I glossed over a point in my Schmidt newsletter polemic. It has to do with numbers. Many are now using and backing those numbers up and I feel it’s worth responding to.

Jean says:

Did you know that more than 80,000 terrorists are no longer a threat to the world?

No, Jean. We didn’t. One reason might be that it is not true. Project Logic comes to the defense of the numbers by citing a Washington Times article that makes a 50,000 claim. Problem is in the same article, they shed doubt on the numbers:

Pentagon officials previously had been quoted as saying 15,000 to 16,000 Iraqis were in custody in Iraq, but spokesman Lawrence DiRita was unable to comment last night on the 50,000 figure offered by the general.

“I would highly doubt that anyone has a good handle on the numbers,” he said. “I’m not aware of what General Keane has been told, but I know of no number that has been provided to the secretary, briefed by the commanders, or is being tracked by anyone.”

So not only is the 50k number sketchy, but I’d say lopping on another 30k makes absolutely zero sense. Not to mention the fact that you just can’t call insurgents terrorists. Two different things. Some people don’t quite get that. Maybe Jean can get a briefing on the difference when she does her fact finding mission in Iraq.

Update: Speaking of Iraq by the numbers, Bush was asked about that very thing in a speech today. Let’s hear what der Kommandant has to say shall we?

(hat tip canofun)

80, 50, 30, what the fuck ever – we’ve killed a TON of the sonsabitches!

In the meantime, maybe it best to do a bit more research.

I would also ask why dead people are a measure of success? There is a reason we stopped doing body counts in Vietnam. It makes no sense. But if callously tossing around big numbers of Iraqi dead makes you feel better about the war, then I guess that’s a good thing…

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