Last week, Brown University’s Costs of War Project released a report that revealed a startling statistic: since George W. Bush’s initiation of the “Global War on Terror,” “at least 37 million people have fled their homes [as the result of] the eight most violent wars the U.S. military has launched or participated in.”
The interventions in Afghanistan have resulted in 5.3 million displaced people; Pakistan, 3.7 million; Iraq, 9.2 million; Libya, 1.2 million; Syria, 7.1 million; Yemen, 4.4 million; Somalia, 4.2 million; and the Philippines, 1.7 million. These numbers are “more than those displaced by any other war or disaster since at least the start of the twentieth century with the sole exception of World War II.”
The 37 million figure is a conservative estimate — the total number might be as high as 59 million, if not higher, since no estimation has accounted for the number of Africans driven from their homes due to US military interventions on the continent. These numbers also say nothing of the human toll wrought by displacement. Edward Said, the late Palestinian literary theorist who spent most of his life living outside his homeland, spoke for many when he described exile as “terrible to experience.”
Read the full article in Jacobin.