L'Ombre de l'Olivier

The Shadow of the Olive Tree

being the maunderings of an Englishman on the Côte d'Azur

01 October 2007 Blog Home : October 2007 : Permalink

BBC AWOL on Surge

Until the middle of September the BBC was dilligently reporting a host of statistics each week that were supposed to summarise how well (or how badly) the surge was progressing. Since numerous bloggers have noticed that September was  the month with lowest U.S. death toll in Iraq for many months, and since I haven't heard of many large suicide bombings etc., I wondered how the stats were looking.

And I discovered that the BBC hasn't bothered to update the page since Sept 14. Why? Also AWOL for some reason are updated statistics on overall civilian deaths (last updated end of July) despite the fact that the "summary" document says:

Using two media reports as its source for each death, IBC[Iraq Body Count] says the civilian death toll by September 2007 was between 71,000 and 78,000. But the organisation also warns that many deaths may not have been reported.

These pages - updated monthly - give an overview of the most recent estimates.

And while it is possible to blame IBC for not providing a count for the last 3 weeks, IBC do have details up until the middle of September and a nice graph that shows a downward trend up to that date. Doing a scan of the IBC site it looks to me like "civilian" casualties in Sepetember are going to be around 1000, possibly less, which would also be (one of) the lowest numbers in 2007.

Oddly the BBC isn't reporting this - anywhere. The latest "Baghdad Diary" entry, for example, is Septeber 18 and entitled Iraq's capital feels quieter under a veneer of security. Is it just me or is something missing here? You know something called "Good News".