Best estimate of civilian casualties due to the Iraq war -- 100.000
A Reuters summary of a recent report from The John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
contains some especially dreary, but not unexpected news. Other figures I've read now count from
13.000 to 15,000 plus Iraqi casualties in the war. The Hopkins study looks at "excess deaths" over
an eighteen month period, concluding that 100,000 is a reasonable estimate. These figures and the
human realities behind them are simply tragic.
Our national tendency is, of course, to ignore such data in favor of triumphalist high patriotism.
Even publicizing the number of American troops killed in combat (now well over 1,100) is
considered suspect. In the little village of Chatham, New York, near where I live, the mayor ordered
removal of a billboard and small yellow flags memorial that gave daily updates on deaths of U.S. soldiers.
Which of these deaths -- American, Iraqi, and others -- should we remember, mourn and honor?
If the answer is not "All of them," I'd like to know the reason why.