Saturday, June 09, 2007


It's true, as former Central Command CO Tommy Franks said, "We don't do body counts." Not wanting to repeat its Vietnam-era numbers obsession, the Defense Department tracks and reports only American military casualties. The Iraq Coalition Casualties site collects similar data for British and other allies in the region. Iraq Body Count is somewhat credible on total deaths--and far more rigorous than the two biased Lancet studies. Still, IBC blames all civilian deaths on the coalition, even where the "civilian" was an armed unlawful combatant or was killed by one (as opposed to by a coalition soldier).

So Terrorist Death Watch is a useful meter of our progress against jihadis in Iraq and Afghanistan. Founded and operated by Chuck Simmins, TDW started counting on January 1, 2006. As of June 4th this year, our forces killed 2,283 terrorists in Afghanistan and 4,261 in Iraq. This week, Simmins summarized the surge:

(source: Simmins' North Shore Journal)
Impressive--as Gateway Pundit notes ironically, "another grim milestone." Still, the data are not widely known, as Boston Herald editor and columnist Jules Crittenden observes:
Turns out our soldiers are killing terrorists at a rate of up to 10 to 1.

AP likes death numbers. Why doesn’t AP like these death numbers? I read AP’s Iraq copy every working night. I have not seen these numbers in the AP copy that comes across my screen.

So, what's the answer?

As Tom Lehrer says, "let's not always see the same hands."

(via Instapundit)

1 comment:

MaxedOutMama said...

Ah. These numbers of dead aren't "terrorists", remember, but "insurgents". Freedom fighters. Fighting the nasty militaristic jack-booted thugs of Bush the Anti-Christ.

They HAVE to be, because if they aren't, then we'd have to take them seriously and take ourselves less seriously, and every journalistic knows that his- or herself is the most serious, enlightened person on the face of the planet.