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22 November 2005

The Numbers: Hillary's Boys in Bush's Folly


1 U.S. Soldier Captured

DoD Announces Soldier's Captured Status

The Department of Defense announced today a change in the status of a soldier serving in Operation Iraqi Freedom from duty status - whereabouts unknown to captured.

Pfc. Keith M. Maupin, 20, of Batavia, Ohio, was declared captured on April 16.

On April 9, Maupin and Sgt. Elmer C. Krause, 40, of Greensboro, N.C., were categorized as duty status - whereabouts unknown when individuals using rocket-propelled grenades and small arms fire attacked their convoy. Both soldiers were assigned to the Army Reserve’s 724th Transportation Company, from Bartonville, Ill.

Krause’s status remains unchanged because his whereabouts remain unknown. Efforts continue to obtain the successful and safe return of both individuals.

Questions regarding theater operations can be directed to CENTCOM at (813) 827-5895. Change-in-status questions can be directed to Shari Lawrence, deputy public affairs officer for the U.S. Army Human Resources Command in Alexandria, Va., at (703) 325-8856.

For the public affairs officer assisting Maupin’s family contact Maj. Willie Harris, 88th Regional Readiness Command, (612) 290-0517.


Details about the table at the top of this post:

20 March 2003 through through 1 May 2003 (end of major combat).

2: 2 May 2003 through 28 June 2004 (sovereignty turned over to Iraq).

3: 29 June 2004 (day after the official turnover of sovereignty to Iraq) through 30 January 2005 (Iraq Elections).

4: 31 January 2005 (the day after Iraq Elections) through today.

Where the Death Numbers Come From?

There is no magic to coming up with the number of coalition dead from our war on Iraq . Our sources are not secret. In fact, our primary source is the U.S. government. Any private individual or news organization who wishes to keep track of war dead gets their information from this same source.

Whenever a death occurs, CENTCOM (the United States Central Command in Tampa , FL ) issues a brief news release that gives the bare facts about the incident: when it happened, how it happened, and the soldier’s regiment, if known. The only information not provided at this point is the soldier’s name. These releases are published regularly on the Internet at:

After the soldier’s relatives are notified of the death, the U.S. Department of Defense then issues its own news release that gives the soldier’s name, age, unit and hometown. Again, these can be found on the Internet here:

The trouble with this system of notification, however, is that the government provides no tally of those releases. Occasionally, the Department of Defense will release a total number of deaths to date. But it certainly doesn’t go out of its way to divulge those numbers. If you want to know the number of deaths at any given point, you have two choices: count up the news releases yourself -- or find a non-governmental entity that is tracking the numbers and posting them somewhere.

This has not always been the case. We are told that during the Korean and Vietnam wars, the names and numbers of dead AND injured were readily available from the government. No longer.

Incidentally, it should be mentioned that the British do a much better job with their dead. All of their deaths are listed in one place at the British Ministry of Defense’s website at

Now, several private groups have indeed been counting up the death notices and providing lists of names and total numbers. But how accurate are their lists? And how easy are they to follow? Our research has determined that they are not always accurate, not always up to date, and often difficult to use.

One of the most popular lists on the Internet is at CNN:

It is an attractive site, with pictures of most of the soldiers who have died in the Iraq War. And a total number of deaths is given. But, that total number includes both British and American deaths. No attempt is made to provide a breakdown. Worse, the listing is done alphabetically. That’s fine if you are interested in one particular soldier, but makes it extremely difficult to follow recent deaths or determine what the current death rate is really like. And consider this. The site gives no backup for its data. How do you know that all deaths have been included? Only a thorough cross-check against DOD and British Ministry of Defense news releases will prove that they have indeed caught most of the deaths. Missing are two British casualties that appear on the British MOD website. However, has anyone counted the number of entries on the CNN list? We have -- and we’ve consistently come up short of what they say their total number is. So where does their total number come from? We certainly can’t say.

Another popular site is the listing at the Army Times, here:

Once again, it is a nicely presented site. Best of all, the deaths are listed by date which makes it easy to follow the latest deaths. But this site covers only U.S. deaths and not British ones. And they do not give a total number to date. Worse, a thorough cross-check of the data list against DOD news releases reveals the list to be short four U.S. soldiers who died in a helicopter crash on the first day of the invasion of Iraq . Moreover, they are very slow to update their list with the latest deaths.

Since May, we have scrutinized several other lists as well, and have turned up similar problems with all of them.

That is why this web site was developed -- to provide information that has been scrupulously culled from government sources and cross-checked against other existing lists to ensure the most accurate and complete accounting of deaths that we can possibly assemble.

And then we take things a step further. We present the data in a way that will allow other researchers and interested individuals to easily analyze it for trends and benchmarks.

The raw death numbers are given on a daily basis in the Summary chart on the main page and are tabulated for three periods: (1) March 20, 2003 through May 1, 2003 (the end of major combat)., (2) May 2, 2003 through June 28, 2004 (the day of the official turnover of sovereignty to Iraq)., and (3) June 29, 2004 (the day after the official turnover of sovereignty to Iraq) through today's date.

Clicking on View Details will bring up the actual data table with each soldier’s name and basic information -- a table that can at present be filtered by date, by a soldier’s age, by a soldier’s rank, or by whether the soldier was with US or UK forces. In other words, with the use of the filters provided, it becomes easy to determine how many soldiers were 18 years of age, how many were sergeants, how many died on March 23rd (one of the heaviest days of fighting), how many were British, or how many died before June 1st.

Please be aware that this site is a work in progress. Improvements are always being made and many more are currently in the works. Needless to say, your comments and suggestions for improvements are always welcome.

Pat K.
12 July 2003

Copyright 2003-2004 by Lunaville


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