Coward Old Universe…

by Jeremy G.

Archive for the ‘cost-benefit analysis’ Category

The Benefits of the Global War on Terror

Posted by Jeremy Ghez on June 4, 2007

The latest terror plot recently uncovered could have been twice as worse as 9-11, according to some reports.  It also goes to show that, beyond the chronic instability in Iraq and in Afghanistan, the Global War on Terror is an ungrateful task: Failure leads to dreadful consequences whereas success allows for business as usual.

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This explains why a general assessment of the current Administration efforts to curb the terror threat on American soil is necessary, in order to evaluate the efficiency of security spending since 9-11

In the working paper available for download below, I offer a first crack at such an assessment, relying on a cost-benefit analysis and testimonies from the U.S. Intelligence Community in front of the Senate Select Committee on IntelligenceI find that if, between 2001 and 2006, the U.S. avoided at least one terror attack that would have caused 20% more damage than 9-11, then security expenditures pass the usual cost-benefit tests. 

The reasoning is still a little sketchy, and there is significant room for approval, especially in assessing the nature of the terror threat the U.S. has faced since 9-11.  That’s why I’m looking forward to any comments readers may have, and ideas or previous work to improve such an assessment.

Download Working Paper (.doc)

Posted in cost-benefit analysis, Global War on Terror | Tagged: , , , | 3 Comments »