October 24, 2011
JUST THE START OF PENTAGON BUDGET CUTS:What Iraq pullout means to the budget (Lawrence J. Korb and Alexander Rothman, 10/21/11, CNNMoney)
Once the troops withdraw, the country's Iraq-related expenditures should decrease significantly.
According to Obama's fiscal year 2012 budget, total U.S. government funding for operations in Iraq will fall to $15.7 billion this year. That's a drop of 76% from what we spent in 2010.
Moreover, these war costs will continue to decline.
In 2012, the Department of Defense will spend $11 billion to fund the last few months of the occupation and troop withdrawal. These expenditures should fall to nearly zero in 2013, leaving the United States spending just $5 billion annually on Iraq, assuming State Department funding remains stable at 2012 level of $5 billion.
Losing the 1992 election cost the GOP the chance to be the government that reaped the peace dividend after the fall of the Iron Curtain. Thus, Bill Clinton and Democrats get credit for the budget surplus of the 90s, even though the entirety of it came from reducing military expenditures by a few percent of GDP.
We need to avoid a replay of that this time, or Barrack Obama presiding over the next boom will revive a Democratic Party that it poised for a long period in the wilderness.
Posted by Orrin Judd at October 24, 2011 6:35 AM