*HOW* many Iraqis dead??

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  1. Polimom,

    Yes, the numbers look high. On the other hand, Bush’s December figures looked low.

    I agree with you. The number of Iraqi dead since Desert Storm II is almost surely greater than 30,000. I find it highly unlikely that the number exceeds 650,000. An estimate based on a sample size of 547 has lots of problems with it, statistically speaking, the most obvious being the randomness–or lack thereof–of the sample.
    For perspective:
    — The number claimed exceeds the number of Germans killed by Allied bombing during five years of WW II (593,000 german civilians died (AJ Levine, The Strategic Bombing of Germany 1940-1945, Prager, 1992, p.190)).
    — The number represents over 500 Iraqis killed per day, each day, for the last 3 1/3 years. (500+ funerals per day, seven days/week including the Sabbath and holy days).
    — Not to be gruesome, but 655,000 dead bodies (assuming an average weight of 140 pounds/body) represents over 45,000 TONS of dead bodies. Surely a “sanitation” problem like that would have been noticed?
    The Brookings Institution (hardly a flack for the Neocons–or Republicans in general) published a new Iraq report on October 9th. At the bottom of page 10 there are several estimates of Iraqi deaths since May, 2003, ranging from 19,900 (UN estimate) to 62,000 (using UN and Iraq Body Count (IBC) estimates).
    I’m inclined to discount the much higher number, and agree with Anthony Cordesman that this is an attempt to steer the US elections.

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