Tags: war on terror | middle east | jerrod laber

Cost of War on Terror Not Worth It and Not Needed, Expert Argues

Cost of War on Terror Not Worth It and Not Needed, Expert Argues

The house of the Islamic Jihad leader Baha Abu Al Ata damaged after an Israeli air raid. (Saud Abu Ramadan/picture-alliance/dpa/AP)

By    |   Sunday, 17 November 2019 10:26 PM

The financial cost of the war on terror is unjustified and not needed in order to keep the United States safe, argues Jerrod Laber, a fellow at Defense Priorities, in an op-ed published Sunday in the Washington Examiner.

A recent Brown University’s Costs of War Project report estimates that the U.S. has spent $5.4 trillion on conflicts since 9/11, which is about 50 times more expensive than the Marshall Plan and gobbles up about a quarter of the U.S. annual economic output.

Despite this cost, in addition to the death of thousands of American soldiers in battling terrorists, the U.S. does not have much to show for it after nearly two decades, Laber writes.

The Middle East is more unstable than it has been in a century and Afghanistan, despite more than 18 years of American investment and troop presence, remains a corrupt state that would likely collapse without the international community's backing.

Laber says that even the defeat of Islamic State in Syria and Iraq is not a full-fledged victory, because it was U.S. intervention that helped create ISIS.

While defenders of the war on terror argue that the fact the U.S. has not suffered another 9/11-scale attack has made the cost worth it, Laber contends this success is not due to American presence in Middle Eastern countries.

Instead, he said the U.S. has made significant strides in its ability to track and target terrorists remotely from a distance through drone surveillance, airstrike capability, and in quickly processing intelligence information.

This means the U.S. can disrupt the plans of terrorists to harm Americans at a much lower cost without sacrificing security, and it is this policy that should be pursued, Laber insists.

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The financial cost of the war on terror is unjustified and not needed in order to keep the United States safe, argues Jerrod Laber, a fellow at Defense Priorities, in an op-ed published Sunday in the Washington Examiner.
war on terror, middle east, jerrod laber
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2019-26-17
Sunday, 17 November 2019 10:26 PM
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