Cost of Operation Desert Shield and Desert Storm and Allied Contributions

T-NSIAD-91-34: Published: May 15, 1991. Publicly Released: May 15, 1991.

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GAO discussed the Office of Management and Budget's (OMB) and the Department of Defense's (DOD) cost estimates of Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm. GAO noted that: (1) from the inception of the operation in August 1990 through February 1991, OMB reported incremental costs of $31.6 billion, including combat costs; (2) OMB has found no evidence to dispute the DOD $12.2-billion cost estimate for a 3-month post-combat period and redeployment; (3) the GAO-estimated incremental funding requirements for fiscal year (FY) 1991 was about $33 billion, which was lower than the OMB and DOD $60-billion cost estimate, mainly because OMB included FY 1990 costs which had already been funded, used cost estimates rather than actual costs, and included anticipated expenditures that may not result in the obligation of funds; and (4) U.S. allies contributed about $32 billion to the defense cooperation account and were expected to contribute an additional $15.3 billion. GAO believes that the overall operation costs could total more than $100 billion including $50 billion to raise, equip, and maintain the deployed force.

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