American Deaths in Iraq Hits Two-Year High

From yesterday’s Financial Times:

A series of fatalities announced on Tuesday in Iraq saw the US military’s death toll rise to its highest monthly level in more than two years.

The US army reported that eight troops died in roadside bombings and a helicopter crash, bringing total fatalities so far for May to 112, a level not seen since the insurgency took hold in November 2004. The spike in violence follows another bloody month in April, when 104 US troops were killed.

The deaths, which came as Americans celebrated the Memorial Day military remembrance holiday, were announced amid a surge of violence in the capital, where 40 Iraqis were killed in two car bombings. In another sign of the deteriorating security situation, the UK government confirmed that five Britons had been kidnapped in Baghdad by gunmen who raided a finance ministry building.

The FT piece also reports that half of Americans now believe the surge is having no effect, and slightly over a quarter think it’s making things worse. Fully 72% of Americans disapprove of the way Pres. Bush is handling the war.

But of two things we can be sure: (1) Pres. Bush will not change course, even if his disapproval rating on the war is 100%; and (2) the war cheerleaders on the right will continue to support keeping U.S. troops in Iraq — and sending more — so that the almost-3,500 who have died and 25,000 who have been maimed for life will not have incurred those sacrifices “in vain.” Indeed, I expect that the more American soldiers die, the louder will be the cacaphony coming from the drum-beaters for war, because their psychological need to justify all the deaths that went before and give them meaning will feel more compelling.

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5 Comments

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5 responses to “American Deaths in Iraq Hits Two-Year High

  1. nightshift66

    On a related note, Cindy Sheehan is calling it quits, according to KO last night. Said she’s had enough of fighting for peace and justice for a country that doesn’t want either one. I understand her exhaustion, but I think she’s wrong about what the country wants. It’s just that the PTB don’t care any more what the people want.

    GWB is going to keep our military in the sandbox, in harm’s way, every single remaining day of his occupation of the White House. He’s doing it for the sole purpose of having the inevitable mess that will occur when we leave happen on someone else’s watch. He’s loathsome.

  2. I assume that an increase in action on our end would lead to higher casualty rates while we are cleaning up, but I do not think our overall strategy will be the solution. We may clean up areas of Baghdad and other provinces, but they will just go somewhere else and we will either chase them leaving a void where we were, or let them be and create more tensions with local forces. A surge could work if we used maybe a million and just swept the insurgents and terrorists completely out of Iraq, but then the rest of the population would turn on us for using too much force and causing too much more death and destruction. My solution would be to put up blow up doll soldiers and Hollywood set bases and pull out while everyone is sleeping.

  3. My solution would be to put up blow up doll soldiers and Hollywood set bases and pull out while everyone is sleeping.

    LOL! Where are Sheriff Bart, the Kid, and Mongo when you need them?

  4. On a related note, Cindy Sheehan is calling it quits, according to KO last night.

    I wrote about that at Liberty Street. 🙂

  5. Pingback: Daily Round-Up at Shakesville

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