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US Cost For Iraq War Could Reach $6 Trillionn;
Try Tony Blair As War Criminal, Finds A Poll

By Countercurrents.org

15 March, 2013

More than half of Britons believe Tony Blair was wrong to invade Iraq, while 22% tell he should be tried as a war criminal. A poll conducted to mark the 10th anniversary of the war finds[1].

Richard Norton-Taylor reported:

A majority (56%) of the public believe the war has increased the risk of a terrorist attack on Britain. More than half, (53%), of those questioned think the invasion was wrong, while just over a quarter (27%) think it was right, according to the YouGov survey.

The poll registered a marked gender difference, with almost a third (32%) of men approving the invasion compared with less than a quarter (23%) of women.

Half of those questioned said they believed Blair deliberately set out to mislead the British public about the threat posed by weapons of mass destruction (WMD). Less than a third (31%) say he genuinely believed Saddam Hussein possessed a stockpile of WMD.

More than a fifth (22%) believes Blair knowingly misled parliament and the public and should be tried as a war criminal over the conflict, according to the poll. The figure compares with almost three in 10 (29%) who say he was right to warn of dangers of the Hussein regime, 18% who think he misled people but we should move on and 15% who believe he did not intend to give false information about the threat.

The poll records that a decade after the invasion 41% thinks Iraqis are better off than they would have been under Hussein, and just over a fifth (21%) believe the Iraqis would have been better off under the dictator. However, more than seven in 10n (71%) say Iraq is likely to be a permanently unstable country over the next few years.

In 2010, as the Chilcot inquiry was under way, hearing highly critical evidence about how Britain went to war, 37% thought Blair should be tried for war crimes, according to a ComRes poll at the time.

At the time of the invasion, 53% of those polled said they believed military action against Iraq was right.

The cost of Iraq War could be higher

A report [2] said:

The US war in Iraq has cost $1.7 trillion (£1.1tn) with an extra $490 billion in benefits owed to war veterans, expenses that could grow to more than $6tn (£4tn) over the next four decades with interest, a new study has found.

The war killed at least 134,000 Iraqi civilians and may have led to the deaths of four times that number, said the Costs of War Project by the Watson Institute for International Studies at Brown University, ahead of the tenth anniversary of the US-led invasion on March 19.

Cost of the war

An AFP report carried by Khaleej Times said [3]:

At least 116,000 Iraqi civilians and more than 4,800 coalition troops died in Iraq between the outbreak of war in 2003 and the US withdrawal in 2011, researchers estimated on March 15, 2013.

Its involvement in Iraq has so far cost the US $810 billion (625 billion euros) and could eventually reach $3 trillion, they added.

The estimates come from two US professors of public health, reporting in the British peer-reviewed journal The Lancet.

They base the figures on published studies in journals and on reports by government agencies, international organizations and news media.

The paper is authored by Barry Levy of Tufts University School of Medicine in Boston and Victor Sidel of the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York.

It appears in a package of investigations into the health consequences of the Iraq War, published by The Lancet to mark the 10th anniversary of the start of the conflict.

‘We conclude that at least 116,903 Iraqi non-combatants and more than 4,800 coalition military personnel died over the eight-year course’ of the war from 2003 to 2011, they said. ‘Many Iraqi civilians were injured or became ill because of damage to the health-supporting infrastructure of the country, and about five million were displaced.

‘More than 31,000 US military personnel were injured and a substantial percentage of those deployed suffered post-traumatic stress disorder, traumatic brain injury, and other neuropsychological disorders and their concomitant psychosocial problems.’

Citing figures from the website costofwar.com, which looks at funding allocated by Congress, the study said that as of January 15 this year, the Iraq War had cost the United States about $810 billion, ‘not including interest on debt.’ ‘The ultimate cost of the war to the USA could be $3 trillion,’ it said.

‘Clearly, this money could have been spent instead on domestic and global programs to improve health. The diversion of human resources was also substantial, in Iraq, the USA, and other coalition countries.’

In 2006, estimates by researchers at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland, also published in The Lancet, said 655,000 people had died in the first 40 months of the war. That figure was widely contested.

In 2008, a study by the Iraqi government and World Health Organisation (WHO), published in The New England Journal of Medicine, said between 104,000 and 223,000 Iraqis had died violent deaths between March 2003 and June 2006.

Those figures were based on home visits to around 1,000 neighborhoods across the country.


[1] guardian.co.uk, March 14, 2013, “53% of Britons think Iraq invasion was wrong, poll shows”,

[2] scotsman.com, March 15, 2013, “Iraq war could cost US $6tn”,

[3] March 15, 2013, “Iraq war killed 120,000, cost $800 billion”,





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