Reality check: If China "liberated" US like we "liberated" Iraq, here’s how we would look

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How bad is the death and injury toll in Iraq since the US invasion? Let’s extrapolate the data from Iraq onto the US and see the effects. Imagine that China is playing the role of the US and the US is in Iraq’s position. Several areas of data might need updating; I welcome your suggestions for any improvement.

The data: According to the John Hopkins School of Public Health published in the esteemed Lancet Medical Journal using the best academic and professional methodology, as of October, 2006, over 650,000 more Iraqis were killed since the US invasion than would be expected in pre-war conditions.[1] Despite this being the only peer-reviewed study, the US government dismissed this study without giving reason, saying that less than 100,000 Iraqis died.[2] Today, the number of violent Iraqi deaths is probably 1.4 million.[3] From these deaths, the Iraqi government reports that five million children have become orphans; horrific even if overestimated by a factor of two.[4]

A 2008 UN report documents over 800,000 displaced children, most of whom are so impoverished that they don’t have access to clean water.[5] There are now about 2.8 million displaced Iraqis within the country, having fled from their homes to escape sectarian violence.[6] In addition, the war has caused over 2 million Iraqis to flee their country, 7.7% of their population,[7] with many of the most desperate families using their young girls and women for prostitution.[8] The unemployment rate in Iraq is 60-70%.[9] Getting clean water is a daily struggle, and sanitation is a nightmare with 250 million gallons of raw sewage spilled into the water system daily.[10]

The US is using illegal WMD in Iraq that kills and damages US troops and Iraqi civilians: depleted uranium shells (DU).[11] The UN declared DU weapons in violation of several International Laws and UN conventions in August 2002. Independent medical research found increases in cancer and birth defects at 400% of previous rates in areas of DU use.

In 2004, the US military planned to spend $100 million to hire at least 100 people as covert counter-intelligence agents in Iraq to provoke terrorist groups to cause acts of terrorism against the Iraqi people. The stated purpose of this project was to expose terrorist groups for counterattack by US forces.[12] This means that the US planned to incite terrorism that would injure and kill Iraqi civilians, making the US an accomplice to terrorism.

Among the provisions of US occupation of Iraq is that it is now illegal for Iraqi farmers to use their own seeds; this in the Fertile Crescent where much of agriculture began. Iraqi farmers must buy their seeds from US companies, and only use genetically modified seeds where farmers pay a licensing fee for each use.[13] This act is done under US rhetoric for “freedom for the Iraqi people.”

In December, 2004, the US announced a military siege of the Iraq city of Fallujah, home to 300,000 Iraqis (equivalent to 15 cities of 20,000 such as where I live). The US gave the city residents the ultimatum of abandoning their homes or being attacked as terrorists. 250,000 left the city, becoming refugees with no provisions for their care. The US military estimated that Fallujah contained a “few thousand” terrorists; but all remaining 50,000 residents were targeted as the enemy. When the US attacked Falujah, their structural targets included the four water purification plants, destroying three and severely damaging the fourth. Again, this is a War Crime.[14]

Beginning in November, 2005, US war strategy increased the use of air strikes against Iraqi urban areas to nearly 1,000 sorties a month, deploying 500 and 1,000 pound bombs. The most respected medical journal in the UK, The Lancet, reported that the US and coalition forces cause 85% of all violent deaths in Iraq, with 95% of those coming from aerial attacks.[15]

The Bush administration has repeatedly assured the American public that our stay in Iraq is temporary, just until the Iraqi people can manage themselves. However, the US has built four military “super-bases,” each housing tens of thousands of personnel that appear permanent.[16] The new US Embassy in prime-area Baghdad on the Tigris River is over 100 acres and will house over 8,000 people (in comparison, my large local high school is 18.5 acres, the Los Angeles Zoo is 80 acres[17] and Disney’s Magic Kingdom in Disneyworld is 107 acres with the Southern California location also about 100 acres[18]), also appearing to manage greater responsibility than diplomacy in someone else’s country.[19]

What the US would look like if Iraq’s war data were applied to us: Iraq has a population of 26 million. Those percentages translated to the US population of 300 million would be as if China came to “liberate” us, built 48 permanent military bases, caused the violent deaths of 16,000,000 Americans, forcing 23 million Americans to leave the US, and creating over 30 million Americans to become homeless.

A comparison to California’s 34 million population: the ensuing violence from China’s invasion has killed close to two million. To translate to my city’s 20,000 population: the violence claims 15 lives a month, with over 50 wounded (conservatively assuming ~5 wounded for every kill in Iraq; half the US troop ratio of over 10:1). Since 2003, close to 1,000 residents have died in car bombs, drive-by-shootings, and general violence, with 5,000 wounded. Four thousand of us have fled our homes, about half leaving the city, and about 2,000 homeless.

Finally, since I teach 17 and 18-year-old students, on a scale of a 2,600 student high school: intra-school wars kill 1-2 students a month, wounding ~15. The class of 2010 will have seen just under 100 of classmates killed since their 8th grade year, with one quarter of the student body having been wounded. The new principal elected under the supervision of the invading power assures us that their “surge” of troops and Blackwater’s private military company is working, the school is now safer, and they’ll stay until they defeat our “terrorists.” One in every 20 students has been killed since “liberation.” Thirty-five percent of the students have had a parent killed, over 600. Any student can be labeled a “terrorist suspect,” detained indefinitely without habeas corpus or communication to friends and family, and be tortured[20] (controlled drowning, naked in 45° F. cells for days, sleep and food deprivation for days, shackled in painful positions for days, threats to sexually assault and torture your family members, and if Abu Ghraib tactics are included: sodomizing with broom handles and lights, forced homosexual acts, rape, pouring on phosphoric acid, smearing faces and bodies in feces, etc.). China’s forces say they need to stay for the safety of the students because the school would become more violent if they left. After all, they say, North America has a violent history. They also talk openly about expanding their “War on Terror” to the neighboring city; a military option is “on the table” because their “terrorists” are also involved.

Over 4,300 American troops have been killed in the War on Terror, with over 30,000 wounded, according to official government statistics.[21] CBS News commissioned an extensive study to measure how many US military veterans are committing suicide. Their report: over 6,000 a year.[22] Among active duty soldiers, over 580 have committed suicide since the war began.[23] The Veterans Affairs Department received over 22,000 calls from desperate veterans in its first year of opening a suicide hotline.[24] Over 10,000 active American troops are diagnosed with the most severe classification of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder,[25] with one in eight returning troops reporting symptoms.[26] There are increasing reports that returning veterans are not receiving proper care for PTSD and other ailments, as the suicide numbers of CBS suggest.[27]

The endgame for US occupation of Iraq was legislated by the Iraqi Parliament on November 27, 2008. Under the Status of Forces Agreement, all 150,000 US troops will withdraw from all cities, towns, and villages by June 30, 2009 and remain upon their bases unless authorized to leave by Iraq’s government. All US troops shall withdraw from Iraq by December 31, 2011. Blackwater and other US security firms shall be subject to Iraq law rather than legal immunity after the end of 2008.[28]

“What difference does it make to the dead, the orphans, and the homeless, whether the mad destruction is wrought under the name of totalitarianism or the holy name of liberty and democracy?” - Mohandas Gandhi, “Non-violence in Peace and War”

“This business of making people conscious of what is happening outside their own small circle is one of the major problems of our time, and a new literary technique will have to be evolved to meet it. Considering that the people of this country are not having a very comfortable time, you can't perhaps, blame them for being somewhat callous about suffering elsewhere, but the remarkable thing is the extent to which they manage to be unaware of it. Tales of starvation, ruined cities, concentration camps, mass deportations, homeless refugees, persecuted Jews — all this is received with a sort of incurious surprise, as though such things had never been heard of but at the same time were not particularly interesting. The now-familiar photographs of skeleton-like children make very little impression. As time goes on and the horrors pile up, the mind seems to secrete a sort of self-protecting ignorance which needs a harder and harder shock to pierce it, just as the body will become immunised to a drug and require bigger and bigger doses.”
- George Orwell, "As I Please," The Tribune (1947-01-17)

Policy response: Gandhi and Martin Luther King advocated public understanding of the facts and non-cooperation with evil. I’m among hundreds who advocate:

1.Understand the laws of war. These were legislated after WW2 and are crystal-clear that only self-defense, in a narrow legal meaning, can justify war. This investment of your time takes less than an hour and empowers you to legally stand for ending these unlawful US Wars of Aggression.

2.Communicate. Trust your unique, beautiful, and powerful self-expression to share powerful information as you feel appropriate. Understand that while many people are ready to embrace difficult facts, many are not. Anticipate your virtuous response to being attacked and give it in the spirit of competition, just as you do in other fields.

3.Refuse and end all orders and acts associated with these unlawful wars and constant violation of treaties. Those involved with US military, government, and law enforcement have an oath to protect and defend the US Constitution. Unlawful acts only move forward with sufficient cooperation and public tolerance. Stop cooperating with the most vicious crime a nation can commit: war.

4.Support global security through cooperation, dignity, justice, and freedom. End poverty through global cooperation to achieve the UN Millennium Goals by developed countries investing 0.7% of their income. End extremism by providing all humanity with an opportunity to live a life of peaceful creativity. Create a US Department of Peace to help.

5.Prosecute the war leaders for obvious violation of the letter and spirit of US war laws. You can only understand how these wars are specifically unlawful by investing the time to do so. Because the crimes are so broad and deep, I recommend Truth and Reconciliation (T&R) to exchange full truth and return of stolen US assets for non-prosecution. This is the most expeditious way to understand and end all unlawful and harmful acts. Those who reject T&R either by volunteering their name and/or responding when named are subject to prosecution after the window of T&R closes.

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I include a 2-minute video of President Bush discounting the only peer-reviewed death total in Iraq as “not credible” without explanation, and the PuppetGov 8-minute video, "How you ended the war."


[1] Infowars. Watson, S. Government Dismissed Iraq Death Toll Report In Full Knowledge It Was Likely Accurate. March 27, 2007: .
[2] See Bush press conference. YouTube. Bush Admits: “A lot of innocent people have died in Iraq.” : .
[3] Antiwar homepage: .
[4] Gorilla’s Guides. Ibn Hussein, K. 5 Million Orphans. Dec. 15, 2007: .
[5] Silent Victims of the Iraq War. June 20, 2008: .
[6] Displaced Iraqis Struggle for Food, Services: IOM. July 18, 2008: .
[7] Der Spiegel. Putz, U. Fleeing from Baghdad to Damascus: Refugees on the Highway from Hell. March 27, 2007:,1518,474205,00.html .
[8] Zoepf, K. Desperate Iraqi Refugees Turn to Sex Trade. May 29, 2007: .
[9] Ali, A., Jamail, D. Iraq: Unemployment too becomes an epidemic. Feb. 21, 2008: .
[10] Reuters. Ryan, M., Rahim, S. After 5 years of war, Iraqis desperate for water. Aug. 24, 2008: .
[11] Project Censored. Williams, R., Jacks, S., Spencer, J. #8 in top 25 censored stories for 2004: US/British forces continue use of depleted uranium weapons despite negative health effects. .
[12] Project Censored. Nelson, C., Storino, M., Scanlan, J. #4 in top 25 censored stories for 2004: Rumsfeld’s plan to provoke terrorists. .
[13] Project Censored. Wingard, J., Barker, C. #8 in top 25 censored stories for 2006: Iraqi farmers threatened by Bremer’s mandates. .
[14] Project Censored. Crowley, B., Jaffe, S., Lanphear, B. #2 in top 25 censored stories for 2006: Media coverage fails on Iraq: Fallujah and the civilian deathtoll. .
[15] Project Censored. Manning, R., Fuchs, B. #10 in top 25 censored stories for 2007: Expanded air war in Iraq kills more civilians.
[16] See Information Clearing House. Lando, B. Total Withdrawal? Who Are You Kidding? March 12, 2007: and Alternet. Von Hoffman, N. Finally, the US Mega-Bases in Iraq are Under Debate. June 15, 2008: .
[19] The Nation. Von Hoffman, N. Bush’s Baghdad Palace. June 20, 2006: and Wikipedia: , and Daniel Pipes Blog. “The Largest Embassy Ever Run by Any Country.” March 9, 2004: .
[20] What Really Happened. Torture of Iraqi POWs. May 10, 2004: , ABC News. Ross, B & Esposito, R. CIA’s Harsh Interrogation Techniques Described. Nov. 18, 2005: , Hersh, S. Torture at Abu Ghraib. New Yorker, May 10, 2004: .
[21] homepage: .
[22] CBS News. Nov. 13, 2007: Suicide Epidemic Among Veterans:
[23] Suicides Clime Among US Soldiers. June 12, 2008: .
[24] Yahoo News. Euphrat, K. Suicide hot line got 22,000 calls from veterans. July 28, 2008: .
[25] Wood, D. Suicides in Army Increase by 13%. June 27, 2008. .
[26] MSNBC. AP Report: June 30, 2004. 1 in 8 Returning Soldiers Suffers from PTSD: .
[27] Among many: KPFA 94.1. The War Comes Home. The Crisis in Veterans’ Health Care. Broadcast April 22, 2008: , ZDNet. Blankenhorn, D. Is Congress Looking at the Right VA Scandal? April 24, 2008: , and Hull, A & Priest D. It is Just not Walter Reed. March 5, 2007: .
[28] Cockburn, P. It’s official: total defeat for U.S. in Iraq. Dec. 15, 2008.