Large Spending Not Unprecedented in U.S. History
This is not original reporting. All information has been compiled from The Washington Post articles "U.S. History: Speak Softly and Carry a Big Check" by David Montgomery and "Democrats in Debate Attack Bush on Iraq, Each Other" by Dan Balz.
President Bush recently suggested that the United States spend $87 billion for the reconstruction of Iraq and Afghanistan. Democratic candidates criticized Bush's proposition yesterday in Detroit, many arguing that the amount was excessive.
Throughout U.S. history, the government has frequently paid large amounts of money for war restoration and reparations. Inflation considered, the U.S. spent $41 billion on the Marshall Plan in 1949, $99 billion on the Vietnam War in 1969, and $9 billion of the $82.5 billion spent during the Persian Gulf War in 1991.
In comparison to these prices, the U.S. spent $3 billion in contributions to the United Nations in 2002 and $4.6 billion on Egyptian and Israeli aid since January 2003.
Bush's proposition of $87 billion in aid for the reconstruction of Afghanistan and Iraq received criticism because it does not include a plan for "stabilizing Iraq and bringing U.S. forces home in a timely fashion," and appears to give Bush control of a "blank check," according Senators John Edwards (N.C.) and Joseph Lieberman (Conn.).
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