National Journal did the math on the financial costs of our Libyan adventure:
With allies expected to shoulder some of the bill, the initial stages of taking out Libya’s air defenses could ultimately cost U.S.-led coalition forces between $400 million and $800 million, according to a report released by the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments earlier this month.
Maintaining a coastal no-fly-zone after those first strikes would cost in the range of $30 million to $100 million per week – not pocket change by any means, but far less than the $100 million to $300 million estimated weekly cost for patrolling the skies above the entire 680,000-square-mile country.
Needless to say, military engagements -- especially those involving high-tech weapons like $1 million-a-pop Tomahawk cruise missiles -- become very expensive very quickly.
That fact makes it all the more striking that the Obama administration launched the bombing raids without consulting Congress. For comparison's sake, the Republican-led House has spent recent weeks arguing over such issues as the Corporation for Public Broadcasting ($422 million in annual federal funding) and Planned Parenthood (roughly $325 million in annual federal funding).