Tuesday, October 16, 2007

US Casualties Down in Iraq

It's a little early to tell, but it's interesting that US casualties are on pace for the lowest in any month in quite a while.

Cybercast News service is reporting:
Through the afternoon of October 15, the Defense Department reported that 15 U.S. military personal had been killed in Iraq since October 1. Thirteen of these were combat-related, while the other two were not. The most recent Defense-Department-reported death occurred on Oct. 12.

Last year -- during the same period -- 44 U.S. military personnel were killed in Iraq, all but two in combat-related incidents. That's more than three times the number of combat-related casualties now being reported for the first half of this October.
It sounds like the counter-insurgency tactics employed by General Petraeus are working, and that perhaps the MoveOn.org crowd was a bit premature in saying that he was betraying the US. Hmmm.....

CNSNews adds that
September 2007 marked a 14-month low in reported casualties: 68 U.S. military personnel were killed in Iraq, a drop in deaths the military credited to the 30,000 "surge" in troops that began in June. Among the 68 U.S. casualties in Iraq in September, 41 were from combat-related incidents.
It seems as well, from what I've been hearing on the radio, that car bombings are down, and the number of casualties from such bombings are down as well.

Sounds almost like a trend...or two.


rmwarnick said...

I'm still waiting for Frank to tell us what, if anything, was inaccurate in the MoveOn.org Petraeus ad.

Petraeus delivered bogus statistics to Congress, and that's that.

Our new tactic in Iraq is to pay lots of money to Sunni insurgents not to shoot at us. Like everything else that has been tried up to now, it's an ad hoc improvised short-term fix.

In the long run (or sooner), everybody knows the U.S. forces will be going home. The Brits have one foot out the door already. Let's hope the bad guys figure out that we're withdrawing anyway, and casualties will stay down.

Frank Staheli said...


Your ability to see and ariculate the opponent's point of view on MoveOn.org matches your ability to see and articulate their point of view on Utah school vouchers.

C'mon. I know you're smarter than that...

rmwarnick said...

Let me get this straight. You want me to tell you what was wrong with the MoveOn.org ad? There was nothing wrong with the ad. Petraeus lied to Congress on behalf of President Bush.

Frank Staheli said...


No he didn't.

Frank Staheli said...

By the way, you missed my point again.

rmwarnick said...

Let's look at this with logic. If the mission is force protection, we can accomplish that better by removing our forces from Iraq. If the mission is to reduce the overall level of violence in Iraq, the best way is to withdraw our forces. If the mission is to allow the Iraqis to establish a stable government free of the taint of foreign occupation, the only way to do that is end the occupation. And so forth and so on.

What is the reason to keep our troops in Iraq as targets for insurgents? So that President Bush can hand over the fiasco to the next administration without having to admit making the biggest mistake in the history of U.S. foreign policy.

Frank Staheli said...

I'm not sure how we got sidetracked on this issue, but I'll bite.

If you've read my fairly recent posts, including those that discuss the fact that I support Ron Paul for president, then you'll see that I agree with you that we should begin removing our forces from Iraq.

That being said, I still believe that

1. Casualties are down, and
2. MoveOn.org was inaccurate by saying that Petraeus is betraying the United States.

Come on.

rmwarnick said...

IMHO some people (other than Frank) are citing the recent decline in casualties as a reason to extend the fiasco.

Frank Staheli said...


Point well taken. But I still am not sure how you can defend MoveOn.org.

rmwarnick said...

Frank, you are really obsessed with that MoveOn.org ad. Maybe I missed it, but have you pointed out anything in the ad that was untrue?

rmwarnick said...

Have a look at my recent post on One Utah for a realistic assessment of the situation in Iraq.

rmwarnick said...

Frank, let me know what you think of this story based on your experience in Iraq. It says some units decided not to drive around and wait to get blown up by IEDs, they just set up in a secure location and sent in radio checks as if they were on patrol.

I was on active duty years ago in the peacetime Army, but I'll never forget how clever my guys were at avoiding tasks they considered a waste of their valuable time. I'd be surprised if today's soldiers were any different.