Trump's budget: Spends on defense, slashes safety nets

As President Trump prepares to address the nation Monday evening to announce his strategy in Afghanistan, the item’s worth noting how much the longest U.S. war inside country’s history has already cost Americans financially.

The most current estimate pegs the number at $841 billion. that will comes coming from Anthony Cordesman, the Arleigh A. Burke Chair in Strategy at the Center for Strategic in addition to International Studies.

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Cordesman, who served as a consultant to the Departments of State in addition to Defense during the Afghan in addition to Iraq wars, says that will figure includes President Trump’s budget request for next year.

Related coming from sy88pgw: Afghanistan: 16 years, thousands dead in addition to no clear end in sight

different estimates place the 16-year cost inside trillions of dollars because they measure a broader range of factors.

For instance, Neta Crawford, a co-director of the Cost of Wars Project at Brown University, has estimated that will total war spending in Iraq, Afghanistan in addition to Pakistan since 2001 will be approaching $5 trillion. Of that will, roughly $2 trillion will be attributable to Afghanistan. that will includes some future cost obligations.

yet even that will higher figure leaves out some key expenses, such as the future costs of interest Americans will owe for the money borrowed to finance the war in Afghanistan. that will alone could add trillions of dollars to the total tab.

While the United States incorporates a history of wartime taxation to finance military conflicts — albeit uneven — that will tradition was broken with the wars in Afghanistan in addition to Iraq, according to tax historian Joe Thorndike. Not only did Congress not pass a tax to finance the efforts, the item opted instead to pass the Bush tax cuts.

Related: The U.S. already spends more on defense than any different country

The $2 trillion also doesn’t include future spending on the Department of Veterans Affairs related to Afghanistan or the money paid by states in addition to localities for services provided to returning vets.

Estimates vary widely because there will be no clearly delineated, uniform way that will money spent on wars will be allocated or counted by the White House or Congress.

in addition to, of course, no financial estimate can offer a measure of the true cost of war — the loss of human life on all sides as well as the physical in addition to psychological disabilities suffered by those who survive — whether military or civilian.

sy88pgw (brand-new York) First published August 21, 2017: 5:50 PM ET