With our troops heading into their sixth year in Iraq, it is increasingly obvious that the Bush administration greatly underestimated what a challenge overthrowing and installing a new government can be. At the beginning of the Iraq War, the Bush administration predicted that the war would cost $50 to $60 billion. Five years later, the total cost of the war is far beyond $50 billion.
Five years in, the Pentagon tags the cost of the Iraq war at roughly $600 billion and counting. Joseph E. Stiglitz, a Nobel Prize-winning economist and critic of the war, pegs the long-term cost at more than $4 trillion. The Congressional Budget Office and other analysts say that $1 trillion to $2 trillion is more realistic, depending on troop levels and on how long the American occupation continues.
I don’t know about you, but $4 trillion over budget seems like more than a slight miscalculation to me.
Estimates of Iraq War Cost Were Not Close to Ballpark – [New York Times]