Wednesday, September 21, 2005

So Glad Combat Ops Are "Over"

A Look at U.S. Military Deaths in Iraq - Yahoo! News

As of Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2005, at least 1,907 members of the U.S. military have died since the beginning of the Iraq war in March 2003, according to an Associated Press count. At least 1,484 died as a result of hostile action, according to the military's numbers. The figures include five military civilians.

The AP count is the same as the Defense Department's tally, last updated at 10 a.m. EDT Wednesday.

The British military has reported 96 deaths; Italy, 26; Ukraine, 18; Poland, 17; Bulgaria, 13; Spain, 11; Slovakia, three; El Salvador, Estonia, Thailand and the Netherlands, two each; and Denmark, Hungary, Kazakhstan and Latvia one death each.

Since May 1, 2003, when President Bush declared that major combat operations in Iraq had ended, 1,768 U.S. military members have died, according to AP's count. That includes at least 1,375 deaths resulting from hostile action, according to the military's numbers.

Since the start of U.S. military operations in Iraq, 14,641 U.S. service members have been wounded, according to a Defense Department tally Wednesday.

It's not just the numbers. A high percentage of those 14,641 wounded are extreme injuries due to explosions, meaning amputations and neurological trauma. And these figures don't include the "private contractors" that are used extensively thoughout the theater, let alone the civilian losses by Iraq itself. This is quickly becoming the highest costing military action taken on by the US since, well, since Vietnam. Unless someone draws the line arbitrarily and declares "victory," as was done in southeast asia, it will surpass that as well. And to what end? So what if Saddam is no longer running the show, will anything have really changed? For the better?    

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