from $48 billion in 2003 to $59 billion in 2004 to $81 billion in 2005 to an anticipated $94 billion in 2006, according to the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments. The U.S. government is now spending nearly $10 billion a month in Iraq and Afghanistan, up from $8.2 billion a year ago, a new Congressional Research Service report found.

Annual war costs in Iraq are easily outpacing the $61 billion a year that the United States spent in Vietnam between 1964 and 1972, in today's dollars. The invasion's "shock and awe" of high-tech laser-guided bombs, cruise missiles and stealth aircraft has long faded, but the costs of even those early months are just coming into view as the military confronts equipment repair and rebuilding costs it has avoided and procurement costs it never expected

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...041902594.html

[/q]



and let's keep in mind that the 1980s saw huge increases in military spending -- funny to call it "peacetime" -- especially on nuclear arms.

Bush's 2007 budget includes a request of $439 billion for defense -- that does not include the cost of the Iraq-Afghanistan conflicts, which have ranged from $4.4 - 7.1 billion per month since 2003.

current U.S. defense spending is more in real terms than during any of the Reagan years and surpassed only by spending at the end of World War Two in 1945 and 1946 and during the Korean War in 1952
The real cost of anything is best caculated by comparing it to the nations total wealth, GDP. As a percentage of GDP, the current cost of all spending on Iraq and Afghanistan plus defense spending is a smaller percentage of GDP than at any time, peace time or not, during the Cold War.

Here is what the United States spent every year(1980-1989) on Defense in 2005 dollars from the IISS(International Institute For Strategic Studies):

1980 320 Billion
1981 355 Billion
1982 382 Billion
1983 419 Billion
1984 435 Billion
1985 468 Billion
1986 488 Billion
1987 479 Billion
1988 462 Billion
1989 453 Billion

This was on average 6% of US GDP in the 1980s. A Defense bill of 439 Billion dollars with an additional spending of 84 Billion dollars on operations in Iraq/Afghanistan gives us a total price tag of 523 Billion dollars on all Defense related matters for the 2007 budget. This is 4% of the United States GDP this year.

So, even while fighting two wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, the United States spending on Defense is currently only a little more than half of what it spent on average, during the 1980s as a percentage of GDP.

The only time since 1940 that the United States has spent a smaller percentage of its GDP on defense than now was during the late 1990s when Bill Clinton was in office.
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Old 06-20-2006, 11:08 PM   #33
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Though accurate on paper, these numbers are a little misleading as a true snapshot of real military spending. In every era, much of the financing actually goes unreported--I've heard of estimates of $30 billion or more that has been secretly spent by the Pentagon on the war on terrorism.

Also keep in mind that some economic researchers estimate the final cost of the Iraq conflict could amount to more than $2 trillion. This takes into account the long-term damage inflicted on the economy and the decline in overall productivity.

That's four times the Bush administration projections you quote.
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Old 06-21-2006, 01:47 AM   #34
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Quote:
Originally posted by angelordevil
Though accurate on paper, these numbers are a little misleading as a true snapshot of real military spending. In every era, much of the financing actually goes unreported--I've heard of estimates of $30 billion or more that has been secretly spent by the Pentagon on the war on terrorism.

Also keep in mind that some economic researchers estimate the final cost of the Iraq conflict could amount to more than $2 trillion. This takes into account the long-term damage inflicted on the economy and the decline in overall productivity.

That's four times the Bush administration projections you quote.
In Defense spending terms, $30 Billion dollars is a drop in the bucket. Even if this figure were correct, over 5 years, this only amounts to $6 Billion dollars in extra spending per year. When your dealing with an annual defense budget that is half a Trillion dollars per year when Afghanistan/Iraq is included, $6 Billion dollars is not significant in terms of this discussion.

The spending for the Bush administration that I listed was only for one year, and of course including all defense spending not related to the conflict in Iraq. Total spending on Iraq exclusively could turn out to be between 1 and 1.5 Trillion depending on how many years it last and how large the US deployment there is over that time. Over a 10 year period, 1.5 Trillion is only 150 Billion dollars more per year beyond normal spending on the Defense Budget. Even at a rate that high, over all spending per year on both Defense and Iraq/Afganistan would still be under 6% of GDP which is what the United States spent on defense alone during the peacetime of the 1980s.

The US economy is doing fantastic and has not been damaged at all by the war. GDP growth is close to 5% and the unemployment rate has dropped to a historic low of only 4.6%. In terms of economic growth and unemployment, only the last 2 years of Clintons time in office surpasses current US economic performance.
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Old 06-21-2006, 10:43 PM   #35
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Quote:
Originally posted by STING2


The US economy is doing fantastic and has not been damaged at all by the war. GDP growth is close to 5% and the unemployment rate has dropped to a historic low of only 4.6%. In terms of economic growth and unemployment, only the last 2 years of Clintons time in office surpasses current US economic performance.
There's still an awful lot of grey in those black and white statistics. However, just dealing with the numbers for a second, it's interesting to note that global military spending rose to a record $1.12 trillion last year. Of that amount, 80 per cent of the increase is directly linked to the United States.

Of course, the "war machine" is fantastic for the US economy in the short-term--manufacturers of fighter planes and weapons are no doubt enjoying the ride. So, yes, this is a good thing for US corporations right now. (In fact, those rosy economic figures were actually predicted, and were a major thrust in the preemptive strategists' Iraq master-plan long before 9/11.)

But, getting back to the original discussion, what's the end-game strategy here? Is it to just "see what happens" while the coffers of Lockheed are bolstered and pipelines are secured for Iraqi oil?

If the "grand plan" is actually one set out to inject democracy, and remove people from the plight of their misery, isn't it ironic how this U.S. brand of forced emancipation is actually rejected by most of the world?
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Old 06-22-2006, 11:57 AM   #36
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Despite our wildest desires for instant outcome, we are dealing with a struggle that is thirty years old (and by some measures, going back centuries). The last military conflict that did not involve some permutation of Islam was Vietnam. We are looking at the result of a free Ayatollah Khomeini back in the 70’s and a series of short sighted decisions that followed. A democratic Iraq may help the Muslim world decide which road it desires to take.
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Old 06-22-2006, 12:28 PM   #37
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Originally posted by nbcrusader
. A democratic Iraq may help the Muslim world decide which road it desires to take.


and what if a democratic Iraq democratically elects the Iraqi equivalent of an Ayatollah Khomeini? might war-torn Iraqis drenched in sectarian blood elect new and more lethal version of the Taliban's Afghanistan?

democracy itself is meaningless without the adoption of liberal Western values, for it can be used to legitimize tyranny.

due to the chaotic, violent nature of life in Iraq that is a result of a poorly planned and executed US invasion, i fear only a strongman can quell the violence and restore order, and then Iraqi will be back to pretty much where it started, only with the rest of the Muslim world deeply suspicious and angry at the United States (which will make an Israeli/Palestinia settlement all that much more difficult) and with inter-Muslim tensions, Arabs vs. Persians, at a boiling point. at this point, it seems as if we've done little but stoke the cauldron and toss more gasoline onto the fire.
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Old 06-22-2006, 03:35 PM   #38
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You shouldn't underestimate the power of the Islamic clergy in a place like Iraq. The Iraqi people could chose someone they think will liberate them from the chronic instability, because there's a finiteness to Iraqi patience with this mess. This could be a strong leader with backing from the majority Shi'ites, especially if Iran has anything to do with the matter.
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