For the price of the Iraq War, we could've hunted down Osama Bin Laden by placing a fully equipped M1 Abrams battle tank on every square mile of Afghanistan and staffing them entirely with duplicates of General Petraeus.
The heavily armored 67-ton M1 Abrams battle tank, which carries four crew members, is the principal combat tank of the American armed forces. A fully equipped M1 Abrams costs $4.30 million. General David Petraeus, who oversaw all US forces in Iraq, earns $180,000 per year. The area of Afghanistan is 251,772 square miles Putting an M1 Abrams on each square mile of Afghanistan and staffing them entirely with Petraeus duplicates drawing a salary equal to his would cost $1.26 trillion, which is less than half of Joseph Stiglitz and Linda Bilmes' estimate of $3 trillion for the cost of the Iraq War.