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Infographic: Visualizing The True Cost Of War

Tyler Durden's picture


While we have shown some quite fascinating infographics (here and here) from the folks at Demonocracy, this one may be the most informative. Because while everyone knows by now that if the global "bailout" to preserve the insolvent ponzi were to be paid in crisp, physical $100 bills, the amount of money required would fill countless skyscrapers, and only pales compared to the the amount of money needed to fund the insolvent welfare state which at last check was at over a quarter of a quadrillion, it is another less appreciated aspect of the daily US spending routine that is arguably just as big an offender when it comes to endless wanton spending: the cost of war. Below we present just that, in a series of simple, easy to understand charts that even Nobel peace prize winners should grasp.

The true cost of war:


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Wed, 02/15/2012 - 00:22 | 2160615 Seasmoke
Seasmoke's picture

where are the star of david coffins ?

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 00:29 | 2160628 mt paul
mt paul's picture

war is good 

for the GDP

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 00:30 | 2160632 Bansters-in-my-...
Bansters-in-my- feces's picture

Hey...It doe not show Irans war cost...?

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 00:37 | 2160636 alien-IQ
alien-IQ's picture

I guess there is no canvas large enough to draw all the coffins you'd need to count the civilian casualties.

That's the missing cost in this presentation.

Some pretty staggering numbers:

Why do we ignore the civilians killed in American wars?

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 00:38 | 2160643 Grey-Ghost
Grey-Ghost's picture

Fraud, destruction and death - three pillars of pillage a.k.a. American Economy.


Wed, 02/15/2012 - 00:46 | 2160657 SoCalBusted
SoCalBusted's picture

But that is only half the calculus.  What is the cost of not going to war?

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 00:54 | 2160669 LetThemEatRand
LetThemEatRand's picture

Peace.  Very expensive and undesirable for the .01% of the population that run the world.

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 03:02 | 2160813 SoCalBusted
SoCalBusted's picture

Thanks for all the down votes.  So war is never an option?  When our enemies (yes, believe it or not, we have enemies) know that. we are doomed.

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 07:08 | 2160988 Acet
Acet's picture

The cost of not having done something is a huge unknown. There is a near infinite number of scenarios and as such what-if scenarios can be made to justify any and all positions.

Your approach of making an open-ended appeal to what-if we didn't go to war, rather than suggesting a different but concrete option (for example, "what if our monetary help to Paquistan was dependent on them keeping Al-quaeda down") indicates that your position is likelly in favor of the war and you are keeping your options open so that you can invent scenarios on the spot to try and counter any argument from others.

The discussion here is not about imaginary what-ifs - what we have in front of us is an action that has been already taken and we now know with certainty the cost of it (and likelly that cost has been underestimated) and can make a judgement based to that. Open-ended "what-if we didn't do that" questions are in the domain of ideological, imaginary conjectures rather than cold and logical evaluation of the facts on the ground.

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 08:55 | 2161142 kralizec
kralizec's picture

I like certainty as well.  But when that mushroom cloud goes up over a US city, well, oops, sorry!  It is also equally the domain of "ideological imaginary conjectures" to argue non-military courses of action, yes?  It is also naive to think all nations (cough, Middle East) are run by sane non-idelogical logical people who value life the same way we do.

'Jus sayin'.

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 01:07 | 2160689 JTBfromtheWL
JTBfromtheWL's picture

I concluded the more we spend the more are killed.

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 01:44 | 2160733 falun bong
falun bong's picture

What Americans miss, because it's all around them and they don't know any different, is the cult of war that permeates the nation. Instead of being a necessary evil, used only when the nation is threatened, war has become a permanent feature of American life, the economy, and the culture.

So we get shots during the Superbowl of American troops in Afghanistan and everybody goes "Boo-Yah!"...instead of asking why the hell they are there, what the mission could possibly be, who are we killing and why, and how America and our children and grandchildren can possibly borrow enough money to keep paying for it. And don't start about "9-11": the CIA and DOD themselves say there's no al-Qaeda in Afghanistan. So what is the mission? Let's face it, the mission is to borrow money to blow stuff up so we can then go borrow money to rebuild it. All that death, all that hatred it generates in people around the world, is for bankers and military contractors. And the sheeple go along, are anesthetized with TV images of glory and "patriotism". 

The brainwashing happens in subtle and not-so-subtle ways. Ever since Fox bought National Geographic the changes have been there to see. When I was growing up, National Geographic was about beautiful wild nature and interesting primitive cultures. Now every other eipsode is about some disgusting new tank or weapon. "Look at these great new ways we're inventing to kill people...isn't that cool?" Boo-yah.

There's a simple way to break out of this cycle of destruction. It begins with awareness. Then there's commitment, to candidates who understand it and fight it. It's the biggest, most important, and best mission we could have.

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 01:57 | 2160747 JR
JR's picture

Iraqi Deaths Due to U.S. Invasion: 1,455,590.

Says Just Foreign Policy: “The number is shocking and sobering. It is at least 10 times greater than most estimates cited in the US media, yet it is based on a scientific study of violent Iraqi deaths caused by the U.S.-led invasion of March 2003…

“The estimate that over a million Iraqis have died received independent confirmation from a prestigious British polling agency in January 2008. Opinion Research Business estimated that the death toll between March 2003 and August 2007 was 1,033,000.

“This devastating human toll demands greater recognition. It eclipses the Rwandan genocide and our leaders are directly responsible. Little wonder they do not publicly cite it.”

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 04:24 | 2160873 vh070
vh070's picture

Not surprising, the ratio is similar in most wars.

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 03:35 | 2160843 resurger
resurger's picture


The fact's are very simple for Afghanistan the invasion was for the following reason's

1- Set a base to attack iran

2- increase/secure the drug trade, CIA , Mossad , and the Indian RAW

3- Secure the Israeli TAPI pipeline (Turkmistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan and India)

What is the collateral damage:

1.2 Million Afghanis have been murdered in teh 10 years invasion , 3.2 Million displaced from their homeland.


Paul Wolfowitz said they can cover the costs of war in Iraq in 2 years and then he becomes the head of the World BAnk, they have never recovered the war costs, NEVER!


see how many dead men, soliders, widows, women and childern are out there now... There is no such thing as Iraq, its a waste land.





Wed, 02/15/2012 - 07:54 | 2161014 10mm
10mm's picture

Smedley Butler had it pegged.Spoke the utmost truth regarding war.

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 04:45 | 2160889 AnAnonymous
AnAnonymous's picture

What Americans miss, because it's all around them and they don't know any different, is the cult of war that permeates the nation. Instead of being a necessary evil, used only when the nation is threatened, war has become a permanent feature of American life, the economy, and the culture.


Falun Bong? That is chinese.

It gives some ground to US citizens who claim that one has to be a Chinese to see obvious facts.

Dont worry, US citizenism is coming to your home.

Here's an article written by a US citizen on the way US citizenism is spreading into China

Notice how the US citizen who wrote that felt the urge of kicking the can by claiming that fascism is spreading while it is US citizenism spreading and by adopted by Chinese.

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 10:25 | 2161477 moondog
moondog's picture

Hello Chinese government propaganda spambot. I've visited your website -->

Thank you for the information on US citizenism. Perhaps you can provide information on Chinese citizenism in your next posting.

I've heard exciting information regarding how blobbing is the eternal nature of the Chinese citizen.

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 01:44 | 2160735 q99x2
q99x2's picture

That's a scary batch of ghosts to have to reckon with. Someone is accumulating a lot of negative karma points. No one can say it was for freedom since it is widely recognised that the US has steadily had its freedom eroded over the last decade. What was all that for?

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 01:54 | 2160744 Bringin It
Bringin It's picture

Bomb in Bangkok.  The only casualty is the perp, who's legs are gone.  Thrown bomb, bounced off a tree, and landed at his feet!?!

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 04:26 | 2160875 vh070
vh070's picture

The grenade probably rebounded off a telephone pole.  If it rebounded off the taxi he was aiming for then even better.

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 02:59 | 2160758 resurger
resurger's picture

“I am driven with a mission from God. God would tell me, 'George go and fight these terrorists in Afghanistan'. And I did. And then God would tell me 'George, go and end the tyranny in Iraq'. And I did." -     George W. Bush

Terrorist's now in a hood near you...


Wed, 02/15/2012 - 02:22 | 2160779 jack stephan
jack stephan's picture

Egon: Let's see what happens when we take away the puppy.

Good morning somewhere dickheads, it's always something but not on valentines

It's every new Yorkers right to treat others like dirt it's everyone's god given right.....

Weird night carry on

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 02:31 | 2160787 JR
JR's picture
Says Pat Buchanan in On to Tehran – or Is It Damascus?:

“And, predictably, with the death toll rising, those champions of world democratic revolution – John McCain, Joe Lieberman and Lindsey Graham – have begun beating the drums for U.S. aid to a 'Free Syrian Army'. …

“Danielle Pletka of the American Enterprise Institute, Neocon Central, is also pushing the Iranian angle.

"'Syria is the soft underbelly of Iran, Tehran's most important ally, conduit for arms and cash to terrorists. ... A unique confluence of American moral purpose and America's strategic interest argue for intervention in Syria. ... It's time to start arming the Free Syrian Army.'"

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 02:42 | 2160795 Zero Govt
Zero Govt's picture

"..easy to understand charts that even Nobel peace prize winners should grasp."

..and Nobel economists, like Paul 'War = Wealth' Krugman maybe?

Drop it like it's Hot (Not)

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 05:54 | 2160951 old naughty
old naughty's picture

so that's the reason they want it back, for he isn't grasping it?


Wed, 02/15/2012 - 09:31 | 2161279 TheFourthStooge-ing
TheFourthStooge-ing's picture

Fuck off, spammer. Your props2009 account got deleted for spamming your crummy little capital3x site. How many more accounts do you have in reserve? is a fraudulent operation whose business plan is based on spam.


Wed, 02/15/2012 - 03:03 | 2160814 giovanni_f
giovanni_f's picture

"cost of war": How do > 1 million killed civilians look against all soldiers killed. Idea: A mountain of coffins, some neocons to the left (to give some perspective), subtitle from a NYT "weapons of mass distruction found".

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 03:09 | 2160819 Nachdenken
Nachdenken's picture

War is an industry, a growth part of any GDP.  See what it brings us - internally jobs, massive r+d advancements, externally it brings influence, access to raw materials, commodities, did I forget oil, keeps drug routes open.  Why moralise war ? Measure the economic benefits....

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 04:26 | 2160874 Sandmann
Sandmann's picture

It did, but if you imagine 9/11 provided a Stimulus Package to the US economy you have to ask why Greenspan had a lax Monetary Policy at the same time. You might also ask what is wrong with the Us economy that it needs to spend Trillions fighting Wars to fund purchases of consumer goods from China.

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 04:35 | 2160882 vh070
vh070's picture

Sure it creates jobs and advances technology, but when the war ends what else is there to do with all them "jobs" and "technology" other than to start another war.  When you borrow to fund infrastructure, you get a longer lasting bang for your buck, maybe even a profit in the very long run.  Borrowing to fund a war, on the other hand, or launching a war and cutting taxes so it can only be funded by borrowing, you're likely to ruin the economy.

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 04:21 | 2160869 BlackholeDivestment
BlackholeDivestment's picture

...mercy, that is the cost of war.

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 05:01 | 2160911 reutersanalyst
Wed, 02/15/2012 - 09:36 | 2161297 TheFourthStooge-ing
TheFourthStooge-ing's picture

More spam from the idiot whose props2009 account was deleted for spamming.

His crummy little site is a fraud with a business model based on spamming.

Quick now, props2009, I mean reutersanalyst, go make another account so you can keep spamming after this account is deleted, you worthless piece of shit.


Wed, 02/15/2012 - 06:02 | 2160952 Scrilla
Scrilla's picture

Really interesting graphics. But jesus christ, you guys are so shit-full of political conspiracy it's kind of embarrasing. 

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 06:21 | 2160957 Disenchanted
Disenchanted's picture




"I'm already against the next war"


The moment war is declared, however, the mass of the people, through some spiritual alchemy, become convinced that they have willed and executed the deed themselves. They then, with the exception of a few malcontents, proceed to allow themselves to be regimented, coerced, deranged in all the environments of their lives, and turned into a solid manufactory of destruction toward whatever other people may have, in the appointed scheme of things, come within the range of the Government's disapprobation. The citizen throws off his contempt and indifference to Government, identifies himself with its purposes, revives all his military memories and symbols, and the State once more walks, an august presence, through the imaginations of men. Patriotism becomes the dominant feeling, and produces immediately that intense and hopeless confusion between the relations which the individual bears and should bear toward the society of which he is a part. ~ Randolph Bourne 1918

Excerpt from War Is The Health Of The State:

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 06:37 | 2160967 Disenchanted
Disenchanted's picture



War(What Is It Good For?)


Nothing...but profits and power for a select few.

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 06:42 | 2160970 JOYFUL
JOYFUL's picture

The article is badly titled, as it implies that the various satrapies of the terrorist state which rules over the west are collectively involved in a war, or wars, against an opposing military force, rather than campaigns of mass terror against the entire populations of those countries.

It should be more than clear by now that acts of aggression directed by a terrorist state such as israel can only involve terrorism, which implicates all involved as terrorists, beyond the rules of 'civilized warfare' but not beyond the natural laws of retribution. While it would be natural to assume the innocence of those duped into fighting in the cause of international state-sponsored terrorism, the sad truth is that the cabbalist-controlled terror state which mandates this mass terror greatly desires that its chosen dupes suffer all of the guilt and blowback that accrues from the torture, killing and terorrizing of civilian populations. Cabbalists always dump their sins onto others. Hence there are no innocent dupes any longer. This can be ignored but not escaped.

In 1956 I eagerly swallowed all of Ben-Gurion's political and military reasons for Israel initiating the Suez War, until he (in spite of being an atheist, proud of his disregard of the commandments of Jewish religion) pronounced in the Knesset on the third day of that war, that the real reason for it is 'the restoration of the kingdom of David and Solomon' to its Biblical borders. At this point in his speech, almost every Knesset member spontaneously rose and sang the Israeli national anthem. -Israel Shanak


The last 'war' that was fought by America(irregardless of it's dubious legitimacy or motives) was in Vietnam, almost 50 years ago. At that time, a large network of jewish American and European youth protested vigorously against the war and those who fought it. The image of the military was changed by this campaign into that of an oppressive arm of a military-industrial complex, and ordinary Americans induced to call their own servicemen cowards and bullies. That stayed the dominant view until the Gulf "wars" ushered in the new era of foreign adventurism in direct support of isreali expansionary policy, at which time it again became patriotic to 'support the troops.'

Unfortunately most of the casualites of these latter American incursions have been at the hands of the authorities in charge of the operations themselves, rather than any fictitious enemy, as troops have been poisoned repeatedly by toxic compounds and vaccines then sent home to suffer disability in silence and neglect.

In 1967 the USS Liberty was attacked by israeli aircraft while collecting intelligence data off the coast of Eygpt.  Mark Bamford's book Body of Secrets has detailed how this act of terrorism was recorded by an NSA plane and covered up by Amerikan politicians and media. The successful(for israel) conclusion of the 6 day war marked a sea change of opinion amongst the previously 'anti-war American jewish left. 

For American Jews this conflict involving Israel had quite a different aura from Vietnam. Many Jews found themselves surprised at how deeply they felt Israel's crisis and triumph as they lived through it.

From that point on, the core self-identity of most of that generation of  American jewry has not deviated from unequivocable support for the sionist state, ascendant over all other loyalties. These are the people who now exercise almost total control over American political and economic realities. Not all of them are actual cabbalists, but they are all controlled by cabbalists, and work diligently to control the debate over the wisdom of Americans fighting and dying on behalf of the terror state of israel. Of course, it is not  considered polite to mention this.

Whatever the true cost of war, the true cost of enlisting as proxies in a campaign of terror appears to be a loss of self-determination and even the most basic liberties.

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 08:08 | 2161036 firstdivision
firstdivision's picture

I'd like to see them add in Iraqi/Afghani civilian deaths/costs into this as well.

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 08:28 | 2161085 Widowmaker
Widowmaker's picture

Blood for oil. Someone has to say it, "mission accomplished!"

Record bonuses eating the middle class. Fucking corruption inc.

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 08:41 | 2161104 MFL8240
MFL8240's picture

Kind of early to post these photos, the clown is about to get us involved in yet another war to help his reelection. 

Wed, 02/15/2012 - 09:07 | 2161173 sooner_gold
sooner_gold's picture

Yet, you could cut the entire DoD and still not balance the budget.  it's so easy to throw stones at Defense.  When are we going to see articles about the "true cost of entitlements".  Social Security, Medicare, and Medicade is what's breaking the budget, not the DoD.  At some point, we need to discuss how to cut entitlements.

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