T Nation

A Little War Perspective


This guy does a pretty good job of putting things in perspective.


US Military Casualties During Operation Iraqi Freedom and Beyond (7/4/05)

OK, enough is enough. For months now I have listened to liberal pussies (pardon the redundancy) bitch about how the casualty rate of US military personnel in Iraq is out of control? how it is disgusting that many young American men and women are dying in this ?horrible? conflict. Part of me wants to say that you can?t really blame them since the liberal media perpetuates this idea with its constant reporting of US military casualties. The media reminds me of an overzealous sports announcer who must constantly narrate and dramatize every single detail of every damn player on the field. But then I realize that these are hippies we are talking about and of course they are culpable.
Let?s put some shit in perspective:

In the last ten years, total out-of-action, peacetime deaths in the US military have averaged about 900 per year. I think I need to repeat that, so that it isn?t lost? 900 US soldiers die per year in times of peace. That means, when this war ends, 900 US soldiers will die every year from accidents, murder, sickness, suicide or any other non-combat form of death.
According to recent mortality rate information, we have lost around 1,745 troops in Iraq thus far. Keep in mind the war started in March of 2003. This means that the war has been raging for 2.3 years. Therefore, on average, 759 US troops are killed each year in the war. But wait, 759 is less than 900?the average peacetime mortality rate of our military?!? How does that work? It doesn?t, or at least not logically. More troops die in peacetime than they do in war by war-related deaths.

A savvy hippie might interject at this point that peacetime deaths are independent of wartime deaths in the sense that people will still die of natural causes while ?at war?.

True. I admit that a certain number of non-combat deaths occur while at war, but I would also contest that not nearly as many occur while at war. See, while a soldier is doing his best to stay alive, he doesn?t have the time to commit suicide or murder and he doesn?t even really have time to get sick. People are at their healthiest and safest when their life is on the line, ironically. Additionally, I am not implying that more soldiers die in peacetimes. What I am trying to do is put things in perspective. 1,745 US military deaths over the course of 2.3 years is not considered to be ?a lot?.

Now am I saying that the loss of life is not tragic? Of course not. It upsets me that Americans have died. But I am just a big fan of perspective. When politicians and media cocksuckers try to make it sound like Iraqi streets are running deep with the blood of Americans, it pisses me off. By any statistical analysis, (and before anyone gets pissed, I should note that I am putting emphasis on ?statistical?) casualties in Iraq are negligible. Throughout the course of history, any general or chief executive would have loved to enjoy our current kill/death ratio as a function of our population.

And to all those people who claim Iraq is another Vietnam? Are you people even aware of what you are saying? Can you even fathom how ignorant you sound when you say that? Because it sounds to me like you folks had a sudden urge to get political but didn?t have the knowledge base requisite to make anything more than a stupid fucking comment??Iraq is another Vietnam.? Oh really?

See, like I said before, I am a big fan of perspective. A crucial part of perspective comes from data in the form of numbers. So why don?t you political savants help me reconcile some data? over 58,000 American military personnel died in Vietnam. About 1,745 have died in Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Let me put it to you folks like this. Let?s say that one of you guys who says Iraq is another Vietnam is taking a shower at the gym. Your penis is 1.745 inches long. The guy next to you has a dick that is so long it is lying on the tile floor as he showers. In fact, it is 58 inches long?33 times the size of your dick. Would you actually have the audacity to compare your cock to his? Could you actually look at him and be like, ?Hey buddy, looks like we are working with pretty much the same hardware?? What reality do you semen-swindlers live in? How can you even compare Iraq and Vietnam in any manner? Hell, if you take the casualty figure as a function of population, Vietnam was 48 times as costly in terms of US military lives.** Oh, but wait, you people don?t actually think for yourselves. You just regurgitate liberal shit that you snarfed up off of some public access radio station or CNN. Well, allow me to offer a resounding FUCK YOU in your general direction! Our military is kicking ass and not even bothering to take names? because taking names would mean they have less time to kick ass. And they wouldn?t like that.

**(1.75/58) x (1970 US population/current US population) = M
1/M = 48
Where M stands for ?Math too difficult for stupid hippies?


War is war. You expect deaths. I do think that the troops were improperly armed and armored (tanks). It's gotten better but not enough.


Wow, you really are retarded. Remember to use the oxygen tank when going into smoke filled rooms, alas it may be too late though.


Thanks for the intellectually stimulating rebuttal Elk!




Without taking sides, I will try to explain something to you bigflamer. When people are comparing Iraq to Vietnam, they are not refering to casualty rates. They are referring to the fact that they believe we shouldn't be there and shouldn't have gone in just like in Vietnam. Or the fact that they feel the reconstruction and rebuilding process is just as bungled and ineffectual as in Vietnam.


Screw you, he makes a post comparing Iraq to guys comparing their cocks in bathroom and he labels those in disagreement with the war as liberal pussies!

And, you have the audacity to fling shit my way.... you and your hypocritical BS can take a flying leap.


Let me explain something to you, jsbrook. You are wrong as you can possibly be in on this.

This is the only war in our history that has been defined by the casualty rate. Name another war we have been in that was defined, on an running total basis, by the number of casualties. You can't. Why? Because historically, we have looked at the objective rather than the cost to decide the worthiness of the engagement.

The only bad thing going on in Iraq now is the death toll - but it is lower than any other extrended campaign we have EVER waged. There is no comparison to Viet Nam. Just because a bunch of left-wing peacniks say so doesn't make it true.


I don?t know about your facts, but that was an enjoyable rant:) I agree Iraq is no Viet Nam. Viet Nam war was mostly drafted soldiers .This war is mostly enlisted soldiers .The vocal left could never pull of the demonstrations like Kent State. The right would meet them head on. They have the similarity of being a war or conflict.


Exactly how am I wrong? It's your OPINION that the only thing going wrong in Iraq is the death toll. Which of course is an unavoidable consequence of war. Most of the complaints against the war in Iraq is NOT that people are dying. This war is not being defined by the number of casulties either. And it shoudldn't be. The complaints are that people are dying for a war that should not have been exectued the way it was. And that the reconstruction and rebuilding process is not going well. These are peoples OPINIONS.


This is very true.


You are truly astounding...... I trust you can count, right? Okay, how many years did our involvement in Vietnam last? You see if you are able to comprehend this, Vietnam had very low casualties in the beginning years of our involvement there. With piss poor leadership and decision making the war drug on for years with those numbers escalating drastically!

There is no side by side comparison at this point as far as numbers go like you are trying to insinuate!!! The comparisons are being drawn as far as the potential for this due to piss poor political decision by political hawks to disintegrate into a life and resource draining mess.

You are so blinded by your pigheaded idol worship of the current leadership that it is vomit inducing. If this does escalate over the next few years and more eighteen and nineteen year olds are asked to give up their lives, I hope you offer yours as well!


Elkhunter How old are you? Peace


There goes elk again. Absolutely no position other than to call names and run folks down.

I must be on the right track if I am inflaming the big, bad, huffy, puffy elk.

It would be really a novel twist if you didn't regurgitate the tried and tired old arguments. But I can understand that your ilk don't exactly boast of being original - not with your demonstrated inability to stay on topic.

You are an ignorant, embarassing asshole.


You "explained" nothing more than your own opinion. How is that any different than what I said? I disagree with you on your assessment. Many folks disagree with your assessment.

It most certainly is being defined by the death toll. That is all you hear about. No other war had the MSM slobbering in anticipation of the death toll topping 2000.

It is exclusively the opinion of those that wrongly think that this is another Viet Nam that think we are sending our boys to die for a war that should not have been prosecuted.

But even then the war is being framed by the deaths of our soldiers.


Viet Nam had a smaller percentage of drafted soldiers than did WWII. By a large amount.


I can indeed count. Can you? Do you even know what the total casualty count in Viet Nam was? Okay - I had to look it up as well, but 58,169.

Do I need to do the math for you? You're right - of course I do. At the current race to death - we will have to be in Iraq for another 56 YEARS before we get to Viet Nam numbers.

You'd probably do best if you just stick with hate filled outbursts that don't require you to put actual thoughts together. You have no skill whatsoever in that department.


You are more stupid then a rock and stubborn then a mule. You completely and totally miss the point. You come back with logic or I should say a lack of logic that in your developmentally disabled mind makes sense, but to no one else.

Oh, sure some of your fellow cheerleaders might not say anything when you post some of your garbage, but I am sure they have even told you in private that ninety percent of the time you sound like a completely retarded asshole.

Bottom line if this war drags on for a few more years and more people are asked to die, I sincerely hope you will show some character if you have any and offer your life as well!


My point is that many of the people who are against the Iraqui war or against how the war and reconstruction is being conducted (the two are after all not the same thing) are not complaining about casualties. Of course some are. But many have other issues. And the comparisons to Vietnam relate far more to these issues than to the casualty rate. The death toll is not all that's talked about. I watch the news. I hear a huge number of 'complaints' about Haliburton's no-bid contract, the lack of WMDs, the lack of an international coalition and involvement in reconstrucation, and the improper arming of troops. Whether or not you agree with these people or fault the adminstration to any degree, you can't say that this isn't true.


You can not compare vietnam to iraq. At least in vietnam we were fighting a uniformed army. In iraq we are fighting terrorists. As for pittbulls comment about drafted soldiers I think you meant to say this war is fought by volunteers, because all wars have been fought by enlisted men. Officers merely issue the marching orders and expect NCO's to carry them out by any means necessary. Not to mention vietnam was a politically damned war to begin with, you can't have our lawmakers telling our soldiers and marines when and where they are allowed to shoot and not expect massive casualties.