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Jun 26, 2017 - latter report—The Cost of Iraq, Afghanistan, and Other Global War on Terror Operations Since 9/11, CRS RL33110, December 8, 2014— ...
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1616 Rhode Island Avenue NW Washington, DC 20036 Anthony H. Cordesman Phone: 1.202.775.3270 Email: [email protected] Web version: www.csis.org/burke/reports

U.S Military Spending: The Cost of Wars Anthony H. Cordesman [email protected]

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Burke Chair In Strategy

June 26, 2017

Table of Contents Section Introduction and Summary Analysis

Page 3

Summary of Direct Costs of the Afghan War, Iraq War, and Total OCU in Budget Authority vs. Other Illustrative Estimates

17

Cost of Today’s Wars Compared to Past Wars

26

Comparative U.S. vs. Nth Country Military Spending

30

Size and Cost of the Total U.S. Military Effort in Recent Wars and Its Impact as a Percent of GDP

38

Size and Cost of the U.S. Military and Civil Effort (DoD and State/USAID) Overseas Contingency Operations in FY2001-FY2018

46

Cost of the U.S. War Effort as Reported by DoD for Total Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO) in FY2001-FY2018

51

Cost in U.S. Casualties: FY2001-2018

69

Shifting Levels of Military Personnel and Contractors in the Wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Syria: FY2001-2018

72

Funding Civil and Civil-Military Operations

90

The War in Afghanistan: “Decisive Force?”

102

The War in Syria and Iraq: “Decisive Force?”

115

Homeland Defense: The Other War Costs

132

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Introduction and Summary Analysis

6/26/2017

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One of the striking aspects of American military power is how little serious attention is spent on examining the key elements of its total cost by war and mission, and the linkage between the use of resources and the presence of an effective strategy. For the last several decades, there has been little real effort to examine the costs of key missions and strategic commitments and the longer term trends in force planning and cost. Both the Executive Branch and the Congress have failed to reform any key aspect of the defense and foreign policy budgets to look beyond input budgeting by line item and by military service, and doing so on an annual basis. The program budgeting and integrated force planning efforts pioneered towards the end of the Eisenhower Administration—and put into practice in the Kennedy and Johnson Administrations—have decayed into hollow shells. The effort to create meaningful Future Year Defense Programs seem to have been given a final death blow by the Budget Control Act (BCA)—legislation originally designed to be so stupid that the Congress could not possibly accept it. Efforts to integrate net assessment with budget submissions were effectively killed by the Joint Staff decades earlier, during the Reagan Administration.

Critical Failures by Both the Executive Branch and Congress What is even more striking, is the failure of both recent presidents and the Congress to properly analyze and justify the cost of America's wars. If one counts the Cold War, the United States has been at war for virtually every year since 1941. The United States has been actively in combat since late 2001, and there is little prospect that it can end the need to use force to check terrorism and violent extremism within the next decade. Moreover, the Cold War may be over, but the United States still faces strategic challenges from Russia and the emergence of China as a major global power in what is already a multipolar world. "War" may not be the normal state of U.S. national security planning indefinitely into the future, but war—and/or the constant risk of war—is a grim reality of our time. Yet, the Administration and the Congress have tended to treat warfighting as a temporary aberration—as something to be delt with by supplementals or creating short-term budget catego