The End? US to Spend $6.5 Billion in Iraq in 2012

US Envoy Says 'Broad Assistance' to Continue

The ‘end’ of the US occupation of Iraq won’t mean the end of throwing billions of dollars at the nation, with US Ambassador James Jeffrey revealing that the 2012 budget will have $6.5 billion of spending in Iraq.

And most of that is going to be military spending, with the operational budget some $6.2 billion and another $300 million going to “refugee programs.”

That sounds awfully expensive for a war that is supposed to be over before 2012 even begins, but the bulk of it will go to the massive, city-sized US embassy and its 16,000 personnel, meaning that the costs probably won’t be going down from there in the future either.

In an era of budget crunches, such extravagant spending in Iraq would normally be the subject of at least a little controversy, but with eight years of occupation coming to an end there seems to be little stomach to press for curbing expenses further.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.