Then and now


The White House is downplaying published reports of an estimated $50 billion to $60 billion price tag for a war with Iraq, saying it is “impossible” to estimate the cost at this time.

White House Office of Management and Budget Director Mitch Daniels told The New York Times in an interview published Tuesday that such a conflict could cost $50 billion to $60 billion — the price tag of the 1991 Persian Gulf War.

But Trent Duffy, an OMB spokesman, said Daniels did not intend to imply in the Times interview that $50 billion to $60 billion was a hard White House estimate.

“He said it could — could — be $60 billion,” Duffy said. “It is impossible to know what any military campaign would ultimately cost. The only cost estimate we know of in this arena is the Persian Gulf War, and that was a $60 billion event.”

Duffy also was careful to caution that President Bush had not made a decision to use military force against Saddam’s regime.


The war has turned out to be hugely costly in both blood and treasure. We estimate that the total budgetary and economic cost to the United States will turn out to be around $3 trillion, with the cost to the rest of the world perhaps doubling that number again. In one sense, this book is about that $3 trillion – how America will be paying the bill for this war for decades to come, and why it is that the true costs are so much larger than the cost estimates originally provided by the Bush administration.


Current Cost of War in Iraq Is Almost $11 Billion Per Month. “In FY2007, DOD’s monthly obligations for contracts and pay averaged about $12.3 billion including about $10.3 billion for Iraq and $2.0 billion for Afghanistan.” [CRS Report, 2/22/08]

That Amounts to…

* $332,258,064 Per Day
* $13,844,086 Per Hour
* $230,734 Per Minute
* $3,845 Per Second