Skip to comments.U.S. Troop Deaths in Iraq Rise to 1,500
Posted on 03/03/2005 3:09:18 AM PST by gridlock
By TODD PITMAN
BAGHDAD, Iraq (AP) - The number of U.S. military deaths in Iraq rose to 1,500 after the military announced Thursday that a soldier was killed in action just south of the capital, an Associated Press count showed.
The latest fatality occurred Wednesday in Babil province, part of an area known as the "Triangle of Death" because of the frequency of insurgent attacks on U.S.- and Iraqi-led forces there.
In eastern Baghdad, two suicide car bombs exploded outside the Interior Ministry, killing at least two policemen and wounding five others, police Maj. Jabar Hassan said. Officials at nearby al-Kindi hospital said 15 people were injured in the blasts.
Hassan said the car bombers had been trailing a police convoy that was trying to enter the ministry. Iraqi security forces opened fire on the vehicles and disabled them before they could arrive at a main checkpoint outside the building, said Col. Adnan Abdul-Rahman, an Interior Ministry spokesman.
"Casualties were very small because they didn't get to the checkpoint," Abdul-Rahman said.
Meanwhile, talks aimed at forging a new coalition government faltered Wednesday over Kurdish demands for more land and concerns that the dominant Shiite alliance seeks to establish an Islamic state, delaying the planned first meeting of Iraq's new parliament.
The snag in negotiations between Shiite and Kurdish leaders in northern Iraq came as clashes and two other car bombings in Baghdad on Wednesday killed at least 14 Iraqi soldiers and police officers _ the latest in a relentless wave of violence since elections Jan. 30.
The group led by Iraq's most wanted terrorist, Abu-Musab al-Zarqawi, purportedly claimed responsibility in an Internet posting for Wednesday's clashes and at least one of the bombings. It also claimed responsibility for a suicide car bombing Monday that killed 125 people in Hillah, a town south of the capital.
National Security Adviser Mouwafak al-Rubaie vowed the attacks would not derail the political process. "The Iraqi government will go after and hunt down each and every one of these terrorists whether in Iraq or elsewhere," he said.
The U.S. soldier killed Wednesday was assigned to the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force and died "while conducting security and stability operations," the military said without elaborating.
As is customary, the name of the soldier was withheld pending notification of family.
U.S. troops are killed nearly every day in Iraq.
The latest death brought to at least 1,500 the number of members of the U.S. military who have died since the U.S.-led war in Iraq began in March 2003, according to an Associated Press count. At least 1,140 died as a result of hostile action, according to the Defense Department. The figures include four military civilians.
Since May 1, 2003, when President Bush declared that major combat operations in Iraq had ended, 1,362 U.S. military members have died, according to AP's count. That includes at least 1,030 deaths resulting from hostile action, according to the military's numbers.
The tally was compiled by the AP based on Pentagon records and AP reporting.
The U.S. exit strategy is dependent on handing over responsibility for security to Iraq's fledgling army and police forces. Forming Iraq's first democratically elected coalition government is turning out to be a laborious process.
Shiite and Kurdish leaders, Iraq's new political powers, failed to reach agreement after two days of negotiations in the northern city of Irbil, with the clergy-backed candidate for prime minister, Ibrahim al-Jaafari, leaving with only half the deal he needed.
The Shiite-led United Iraqi Alliance, which has 140 seats in the 275-member National Assembly, hopes to win backing from the 75 seats held by Kurdish political parties so it can muster the required two-thirds majority to insure control of top posts in the new government.
Al-Jaafari indicated after the talks that the alliance was ready to accept a Kurdish demand that one of its leaders, Jalal Talabani, become president. However, he would not commit to other demands, including the expansion of Kurdish autonomous areas south to the oil-rich city of Kirkuk.
Kurdish leaders have demanded constitutional guarantees for their northern regions, including self-rule and reversal of the "Arabization" of Kirkuk and other northern areas. Saddam Hussein relocated Iraqi Arabs to the region in a bid to secure the oil fields there.
Politicians had hoped to convene the new parliament by Sunday. But Ali Faisal, of the Shiite Political Council, said the date was now "postponed" and that a new date had not been set.
The Kurds, he added, were "the basis of the problem" in the negotiations.
"The Kurds are wary about al-Jaafari's nomination to head the government. They are concerned that a strict Islamic government might be formed," al-Faisal said. "Negotiations and dialogue are ongoing."
In another twist, alliance deputy and former Pentagon favorite Ahmad Chalabi was to meet Thursday with interim Prime Minister Ayad Allawi, whose party won 40 seats in the assembly. It was unclear why the meeting between the two rivals was taking place.
Both Allawi and Chalabi are secular Shiites opposed to making Iraq an Islamic state. Concerns over a possible theocracy are especially pertinent because the main task of the new assembly will be to write a constitution.
Are we all supposed to say "Well, 1497 was OK, but 1500 is completely unacceptable!"
Katie Couric will be falling all over herself this morning to emphasize this on the Today show. Typical of blame America hate America mainstream media types.
And the liberal media and the anti-war, pro-terrorist left morbidly celebrate.
AP loves milestones.
No, what they love are milstones. They do their damndest to turn each milestone into one.
Multiples of 100 are biiiig and scaaary. Not that the AP gives a flying hoot about any of the deaths of individual soldiers, but collectively, they make a good stick to beat people with. That's why they go with the round numbers. Their point isn't to honor the 1497 that died for a noble cause. They want a nice round number like 1500 American servicemember dead in combat as a grim headline.
Wonder what the murder toll in cities like Detroit and DC is for 2005 so far?
"Wonder what the murder toll in cities like Detroit and DC is for 2005 so far?"
A lot less than the murder toll in Baghdad no doubt. A better analogy would be comparing Iraq casualties with police deaths in the afore-mentioned Detroit and DC.
It took us over two years to reach 1,500 deaths. How many dead Iraqi military and jihadis are there in comparison? It's a good thing these AP wusses weren't there to hype the numbers at Iwo or Normandy. Thank God our military doesn't pay attention to these perpetual Cassandras. They just get the job done.
Wouldn't know. I haven't hung around stateside much in quite a while.
I believe most people get my point. It has to do with reporting.
A more fitting comparison would be how many deaths to accomplish this mission as compared to how many to accomplish similar missions in the past.
Except that nobody has ever accomplished this particular mission before. To call the feat of defeating and stabilizing a country as large and backward as Iraq anything other than a triumph is ludicrous.
The number of U.S. military deaths in Iraq rose...
Its still smaller than the number of innocent Americans we lost on 9/11.....and a lot less than the Terrorists have lost in Iraq...
Freedom isn't free.
But the MSM will harp on "rising numbers".
NEVER HAVE SO FEW GIVEN SO MUCH TO SAVE SO ALL EVIL FROM ALL HUMANS FOR ALL TIME AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE, AS WINSTON CHURCHILL MIGHT HAVE SAID. MY THEIR SACRAFICE EVOKE CHARITY AND EXTROVERSION TO END WORLD PAIN AND EVOKE GOOD. I SHALL READ MY BIBLE IN THE HONOR OF THESE DEAD.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.