Iraq War Costs $6 Billion a Month

On September 22, an updated report by the Congressional Research Service was filed with Congress, The Cost of Iraq, Afghanistan, and Other Global War on Terror Operations Since 9/11. From the introduction:

Through FY2006, Congress has appropriated a total of about $437 billion for military operations, base security, reconstruction, foreign aid, embassy costs, and veterans' health care for the three operations initiated since the 9/11 attacks: Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) covering Afghanistan and other Global War on Terror (GWOT) operations, Operation Noble Eagle (ONE) providing enhanced security at military bases, and Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF), Iraq.

In the last week of September 2006, the House and Senate are slated to consider the conference versions of the FY2007 defense appropriations bill, H.R. 5631, and the national defense authorization bill (H.R. 6122/S. 2766), both of which include an additional $70 billion for war costs. .... The Administration is expected to submit a FY2007 supplemental for additional war costs some time next year.

If the FY2007 defense appropriation bill passes, total war appropriations for all three operations would reach about $507 billion. Another $2 billion is included in other appropriations bills for foreign and diplomatic operations in Iraq and Afghanistan and VA medical costs. In its July 2006 mid-session update, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) estimates that war funding in FY2007 will total $110 billion, including bridge funding. Based on this OMB projection, cumulative war funding for all of FY2007 would reach about $549 billion. OMB also assumes a $50 billion bridge fund for FY2008.

DOD has not provided Congress with the individual costs of each operation. Based on previous spending and a rough allocation of the FY2007 bridge fund, CRS estimates that Iraq will receive about $379 billion (75%), OEF about $97 billion (20%), and enhanced base security about $26 billion (5%), with about $4 billion (1%) that CRS cannot allocate. Generally, about 91% of these funds are for DOD and about 8% are for foreign aid programs and embassy operations, with 1% for medical care for veterans and 1% are unallocated.

On a monthly basis, DOD spent an average of about $6.4 billion for OIF, $1.3 billion for OEF, and $180 million for enhanced base security in FY2005. During FY2006, these monthly spending levels may increase to about $8.0 billion for OIF and $1.5 billion for OEF, an overall increase of 20%.

The emphasis is mine. As one reader of the report notes, the Congressional Budget Offices state there may be an additional $371 billion in war costs between fiscal years 2007 and 2016. If you add in these supplemental funds, total war funding could reach $808 billion by 2016.

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  • Re: Iraq War Costs $6 Billion a Month (none / 0) (#1)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Tue Sep 26, 2006 at 02:48:18 PM EST
    i wish that the 'i vote for republicans because they lower taxes' people would realize that they're enabling reckless over-the-top deficit spending, which is in essence a tax increase for their children and their childrens' children

    Re: Iraq War Costs $6 Billion a Month (none / 0) (#2)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Tue Sep 26, 2006 at 03:11:24 PM EST
    Only $6 million a month for a war that wasn't necessary in the first place and is now making us more, rather than less, safe? What a deal!

    Re: Iraq War Costs $6 Billion a Month (none / 0) (#4)
    by Che's Lounge on Tue Sep 26, 2006 at 07:59:17 PM EST
    Wow they get their two-fer. They get to shoot at our soldiers and bankrupt us at the same time. Who woulda thunk it?

    Re: Iraq War Costs $6 Billion a Month (none / 0) (#3)
    by DavidLA on Tue Sep 26, 2006 at 09:13:03 PM EST
    I believe if you look more closely, the cost per month for the war operation in Afghanistan (Operation Enduring Freedom) and Iraq (Operation Iraqi Freedom) for FY2006 is a combined total of about $9.5 billion per month. That's over $306 million per day.

    Re: Iraq War Costs $6 Billion a Month (none / 0) (#5)
    by john horse on Wed Sep 27, 2006 at 07:43:12 AM EST
    Included in the $6 billion a month bill is a lot of war profiteering. Things like Halliburton billing us $45 for cases of soda and $100 to clean 15- pound bags of laundry.

    Re: Iraq War Costs $6 Billion a Month (none / 0) (#6)
    by kdog on Wed Sep 27, 2006 at 09:49:18 AM EST
    The Iraq war could be described as defense contractor welfare.

    Re: Iraq War Costs $6 Billion a Month (none / 0) (#7)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Wed Sep 27, 2006 at 11:25:26 AM EST
    Another direct cost of this operation not included is the annual interest on the cost of borrowed money to fund these wars. $500 billion at 5% interest is $25 billion a year.