Thursday, October 04, 2007

British Casualty Monitor Update 04.10.07: Uncertain troop reductions in Iraq while fighting continues unabated in Afghanistan

The fortnightly update of Ministry of Defence data on British casualties from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan is now available, up to 15th September. In Iraq, total British military casualties for 2007 have now reached 1438, while in Afghanistan, total casualties for 2007 now stand at 1069.

As with the previous update, the data from the first half of September shows a continuing decrease in British casualties in Iraq. The impact of the withdrawal from Basra City at the beginning of September, combined with the ceasefire negociated with elements of the resistance in Southern Iraq, appears to have dramatically reduced British casualties over the last few weeks.

However, the same is not true in Afghanistan, where fighting continues and casualties continue to mount.

News round up:

The army chief's concern over public support for the British military continues in public. But as Prime Minister Brown announces Iraq troop cuts during a surprise visit to Iraq the debate opens on just how much was this a real reduction and how how was just 'a neat trick'. What was clear from his annoucement however was that there are no plans for a full withdrawal in the near future. One has to wonder how long the current ceasefire with the resistance in Southern Iraq can last, following this clarification of strategy.

Meanwhile, in Afghanistan, the US commander pondered over how much fighting will be required by the British next spring; and this just to retake ground won already 'won'.