11.6.04

Iraq Civilian War Casualties

Below is Raed's introduction note. Please visit the site by clicking anywhere on the orange text of Raed's words. This was clearly a lot of hard work by many. Congratulations on a job well done for everybody involved. -lim

I was the country director of the first (and maybe only) door-to-door civilian casualties survey. Marla Ruzika was my American partner, the fund raiser, and the general director of CIVIC. Unfortunately, she didn't have the chance to publish the final results until now.


I decided to publish my copy of the final results of the Iraqi civilian casualties in Baghdad and the south of Iraq on the 9th of this month in respect to the big effort of the 150 volunteers who worked with me and spent weeks of hard work under the hot sun of the summer, in respect to Majid my brother who spent weeks arranging the data entry process, and in respect to the innocent souls of those who died because of irresponsible political decisions.


Two thousand killed, Four thousand injured.


Each one of these thousands has a life, memories, hopes. Each one had his moments of sadness, moments of joy and moments of love.


In respect to their sacred memory, I would appreciate it if you could spend some minutes reading the database file: read their names, and their personal details, and think about them as human beings, friends, and relatives -- not mere figures and numbers.


I led the volunteers in their work in Baghdad, and the nine cities of the south: Karbala, Hilla, Najaf, Diwanyya, Simawa, Nasryya, Basra, Kut and Amara through my weekly visits. I went to the north for a couple of times, and arranged some smaller-scale surveys.


The survey teams were from the local areas: I made sure to create groups that reflected the ethnical, religious and gender ratios of the targeted regions. And I designed the survey form, all of which relied on my scientific background I gained from my M.Sc. researches, and relied on the very cooperative spirits of the volunteers and of the Iraqi families. We preferred not to include the military casualties to give our survey a civilian perspective.


Civilian: anyone killed outside the battlefield, even if his original job was military (e.g. a soldier killed in his house is a civilian). Military: anyone killed while fighting in a battle, even if his original job was a civic one (e.g. an engineer killed while fighting as a Fidaee). We had primitive and simple tools of research, yet I believe our survey is credible and accountable.


I would like to thank my friend Michael Richardson, a writer and graphic designer from Northampton, MA, USA, for his huge effort in designing and publishing the casualties website.




—Raed Jarrar
Baghdad

PS footnote, today this came out, BBC reports- US U-turn on upbeat terror report: Global terror attacks are on the rise, says the US State Department, admitting an earlier report - which had claimed attacks were tailing off - was wrong

and BBC also reports, US firms face Iraq abuse lawsuit: Two US firms hired to help interrogate Iraqi prisoners have been sued for allegedly conspiring to abuse detainees in order to boost profits. The firms - Titan and CACI International - deny the allegations.

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