Hmm... seems the proclamations from the media and the Pentagon about a new low death toll in Iraq were a bit premature. Media outlets stating that July had the lowest US death toll in 8 months, have been quoting a figure of 73
US soldier deaths. According to the latest from Iraq Coalition Casualty Count, July still has the lowest death toll in 8 months, but the margin has now been cut to 1 soldier. The toll is now believed to be 80
. For comparison, January, February and March of this year had death counts respectively of 83, 81 and 81. The only reason the July looks good is because April (104), May (126) and June (101) were so bad. In fact if we look at death rate (deaths/day), 2007 has been the bloodiest year for US soldiers of the entire war (2003: 1.92/day, 2004: 2.32/day, 2005: 2.31/day, 2006: 2.25/day, 2007: 3.22/day). 2007 has nearly 1.4 times the death rate of 2004, the previous high, and nearly 1.7 times the rate of 2003, the low mark. Put another way: it took 19 months from the beginning of the war to reach 1000 US deaths, it took 13 months to go from 1000-2000 deaths, and 14 months to go from 2000-3000. If current trends continue it will be 10-11 months between 3000 and 4000 deaths.