Iraq war bill: $ 2 trillion and rising

Updated 15 March 2013
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Iraq war bill: $ 2 trillion and rising

The US war in Iraq has cost $ 1.7 trillion with an additional $ 490 billion in benefits owed to war veterans, expenses that could grow to more than $ 6 trillion over the next four decades counting interest, a study released yesterday said.
The war has killed at least 134,000 Iraqi civilians and may have contributed to the deaths of as many as four times that number, according to the Costs of War Project by the Watson Institute for International Studies at Brown University.
When security forces, insurgents, journalists and humanitarian workers were included, the war’s death toll rose to an estimated 176,000 to 189,000, the study said.
The report, the work of about 30 academics and experts, was published in advance of the 10th anniversary of the US-led invasion of Iraq on March 19, 2003.
It was also an update of a 2011 report the Watson Institute produced ahead of the 10th anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks that assessed the cost in dollars and lives from the resulting wars in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Iraq.
The 2011 study said the combined cost of the wars was at least $ 3.7 trillion, based on actual expenditures from the US Treasury and future commitments, such as the medical and disability claims of US war veterans. That estimate climbed to nearly $4 trillion in the update.
The estimated death toll from the three wars, previously at 224,000 to 258,000, increased to a range of 272,000 to 329,000 two years later.


‘Get out:’ some Mexico border residents reject migrant arrivals

Updated 2 min 52 sec ago
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‘Get out:’ some Mexico border residents reject migrant arrivals

  • A small group of residents of an upscale neighborhood in the Mexican border of Tijuana confronted caravan migrants
  • With some exceptions, Mexico has welcomed the Central Americans, offering food and lodging in towns during their journey

TIJUANA, Mexico: Demonized by US President Donald Trump and exhausted after a harrowing journey, members of Central American migrant caravans now face a new threat: open hostility from some Mexicans on the US border.

A small group of residents of an upscale neighborhood in the Mexican border of Tijuana confronted caravan migrants late on Wednesday, throwing stones and telling them to go back to their home countries.
“Get out of here,” a group of around 20 people shouted at a camp of Hondurans near the border. “We want you to return to your country. You are not welcome.”
Migrants shouted back, in a confrontation that belied Tijuana’s reputation as a free-wheeling, tolerant city and lasted into the early hours of Thursday. Dozens of police arrived at the scene.
A caravan of thousands of mostly Honduran migrants who are fleeing violence and poverty at home set off for the United States in mid-October, with the bulk of them still to arrive at the border. Other large bands of mostly Salvadorans have followed behind.
Trump has declared the caravans an “invasion,” and has sent some 5,800 troops to “harden” the border, including with barbed wire.
With some exceptions, Mexico has welcomed the Central Americans, offering food and lodging in towns during their journey. The migrants said they were stunned by the hostile attitude in Tijuana.
“We are not criminals. Why do treat us like this if everywhere we have traveled in Mexico they treated us well?” migrants shouted back. “Think about the children who are here, please.”
Tensions began brewing several days ago when residents complained about a group of 80 or so LGBT migrants who broke away from the caravan and arrived in an upscale part of the Playas de Tijuana neighborhood, near where the stones were thrown.
A popular party town for US tourists, Tijuana has a history of absorbing visitors, including Chinese immigrants in the 19th century. It has a large American population and some 3,000 Haitians settled in the city, just south of San Diego, in 2016 after failing to cross the US border.
But the arrival of hundreds of members of the caravans has stretched to the limit migrant shelters that were already overflowing with people. While Tijuana’s traditional generosity was also on display, with the government setting up a new shelter and citizens offering food and clothing, a harder attitude also emerged.
Reuters gained access to a WhatsApp chat group called “Citizen Blockade” where some 250 members using strong language discussed strategies to harass the migrants or block their arrival.
Tijuana’s city government opened a shelter for 360 people of an estimated 810 that arrived this week, and officials warned there was little room to house more than 2,000 more who are expected to arrive this week.
Irineo Mujica, representative of the organization Pueblos Sin Fronteras, which is advising the migrants in the caravan, said the migrants wanted to seek asylum in the United States.
Their arrival adds to already long lines of people who have been waiting their turn at the Tijuana crossing. Last week, Trump suspended the granting of asylum to migrants who cross the US-Mexico border illegally.
“We are looking for solutions, not confrontations,” Mujica said following the clash with Mexicans as a helicopter hovered above, surveying the scene from the American side.