I feel like I should say something about the 1000 servicemembers who have died in Iraq, but I really don't know what it is I should say. Should I point out that, statistically speaking, one is more likely to die in a car accident -- as my boss' son unfortunately did over the weekend -- than in Iraq? Should I point out that 1000 war deaths is,
, a blessing? Should I point out that I consider those combat deaths to be part of the larger deathtoll that includes 9/11 and Afghanistan, in which we passed the 1000 mark on the first day? I really don't want to point any of that stuff out; it is what it is. My regular readers don't need it pointed out anyway.
Should I point out that, statistically speaking, one is more likely to die in a car accident -- as my boss' son unfortunately did over the weekend -- than in Iraq?
Do you have a link for the source?
Posted by: Donna at September 08, 2004 10:17 AM (Zy8m6)
Sure. All you need to do is add up all the highway deaths in the US, and divide that by the population. Then compare it to 1000/200,000 (or the total of all who have served in Iraq).
Posted by: Mike at September 08, 2004 11:48 AM (MqNKC)
Mike, I was getting ready to do all the math, but you beat me to it and I'm way too grumpy after a long day of work to do more probabilities. I'd also say that since most soldiers are in the 18-25 year range, there's even a bigger chance of those guys dying if they were at home in cars than in Iraq. And I'd say we'd have to include all of those who have served in Iraq, which is more than 200,000, right? The actual figures are hard to find, both for car accidents and for troops downrange.
Posted by: Sarah at September 08, 2004 12:06 PM (UfrU2)
I was thinking along similar lines yesterday - and trying to take comfort in the amazingly small probabilities of anything happening to Nerdstar in the next ten or so days. While yes, we've had a really low number of casualties all things considered - you know, like removing a brutal dictator who'd ruled for so long, and all, my heart breaks, just as I know yours does, for all the friends and loved ones of those 1003 soldiers.
Posted by: Beth at September 08, 2004 12:31 PM (CZ0NV)
Yeah, I know what you mean about dying in a car wreck. I know a lady; her husband died in a car wreck a few weeks ago. Meaningless death. At least if you are going to die before your time, you should die for something.
Hope that came out the right way.
Posted by: Tom at September 08, 2004 12:37 PM (kmiNS)
Can't get blooger to work.
Today the USA Today had a nice article on the deaths (and a picture that belonged in an anti-war art museum and not on the cover of a newspaper). It's important to remember the lives of everyone of the 700+ combat casualties, and the 250+ accidental deaths. How they lived and what they believed is important.
So, can anyone tell me how many brave men and women we have lost in Kosovo or Afghanistan? I can't. I can't remember the last time any of the major media even mentioned the deaths of one of our people in either country.
For the media and those who use the war deaths for their political agenda, some American deaths are more important than others. I guess it doesn't matter to them that a GI died in Kosovo, since that doesn't advance their own agenda.
Posted by: Kalroy at September 08, 2004 01:10 PM (q1aeu)
Posted by: A Hermit at September 08, 2004 01:21 PM (Lb9gk)
Wow, what a moronic post this was. I'm embarrassed for you.
Posted by: tgb at September 08, 2004 01:29 PM (y5alw)
If you want to call a post moronic you should at least explain why, and dump the patronizing attitude.
I think you should try La Shawn Barber's rules on comments - remove all the name-calling posts and those that don't support their point. Don't let those condescending trolls get to you. And I also think that the media coverage of 1000 is stupid, as if the one between 999 and 1000 makes all the difference in the world.
Posted by: chris at September 08, 2004 01:47 PM (Y6vT5)
It means the world of difference to the family of the one between 999 and 1000.
Posted by: ME at September 08, 2004 02:19 PM (W5nSP)
Then the 999 means 999 worlds of difference to the families of those 999 killed, which would dwarf one world of difference, if you really want to look at death in terms of numbers. And I highly doubt that the media suddenly cared about one particular soldier's family (as in really symphathizing with).
Posted by: chris at September 08, 2004 02:48 PM (nyxv/)
And they DON'T care about the deaths, which is what makes me mad about the issue. I grieve for every one of them, as any could have been my own son. These folks do not grieve. They simply see it as a milestone, as they've said. This false face is common from their ilk.
Posted by: Mike at September 08, 2004 03:07 PM (MqNKC)
You missed my point or maybe I missed yours. The media coverage that I have seen or read has spoken about the lives of these soldiers that have given their life. It is a good time to reflect that they are just not numbers but human beings. If it takes a milestone such as 1000 for us to remember the other 999 then so be it. I grieved for those families and have seen as such from some of the media. If it were not for the media, I might not know about these soldiers. As in any profession, do not judge all by how some are portrayed. As for taking these soldiers and families to heart, I currently have my only 2 sons in Iraq. My heart goes out to all families.
Posted by: ME at September 08, 2004 03:30 PM (W5nSP)
I apologize for sounding harsh. God bless you and your sons. What I really can't stand about the media's "1000" is the almost gleeful way they presented it, as if they were dying to reach it so they can say, look at those poor soldiers, let's celebrate that it'll make Bush look bad. I'm especially annoyed at the way they make the soldiers sound as if they were all sheep sent to be slaughtered - nothing but victims - while most of them, I believe, were fighting for something that they believed in. It may be little consolation to the families that they died heroes instead of victims, but the media could at least honor them as more than just tragic deaths.
Posted by: chris at September 08, 2004 05:32 PM (nyxv/)
How many times can Sarah get the numbers so wrong?
The odds of dying in a car accident in the USA are approximately 1 in 6,029. If you're unlucky enough to be sent as a U.S soldier to Iraq, your odds of being killed are approximately 1 in 250.
You are a pure unadulterated idiot, Sarah!
Posted by: Adrian at September 08, 2004 06:24 PM (jyOeZ)
Hey idiot - do the math again. What are the odds of sitting in your office building on a bright September morning and having your life taken while sitting at your desk by a 747? These are the odds these soldiers are trying to reduce to us and our families. Show a little courage and grow up.
Posted by: Kathleen A at September 08, 2004 06:59 PM (vnAYT)
Hey idiot - do the math again. What are the odds of sitting in your office building on a bright September morning and having your life taken while sitting at your desk by a 747?
Kathleen, do you really
want us to do the math on the chances of this? I can tell you right now it'll bear out the fact your statement is even more moronic than Sarah's.
To add insult to injury, you'd also have to explain how Iraq was involved in the attacks of 9/11--something AWOL Georgie hasn't been able to do.
Posted by: JadeGold at September 08, 2004 08:00 PM (q+Jn/)
JadeGold - glad to help you out.
Please refer to the 9/11 report which is accessible through keyword searches here.
Please do search for keywords: Iraq and Al-Queda
Let me help you out...
With UN sanctions set to come into effect in November, Clarke wrote Berger that Â“the Taliban appear to be up to something.Â”89 Mullah Omar had shuffled his Â“cabinetÂ”and hinted at Bin LadinÂ’s possible departure. ClarkeÂ’s staff thought his most likely destination would be Somalia; Chechnya seemed less appealing with Russia on the offensive. Clarke commented that Iraq and Libya had previously discussed hosting Bin Ladin though he and his staff had their doubts that Bin Ladin would trust secular Arab dictators such as Saddam Hussein or Muammar Qadhafi.
Though intelligence gave no clear indication of what might be afoot,some intelligence reports mentioned chemical weapons,pointing toward work at a camp in southern Afghanistan called Derunta. On November 4,1998,the U.S. AttorneyÂ’s Office for the Southern District of New York unsealed its indictment of Bin Ladin,charging him with conspiracy to attack U.S.defense installations. The indictment also charged that al Qaeda had allied itself with Sudan, Iran,and Hezbollah. The original sealed indictment had added that al Qaeda had Â“reached an understanding with the government of Iraq that al Qaeda would not work against that government and that on particular projects, specifically including weapons development, al Qaeda would work cooperatively with the Government of Iraq.Â” 109 This passage led Clarke, who for years had read intelligence reports on Iraqi-Sudanese cooperation on chemical weapons, to speculate to Berger that a large Iraqi presence at chemical facilities in Khartoum was Â“probably a direct result of the IraqÂ–Al Qida agreement.Â”
He (Clarke) wrote Deputy National Security Advisor Donald Kerrick that one reliable source reported Bin LadinÂ’s having met with Iraqi officials, who Â“may have offered him asylum.Â” Other intelligence sources said that some Taliban leaders,though not Mullah Omar, had urged Bin Ladin to go to Iraq. If Bin Ladin actually moved to Iraq,wrote Clarke, his network would be at Saddam HusseinÂ’s service,and it would be Â“virtually impossibleÂ”to find him. Better to get Bin Ladin in Afghanistan,Clarke declared.134 Berger suggested sending one U-2 flight,but Clarke opposed even this. It would require Pakistani approval, he wrote; and Â“Pak[istanÂ’s] intel[ligence service] is in bed withÂ”Bin Ladin and would warn him that the United States was getting ready for a bombing campaign:Â“Armed with that knowledge,old wily Usama will likely boogie to Baghdad.Â”
Bin Ladin now had a vision of himself as head of an international jihad confederation. In Sudan,he established an Â“Islamic Army ShuraÂ”that was to serve as the coordinating body for the consortium of terrorist groups with which he was forging alliances. It was composed of his own al Qaeda Shura together with leaders or representatives of terrorist organizations that were still independent. In building this Islamic army,he enlisted groups from Saudi Arabia,Egypt,Jordan, Lebanon, Iraq, Oman,Algeria, Libya,Tunisia, Morocco, Somalia, and Eritrea.
Bin Ladin was also willing to explore possibilities for cooperation with Iraq, even though IraqÂ’s dictator, Saddam Hussein, had never had an Islamist agendaÂ—save for his opportunistic pose as a defender of the faithful against Â“CrusadersÂ”during the Gulf War of 1991. Moreover, Bin Ladin had in fact been sponsoring anti-Saddam Islamists in Iraqi Kurdistan,and sought to attract them into his Islamic army.53 To protect his own ties with Iraq, Turabi reportedly brokered an agreement that Bin Ladin would stop supporting activities against Saddam. Bin Ladin apparently honored this pledge,at least for a time,although he continued to aid a group of Islamist extremists operating in part of Iraq (Kurdistan) outside of BaghdadÂ’s control. In the late 1990s,these extremist groups suffered major defeats by Kurdish forces. In 2001,with Bin LadinÂ’s help they re-formed into an organization called Ansar al Islam. There are indications that by then the Iraqi regime tolerated and may even have helped Ansar al Islam against the common Kurdish enemy.54
With the Sudanese regime acting as intermediary, Bin Ladin himself met with a senior Iraqi intelligence officer in Khartoum in late 1994 or early 1995. Bin Ladin is said to have asked for space to establish training camps, as well as assistance in procuring weapons, but there is no evidence that Iraq responded to this request.55As described below, the ensuing years saw additional efforts to establish connections.
Posted by: Kathleen A at September 08, 2004 08:10 PM (vnAYT)
Sarah honey, please have an adult check your homework in the future. Being off by a factor of 25 is pretty embarrasing and could have been so easily corrected.
And Kathleen, you can't use stat analysis on a one time event.
And everyone, please remember our troops in Afghanistan who are still dying while we lose control of that country, (which btw, actually DID have something to do with 9/11.)
Posted by: Anon at September 08, 2004 08:14 PM (3Y1xf)
You're right. There is no link between SH and 9/11 - but there IS a link between SH and Al-Queda. Which is clear from 9/11 report. Thus the reason we are in Iraq.
Posted by: Kathleen A at September 08, 2004 09:49 PM (vnAYT)
You are insulting our guys over there to score some political points. Trying to suggest that our soldiers are not put in harms way is flat out wrong. I have a few friends who are serving in Iraq at this point - none of them would appreciate the garbage you posted.
Posted by: SomeRandomGuy at September 08, 2004 09:53 PM (nHMr5)
SomeRandomDumbass - SARAH'S HUSBAND IS SERVING OVER THERE. Pay attention before you insult someone.
Posted by: Kathleen A at September 08, 2004 10:07 PM (vnAYT)
I assume that author just isn't too bright (she certainly is bad at statistics) and didn't see the implications of what she was saying. If she has a husband serving over there, it just makes it all the worse that she is insulting him as well as our soldiers by saying that they are not in harm's way. Since the post doesn't mention that her husband is serving over there, this is not really a question of paying attention.
Thanks for bringing the level of discourse down to name calling. That shows a remarkable level of imaturity on your part, but makes me confident that my point must be true since you can't actually refute it and instead have to attack me personally.
Posted by: SomeRandomGuy at September 08, 2004 11:47 PM (RngL2)
but there IS a link between SH and Al-Queda. Which is clear from 9/11 report.
Perhaps you'd care to link to the relevant passges of the report that says this.
Posted by: JadeGold at September 09, 2004 12:21 AM (q+Jn/)
You're amazing. You can find more "links" between various U.S administrations and al-Qaeda than you can between Saddam and al-Queda.
Do you really want to play six degrees of kevin bacon with this?
And since when does the fact that Sarah's husband is "serving there" excuse Sarah's shoddy statistical analysis?
Hopefully Sarah's husband won't turn out to be another in the long line of historical "blessings", as Sarah refers to the dead and maimed.
Posted by: Adrian at September 09, 2004 12:37 AM (DgCeL)
Even assuming you're right, does being bad at statistics make someone stupid? If you think Sarah is stupid, as in lacking intelligence, then you're really wasting time reading her blog and posting comments here.
I find it really interesting that some posters here think that being patronizing to Sarah or insulting her intelligence on *her* weblog is perfect okay, even though they don't consider name-calling acceptable. And these people seem to be really obsessed about statistics, and Sarah's alleged lack of expertise in it.
I do not believe that Sarah meant that soldiers aren't in harm's way in Iraq. She knows people who have been hurt over there. I believe she's pointing out that people are in danger everywhere, and that the media is obsessed with tallying up death in Iraq. We just don't see a similar tally for Afghanistan, even though soldiers die there also.
Posted by: chris at September 09, 2004 02:13 AM (VDzYB)
"And these people seem to be really obsessed about statistics, and Sarah's alleged lack of expertise in it."
Wait a minute! Sarah's the one who's obsessed with pulling very smelly,incorrect statistical analysis out of her ass, so why shouldn't we wipe off the dingleberries for her?
She's just plain wrong! Not 'allegedly" wrong, but demonstrably wrong!
Posted by: Adrian at September 09, 2004 02:31 AM (DgCeL)
Ooh, Sarah, looks like you're having fun, AGAIN! Yep, that trackback thing can be a killer sometimes.
Thanks for your post. I understood exactly what you were trying to say, as did Chris, ME and Kathleen.
I'm not going to comment on statistics or put down numbers, since I'm an attorney and have no interest or ability at such things. However, I do take your point that you can die anywhere, anyplace and that 1000, while horrible for those proud soldiers, is much less than it would have been in other wars and that 1000 is just a number with no significance attached, other than the significance the press attempts to give to it.
I can't get too upset at the moonbats. After all, I used to be one. If you'll notice, they have not commented at all on the overall statement of your post, but have instead focused on statistics.
This seems to be a common flaw amongst their people. Ignore the big picture, which is too scary or painful - or truthful! - to approach, and try to focus on a small area that you can control or understand. Very Gollum-like! You, my dear, are a bit more Aragorn so please ignore the trolls scrabbling and wheezing at your feet. Talk to you later.
Posted by: Oda Mae at September 09, 2004 02:32 AM (S5n+c)
For those regular readers who understood the point of Sarah's post, you might also want to go to the following blog and read the comments or add some of your own. (Those of you who prefer to deal with small nuances at a time might wish to stay here or fly back home. NOT for the fainthearted snarky ones carrying calculators.)
"I really, really want your thoughts on this.
I myself, am torn between rational and emotional...
Now, 1,000 American military personnel have died in the Iraq war.
They are teens who went from senior proms to boot camp and battle and middle-aged men who put aside retirement and grandchildren for a war zone.
What does the number mean?
On D-Day, more Americans lost their lives. At the peak of Vietnam, hundreds of U.S. troops died each week. And in one September morning, 2,792 died in crumbling New York towers.
Still, 1,000 is a grim milestone.
Soldier's comments are particularly welcomest but I'd like to hear from all of you."
Here's my favorite comment so far - with a LINK for those of you who have asked for one.
"Please take my comments in the context they are offered, for perspective. I would hate for this to sound as if the numbers were insignificant -- it's just that I generally operate on my left brain ...
We need to get over our vanity. People die. Birth is a terminal illness. Actuarial tables will show us that in the age group 25-44 the mortality rate is 153.3 per 100M (stateside, peacetime). Link. So, with 150,000+ troops in peacetime we would expect the annual death toll to be 230. For the 18 months we have been at war, we would expect 345.
Looking at annual mortality rates per 1000 workers by occupation we find rates for roofers (13.1), painters (12.5), and pilots (11.3). In any of these occupations we would have expected this group to have suffered annual casualties of at least 2,542 during the same period. Link.
While it is counter-intuitive, the reality is that being a soldier in todays military is a relatively safe occupation. So is being a police officer, or a fireman. All of them fall below fishing, truck driving, and farming -- they don't even show up in the top ten most hazardous occupations.
Here's a number to consider. The 1918 influenza outbreak buried over 50 million people in less than 18 months (550,000 in U.S. alone). That was a time when people understood mortality.
While none of this is meant to diminish the sacrifice, and certainly will offer no comfort to familys of the fallen -- but it should offer some perspective.
Our responsibility to future generations is much the same as the debt to our parents and the past -- to preserve the process, and our way of life.
Posted by: SheetWise at September 8, 2004 06:54 AM "
Posted by: Oda Mae at September 09, 2004 02:54 AM (S5n+c)
Ahhh, I see the moonbats have come out again.
Personally, my heart weeps for all the soldiers, wounded or killed. It also swells in pride at their service.
1000 is only significant to the media, to those that asked if 1000 was more important than 999, no, it is no less important than all the others, except to the media which now use it to sell their product.
Leacherous behavior if you ask me.
Posted by: John at September 09, 2004 06:48 AM (crTpS)
I was in a car yesterday. I am more brave than the soldiers in Iraq. Thanks for posting this. When is someone going to talk about my bravery. Those soldiers have it easy!
Posted by: yettrab at September 09, 2004 09:17 AM (9AAwc)
I would point out that the War in Iraq was based on Lies. That makes the 1000 sacrifices go down more smoothly.
Posted by: curveball at September 09, 2004 11:49 AM (XxIKf)
Slightly OT, but important nonetheless:
"It wasn't, in other words, a Democratic administration that foolishly, through its own arrogance and incompetence, handed Al Qaeda leadership nearly everything it hoped for at nearly every step of the drama: a lax mindset regarding security, an escape through Pakistan, a gift invasion of Iraq that diverted precious resources from the serious work fighting terrorism, a mishandled occupation that provided a groundswell of recruitment."
"Wrong leadership is not strong leadership."
Posted by: A Hermit at September 09, 2004 01:09 PM (Lb9gk)
What I don't understand is how you can sit there and post something that is as asinine as it is incorrect and believe that it supports your point. If your numbers are wrong and your argument is based on your numbers then you have no argument. Logic. It's a bitch.
Besides that, comparing the sacrifice of those kids, and they are kids, to dying in a car accident is insulting. Personally, I don't care if someone's supposed husband is supposedly serving in Iraq - it doesn't give you the right to belittle the soldiers who have been sent around the world for a war that benefits only a few American corporations that are outsourcing their jobs anyway. Furthermore, in case any of you missed that amazing photo op Bush orchestrated, wasn't our Mission: Accomplished? Weren't major combat operations over? Weren't the people supposed to welcome their liberators with open arms? Of course, we weren't calling ourselves liberators until it came out that there were no WMD. But that's only a slight technicality.
If you're going to turn the deaths of so many into a numbers game, get the right numbers. You can't compare the total number of vehicular deaths in history - so pick a year. Let's say 2003:
Numbers of deaths in automobile accidents in 2003: 43,000
US population: 290,000,000
Death Rate: 0.00016
On the other hand...
Number of dead soldiers: 1,000
Total number of soldiers in Iraq: some say 150,000 while some say 200,000. For the sake of argument, we'll go with 175,000
Death Rate: .0057
God, those numbers were so hard to find! Damn Google for being so difficult to operate. All that clicking wore me out. Now, I haven't taken Statistics since college but, uh, which is the bigger number?
Posted by: wing nut at September 09, 2004 03:01 PM (+lzp0)
Sarah, i started reading through all the troll comments but i stopped halfway through because [sarcasm]i suddenly became totally convinced that they were right. We should admit defeat and immediately withdraw from Iraq. Afghanistan too, for that matter.[/sarcasm]
arguing about numbers and statistics is, as jade gold would say, a "nice straw man." the real question is, and has always been, whether the loss of fighting men and women in a war is worth the cost, in light of the strategic goals of the war.
We can debate that question forever, but i think we will all get a pretty good sense of where the majority of Americans stand on the issue come November.
Posted by: annika at September 09, 2004 03:27 PM (zAOEU)
To all those touting 40k some auto deaths in a year as the accurate numbers to compare, let me ask you how long we've been in Iraq. Once you finally come up with the fact that its been more than a year (closer to 18 months), and then realize that you are also using the wrong numbers, I expect you to withdraw any criticizm of using the wrong numbers.
I'm not holding my breath.
Posted by: John at September 09, 2004 05:36 PM (+Ysxp)
The idea that driving in a car in the US is more dangerous than serving in Iraq is just stupid, and not worth all the effort defending and rejecting it. It just ain't true, and you cannot prove because it just ain't true.
We were suckered into a foreign war by agent of Iran and Israel to solve their biggest regional problem. Whoever is responsible for this should be behind bars, and I hope they soon will be.
Posted by: Max Edison at September 09, 2004 05:50 PM (EjQFy)
Why is it that every time you post about something regarding statistics, all the math nerds suddenly emerge? I always have the urge to defend you, because I know you beyond your website. I was driving with your mother today, and we passed the flag as they were taking it down for the day. Every time I see that, I get chills up my spine - literally. All of the men and women in uniform stop their cars, get out, and salute their flag. And every time I see our boys at the range, I smile. I know the point you were making in your blog, and I wish that others could focus on the big picture. Remember that most of these people don't even know a service member...so they can't really comment on whether our boys believe in what they are doing.
And to all of the jack asses that have nothing good to say about this blog...
Not only do I take it as a blow to our husbands, but I take it as an insult to us that you degrade our service members. Not only do we choose to believe in what they are doing, we NEED to believe in what they are doing for our own sanity (and I bet that statement will be taken out of context). We are away from them for so long that it makes us crazy. I have twice as much responsibility without him here, and half as much help...which of course doesn't compare to what he has to deal with down there. Add on top of that that we have no one to kiss us at night before we go to sleep, no one to stop in to work to have lunch with us, and no one to talk to when it's just a really bad day.
Everyone leaves a legacy behind when they die. The soldiers that died in Iraq will always have a place in my heart. Maybe you all should be working on YOUR legacy instead of getting caught up in this petty arguing.
Posted by: Erin at September 09, 2004 06:24 PM (By3Wm)
Putting aside the fallacious math, it's a pretty poor choice of analogies. My first reaction was "Does she really think that the soldiers are fortunate to be in Iraq instead of rolling down America's treacherous highways?"
If you're searching for something to say, try setting aside the petty point-scoring - even if it is in response to what you regard as someone else's petty point-scoring.
Posted by: Andy at September 09, 2004 06:47 PM (Qxn3J)
Perhaps we should look at this another way: Given the worst year for terrorism in the US (2001), a US citizen was far more likely to die in a traffic accident (40K+ deaths that year) than in a terrorist attack (~3K). Given that, why are we so worried about terrorism?
Of course, if you believe the above argument to be silly, then you should also believe any attempted statistics-based diminishment of US soldiers' deaths abroad to be equally silly - if not downright stupid.
Posted by: meph at September 09, 2004 06:52 PM (CnMr8)
I don't know where you get your statistics but I was shock to learn things like .13 death rate for roofers as opposed to .0057 for soldiers in Iraq. But if you check the CDC website http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm5016a4.html you will see that the occupational death rate for civilians in the U.S. (1997 figures) is 4.1 per 100,000 (.000041). So you are less than 100 times as likely to die at work here in the U.S. than on patrol in Iraq. The most dangerous civilian job in the U.S. is mining (30/100,000); still about 20 times safer than being a soldier in Iraq. I'm a little too lazy to check on the overall mortality rate for 25--44 year olds but I will point out that the average age at death of our soldiers in Iraq is 24 so even if those stats are accurate they don't mean a whole lot. And if you think the media is too lazy in pointing out the casulties in Iraq and Afghanistan it is updated every day on DOD.gov although frankly I am surprised it is still so easy to find.
Posted by: freder frederson at September 09, 2004 07:09 PM (mtcvR)
There seems to be a large number of site lice here who profess to be experts in mathematics. I'll hazard their assertions and come back with one of my own. You (collectively) may know math, but you don't know dick about the cost of freedom. Over 53,000 Americans were KIA and WIA during the period 1 July-3 July 1863 in a little town called Gettysburg. They too were in "Harm's Way".
The 1,000 plus that have perished in Iraq died to preserve Liberty, even for "Americans" like this cynical lot. Bush didn't lie. We are in a fight to the death to preserve freedom. The Stan spawn we are fighting don't give a rat's ass who is President, they want to destroy us.
Some of you "mathematicians" need to get a grip. The enemy isn't George Bush, it is these madmen bent on destroying us. Calculate that!
Posted by: Lee at September 10, 2004 12:04 AM (x5Fil)
Last I checked it wasn't the so-called math nerds who tried to trivialize the deaths of American soldiers by comparing them to automobile deaths.
Posted by: wing nut at September 10, 2004 01:19 PM (+lzp0)
Bush didn't lie?
Connection between 9/11 and Saddam? none
Nuclear program reconstituted? nope
Mobile biological weapons labs? nope
War will be paid for by Iraqi oil revenues? Nope $200 billion and counting
We will be greeted as liberators? hardly
Mission accomplished? Don't think so
There is no way it will take more troops to stablize the country than to overthrow Saddam? Wrong again
Didn't anticipate the strength of the insurgency? Shinseki warned you, Zinni warned you, the State Department warned you, numerous middle east experts warned you. You just chose to ignore all that advice for the neocon fantasy of chocolates and flowers. Thank God that the military forced Bush to accept 140,000 troops instead of the 40,000 troops Rumsfeld really wanted.
We'll be down to 30,000 troops by October 2003? Still at 140,000 with no end in site.
Face it, we're in a war that took our eyes off the real goal of getting Al Qaeda (read October's Atlantic for an excellent article on this) and probably has created more islamic terrorists than it has destroyed (even Rumsfeld has admitted as much). Afghanistan is a disaster. We are now in the embaressing position there that there are more people registered to vote than there are voters and more opium being produced than ever before.
Posted by: Freder Frederson at September 10, 2004 02:11 PM (mtcvR)
As was already pointed out, mining is the most hazardous stateside industry with 30 deaths per 100,000 for 2000-2001. The numbers posted by (streetwise?) from his linked source are pretty far off.
Typical mortality rates for males aged 25-34 years are 120-200 per 100,000. They vary a lot by race. The numbers are lower for the 15-24 category of course.
Clearly there is a significant additional risk to being in a U.S. uniform in Iraq, with mortality numbers of about 600 per 100,000. Considering how dangerous what they are doing is, it is remarkable that more aren't killed (but thankfully so).
Whatever your political stripe, we should all hope for the safe return of those serving and as painless as possible of a transition for the Iraqis.
Posted by: loser at September 10, 2004 04:42 PM (jNTP/)
IMAGINE IF MIKE MOORE SAID WHAT YOU SAID SARAH?
HEADLINE: Iraq Comments Provoke Conservative Outrage
Sept. 10, 2004
Conservatives across America today expressed outrage today at comments made by [Mike Moore/John Kerry/Hillary Clinton/some other prominent liberal] as the 1000th US fatality looms in Iraq.
"Statistically speaking, one is more likely to die in a car accident than in Iraq", the [liberal scumbag] is reported to told a rally of supporters, "In fact, 1000 war deaths are a blessing."
[The White House/the rest of the usual suspects]described these remarks as "grossly insensitive and an outrageous insult not only to the decent American men and women serving in Iraq, but also to the science of statistics."
[Mike Moore/whoever] claims his quote about 1000 deaths being "a blessing" have been taken out of context. "I was saying *historically speaking*, a 1000 deaths are blessing, though this qualification seems to have been left out of some news reports". [Guess which ones?]
Even so, a number of conservative commentators have mocked his claim that driving on the road in the US is more dangerous than Iraq. [Take your pick] was quick to point out if you add up all the highway deaths in the US, and divide that by the population...etc etc
Posted by: mrmob at September 11, 2004 04:23 PM (QWMCA)
In the case of U.S. road accidents and the average U.S. driver:
Are they driving tanks?
Bradley Fighting Vehicles?
While many Americans driver Humvees are they armed with machine guns and armor plated?
Are the drivers armed?
Is shotgun literal?
Are they militarily trained?
Are drivers in the U.S. being deliberately killed by I.E.Ds?
Are they being mined?
Are their bodies burnt and then dragged through the streets to be hung from a bridge?
Did the President order those drivers to drive into dangerous roads during an ice storm with bald tires?
Are we forgetting the wounded? Oh right Purple Hearts mean jack, forgot about that.
So can we please drop this Â“itÂ’s just like AmericaÂ” crap? ItÂ’s not, theyÂ’re fighting a war not going to the outlet store in Odenville, Nebraska. You can say itÂ’s just like this or that all you like, it doesnÂ’t change the fact that they are in as war and to pretend itÂ’s like anything else is asinine and a disrespect to the soldiers if you think about it.
Posted by: salvage at September 12, 2004 11:37 PM (3+LTh)
Back to the point you tried to make. Your math is wrong. Don't you have any other evidence? Can you support your point, or not?
Posted by: Curious at September 13, 2004 05:53 AM (n8uIX)
If we compare statistics, don't divide the number of automobile related deaths by number of people in the US. Divide the number of deaths per million miles traveled in a car by the number of people driving cars at a given time or given location (people sitting in front of their TV don't die from automobile accidents).
Military personnel who fix trucks and serve food aren't nearly as likely to die in combat.
Broad generalizing of statistics doesn't really say anything (either way)
Posted by: al at December 07, 2004 02:37 AM (cxM4p)
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