Operation Iraqi Freedom Fatalities “Dip”

Nominee for the “Let’s Tone It Down To Nap Time” headline award, the LA Times is a sure winner: U.S., Iraq fatalities dip in October

The number of Iraqis killed in war-related violence in October was the lowest since the U.S.-led invasion in March 2003, Iraqi officials said Friday.

The death toll was 278, including 22 policemen and 18 Iraqi soldiers, according to the Ministry of Health. In addition, 46 suspected insurgents or militiamen were killed, and 846 were arrested, Iraqi government officials said.

The number of U.S. troops reported dead in October was 13, equal to the low recorded in July, according to independent website icasualties.org.

What, the LA Times couldn’t go to the Department of Defense? Sad commentary in itself, eh?

And, to call it a dip is to ignore not only the tremendous strives in Iraq, but the body of the story itself!

The monthly totals are evidence of the dramatic drop in violence across Iraq in recent months. In October 2007, 888 Iraqis were killed in war- related violence, and there were 38 U.S. military fatalities. The decrease in violence has been attributed to several factors, including the deployment last year of an extra 30,000 American troops to quell sectarian fighting, and the setting up of Sunni Arab paramilitary units to work alongside U.S. and Iraqi forces in providing security.

So, that Surge thang that McCain pushed for and most Democrats, including Senator Barack H. Obama, were against, has worked. Furthermore, setting up the paramilitary units, otherwise known as the police and military (nice dodge, LA Times), was part of the original plan. Anyhow, notice that this is a “dramatic drop,” not a “dip.” In fact, more Marines were killed in motorcycle accidents in the USA then killed in Iraq over the past 12 months.

And from ye olde AP

U.S. deaths in Iraq fell in October to their lowest monthly level of the war, matching the record low of 13 fatalities suffered in July. Iraqi deaths fell to their lowest monthly levels of the year. Eight of the 13 Americans died in combat, most of them in northern Iraq where al-Qaida and other Sunni insurgent groups remain active. The U.S. military suffered 25 deaths in September and 23 in August. (snip)

The sharp drop in American fatalities in Iraq reflects the overall security improvements across the country following the Sunni revolt against al-Qaida and the rout suffered by Shiite extremists in fighting last spring in Basra and Baghdad.

But the decline also points to a shift in tactics by extremist groups, which U.S. commanders say are now focusing their attacks on Iraqi soldiers and police that are doing much of the fighting.

Wait. How’d that get in to print? It almost seems like the AP is saying that the overall plan to turn Iraqi security over to the Iraqi’s has worked.

Meanwhile

Rebuilding schools is a top priority for Multi-National Division – Baghdad to eliminate terrorist and criminal activities and set the condition for a brighter future for Iraqi youth.

Al Tajadud school in the Adhamiyah District of Baghdad reopened, Oct. 26, after undergoing a two-month-long renovation. With $220,000 from the government of Iraq, the 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division facilitated the rebuilding of this important infrastructure.

Progress.

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