Iraq

The Latest Iraq Body Count

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At least 34,452 Iraqi civilians were killed in violence in the country in 2006, the United Nations said in a report. A further 36,685 people were injured.

That's from a Bloomberg News story which continued:

"The root causes of the sectarian violence lie in revenge killings," the UN said today in an e-mailed statement detailing the report's findings.

Sectarian attacks are causing the migration of Iraq's professional class, the UN said, while the "basic rights and freedoms" of women and other minorities are "profoundly affected by violence and action by insurgents, militias and criminal gangs."

Whole thing here.

Back in 2002, former Reasoner Matt Welch checked out an earlier U.N. study on the effects of economic sanctions against Iraq and found claims about the number of dead children to extremely unreliable. Read "The Politics of Dead Children" here.

Go here for a report on the continuing controversies over the number of death in the Gulf War.

NEXT: Three-Fifths of a Man

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  1. But we’ve gotta win, dontcha see!?

  2. and found claims about the number of dead children to extremely unreliable.

    However, claims of the number of those killed by Saddam and other third world despots go unchallenged.

  3. “However, claims of the number of those killed by Saddam and other third world despots go unchallenged.”

    Not true. Have you not listened to the president of iran when he points out that the Holocaust is a hoax? Syria declared three days of national mourning when Saddam was hanged, so clearly the thugs in Syria like Saddam real well.

    The mass graves in Iraq are a nuisance, I will admit, but maybe those Kurds and Shiites just died of natural causes, or maybe they committed suicide to make Saddam look bad.

  4. When do we start calling this genocide? If what goes on in Darfur is genocide, surely this qualifies.

    Somehow I think the word will only be used by sensible people in the US about Iraq once we pull out in defeat cause the US would never be involved in policies that cause genocide.

  5. Freedom is messy.

  6. Just another birthpang for the new Middle East.

  7. At least 34,452 Iraqi civilians were killed in violence in the country in 2006, the United Nations said in a report. A further 36,685 people were injured.

    Aw come on. 200 casualties a day, 100 of them being deaths? Someone is having problems with the adding machine.

    I’m the last person to be behind this war, but the opposition to it is completely undermined when people make up stats like this. Just like the death toll for the conflict supposedly 600,000. Do some division. It’s not possible.

    Tell the truth and the truth shall set us free from that place.

  8. Syria declared three days of national mourning when Saddam was hanged

    Really? Wow. You can’t make this stuff up.

  9. “200 casualties a day, 100 of them being deaths?”

    Why is that remotely surprising? Dozens of bodies turn up every day in Baghdad alone.

  10. “Aw come on. 200 casualties a day, 100 of them being deaths? Someone is having problems with the adding machine.”

    From todays news reports…

    “Attacks in Iraq today left almost 100 people dead, most of them in Baghdad, Agence France-Presse reported. A suicide bomber and a blast from a booby-trapped car killed 60 students and staff members at Baghdad’s Mustansiriyah University, AFP said. Fifteen people were killed when two bombs went off in a central Baghdad market, a blast on a bus killed four others, and gunmen shot dead 10 people at a market in northeastern Baghdad, AFP reported.”

    It doesn’t seem to be an unusual day in Iraq…

  11. 100 deaths per day is about right; and those are the ones you hear about. There are probably a fair number more that go unreported.

  12. Hit a wire service and start counting. 100 deaths per day is unusual and a story. Normally it’s less than half of that.

  13. But that’s usually just Baghdad.

    And when’s the last time you read a story about civilians killed by the U.S. military? You think that’s stopped?

  14. Thanks Joe, for being so predictable.

  15. TPG: what do you think is the percentage of violent deaths in Iraq that makes it onto a wire service?

    Seriously. I mean, you presumably don’t think it’s 100% – they must miss the occasional murder. Do you think it’s 80%? 50%? 20%? You must have some idea, or else you wouldn’t be so quick to dismiss the UN figure.

  16. Predictably right, wayne.

  17. …as if responding to bad news about the Iraq War by denouncing Saddam is some bolt from the blue no one saw coming.

  18. And when’s the last time you read a story about civilians killed by the U.S. military? You think that’s stopped?

    Well, sure. The article said mostly sectarian violence and revenge killings. Also, they didn’t separately break out the number killed by the US military. What this conveys to me, the typical reader, is that very few of those 30,000 odd deaths were caused by US soldiers and their contractors.

    I still say there should be a Constitutional amendment that says one person gets drafted for every enemy civilian we kill.

  19. Sam,

    What is an “enemy civilian”?

  20. aka collateral damage. we can do the euphemisms however you’d like cause u know what i mean.

  21. TPG (or anyone else):

    I assume the 600,000 figure you mention refers to the Lancet study. Almost no one agrees with this figure, even Iraq Body Count says it is too high.

    However, they did this study twice, the first time back in 2004 (I think), and found hundereds of thousands of deaths both times. We are talking about an internationally respected medical journal using time-tested methodology. I know the figure sounds high, but they didn’t fake it, and I can’t figure out where they went wrong.

    If anyone can tell me why we should consider these studies invalid, please explain. Just because you think the number is to big doesn’t mean you should dismiss it out of hand.

  22. Meh, they’re only killing each other because US troops are an irritant. Pull out and everyone will calm right down.

  23. FACT: People have and are continuing to die because of flawed (intentional or not) US foreign policy. Debating the numbers does not absolve this FACT. The US military, state department policies, and UN representation are responsible for Iraqi civilians dying. period. This is irrefutable and only a fool would argue this point. Is how many important? My tax money being used to kill one child is too many, and ALL Americans should be ashamed and outraged at this being done in our name.

  24. Ed,

    “My tax money being used to kill one child is too many, and ALL Americans should be ashamed and outraged at this being done in our name.”

    So, what do you propose we do now?

  25. So, what do you propose we do now?

    Next time you see a pro-Iraq War person tell her or him to shut the fuck up and get out of your presence.

    that is a start. You can do it, Wayne!

  26. Sam,

    I prefer to pray to Neptune as it is much more effective than burying my head in the sand. I do understand your plight though, you have nothing constructive to say and no potential solutions.

    When the US walks away from the problem and the real killing begins though you can always claim that you certainly did not have THAT in mind. Besides, it is all the fault of the US because they interfered in Iran in ’53 and before that in Europe in 1914.

  27. When the US walks away from the problem and the real killing begins though you can always claim that you certainly did not have THAT in mind.

    I don’t want the US to walk away. At this point i want the US to send a couple thousand more troops to live in Iraq and police it. Even if a draft is needed. I have said so on this board. repeatedly.

    Just because I am against the Iraq War doesn’t mean that I think it should be handled incompetently while it is waged.

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