Post-9/11 military costs hit $1.6 trillion

The United States has spent $1.6 trillion on military operations and counterterrorism, including the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, since the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, according to a newly released report by the Congressional Research Service.

“Based on funding enacted from the 9/11 attacks through [fiscal year 2014], CRS estimates a total of $1.6 trillion has been provided to the Department of Defense, the State Department and the Department of Veterans Administration for war operations, diplomatic operations and foreign aid, and medical care for Iraq and Afghan war veterans over the past 13 years of war,” the report, dated Dec. 8, states.

ADVERTISEMENT
Of the $1.6 trillion total, $815 billion was spent on warfare in Iraq and $686 billion was spent in Afghanistan.

Another $81 billion went toward other “war-designated” funding, and $27 billion was spent on Operation Nobel Eagle, which conducts air patrols over the U.S.

The price tag includes all operations through the end of fiscal 2014, which ended in September.

It does not includes the roughly $64 billion in Overseas Contingency Operations that was included in the fiscal 2015 budget to pay for efforts against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria.

“The main factor in determining costs is the number of U.S. troops deployed to Afghanistan and Iraq at different points in time,” according to the analysis.

In Iraq, the number of U.S. troops peaked at 165,000 in late 2007 as part of the “surge” strategy implemented by then-President George W. Bush. Soldiers in Afghanistan topped off at 100,000 in 2011, but there are 11,600 in the country today as the U.S. draws down.

The CRS analysis does not include the "life-time" medical costs of caring for the war veterans or "imputed interest on the deficit or potential increases to the base defense budget deemed to be a consequence of the war."