Monday, September 04, 2006

Just the Facts



I like numbers and hard facts.

But reliable data has been hard to come by in the 2006 Israel Lebanon War. And when data has been available, it has been hard to put in context. How many homes did Israel destroy in Lebanon, and is that a lot or a little when compared to other conflicts? How much damage was caused in Israel? Is that more or less than other conflicts?

Below some numbers I have been able to glean. I cannot vouch for their absolute accuracy (and often there are ranges) but I believe them to give an accurate order of magnitude.

(I should also add that just because there are many immoral activities in the world, doesn't make them OK. Also, I don't mean to imply that we should become blase or indifferent to death and destruction just because so much happenned elsewhere. On the contrary, one death does not justify another.)

NATO operations in Yugoslavia (The Kosovo War), 1999

  • Civilians Killed:
    • approximately 500 - according to NATO,
    • approximately 5000 – according to the Milosevic Yugoslav government during the war,
    • 1092 – according to the post Milosevic post war Yugoslav government
  • Total refugees: 800,000 – 1,100,000
  • Direct property damage: $4 billion
  • Lost economic activity over first year from start of the war: $3 billion.

Gulf War, 1991

  • Total Iraqi Civilians killed by U.S. coalition direct actions: 5,000 – 15,000
  • Civilians killed in single bombing incident, Bagdad, Feb 13 1991: 600-1000
  • Destroyed homes: 70,000 – 100,000

U.S. Aerial Bombing Campaign in Afghanistan, October 2001 – March 2002

  • Civilians killed: 3,000 - 3,400

Iraq War, Jan 2003 – present (August 2006)

  • Iraqi civilian killed by U.S coalition actions March/April 2003: 7300
  • Iraqi civilians killed by military and insurgent activities July 2006: 3100
  • Total Iraqi Civilians killed by military and insurgent activities since January 2003: 41,000 – 47,000

Lebanon War, July - August 2006

  • Civilians killed:
    • Lebanese 854 – 1400
    • Israeli 39
  • Refugees
    • Lebanese 700,000 – 900,000
    • Israeli 140,000 – 350,000
  • Direct Property Damage
    • Lebanese $3 billion - $3.9 billion (including 15,000 homes destroyed)
    • Israel $0.5 - $1.1 billion
  • Lost economic activity over first year from start of the war (projected)
    • Lebanon $3 billion
    • Israel $2 billion
  • Military Costs
    • Lebanon $50 - 100 million (extrapolated costs of Hezbollah weapons used or destroyed)
    • Israel $1.6 billion (includes direct costs of mobilizing 40,000 reserve troops)
  • Area of Beirut destroyed by Israeli bombing: 2 km-sq ( total approx built up area – 80 km-sq )
Other Numbers

  • Number of Israeli civilians killed in traffic accidents May 2006: 36
  • Number of Lebanese civilians killed by other Lebanese, Lebanese Civil War, Jan 18 1976 in village Katrina: approximately 1000
  • Total Number of Lebanese killed in Lebanese Civil War, by all parties, 1975 - 1991: approximately 100,000

Sources used in researching this material include:

http://www.cursor.org/stories/civilian_deaths.htm
http://www.iraqbodycount.org/background.php
http://www.iraqbodycount.org/press/pr13.php
http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/kosovo/052599.htm#II

www.one-europe.ac.uk/pdf/wp18.pdf
http://www.nato.int/kosovo/repo2000/conduct.htm
http://www.thebulletin.org/article.php?art_ofn=sep91lopez
http://www.thebulletin.org/article.php?art_ofn=sep91lopez
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2006_Israel-Lebanon_conflict#References
http://www.irinnews.org/report.asp?ReportID=55340&SelectRegion=Middle_East
http://www.dailystar.com.lb/

http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/749644.html

http://www.haaretz.com

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