July 18, 2003

Media Underplays U.S. Death Toll in Iraq - Soldiers Dead Since May Is 3 Times Official Count

Yesterday, SeeNotNews reported on the White House's
plan to fight back against the Democrats and others
who dare to criticize its unilateral, "pre-emptive"
war in Iraq. VICE _resident Cheney is, of course,
central to the plan. He is the Enforcer. When he
threatens you, indirectly in a speech or an interview,
you are supposed to sit down and shut up (you might get Wellstoned).
Now, 24 hours later, we are seeing some
evidence of the White House's plan in action: someone
at the White House tipped off Matt Drudge that Jeffrey
Kofman, the ABC reporter who did the powerful piece on
US GIs anger at Donald Rumsfeld, is not only gay but
Canadian (Washington Post,
someone at the White House tipped off Robert Novak
that the wife of Charles Wilson, the former US
ambassador who forced out the truth on the Niger
uranium hoax, is a CIA operative on WMDs, thus
endangering her life in a way that is unprecendented
-- indeed, the excuse given for not revealing more
alleged intel is that it could endanger the lives of
CIA personnel (The Nation,
General Abizaid, who just took over Central Command,
says that any US GIs who critiicize the _resident or
any of his cronies will suffer disciplinary action of
some kind (New York Daily News,
http://www.nydailynews.com/news/wn_report/story/101565p-91932c.html)...Yes, the crackdown is coming. They are trying to discourage more Charles Wilsons, Greg Thielmans, Rand Beers, etc. from coming forth. Attacking the Bushes can be hazardous to your health.
I call it the Hatfield Effect. Why? Oh, just do some
research on the fate of "Fortunate Son" and its author
Jim Hatfield...There is no Independent Prosecutor
statue (Ken Starr was victorious in that aspect of his
mission), there will be no open or aggressive
Congressional investigations while both Houses remain
in the iron grip. So you can expect the crackdown to
get worse before it gets better. It is up to the "US
mainstream news media" to report some semblance of the
truth and the facts onj the ground. Perhaps now,
because the economic and national security of the US
is so imperiled by the _resident and the neo-con wet
dreamers he has turned the engines of war over too,
the media's corporate overlords themselves are beginning to
fear the worst and will therefore loosen the leashes
on their news departments...Meanwhile, in Iraq, the
situation is even worse than is being report...Please
read the following from "Editors and Publishers" and
pass it on...

JULY 17, 2003
Media Underplays U.S. Death Toll in Iraq - Soldiers Dead Since May Is 3 Times Official Count

By Greg Mitchell

NEW YORK -- News Analysis

Any way you look at it, the news is bad enough.
According to Thursday's press and television reports,
33 U.S. soldiers have now died in combat since
President Bush declared an end to the major fighting
in the war on May 2. This, of course, is a tragedy for
the men killed and their families, and a problem for
the White House.

But actually the numbers are much worse -- and rarely reported by the media.

According to official military records, the number of
U.S. soldiers who have died in Iraq since May 2 is
actually 85. This includes a staggering number of
non-combat deaths. Even if killed in a non-hostile
action, these soldiers are no less dead, their
families no less aggrieved. And it's safe to say that
nearly all of these people would still be alive if
they were still back in the States. Nevertheless, the
media continues to report the much lower figure of 33
as if those are the only deaths that count.

A Web site called Iraq Coalition Casualty Count
(http://lunaville.org/warcasualties/Summary.aspx) is
tracking the deaths, by whatever cause, of U.S.
military personnel in Iraq, based on official Pentagon
and CENTCOM press releases and Army Times and CNN
casualty trackers. Their current count is 85 since May

Looking at the entire war, there was much fanfare
Thursday over the fact that the latest U.S. combat
death this week pushed the official total to 148 --
finally topping the 147 figure for Gulf War 1.
However, according to the Iraq Coalition Casualty
Count, the total number of all U.S. deaths, combat and
otherwise, in Iraq is actually 224.

This Web site not only counts deaths, it describes
each one in whatever detail (often sketchy) the
military provides, along with the name and age and
home town of each fatality.

An analysis of the 85 deaths by E&P reveals that
nearly as many U.S. military personnel have died in
vehicle accidents (17) as from gunshot wounds (19).
Ten have died after grenade attacks and seven from
accidental explosions, another seven in helicopter
crashes. Six were killed by what is described as
"non-hostile" gunshots, and three have drowned.

The vast majority of those killed -- at least 70% --
were age 18 to 30 but several soldiers in their 40s or
50s have also perished. Pentagon officials also
disclosed that there have been about five deaths among
troops assigned to the Iraq mission that commanders
say might have been suicides. As inquiries continue,
one official said the susupected suicides were not
clustered in any single time period that might
indicate a related cause.

The most recent non-combat death was Cory Ryan Geurin,
age 18, a Marine lance corporal from Santee, Calif.
"He was standing post on a palace roof in Babylon when
he fell approximately 60 feet," the site said.

On July 13, Jaror C. Puello-Coronado, 36, an Army
sergeant, died while "manning a traffic point when the
operator of a dump truck lost control of the vehicle."

Another soldier, still officially listed as "Unknown,"
died on July 13 "from a non-hostile gunshot incident,"
according to the site.

Before that, on July 9, another Marine Lance Corporal,
age 20, died in Kuwait "in a vehicle accident."

Many other deaths are only vaguely described as the
"result of non-combat injuries." One recent death
occurred in a mine-clearing accident. Others "drowned"
or "died of natural causes," and still others lost
their lives in a "vehicle accident."
E&P welcomes letters to the editor:

Source: Editor & Publisher Online

Greg Mitchell (gmitchell@editorandpublisher.com) is
editor of E&P.

Posted by richard at July 18, 2003 08:19 AM