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Tuesday, October 15, 2013

So Half a Million Iraqis Did Die, After All

Remember, a few years back, when a couple of studies (including one published by prestigious Lancet) that found hundreds of thousands of Iraqis died in the years after the U.S. invasion were derided, even mocked, by most media and many expert commentators?  They pointed to reputable counts of those killed in the conflict, placing the number at "only" about 100,000.  When WikiLeaks released its Iraq War Logs, documented deaths shot up another 10,000 or so.

Now it turns out the early studies were probably correct.  What they perhaps got wrong was not the number of fatalities but the cause--almost half were related to the war but not directly caused by the weapons of war.  But: a half million died in any case.  So, sadly, my book on the media and the war, So Wrong for So Long, had it right.

From NBC just now:
About a half million Iraqi people died during the eight-year war in that country, and among those casualties roughly four in 10 perished due to Iraq's decimated infrastructure — from crippled health-care and power systems to interruptions in water and food supplies, according to a study released Tuesday.
U.S. researchers hired Iraqi physicians to go door-to-door at randomly selected homes in 100 Iraqi neighborhoods to ask families what members died between 2003 and 2011 and how they lost their lives, the report states. Among non-violent deaths tied to the war, the most common cause was heart attacks or cardiovascular conditions, followed by infant or childhood deaths other than injuries, chronic illnesses and cancer.

1 comment:

Dave said...

Does that figure meant to include deaths that are completely unrelated to the war?