1.000.000 killed in Iraq since the invasion

1 million killed or dead as cause of the war (2003-07)

this according to an Australian scientist

have anyone heard about this figure (I have only a article in Norwegian and the scientist is not named)

It was 600,000 not very long ago.

These estimates are always pretty chancy, and usually based on extrapolating from small samples as opposed to actually counting up bodies. A million is probably the super high end estimate, though you’ve not provided us with any link.

Still, if it’s only a quarter of that, that’s still pretty awful isn’t it?

the name of the scientist is Gideon Polya

Yeah but you aren’t factoring in the exchange rate.

The same guy says that the US invasion of Afghanistan has caused 2.4 million deaths. Color me verrrry skeptical. Does anyone here believe that Afghanistan is more than twice as bloody as the mess in Iraq?


No Cite, it’s sort of difficult to determine the veracity of the information without at least some sort of article.

I think I’ll stick with the earlier point estimate of 600K for now. That’s better supported, and horrific enough.

One argument against it is that surely such a quantity of death would be noticed somehow. I was thinking about that the other day when I read this AP story that noted that 2 million Iraqis are believed to have fled the country in the past 4 years, and another 1.7 million are believed to have relocated within Iraq.

IOW, roughly 4.3 million Iraqis (out of ~25 million) are no longer living where they used to live, or walking the streets where they used to walk. But that 0.6 million of them are dead - somehow that’s supposed to leave a bigger evidentiary trail than the death and destruction that stalks all Iraqis these days.

Its just the nature of things, I suppose, that we know precisely how many of our own we’ve lost, and theirs are just round numbers. Big goddam round numbers.

One million dead would be an average of 685 per day. Six hundred thousand would be a daily average of 411. There are plenty of people being killed by bombings, death squads and whatnot, but I don’t see that level of dying going on.

There was another estimate that came out a few months ago putting the number at something over 300K and that study included such dubious items as counting people who had died of heart disease which the authors claimed was caused by the stress of war.

When you say “see,” you mean read in the newspapers, right? That’s not really a reliable basis for an impression. We only hear about what’s going on in a couple of major cities.

The method used by the 600k study was supposed to count all sources of increased mortality since the beginning of the war (getting bombed, heart attacks, shot, starvation, whatever). They simply asked people how many of their family members were killed by any source in the several years before the war, and how many were killed afterwards, then extrapolated the numbers to include the whole of the Iraqi population (that said, the largest source of new mortality was violent death, not things like heartattacks, etc.). Supposedly this is a fairly common way to find deathtolls in war zones, where things are too chaotic and dangerous for more comprehensive studies to takeplace.

This American Life (npr radio show) had a good show wiht an interview by one of the researchers involved in these studies. I can’t figure out how to link direclt to the show (anyone know, would be good to know for future reference), but go to thier archives, and its the first story on episode 320.

In a related story, Bush today said that the U.S. shouldn’t pull out because it could result in a “contagion of violence.”

So, uh, what do you call what’s happening now? A violence infection? An abscessed tooth of conflict?

What Marley23 said. It’s unreasonable to expect more than a fraction of the civilian deaths to show up in the organs of the English-language international press.

As for the missing bodies: “We know where they are. They’re in the area around Tikrit and Baghdad and east, west, south and north somewhat”.

“We have no idea how many Iraqis have been killed” is itself a horrific statement.

Don’t worry, though, I’m sure we’ll get to a million eventually.

That’s the same argument the conservatives make, but applied to a different end. It’s the media’s fault.

I think they’re actually doing a pretty good job of reporting Iraqi casualties. Bombing death tolls are a fixture in the press. NPR frequently reports how many bodies are found around Baghdad with the presumption that they were killed in ethnic conflict. Follow-ups are rare, however. We hear 20 people are killed by a bomb, but we don’t hear about the five more who die from injuries caused by the bomb in ensuing days.

Iraqis are motivated to report deaths because they collect benefits for the deceased and the Iraqi government is reporting far fewer than one million deaths in the war. Not that their number is unassailable either.

There are so many unknowns. How many people are killed in ethnic violence and how many are killed for more mundane reasons like robbery or neighbors fighting? What was the death rate in Iraq before the war? Remember the widely disseminated claim that one million Iraqis were killed by the sanctions before the war? I can’t even get a good read on what the population of Iraq is. It seems to vary by millions depending upon the source.

The UN put Iraqi deaths in 2006 (alone) at more than 34,000. It’s good, I think to find a source that doesn’t have an ax to grind.

Ultimately, however, it is going down the wrong road to use these numbers to buttress arguments against the war. The war was an awful idea that has been a huge failure whether the Iraqi death toll (so far) is 30,000 (as Bush claimed not too long ago) or a million as in the OP.

But it is at least somewhat puzzling that the Iraqi Health Ministry, which has been attempting to collect statistics on Iraqis killed during the war, seems to be way out of step with the result of the studies that have found many hundreds of thousands of Iraqis killed. For example, here is an article that says that during September 2006, the ministry counted 2,660 Iraqis killed in Baghdad in one month.

Now, if one million Iraqis have died as the result of the war, that’s in the neighborhood of 15,000 killed per month. How is it possible to reconcile 2,660 killed in Baghdad by violence in one month with a claim of roughly 15,000 killed nationwide as a result of “the war” in the broadest terms? It’s just an awfully large bridge to gap.

Maybe the Iraqi Health Ministry is really bad at counting. Maybe there’s a lot more violence outside of Baghdad than people know about. Maybe “war-related death” is just too broad a term. Maybe people lie to those conducting the surveys. I can see these adding up to some discrepancy between the numbers, but by a factor of six? That just seems really odd to me. I’m really curious as to how those who came up with the estimates of 600,000 to 1,000,000 address this difference.

But is it fair to say it’s completely our fault? How much of those deaths are due to ethnic violence. Sorry for getting rid of the oppressive dictator who’s iron grip kept you from killing each other, I guess.

Yeah, I’m as anti-war as anyone and I use the lowest number because even at that rate ~60K, it’s still horrible and quite a multiple of the United States deaths that get reported.

Lessee: Baghdad has ~20% of the pop. of Iraq, and if 15,000 killed nationwide, ~20% of the deaths. I don’t see the problem.