500. . . . . BILLION

You could buy a lot with that amount of money.

You can even buy five years of war, since on the 20th of this month Americans can 'celebrate' the fifth anniversary of the beginning of Operation Iraqi Freedom and the subsequent occupation of Iraq.

Well before that (in fact, in four days) the total price tag for the war will exceed the title of this post, and the spending continues, to the tune of $275 million a day, over $190,000 per minute. You can learn more about what this is costing our government, and your community, at this site.

Why so costly? Because much of the monies is being used to build permanent American military facilities in the Iraqi desert, on a scale virtually unmatched in the history of the US military. Amazingly, many Americans I mention this to are either completely surprised to learn the depth of that commitment, or (even worse) completely unconcerned about what this commitment implies for the future of that region. It is naive to believe that the next Administration, whatever the party, is simply going to hand off such an investment to the Iraqi government. Iraqis may well have free elections and eventually reach a consensus on how to govern those parts of Iraq that we don't have a tactical interest in, but they will never be free to kick us out, it seems.

In the meantime, I will add a counter to my blog to attest to the most expensive military operation in the history of the world. A desperately sad memento, for which the documentation supporting its model is here.

Click here to learn more

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