Apr 06 2006

Everything In Life Is Perspective

Published by at 11:43 pm under All General Discussions,Iraq

The Iraq war deaths to date (UK plus US) are 2553, with 1991 of those actually combat casualties (complete stats here). How does this compare to history? Well, first we should look at ‘civil wars’ since so many on the left want to believe this is a civil war (though the opposition manages no territory, has no government structure, has no army, and is not recognized). The Iraq ‘war’ has supposedly been waged for 3 years now (though the actual ‘war was a few months). But since people think we are in a civil war we will go with that number. The metrics therefore is 851/year or 71/month.

Estimates of total deaths vary widely (8,000 to 195,000). Some say 35,000 is a reasonable number. If we add these to the coalition numbers we find a total of 37,551 deaths, or 12,517/year or 1,043/month (with many of those coming from the terrorist). But for the US it is a little less than the numbers highlighted above

American Civil War waged for 4 years: 560,000 deaths. Which comes to 140,000/year or 11,667/month. Logic would dictate modern weapons can kill much more efficiently 140 years later. But while weapons are more effective we seem to have lowered the casualties by orders of magnitude.

How about the Korean Civil War? US deaths were 36,940 over 3 years. This would give us a US casualty rate of 12,313/year or 1,026/month (basically the rate for the entire Iraq conflict – not just the US component). But we need to add to that deaths incurred by South Korea and and North Korea: ‘There were about 580,000 UN and South Korean troops killed and 1,600,000 Communists were killed’. That brings the total Korean War civil war toll to 2,219,940. That equates to 184,995/year or 15,416/month.

Well, how about the Vietnam civil war? US deaths in the conflict from 1965 to 1973 (roughly 8 years) was 58,226. That equates to 7,278/year or 606/month. Adding 1,250,000 South Vietnamese and 1,100,000 North Vietnames the total deaths are 2,408,226 or 301,028/year or 25,085/month.

Well, it is clear the Iraq war is not in the same league as the well known civil wars the US has been involved with. How about civil wars which the US has not had a lot of involvement with? How about the Yugoslavia war deaths? Who knows! No one seems to care to capture the numbers anywhere.

Sudanese civil war: spanned 18 years and resulted in 1.9 milllion deaths (105,555/year and 8,796/month).

Angolan civil war: spanned 27 years and resulted in 500,000 deaths (71,428/year or 5,952/month)

The Congo (Zaire) civil war:Since 1998 3 million deaths (375,000/year or 31,250/month)

I guess what we need to take away from all this is the Iraq war, even for those who want to pretend it is a civil war, is one of the most benign in modern times. The Iraq war total casualties are fraction of most monthly totals for the wars listed here that went on for years on end. So when a liberal complains about the ‘civil war’ in Iraq, ask them where were they when massive deaths were happenings in these other wars. And continue today.

4 responses so far

4 Responses to “Everything In Life Is Perspective”

  1. pagar says:

    I believe the way to look at American deaths in recent wars is to compare them to deaths on American highways. Every day we are bombarded with the latest figures on deaths in Iraq. Right now there is a Yahoo headline ¨¨46 killed in Iraq attack¨¨. No information is available on how many died on American highways yesterday. In fact, one would be lucky to find anywhere on the internet, how many were killed in 2006. One might find individual stories like this one:
    If it had some unusual twist, like a illegal immigent driving the car that killed an American.
    The figures for earlier years are available, as you can see in 2003:
    http://www.saferoads.org/press/press2004/pr_FARSFinalRelease8-10-04.htm Some 40,000 plus Americans die yearly on our highways. These are not Americans defending America (with the rare exception of Highway Patrol or other Public Safety officers).
    In many cases, the dead are totally without fault. Just a kid crossing the street at the wrong time, a vehicle being driven carefully-but hit head on by a drunk driver or a speeder or other lawbreaker.
    I believe most Americans would be better off to worry more about the responsibilites of operating a vehicle safely. The first step is everyone take driving or riding in vehicles seriously. The second step
    is for the national news media to publish figures and articles on Americans killing Americans on American highways every day in headline news-not back in the obit section.

  2. AJStrata says:


    Thanks! I actually meant to add that exact metric.


  3. pagar says:

    Please don’t let what I posted be the end of it, because I know with your skills you can do it much better than I did.
    I would like to say that over time I have changed my blog reading order to where, now days the first blog i check in the morning is yours.
    Have no idea if the figures could be found, but the story of the death of the Kansas City coach reminds me that a number of deaths
    of Americans (traffic and criminal) can be traced to illegal immigrants. I think it would be interesting to trace how many. One might find that illegal immigrants kill more Americans than Iraqis.
    Please understand I am not against legal immigrants, my wife was a legal immigrant. It took years and definitely was a hassle. It offends her, and every other legal immigrant that we know, when told that
    those who crossed the border illegally are going to go ahead of immigrants who have tried to follow the maze of laws that one is supposed to follow to be come a legal immigrant of the USA.

  4. wickedpinto says:

    Well “death toll” seems to be the common Assault on The President of The United States of America, but I wonder if the same people hating the current President of The United States of America, would apply the same statistics to Lincoln? Who Killed damn near as many Americans as Saddam did Iraqi’s in an equivalent period of time?

    I of course think Lincoln was a great President, but, I think I made a point about BLATANT HYPOCRISY!!!