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Devastating Death Toll

There's a devastating new report about the Iraq war?not in the mainstream media or in a political book, but in the British medical journal The Lancet. It says that over 650,000 people have died in the last 3 years in Iraq as a result of the war?that's about almost 3% of the population and is more than 20 times higher than President George Bush claimed a little over a year ago. Previous official government estimates have placed casualties at a much lower level of between 50 and 125,000. People have been dying at a rate of almost 600 a day, or about one death every three minutes Debora MacKenzie writes in New Scientist that the study was conducted by Les Roberts and Gilbert Burnham at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, along with Iraqi scientists at Al Mustansiriya University in Baghdad. They questioned about 1850 families about births, deaths and the cause of death. They did not discriminate between civilians and soldiers. Les Robert and his team conducted a similar survey two years ago, which concluded that 100,000 Iraqis had been killed.

In the Independent, Andrew Buncombe quotes Roberts as saying, "I didn't realize that things there were twice as bad as when we carried out our first survey in 2004?Our study is pretty easy to verify. If they go to a graveyard in a small village and ask how many people are being put in the ground..."

Art credit: freeimages.co.uk

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