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WAPO: Afghanistan War to Eclipse Costs of Iraq War

Posted by Derrick Crowe on August 10th, 2009

The Washington Post on Sunday published a report warning that the deepening U.S. involvement in Afghanistan will be far more costly than the Iraq War.

As the Obama administration expands U.S. involvement in Afghanistan, military experts are warning that the United States is taking on security and political commitments that will last at least a decade and a cost that will probably eclipse that of the Iraq war.

…Aid expenditures, excluding the cost of combat operations, have grown exponentially, from $982 million in 2003 to $9.3 billion last year.

The costs are almost certain to keep growing. The Obama administration is in the process of overhauling the U.S. approach to Afghanistan, putting its focus on long-term security, economic sustainability and development. That approach is also likely to require deployment of more American military personnel, at the very least to train additional Afghan security forces.

These growing costs mean that many of the criticisms Democrats leveled at President Bush’s Iraq policies now apply equally well to the misguided U.S. policies in Afghanistan. Take, for example, the rhetoric of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi:

If we could not afford the war in Iraq, we certainly cannot afford the war in Afghanistan. To learn more, watch Part Three of Rethink Afghanistan: The Cost of War.

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