Wednesday, October 18, 2006


The first thing I thought about when I woke this morning was the Iraq Occupation and the recent Johns Hopkins statistical study of the number of civilian deaths in Iraq since the invasion. The study places the number of deaths at 600,000 plus or minus 200,000. That ranks the Iraq invasion and occupation right up there with World War II on a per capita basis. My suspicion about the horror of the conflict has been justified once again.

The Bush Administration has called the study’s methodology flawed. Experts in biostatistics have unanimously defended the survey as the best way to arrive at the facts.

The story has quickly dropped from the news cycle. The deniers go on their merry way. Meanwhile, the death tolls are increasing instead of abating.

Not only the Bush Administration, but also the American public in general has been guilty of willful ignorance about the situation in Iraq. Whether anyone likes it or not, the numbers always display their own tyranny.

I grow weary of thinking this and saying this: nothing good will come to the United States until we leave Iraq. Many have disproved all of the arguments for staying in Iraq. The most compelling arguments for leaving have not come from political hacks or activists, but from experts and those not politically aligned as Republicans or Democrats.

The hubris and willful ignorance of the Bush Administration is by now legendary. The citizens ought to know better. I was encouraged last week while talking to a friend, a staunch Republican and Bush supporter, when we agreed on an Iraq exit strategy. You pack your bags, you get on an airplane, you fly away, and you do not piss away time while doing it.

The deniers have had it all their own way. It is time for them to go to the back of the class and shut up. Too many innocent lives are at stake.


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