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PNS Daily Newscast - November 27, 2020. 


A call on state congressional delegations to speed COVID-19 economic relief; a gap in trapping pollution impacts communities of color.


2020Talks - November 25, 2020 


CORRECTED 2:30pm MST 11/25 - Linda Thomas-Greenfield would be the second Black woman in US UN Ambassador role, Susan Rice was the first. Biden nominees speak; how can social media spread less misinformation and be less polarizing. *2020Talks will not be released 11/26 & 11/27*

Afghanistan Anniversary Cost Check: Eight Years = $228 Billion

October 7, 2009

RICHMOND, Va. - Today (Wednesday) is the eight year anniversary of the U.S. war in Afghanistan. As President Barack Obama huddles with advisers to examine strategy for the war, with requests for more troops from General Stanley McChrystal and other top military officials, its cost is also being analyzed.

According to the National Priorities Project, a nonprofit research organization that analyzes federal data,
the tab is more than $228 billion. Jo Comerford, the group's executive director, says Virginia taxpayers are on the hook for $6 billion of that total. Since such large numbers can be difficult to understand, she explains, her organization breaks the spending down to the local level.

"The $228 billion also means taxpayers in Richmond, Virginia, have spent $115 million. That's 21,000 fully-funded Pell Grants."

Pell Grants are federal, need-based financial aid for students who want to attend college. The combined costs for the conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq will top $1 trillion in March 2010, she adds.

While more military spending is often equated with better national security, Comerford believes that assumption should be receiving greater scrutiny - not just in terms of how much is being spent, but where it's being spent.

"Right now, our military spending is unbridled. We're not being good stewards of the taxpayers in the United States that we need to be."

Comerford notes that the lives lost in the wars also deserve acknowledgment, although the casualty numbers are not part of these statistics. The full report is online at www.nationalpriorities.org.

Deb Courson/Chris Thomas, Public News Service - VA