(Occasional sobering thoughts.) Still a common means of comparison for some war critics: Iraq and Vietnam. But the Bush Administration hearkens to Korea: reports that U.S. troop drawdowns may begin next year now are coupled with indications that some troops may remain indefinitely, just as U.S. troops have remained in South Korea since conclusion of an inconclusive ceasefire 53 years ago.
That debate in mind, here's where things stand: Iraq Body Count reports that as of Monday between 65,116 and 71,328 Iraqis, women, children, and men, had died in the conflict -- an increase of 711 to 776 deaths in the 2 weeks since Memorial Day. American servicemember fatalities edged above the 3,500 mark, to 3,512 persons. Total coalition fatalities: 3,789 persons. (That's 58 servicemember deaths in 2 weeks, all but 1 of them Americans.) The Department of Defense reported a total of 25,549 servicemembers wounded, 7,628 of whom required medical air transport; the total of such transports, on account of woundings and "non-hostile" maladies, is 34,650.
Military casualties in the conflict in Afghanistan stand at 399 Americans and 200 other coalition servicemembers, an increase of 9 and 6, respectively, in the last 2 weeks. A total of 1,636 wounded U.S. servicemembers wounded is reported, 743 of whom required medical air transport; the total of such transports, on account of woundings and "non-hostile" maladies, is 6,213.