By Marcus Brooks,
During the second world war, unprecedented federal spending resulted in a never-before seen level of government debt. Naturally, as soon as the war ended, America’s debt-to-GDP ratio began to decline. As government spending began to consume less and less of GDP, the economy boomed.
Yet today, even as American armed forces withdraw from Iraq and Afghanistan, which according A new exhaustive analysis undertaken by Harvard Kennedy School Senior Lecturer Linda Bilmes indicates that the U.S. military engagements in Afghanistan and Iraq have resulted in “the most expensive wars in U.S. history.” are the nation’s most expensive wars in history, the economy is still mired in anaemic growth and the national debt continues to skyrocket.
And so it beggars belief as to why president Obama and his minions are banging the drums for military intervention in Syria?
As the US Congress discusses and debates potential action in Syria, it is incumbent upon our national leaders to take note on the fiscal realities of war in the 21st Century. Simply put, neither America nor Britain can afford any more wars that use the traditional manner of funding that we have used in the past.
In previous wars, the American and British people would accept that incurring more debt was a cost offset by the necessity of making the nation — and sometimes, the world — a safer place in response to an existential threat. In those times, citizens understood that the sacrifice of our nation’s service members and the burden of more debt were necessary in order to protect our way of life from irreparable harm.
The realities of America’s national debt make the cost of military intervention for any lesser reason completely unjustified. Therefore, if the President makes the unwise decision to engage militarily in the Syrian conflict, Congress should require spending offsets to match whatever costs are incurred.
I cannot provide you a spread sheet-upon cost of Syrian intervention. However, we can get a generally good idea based upon a few factors:
• Per PolicyMic, Tomahawk Land Attack Missiles (which would be implemental in this conflict) cost approximately $1.4 million each.
• The cost of Air Force tankers in the first weeks of the Libyan conflict alone were over $9 million — never mind the cost of missiles, ships, and the like.
• The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff has said that intervention could cost $1 billion or more per month, depending on the depth of America’s intended mission in Syria.
Let me once more re-iterate the case against intervention. Here they are:
- A dictatorship bent on using chemical weapons against its own people
is unlikely to be deterred by a single series of strikes.
- If as is likely Assad continues to use such weapons after any such
strike, the alternatives are further intervention or backing down.
- Further intervention would mean arming rebels, military advice, a no-fly zone – and perhaps “boots on the ground”. We would thereby assume a share of responsibility for Syria.
- It is most unlikely that Assad would be replaced by pro-western democratic liberals if ousted.
- It is probable that Assad would be replaced by a Muslim Brotherhood-flavoured, Hamas-type regime.
- Extremist Shiites have not carried out terrorist acts in Britain since 9/11: extremist Sunnis have carried out such acts. British troops in Syria would be vulnerable to attacks by both.
- Britain thus has no national interest in intervening in Syria’s civil war. In any event, we can now project less military power abroad than ten years ago.