Welcome to the Middle East Today

The Middle East has traditionally been important for the world economy. The Middle East situation today has an impact on all aspects of life in America and much of the world.

Only by understanding the motivations of the various factions in the Middle East can we hope to understand how to promote peace and national security for Middle Eastern nations, Europe, and the United States.

Sep 11, 2011

The Iraqi War and Its Cost to the American Public

The American public will remember those who perished on September 11, 2001 as a result of the tragic terrorist attack at the World Trade Center that was committed by Osama bin Laden and his al-Qaeda.

It took ten years for the U.S. to catch and kill bin Laden. It is regrettable to say that bin Laden’s attack provided President George W. Bush and his neocon supporters with the pretext for their invasion of Iraq in 2003, despite the well known fact that planning for that invasion preceded the 9/11 attack.

Furthermore, the president and his terrorist associates (Cheney, Rumsfeld and Wolfowitz) began to manufacture false reports about Iraq’s “weapons of mass destruction”, which they claimed posed an imminent threat to the U.S. and should be stopped. Despite the warning from CIA director George Tenet that the Nuclear Uranium Secret Report was false. That warning was ignored and the president and his terrorist associates supported the invasion of Iraq.

No weapons of mass destruction were found after the invasion. The tragedy of Bush’s policy of intentionally lying and misleading the nation led to the killings of more than 4,000 American soldiers and the injuries of more than 30,000. The American public should also hold a candle light vigil nationwide in memory of the soldiers who died in vain.

Furthermore, the terrorists who were responsible for the war should be tried as war criminals. It is unfortunate to report that the majority leader of the Senate said that this congress is the most corrupt in the history of the U.S. The majority of the members of the U.S. congress supported the invasion of Iraq to satisfy lobbyists who foot the bill for their elections.

Bin Laden’s strategy, as he put it after 9/11, is that while al-Qaeda can’t defeat the U.S. militarily, they can ruin it economically. Unfortunately, he was right. Dr. Joseph Stigiltz pointed out in his article “The Price of 9/11” that “President George W. Bush’s response to the attacks compromised America’s basic principles, undermined the economy and weakened its security. The attack on Afghanistan that followed the 9/11 attacks was understandable, but the subsequent invasion of Iraq was entirely unconnected to al-Qaeda, as much as Bush tried to establish a link. That war of choice quickly became very expensive.”

Dr. Stigiltz continued to explain that three years ago, he and Dr. Linda Bilms estimated America’s war cost to be around $3 – 5 trillion, but since then the cost has mounted further. He also pointed out that the invasion of Iraq was the first war in U.S. history paid for entirely on credit. The direct government spending on those wars so far amount to roughly $2 trillion, or $17,000 for every U.S. household, with bills yet to be received increasing this amount by more than 50%, according to Dr. Stigiltz.

I am sure that bin Laden probably never thought that the economic cost to the U.S. would reach that magnitude. It is also unfortunate that those who were responsible for undermining U.S. security and its economic disasters are still free and busy writing their own biographies of their roles in the Iraq war to earn more dollars and continue to mislead the American public.

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