Such A Deal!
Over at Newshoggers Robert Greenwald has a post on what we taxpayers and citizens are getting for the two billion dollars a week we are spending in Afghanistan. Go read it all but here are some of the high points.
He starts with a quote from Andrew Bacevich:
What are Americans getting for their money? Sadly, not much. Despite extraordinary expenditures (not to mention exertions and sacrifices by U.S. forces), the return on investment is, to be generous, unimpressive. The chief lesson to emerge from the battlefields of the post-9/11 era is this: the Pentagon possesses next to no ability to translate “military supremacy” into meaningful victory.
He follows that with some Afghanistan specifics. As we approach the anniversary of Obama’s surge what does Afghanistan look like – what have we gotten for our money?
- Country-wide, 2010 was the most violent year of the war so far. Ten thousand people died in war-related violence, including roughly 500 U.S. troops, thousands of civilians and who knows how many insurgents.
- We spent roughly 20 million on killing each enemy fighter in Afghanistan. Yet, Taliban growth is such that despite reportedly losing more than 5,000 fighters this year, NATO estimates their numbers remain steady across the country.
Is that why nearly two thirds of the American people want us out of Afghanistan? The only beneficiaries of US policy in Afghanistan are the defense contractors who are making billions.