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'Institute for the Study of War' Graph Compares Violence Levels Over Three Years
This new ISW graph by the Institute for the Study of War, submitted by ISW president Kimberly Kagen, compares violence levels in Iraq and Afghanistan over a three year period (measuring frequency of four different classifications of attacks) between December 2006 and February 2009.

Download hi-res version here.

The brief accompanying text is below....
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NEJM Study Shows Execution-Style Killings Main Cause of Death of Non-Combatants

A New England Journal of Medicine study,
just out, entitled The Weapons That Kill Civilians — Deaths of Children and Noncombatants in Iraq, 2003–2008, claims that evidence indicates that execution-style killings have been the highest killer of non-combatants, not military operations or suicide bombings.

The journal based their findings on figures from Iraq Body Count, the internet database which seeks to compile accurate numbers of civilian deaths in Iraq.

From the report...

Armed violence, such as that in the ongoing conflict in Iraq, is a threat to global health.1 It causes serious injuries and deaths of civilians, makes orphans of children, traumatizes populations, and undermines the ability of communities to provide adequate medical care even as it dramatically increases health care needs. Moreover, indiscriminate or intentional harm to civilians violates humanitarian principles...
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Evaluating the US military ‘surge’ using nighttime light signatures
A new voice is added to the debate over the effectiveness of the “surge” of U.S. soldiers in combating the sectarian violence in Iraq. Violence has decreased, but the question is why”? Factors that are often cited are the Awakening councils and improved counterinsurgency technology/tactics, but there is an argument that ethnic cleansing segregated Baghdad’s neighborhoods to the point that violence was bound to decrease, and that the influx of American troops walling-off neighborhoods strengthened this segregation.

There are many ways of gathering data and of coming to conclusions. The methodology of “Baghdad Nights”, a new study published in the journal “Environment and Planning A” is a little hard to wrap one’s head around.

Basically, it is this: Satellite images of Baghdad were analyzed for nighttime light signatures, which means that they looked at where people had lights on at night. From mass and sudden absence of such light in, for example, a Shiite section of a largely Sunni neighborhood, ethnic cleansing is claimed to be empirically demonstrated by the study’s leader, John Agnew of the University of California Los Angeles. Such...
Bergen and Cruickshank: "Flypaper Theory" Fails Test
New Report Examines Pentagon Review of Budgeting
Arab Attitudes to U.S. Worse

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