Wednesday, October 11, 2006

The Body Count

I read about the latest report on the death toll of Iraqi civilians, Bush--the one to be published in current edition of The Lancet. It claims 655,000 dead since the beginning of your invasion. Even the Iraqi government, last I heard, was conceding 100,000 deaths. Your latest estimate: 30,000. My conclusion is that someone is likely grossly overestimating or someone grossly underestimating. I ask myself who might have the stronger motivation to exaggerate, one way or the other. Hmmm...

Listen, Bush, I'm certainly willing to concede that the estimate in the newest Johns Hopkins study--that is, the highest of the three--might err on the heavy side. But I do see a strong motivation on the part of the Iraqi government and your good self to keep those numbers low. So let's be wildly charitable, and agree for the sake of argument that the Johns Hopkins folks have vastly overestimated--say twofold. That still leaves 327,500 dead, by my calculation, nearly 300,000 more than you allow.

I heard a good part of your press conference today. (Nice job, by the way, belittling those pesky reporters once again: I especially liked the job you did on the black guy with the nice pin-striped suit. And I won't even mention the "r" word.) I heard you dismiss the Johns Hokins figures out of hand: "I don't consider it a credible report," you said, in your usual argumentative tones. "Neither does General Casey,"--referring to Gen. George Casey, the top U.S. general in Iraq--"neither do Iraqi officials."

Well, surprise. I happen to remember those numbers coming out of Vietnam. Perhaps you were too busy doing other things. But along with many others I do happen to remember the lies we were told repeatedly at that time--figures that estimated just the numbers of our own dead. I also happen to remember the lies your adminsitration told us in the lead-up to this war, and the lies it has told us ever since about the prosecution of the war. Can you be surprised, Bush, that I'm more likely to believe the Johns Hopkins report than what you, or your generals, or the Iraqi government have to say?

Sorry, Bush. No cigar this morning.

2 comments:

PK said...

I remember Nam. I stood at the flight line fence on Tuesday's and Thursday's every week there at Travis. One day the wounded, the other, the dead. I would go home in tears, watch the news, and be so angry I would throw things. The lies, I couldn't believe the lies! 'Only 5 killed, 2 wounded today.' These planes were the big cargo ones, where the back hatch drops down. It took forever to unload the caskets! I don't believe the rhetoric at all, 600,000 sounds about right this time around... That doesn't include the wounded and the AWLO's.

GringoWithoutBorders said...

I'm sure Americans would beleive the numbers were true if you inserted any foreign heathen like Saddam, Musharraf, Putin, Amadinejad, Arafat (peace be upon him), Kim Jong-il ect...

Heck, USA parrots would not need any proof or scientific studies, just say it on the quasi "NEWS" and have it repeated by talking heads and USA parrots would go- bak bak cluck bak bak bak bak bak bak.....

30,000 Bush? What an idiot.