Since the The Independent newspaper today asks what happened to the $1bn Iraqi defence budget, it seems a good time to mention some research by an old lecturer of mine, Professor Keith Hartley.
Professor Hartley estimates that the total cost of the war in Iraq will be US$1.25 trillion. This bill will be picked up by the US and UK taxpayers, and the new Iraqi state.
“If, at the outset, the Americans anticipated the Iraq operation would cost $100 billion, they could have given Saddam Hussein and his family $20 billion to go, $50 billion to Iraq and still have had $30 billion left over. The UK would not have been involved, no-one would have died and no buildings would have been destroyed. (PDF)