Well, let’s go ahead for a second and forget the fact that the international intervention in Libya has followed the predicted route: western bombs have propped up a divided and disorganized rebel movement, created an interminable stalemate and removed any credible threat the west had towards other abusive regimes (I’m looking at you Syria). Just look at what the war in Libya is costing the US economically (At least the US is economically healthy enough right now yo throw around this kind of money):
The cost of military operations is difficult to determine, since the Pentagon has not been forthcoming regarding Libya. Nevertheless, five data points are available either from official releases or media leaks that can be used to extrapolate current expenditures: March 30, $550 million; April 11, $608 million; Mid-May,$664 million; June 3, $714 million; and June 30: $820 million. It is unclear if these numbers include replacing known aircraft loses, including the crashes of an F-15 on March 21 (roughly $30 million) and a MQ-8 Fire Scout on June 21 ($9 million). However, it can be assumed that U.S. military operations costs in Libya per month are between $60-$80 million, with total current costs around $1 billion.
$1.1 billion, to be more exact. Ok, as Zenko says, this pales in comparison to the cost of Iraq and Afghanistan (sitting at around $6.2 and $6.7 billion a month) but – like its counterparts in Iraq and Afghanistan – the war in Libya, or the US role in it, does not look like it anytime soon. Moreover, that $1.1 billion dollars has bought the United States absolutely nothing and was certainly spent unwisely:
That the U.S. role has been relatively affordable does not justify an intervention that was hastily assembled, legally dubious, and conducted with limited means that have failed to achieve the ultimate objective, which Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta declared was “to do what we can to bring down the regime of [Libyan leader Muammar] Qaddafi.”
With the amount of money per month this country commits to its wars in the Middle East, should there be any surprise that the US is having major credit issues?
Photo from Laaska