Perhaps you remember a few days ago when Lt. General Raymond Odierno said the drop in U.S. fatalities in July was an "initial positive sign" for the splurge of blood and bucks begun in February.
"This is what we thought would happen once we get control of the real key areas that are controlled by these terrorists," Odierno said at a press conference. At the same time, he said, "I need a bit more time to make an assessment of whether it's a true trend or not."
Lt. Gen. Raymond Odierno, left, talks with
Brig. Gen. Mick Bednarek in Baquba, Iraq.
Try a different perspective regarding that "drop." Compare the Coalition’s fatalities for all the Julys that the U.S. has occupied Iraq via the Iraq Coalition Casualty Count Website:
July 2007: 77
July 2006: 46
July 2005: 58
July 2004: 58
July 2003: 49
There is a true trend. A trend that, month-by-month, has contributed to the 3940 Coalition fatalities so far. And while politicians keep talking about premature withdrawal, by Labor Day at least 4000 Coalition soldiers will have been prematurely buried.
Iraq by the numbers is an infuriating and ferociously saddening exercise. But let's do it anyway.
655,000: Iraqi deaths a Johns-Hopkins study attributed to the war nine months ago.
2770: Iraqi civilians killed in May 2007, according to government reports. (Actual figure unknown because the Iraqi government refuses to share its data with outside agencies that could verify totals.)
1.9 million: Estimated Iraqis displaced within the country.
2.35 million: Estimated Iraqi exiles outside the country in January 2007.
18,000: Iraqi doctors who have fled the country since March 2003.
???: Iraqis orphaned by the war – no reliable statistics.
25%: Iraqi children who are malnourished (May 2006).
130,000: U.S. troops taking part in the invasion at Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld’s insistence.
500,000: U.S. troops estimated to be necessary by generals who put together a prewar contingency plan.
$60-$95 billion: Total cost of Iraq war and aftermath calculated by Paul Wolfowitz in February 2003.
$600 billion: Money Congress has allocated for direct costs of the war and occupation so far.
$750 billion: Total the Cheney-Bush Administration has sought for keeping the occupation going through September 2008.
$140,000: Estimated cost per minute of the war and occupation in 2007.
$2 trillion: Total direct and indirect costs of war and occupation (through 2010) calculated by Joseph Stiglitz and Linda Blimes in January 2006.
$9 billion: Taxpayer money that disappeared in Iraq.
$549.7 million: Value of unaccounted for spare parts shipped to contractors in 2004.
$1.4 billion: Overcharges by Halliburton.
6,000-10,000: Estimated number of U.S. troops whose injuries have included brain trauma.
30%: Estimated percentage of troops who develop serious mental problems within three or four months after returning from Iraq.
14: Journalists killed by U.S. forces in Iraq.
112: Total number of journalists killed in Iraq.
1-2 a day: Hours of electricity available to the average residential household in Baghdad. (Actual figure unknown since U.S. no longer reports the electricity figures for the city.)
5000: "Diehard" insurgents the Pentagon estimated to be fighting on July 28, 2003.
20-30,000: Insurgents the Pentagon estimated in October 2006.
70,000: Insurgents the Pentagon estimated in March 2007.
69%: Iraqis who say U.S. presence worsens security situation (polled in March 2007).
71%: Iraqis who want U.S. troops out within a year (polled in September 2006).
71%: Americans who want U.S. to withdraw troops by April 2008 (polled in July 2007).
52%: U.S. Senators who have voted to withdraw most troops by April 2008.
8%: Republican Senators who have voted to withdraw most troops by April 2008.
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