This months casualty figures are on track to match or exceed last months figures, which, frankly, surprises me. I thought that it was likely US casualties would drop somewhat. After all, Saddam is gone and US troops are being freed up from guard duty by Iraqi police.
What's not being mentioned so much is that Iraq's police force has been dying in droves. Over 600 killed since April, in fact.
If you run the stats, the risk of being killed as a police officer in Iraq as opposed to in China is about 90 times higher...
Still, that's an unfair comparison right?! Let's compare the whole of Iraq (some of it rural, some of it urban) to a place that's really known for its crime!
In a recent year in New York City, a record setting 140 police officers died in the line of duty. If you run the stats, you'll find that the risk of death for a police officer in Iraq is roughly twice that of a cop in NYC.
Unfortunately, that doesn't account for the fact that the stats I mentioned for N.Y.C. came from 2001 -- a year where half of all police who gave their lives in the call of duty lost them in the World Trade Center. Even factoring out those police officers who died on September 11th, 2001, it was still a particularly bad year for the NYPD.
In other words, think of the most deadly, cop-killingest, gang-bangingest year on record for a major US city, add in the world's most devastating terrorist act, and make it twice as bad... or just four times as bad as a "regular" year in NYC. That's Iraq. Of course, the risks you take as a police officer in Iraq are probably far worse in Baghdad and could be insanely worse for those who serve in the "Sunni Triangle".
(Anyone remember who that Bush administration guy was who once suggested that Iraq was about as safe as a major US city? Rumsfeld? Wolfowitz? Perle?!)
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