Woke up with an irritating insect buzzing in my head this morning. It was the cost of American wars. Weird! But, unable to sleep because of all the racket, I got up, climbed upstairs with my laptop and did some research, creating this graph based on data I gathered from a 2010 Congressional Research Services report.
The reason that mental insect was so darn irritating was the same reason that I was not surprised to learn that the post 9/11 invasion of Iraq was the second most expensive American war (WWII #1), toping the next, Vietnam, by 50 billion dollars. That’s in 2011 dollars.
What I can’t figure out is, “Why did Iraq’s cost ($784,000,000,000) represent only 1% of its peak year’s (2008) U.S. GDP, while Vietnam ($738,000,000,000) amounted to 2.3% of its peak year’s (1968) U.S. GDP?
If you have an answer, please comment here.