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post #1 of 22 Old 10-13-2006, 12:44 PM Thread Starter
 
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The Lancet: Iraq casualty report...

Not much chatter about this, although Bushy addressed it directly in this week's speech from the Rose Garden.

Info is readily available online, but in short the poll taken by the Lancet asserts that there have been ~650,000 extra deaths in Iraq since 2003 due to the ongoing conflict.

Most mainstream estimates I have seen have been in the 50-60,000 range, so I am curious about what you all think about this report...especially you mathematical types...

Apparently they used the same methods used for epidemiological studies that have proven to be very accurate. Their polling confirmed approximately 600 deaths, and that number was used to extrapolate into the 650K figure...

Are their methods sound, or politically motivated...what say ye?

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post #2 of 22 Old 10-13-2006, 12:50 PM
 
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Re: The Lancet: Iraq casualty report...

Its not like an esteemed scientific journal like the Lancet to play politics inthis way. Scientific data is not Democrat or Republican, it just is.
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post #3 of 22 Old 10-13-2006, 12:51 PM
 
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Re: The Lancet: Iraq casualty report...

I just skimmed over my stack of unread WSJs and didn't see an article; I saw that # mentioned earlier in the week on a Yahoo news headline and laughed at it.

Do you have a decent link?



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post #4 of 22 Old 10-13-2006, 12:56 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: The Lancet: Iraq casualty report...

There's some background on Wikipedia, and some great reference links at the bottom, including a PDF of the report...

Lancet surveys of mortality before and after the 2003 invasion of Iraq - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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post #5 of 22 Old 10-13-2006, 1:08 PM
 
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Re: The Lancet: Iraq casualty report...

Door to door interviews to make the determination?
http://today.reuters.co.uk/news/arti...-C1-Headline-2
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post #6 of 22 Old 10-13-2006, 1:20 PM
 
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Re: The Lancet: Iraq casualty report...

I'll trust a Scientific Journal more than a politician any day of the week.
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post #7 of 22 Old 10-13-2006, 1:33 PM
 
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Re: The Lancet: Iraq casualty report...

If you call 2003-6 1000 days then divide you get 650 deaths a day. Seems real high to me.

Must obey the sheep dog
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post #8 of 22 Old 10-13-2006, 1:47 PM
 
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Re: The Lancet: Iraq casualty report...

650k is an exceptionally large number of dead people. Where are all of them? Even modern weapons normally leave remains.

The other part of that report that has a bad smell is from bwhip's link, they were counting deaths from heart attacks and such.

Phone surveys are the gold standard, but I see the trouble of that in a war zone, so the door-door stuff probably is about as good as you can do. Problem is, in face-face interviews, it is so friggin' easy to bias the interviewee without saying anything.



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post #9 of 22 Old 10-13-2006, 2:17 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: The Lancet: Iraq casualty report...

I know this was survey conducted and verified by very smart people, but I'm having a hard time wrapping my head around the validity of extrapolating ~640 reported deaths into a number like ~650,000....

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post #10 of 22 Old 10-13-2006, 2:59 PM
 
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Re: The Lancet: Iraq casualty report...

I agree the numbers seem high, but the senior author on this study knows his stuff. I looked him up on Medline, he's done things like this before, and has published in all the top Journals. This does make me suspect that the war has been far worse for the Iraqis than we have been lead to believe.
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post #11 of 22 Old 10-13-2006, 3:12 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: The Lancet: Iraq casualty report...

Just to be clear, I'm not attempting to refute the report or it's methods...but I'm trying to understand the disconnect between the many agencies that have been calculating and reporting on this...how could they ALL be off by roughly an order of magnitude...

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post #12 of 22 Old 10-13-2006, 4:24 PM
 
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Re: The Lancet: Iraq casualty report...

And in what locale(s) was their sample taken?

I bet if they'd polled households in Nagasaki in 1945 they could have calculated Japan's losses in WW2 to be about 900 million.


And then there's this asshole...
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post #13 of 22 Old 10-13-2006, 5:00 PM
 
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Re: The Lancet: Iraq casualty report...

Politics don't stop at scientific journals.
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post #14 of 22 Old 10-13-2006, 5:05 PM
 
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Re: The Lancet: Iraq casualty report...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunbert View Post
Politics don't stop at scientific journals.
what!?!?! Are you implying that it might be in someone's best interests to "find" specific results?!?! OMG! I'm appaled.

HD
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post #15 of 22 Old 10-13-2006, 5:57 PM
 
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Re: The Lancet: Iraq casualty report...

A scientist who fabricated data for political purposes would be ruined upon discovery, and he or she would be found out. Data is neither conservative nor liberal, Democrat or Republican. Data is data.
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