Thursday, July 21, 2005

How not to count bodies - The Times Online

Stephen Pollard at Britain's The Times Online calls out some of the competition on some dubious Iraqi death toll numbers. Many of Britain's prominent newspapers and other news outlets (the BBC, The Guardian, The Daily Mirror, etc.) ran headlines claiming that almost 25,000 Iraqi civilians have died in the war. Mr. Pollard does some of his own research - on where those numbers came from that is.

There is only one problem with the figure — not that you would know it from the credulous reporting. It is an entirely arbitrary figure published by political agitators.
. . .
The organisation simply adds up all reports of casualties, no matter what the source or how scant the evidence.

I wonder how many of those "civilians" were insurgents who died in combat? I'll let him sum my feelings up for me:

The civilian costs of the war have been greater than its advocates expected. It does not help in getting to the truth, however, when parts of the media report partisan lobbying as fact.
Read the whole thing here.

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