Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Mission Accomplished

Mission Accomplished?
Four years ago George Bush spoke those words, and four years later, they are still premature.

I'm again prompted to wonder where we might be if we had poured our efforts into Afghanistan, instead of invading a second country under false pretenses. For one thing, as this graphic shows, there would be far fewer American and Iraqi casualties. As a matter of fact, U.S. casualties in Iraq surpassed the 9/11 death toll in September of last year.

I incorporated the Iraqi death toll in this graphic not to minimize the deaths of American civilians and soldiers, but to demonstrate that the number of lives taken in our reaction to 9/11 - both American and Iraqi - is of an order of magnitude far, far greater than the lives lost in the United States on that day. And, yes, the vast majority of those lives are Iraqi. It would be intellectually dishonest not to recognize that. And inhumane. Nonetheless, how often is that last figure ever mentioned in the mass media?

Incidentally, these figures do not include the lives of those coalition members from other countries. The total number of coalition casualties (including U.S. troops) stands at 3,624.

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