Making Peace Vigil

Standing up for peace

THE AFGHANISTAN WAR: WHAT ARE THE REAL COSTS?

Posted by strattof on September 2, 2010

DOLLAR COSTS

  • Canada has already spent between $10 and $16 billion on the war in Afghanistan. 
  • According to the Parliamentary Budget Officer, the total cost of the war will be $18.1 billion–a figure that does not include the cost of billions of dollars of military equipment.  
  • This is money that could have been spent on health care, education, and affordable housing.

 HUMAN COSTS

  • 155 Canadians (including three non-military personnel) have been killed in Afghanistan. Many more have been wounded. Of those who return physically whole, a significant number will face mental health and addiction problems.  
  • 1,271 Afghan civilians were killed by the war in the first six months of 2010, according to the United Nations. At least 223 of these deaths are attributable to action by US-led NATO military forces. So far 2010 has been the most lethal year for Afghan civilians since the war began in 2001.  
  • Over 10,000 Afghan civilians have been killed since the beginning of the war. Many more have been injured. Afghan civilians have also suffered from displacement, the destruction of their homes, and loss of livelihood. 
  • Tens of thousands of Afghan soldiers on both sides of the conflict have been killed.

OPPORTUNITY COSTS

  • What $18.1 billion will get you:

–4 years worth of healthcare for every Saskatchewan resident, or

–4 years worth of tuition for every Canadian university undergraduate, or

–2.7 million affordable housing units–more than enough to house Canada’s 300,000 homeless people, as well as to provide affordable housing to the 1.5 million Canadian households spending more than one third of their income on rent, putting them at significant risk of losing their housing. 

  • What could have been done with the lives lost in Afghanistan?

 FUTURE COSTS

  • The costs won’t stop in 2011, the supposed end-date for Canada’s war. The Canadian government plans to spend $779 million in 2011-2012, with a further $549 million scheduled for 2012-2014.
  • No surprise, then, that just last week Prime Minister Harper let war-weary Canadians know that he has not closed the door on  a post-2011 Canadian military presence in Afghanistan.   

Canadians weary of the war’s cost must turn weariness into action.

Let Stephen Harper know the costs of war are already too high, and he should bring the troops home now: pm@pm.gc.ca

FREE MOVIE: MARK YOUR CALENDAR

Pete Seeger: The Power of Song

The movie documents the life of Pete Seeger, one of the world’s most-loved folk-singers. Seeger has been at the forefront of the struggle for civil rights, the peace and anti-war movement, and the environmental movement. Some of his best known songs are “Where Have All the Flowers Gone?,” “If I Had a Hammer,” and “For Everything There is a Season.”

Wednesday September 8, 7:00 pm

Regina Public Library Film Theatre, 2311 12th Avenue

MAKING PEACE VIGIL September 2 2010

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3 Responses to “THE AFGHANISTAN WAR: WHAT ARE THE REAL COSTS?”

  1. bob said

    OMG

  2. Y U NO GOOD said

    they are the bum bum no gud for nutin old grampas

  3. […] truth, the estimated $18.1-billion    the Harper government will have spent fighting the Taliban, the 161 deaths, and more than 2,000 […]

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