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The bitter price of militarism: US casualties mount in Iraq and Afghanistan
by wsws (reposted)
Tuesday Oct 31st, 2006 7:23 AM
A sniper shot a US military policeman yesterday morning in Baghdad. The soldier died from his wounds shortly afterward. His name, his age and his hometown have not yet been released. His death, like those of so many American soldiers, was not considered newsworthy enough to warrant a story in the US media.
The killing of a young marine in western Iraq on Sunday was reported, however. His death pushed the October US death toll in Iraq to 100—the first time that fatalities have reached triple figures since January 2005 and by far the highest figure this year.

Analysts have attributed the spike in fatalities to increased attacks by Sunni resistance fighters, coinciding with the Muslim festival of Ramadan, and escalating clashes between American troops and Shiite militiamen in Baghdad. But as the New York Times reporter who was given the grim assignment of attending funerals at Arlington National Cemetery poignantly noted: “Such explanations were little comfort to a 6-year-old girl weeping at the grave of her father, a mother clutching the flag from her son’s coffin, or a widow walking slowly through the rain behind her husband’s honour guard.”

The illegal and neo-colonial invasions and occupations of Afghanistan and Iraq have cost the lives of hundreds of thousands of Afghan and Iraqi people and devastated both countries. The American people, and the working class in particular, are also paying a terrible price for the war crimes of the Bush administration. The false claims that the US had to send troops to Central Asia and the Middle East to fight a “war on terrorism” and prevent “weapons of mass destruction” has cost far more American lives than the events of September 11, 2001.


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