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May 08 2011

The Cost of Osama

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Osama Bin Laden has cost the United States over $3 trillion throughout the past 15 years. From the war and increase in U.S. security prompted by the terrorist attacks he directed, the issues he brought upon our domestic economy and the direct efforts to hunt him down, Bin Laden has become “the most expensive public enemy in American history.”
In result of Bin Laden’s actions, the United States has over 150,000 troops occupied in war in the Middle East which is drying up a quarter of our defense budget. The soaring oil prices are also related to the global war on Bin Laden’s terrorist network and involvements. Our national debt continues to increase at a rapid pace, heavily impacting the United States economy.
Our largest expense has been spent on development of an unmanned aircraft, Predator drones. Linda Bilmes, a professor at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government stated, “We have spent a huge amount of money which has not had much effect on the strengthening of our military, and has had a very weak impact on our economy.”
Although Bin Laden is dead, is this exactly what he had wanted? The United States’ debt is persisting to increase and the economy is weakening. In a taped speech Bin Laded stated, “We are continuing this policy in bleeding America to the point of bankruptcy.” Part of his goal was to “make generals race there to cause America to suffer human, economic and political losses without their achieving anything of note other than some benefits for their private corporations.”
On May 1st, the United States’ government confirmed that the World’s Most Wanted Man had been killed. Many Americans felt a sigh of relief and closure, some celebrated, and others grew more concerned of al-Qaeda’s retaliation. I think America definitely gained a moral victory with Bin Laden’s death. His death also probably boosted morale throughout the troops deployed. Unfortunately a moral victory only lasts so long. Eventually people are going to realize the amount of time, money and lives were lost because of this man’s life. Was he really worth all of what we lost? As an American I am very relieved Osama Bin Laden is dead, however I am not fully satisfied with his death.