[eDebate] ans Korcok
solistus at mac.com
Wed Aug 8 03:46:25 CDT 2007
Way to ignore all the other arguments in the post.
Also, another quote, from http://www.iraqbodycount.org/
"The test for us remains whether the bullet (or equivalent) is
attributed to a piece of weaponry where the trigger was pulled by a
US or allied finger, or is due to "collateral damage" by either side
(with the burden of responsibility falling squarely on the shoulders
of those who initiate war without UN Security Council authorization).
We agree that deaths from any deliberate source are an equal outrage,
but in this project we want to only record those deaths to which we
can unambiguously hold our own leaders to account."
At first glance, it looks like IraqBodyCount is contradicting itself
- here they explicitly say the US or its allies have to 'pull the
trigger' on the actual weapon that causes the death, whereas your
quote indicates that they include "civilian deaths caused by
coalition military action and by military or paramilitary responses
to the coalition presence (e.g. insurgent and terrorist attacks)."
Given that my argument was based on a direct quote that claims they
don't count deaths caused by deliberate sources other than "US or
allied finger[s]," your claims that I am incompetent, don't know
shit, etc. seem pretty unjustified. I'll write them off as more
childish ad homs.
I'm not sure which is more ambiguous: "responses" in your quote (are
all insurgent/terrorist killings counted as responses?) versus "the
trigger was pulled by a US or allied finger." I'll take your word
for it, mostly to shrink this debate to all the arguments you aren't
At any rate, you just pointed me to another issue: IraqBodyCount
excludes combatant deaths. So, we've traded one unaccounted for
group for another. How many insurgents have been killed?
So, an updated summary (Debate 1, arg 3 is a new cross-app) is
below. Since, as I said, I'm on vacation, I'm going to wait to
respond until you actually address these arguments rather than make
one counterclaim that does nothing to move the debate forward.
1) Your numbers are still ideological bullshit. There is no
warranted justification for including the events immediately
following GW1. Questions of US culpability in Iraq/Iran and GW1
aside, there is no reason to believe that the death tolls from Anfar
or the Marsh Arab campaign would be likely to have recurred from
March 2003 - August 2007. Your only attempts at justifying these
claims were appeals to your personal beliefs and hypotheticals with
many, many unwarranted claims (lifting sanctions -> ? -> ? -> ... ->
another mass murder campaign, saddam's death -> ? -> uday and qussay
taking control -> ? -> ? -> ... -> another mass murder campaign).
2) The IraqBodyCount numbers explicitly exclude all non-civilian
deaths. However many insurgents have died needs to be added to the
3) cross-apply the difficulty of accurate counting. IraqBodyCount is
based on deaths that have been independently verified by multiple
sources. The total is undoubtedly higher; the question is, how much
1) The humanitarian crisis you haven't touched on much (at all?) will
almost certainly more than erase the 1.91 year gain you claim.
2) a 3% gain on a statistic that requires knowledge of every death
and the age of the deceased to be perfectly accurate in a country
where we only control 40% of the capital is really sketchy. It's not
even clear there is a gain now for the crisis to erase.
Relevant to both debates:
1) You haven't answered the utilitarian calculus question: how many
people left homeless and without food, water, medicine, etc. is equal
to 1 death? It would have to be hundreds for the body count margins
you claim to outweigh the crisis.
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