Civilian deaths, Remember the last death on your unit? The first death you witnessed?

  1. This article is about numbers. I truly believe our troops did all they knew not to kill non combatants. They know these are not just numbers.
    One of the imbedded reporters and an independent from the BBC reported many dead people along the roads. The Imbedded coming into Baghdad from the south, BBC man leaving toward Jordan the day after the first bombing. He saw burned or bombed petrol stations. He was not certain because there had been bombing and people filling gas cans while smoking. At any rate there dead people including children.
    Civilian deaths in Iraq could be as high as 10,000

    Final body count could be biggest since Vietnam war, writes IAN BRUCE

    AMERICAN guns, bombs and missiles killed more civilians in the recent war in Iraq than in any conflict since
    Vietnam, according to preliminary assessments carried out by the UN, international aid agencies and independent
    study groups.

    Despite US boasts this was the fastest, most clinical campaign in military history, a first snapshot of "collateral
    damage" indicates that between 5000 and 10,000 Iraqi non-combatants died in the course of the hi-tech blitzkrieg.

    Organisations such as the Red Cross, the Muslim Red Crescent, Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, and
    the UN are all still carrying out surveys and are reluctant to commit themselves to a final figure.

    All agree, however, the toll will exceed the 3500 civilians killed in the 1991 Gulf war and the 1800 to 2000 innocent
    Afghans known to have perished during the 2001 invasion to oust the Taliban and wipe out al Qaeda's training
    camps. US government figures for Vietnam claimed that 300,000 died in the south and 65,000 in the north of that
    divided country.

    Haidar Taie, who runs the Red Crescent's tracing department in Baghdad, said: "We just don't know for certain. But
    thousands are dead, thousands more injured or missing. It will take time to reach a definitive count. It was certainly a
    disaster for civilians caught in the fighting."

    A spokesman for the Red Cross said: "We are piecing things together slowly. Hospitals and doctors were
    overwhelmed by the numbers arriving for treatment, so records are patchy. The indicators from those records which
    were kept is a high civilian bodycount and many, many more injured."

    The independent US-based Campaign for Innocent Victims in Conflict (Civic) has sent out 150 volunteers to
    interview victims' families and record injuries and damage to property. The group is also cross-checking stories
    with grave sites.

    Marla Ruzicka, Civic co-ordinator, said: "Our people have already found more than 1000 graves in the town of
    Nasariyah in the south, where fedayeen resistance meant days of heavy street fighting and air strikes, and at least
    another 1000 fresh graves in the Baghdad area."

    The Red Crescent says there are many more civilian graves between Nasariyah and Najaf along the Euphrates
    River. Pro-Saddam militia made a number of stands and ambushes in built-up areas to slow the US advance on the
    capital and tanks, bombers and artillery were all used to dislodge them from populated areas.

    Professor Mark Herold of New Hampshire University, who is also a spokesman for Iraqbodycount, a website
    dedicated to revealing the civilian cost of the war, says the running tally is "in excess of 5000 and still climbing".

    The site draws on media and witness accounts for its figures. Reporters for news agencies based in Baghdad
    during the invasion are fairly consistent in claiming between 2300 and 2600 civilian victims of the US-led air attacks
    on the city.

    There are no official figures for Iraqi military deaths, estimated at anywhere between 4000 and 7000.

    A Pentagon source said: "It was inevitable there would be regrettable civilian losses. Our forces made every effort
    to minimise innocent casualties, often to the point of putting their own lives at risk.

    "We have no hard facts and figures for such losses. Any non-governmental tally will include a lot of guesswork."

    - May 23rd
    Last edit by pickledpepperRN on May 24, '03
  2. 1 Comments

  3. by   jnette
    Thanx, Spacenurse.

    I hate to read of this.. yet know of the realities of any war. If only we could imagine the destruction of 9/11 across our entire nation, in virtually every city... horrible thought, to be sure, yet this is what war brings... at least has brought to other nations.

    I know many will say that this is exactly what we are trying to prevent here in our country, and while I agree with some points, and disagree with others, it in no way diminishes the realities of the devastation of these civilians.................. and I have to wonder....... I cannot help but wonder...