US Spent $5.6 Trillion on Wars in Middle East Since 9/11

Earlier this year, the Department of Defense estimated the total cost of the post-9/11 military operations at $1.5 trillion. The Watson Institute of International and Public Affairs at Brown University has carried out its own study positing that not all the costs had been calculated by the department.


The largest sum – $877.4 billion – was spent by the Department of Defense and Department of State on the operation in Afghanistan, while the Iraqi operation comes second at $819.1 billion, according to the study released by the Watson Institute of International and Public Affairs at Brown University.

"As of late September 2017, the United States wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Syria and the additional spending on Homeland Security, and the Departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs since the 9/11 attacks totaled more than $4.3 trillion in current dollars through FY2017. Adding likely costs for FY2018 and estimated future spending on veterans, the costs of war total more than $5.6 trillion," the study reads.
In the 2018 fiscal year, the departments are going to spend $48.9 billion on the operations in Afghanistan and only $1 billion on Iraq, which is less than the sum expected to be spent on US involvement in Syria ($13 billion).


The Pentagon's global military presence has always been a costly issue. The United States has had a massive military spending binge ever since 9/11 with the Pentagon budget growing by 119 percent within a few years, as the 2010 report "Debt, Deficits & Defense" has revealed.
Barack Obama and his predecessor George W. Bush were ruling a nation that was fighting wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, but even with the costs of war subtracted, there was a 68 percent increase, which is 13 percent more than the sum allocated for health and human services.

Despite President Donald Trump's claims to stop the wars in the Middle East, to cut NATO spending and to concentrate on internal affairs, made during his presidential campaign, he has not been immune to the fate of his predecessors. On November 7, he had requested an additional $1.2 billion for an Afghanistan mission.

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