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Wednesday, February 21, 2007
Heroes And Cowards - February 20, 2007 - The New York Sun: "The total military dead in the Iraq war between 2003 and this month stands at about 3,133. This is tragic, as are all deaths due to war, and we are facing a cowardly enemy unlike any other in our past that hides behind innocent citizens. Each death is blazoned in the headlines of newspapers and Internet sites. What is never compared is the number of military deaths during the Clinton administration: 1,245 in 1993; 1,109 in 1994; 1,055 in 1995; 1,008 in 1996. That's 4,417 deaths in peacetime but, of course, who's counting?"


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posted by Jack Mercer @ 2/21/2007 11:58:00 AM  
  • At 2/21/2007 06:06:00 PM, Blogger Dan said…

    What is not mentioned is that the number of deaths drops steadily throughout Clinton's tenure- they increase only between 97 and 98.

    How many of these illness and suicide deaths during Clinton's time were related to physical and mental health conditions that resulted from elements soldiers may have been exposed to during the first Gulf War? I am willing to guess a decent amount, moreso during his first couple of years when the rates are at their peak.

    Without raising another global warming debate about the existence of Gulf War Syndrome, there seemed to be something going on there. Might Clinton have "inherited" some of these deaths? Poor diction perhaps with "inherited" but you know what I mean here.

    To be fair, same could have happened for our current president-accident and illness rates climb steadily his first year in office- and his conflict began near the end of 2001. But at the same time, those illness rates have climbed steadily since 2001. Another case for GWS? Since 91, its been an ongoing debate.

    My main gripe is that the 3,133 figure represents deaths directly resulting from the war alone. It does not represent the total of active military personnel that have died throughout the duration of Bush's tenure, whereas the Clinton figures represent the whole spectrum. And hostile action deaths (according to the chart)are somewhere between minimal and non-existent throughout Clinton's tenure.

    Questioning people's support for the troops as a result of peacetime deaths during Clinton's first four years, compared to those resulting from the current conflict, is unfair for two very important reasons. First, Clinton came to office right after the first Gulf War with many soldiers ill and having mental health issues- now, whether or not that correlation exists I cannot know for sure, but its a legitimate question. Second, the current Iraq war death totals are as a result of our current government choosing to go to war. I cannot definitely conclude anything, but it is far more likely ("far more likely," not "definitely because") that the death totals Clinton's military suffered his first four years were "inherited" as opposed to resulting from decisions he made.

    I see where you were going with this somewhat, I just do not understand the relevance of Colon's question about peacetime deaths, when those deaths were not a result of Clinton waging a questionable military campaign. Clinton was no prize when it came to the military, for sure, but this paragraph demonstrates nothing. Under this president, have the media mentioned military deaths that do not have to do with military conflict? That is a more appropriate question, and if the answer is yes, then we can claim blatant media hypocrisy. Other than that irrelevant paragraph she should have omitted, her article is outstanding- especially when alluding to protestors from the Vietnam era. Those were some great points.

  • At 2/21/2007 06:07:00 PM, Blogger Dan said…

    I guess Im not a chickenhawk anymore. Whatever. I still write 463623 paragraphs on one little topic while at work.

  • At 2/21/2007 08:33:00 PM, Blogger Jack Mercer said…

    Hi Dan!

    See the small link at the bottom of the post--they are statistics that breakdown along type of deaths, etc. That will aid you a little bit in answering the questions you raise, but just from a cursory look, it seems like the stats are pretty consistent across the board.

    As far as President Bush's war making vs. President Clinton's, you know where I stand on that one. There was a deafening silence of opposition to Clinton's warmongering. 99 out of 100 people today have no idea what moral wrongs were committed in Bosnia or the illegal nature of many of the Iraqi bombings and other unsanctioned invasions of that time, but each of them know the exact body count and time to the minute that we have been in Iraq. There were many civilians killed by Clinton's bombers. Clinton chose multiple times to go to war, and on many more fronts than even President Bush has. As a matter of fact, most of Clinton's war waging WAS questionable, and in a pre 9/11 world--in my book, much harder to understand that President Bush's actions. Dan, the reason no one knows a whole lot about President Clinton's illegal wars (a lawsuit was actually brought against him for violating the Constitution and the 1973 War Powers Act in his war against refugees in Yugoslavia--by Kucinich and 16 others nonetheless!) was because the media refused to criticize President Clinton on any matter unless they were absolutely forced to. For example, the New York Times is the most biased paper (admittedly) in the nation, and all of the network news shows take their lead from the Times (A good book on this is "Arrogance" by Bernard Goldberg). The Times refused to report on Clinton's violation--an impeachable and illegal offence:

    Dan, this is why the American people have such a favorable impression of President Clinton and such a negative one of President Bush--both are essentially the same in domestic and foreign policy, the only difference is Party (and my other theory is the its because President Bush professed to be a Christian).

    Dan, I usually care less whether people are anti-war or pro-war, the problem today is that we have people that are anti-war when its a Republican in office, then either silent or supportive when a Democrat is there. That is 100% wrong and unprincipled. (BTW, I started an article about this today! :)

    Inconsistency is what drives me crazy, and I didn't hear a peep from the "anti-war" loons during the Clinton years, but they became very active after we had been attacked and a Republican was Commander in Chief.

    Its partisanship--not principle, Dan--Something the new liberals are sadly lacking (see my post- "I like the Old Liberals).

    Always proud to hear from you--you and I have the same knack for publishing a book each time we comment.

    Take care,


  • At 2/21/2007 09:46:00 PM, Blogger Dan said…

    Hey Jack,

    I did read the link- thats where all of my questions were raised. I agree with you as far as the warmongering is concerned. I have known for a good while how you feel about Clinton. Not much different than Bush but Bush does get hated on a lot more. I agree with you as far as the partisanship goes.

    My original point was not that Clinton was a saint or did only good, I just thought her point in that paragraph quoting statistics was very questionable. If she wanted to argue that Clinton got a free pass- she could have found many easier, more logical ways- she could have just mentioned any of the points you just made.

    From the start, I do not think the media liked Bush. A lot of people just hate Bush and a lot of people do not think he has performed well at all. I just do not think he has performed well and had very negative influences. I have read enough about Clinton, and he was as corrupt as they come (he was also the man who drove Hale Boggs to the airport the day Boggs died in a plane crash!), and the media definitely loved him.

  • At 3/25/2007 11:51:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    The percentages don't ever add up to 100. How can this data be trusted?

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"Snipet" (pronounced: snipe - it) is not a word.It is a derivative of two words: "Snipe" and "Snippet".

Miriam Webster defines Snipe as: to aim a carping or snide attack, or: to shoot at exposed individuals (as of an enemy's forces) from a usually concealed point of vantage.

Miriam Webster defines Snippet as: : a small part, piece, or thing; especially : a brief quotable passage.

In short, "Snipets" are brief, snide shots at exposed situations from a concealed vantage point.

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