The Costs of War project at Brown University’s Watson Institute for International Studies has released updated figures for the human and financial costs of the U.S. war in Afghanistan that began 12 years ago on October 7. That war has escalated into Pakistan since 2002; U.S. drone airstrikes began in 2004. The human toll (U.S. soldiers and contractors, allied soldiers, Afghan security forces, insurgents and militants, and civilians) in deaths by direct war violence is now estimated to be at least 145,000 since 2001 in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Costs of War researchers estimate that U.S. financial costs — war spending and war costs obligated for the future such as veterans’ health care — totals $1.6 trillion. An additional $3 trillion may be paid in through 2053 for interest payments on borrowing to finance the war. Complete findings are available at Project co-director Catherine Lutz, the Thomas J. Watson Jr. Family Professor of Anthropology and International Studies at Brown University, will be available for comment and analysis through the Watson Institute.

Read more