Overlooked Cost of the War: Veterans’ Benefits
by Jackie Speier

Two years after an Army specialist saw half his platoon torn apart in Iraq, he hanged himself in a California backyard. In June, the Army and National Guard recorded 32 suicides, the highest number ever in one month. But his death isn’t in any military report, because the specialist was a veteran when he took his life.

Iraq War Winds Down, but Costs Soar
by Linda J. Bilmes

President Obama announced recently with much fanfare that the number of U.S. troops in Iraq will be down to 50,000 by the end of August. All troops will withdraw by December next year. Clearly it is good news that the United States is finally extricating itself from what has been a long, bloody and unnecessary conflict. But drawing down the number of troops doesn’t mean the end of spending money. Many of the biggest costs are still to be paid.

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