US Death Toll In Iraq at Lowest Level in Nearly Two Years
The US Death Toll in Iraq Is Trending Down…
(Iraq Coalition Casualty Count)
The US death toll in Iraq fell to its lowest level in nearly two years in October.
The AP reported:
The monthly toll of U.S. service members who have died in Iraq is on track to being the lowest in nearly two years, with at least 37 troop deaths recorded as of Tuesday, but the military cautioned it’s too early to declare a long-term trend…
At least 37 American service members have died so far in October, nearly a quarter from non-combat causes…
It is the lowest number since 32 troops died in March 2006 and the second-lowest since 20 troop deaths in February 2004, according to an Associated Press count based on military figures.
That would be the second consecutive drop in monthly figures, after 65 Americans died in September and 84 in August.
Maj. Winfield Danielson, (whom I talked with earlier today) a military spokesman in Baghdad, pointed to a number of likely reasons for the decline, including a U.S. security push that has driven militants out of former safe havens and a change in strategy that has placed troops closer to the population. That, in turn, has caused a rise in the number of tips from residents about roadside bombs and other dangers.
He also singled out the cease-fire call by radical Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr, who in August ordered his fighters to cease attacks against U.S.-led forces and other Iraqis for up to six months. Danielson said Iraqi forces also were increasingly taking charge of security operations.
He welcomed the lower numbers but stressed it was too early to say it was a downward trend.
“Have we turned a corner? It might be a little too early to say that,” he said. “It’s certainly encouraging.”
This follows the news from September that showed violent deaths in Iraq are also trending down.
It looks like the Surge is working.
Meanwhile… The New York Times gets a bit confused on which country the US is fighting in.
UPDATE: Front line experts are reporting that non-combat injuries and illnesses are the number one hazard in Iraq. ” From the invasion in March 2003 through Oct. 1, 2007 , more than 36,000 U.S. troops were evacuated from Iraq . More than 77 percent of those were for illnesses or non-combat injuries.”… That means 8,280 were evacuated for combat related injuries. You sure don’t hear that pointed out in the Democratic talking points.