Skutečné náklady války v Iráku

Nejdůležitější věci v životě – například život sám – jsou neocenitelné. To však ještě neznamená, že otázky týkající se zachování života (nebo způsobu života), jako je například obrana, by neměly být předmětem chladné a tvrdé ekonomické analýzy.

Když ekonom Bushovy administrativy Larry Lindsey krátce před současnou válkou v Iráku odhadl, že se její náklady budou pohybovat mezi jedním a dvěma sty miliardami dolarů, ostatní oficiální činitelé to rychle zpochybnili. Například ředitel Úřadu pro řízení a rozpočet Mitch Daniels uvedl číslo 60 miliard dolarů. Dnes se ukazuje, že i Lindseyovy odhady byly silně podhodnocené.

V obavách, že by Bushova administrativa mohla v otázce nákladů na válku v Iráku uvádět veřejnost v omyl, stejně jako ji uvedla v omyl v otázce iráckých zbraní hromadného ničení a souvislosti s al-Káidou, spojil jsem se s rozpočtovou expertkou Lindou Bilmesovou z Harvardovy univerzity a společně jsme se začali tímto tématem zabývat. Výsledná zjištění naplnila úžasem dokonce i nás samotné jakožto odpůrce irácké války, neboť konzervativní až umírněné odhady se pohybovaly od necelého bilionu po více než dva biliony dolarů.

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