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Miscellaneous thoughts and ramblings
Sunday, March 20, 2005
The Belmont Club : Is the Iraqi Insurgency Dying?
The Belmont Club : Is the Iraqi Insurgency Dying?

Updated to add: I posted this last night with half my attention on the television, so I never got around to adding... I've followed the casualty rate since the invasion at this site:

It's probably compiled by some left-wing types, but if so, it conceals its political motives to such a degree that it works as a non-biased source of casualty figures. Freedom has a cost. Knowing that cost is not a bad thing.

Since April, 2004, the two deadliest months have been, (as you would expect), November (our election month) and January (their election month).

Since the election at the end of January, there has been a significant downtick in American and Coalition casualties. February showed the lowest avg. fatalities since July (2.14 per day). To date March has been substantially lower than that, at 1.33 per day. At this pace, March would have the lowest casualty rate in over a year.

Also worthy of mentioning are the daily totals for March. Prior to the elections, it was a rare day when there wasn't at least one US fatality. Since the 4th of March, there have been 8 such days (out of 17). There have been 14 Coalition fatalities during this period (12 in hostile action). So, the trend for March is continuing downward as the month has progressed.

This is all significant, although by no means conclusive. It is entirely possible that the enemy has simply retreated temporarily in order to regroup, replan and renew their offensive at a later date.

On the other hand, with the Iraqi elections demonstrating a resounding defeat for the enemy in Iraqi public opinion, the Coalition military efforts in Fallujah and elsewhere, and the increasing potency of the Iraqi defense and police forces, it is tempting to believe that the downtrend is an indication that the "tipping point" has been reached. As Belmont Club states, the next couple months will ultimately demonstrate whether or not it has.
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