Saturday, June 12, 2004

CIVIC Data Collection

Perhaps you remember Salams description of a project Raed was involved in last year, surveying civilian casualties.

Well, the information is now available here.

While Iraq Body Count counts the death toll based on media reports, the CIVIC project may be the only on ground collection of civilian casualty figures in Iraq during this war.



10 Comments

#6/12/2004 09:12:00 pm Assalam Aleikom Blogger Jeffrey

The IBC methodology is a joke. It counts ANYONE who dies as a civilian casualty because the Coalition forces are responsible for the safety of all Iraqis. Check out the supporting material on the website and you will have a good laugh. In classes, I have used the IBC website and methodology as an example of how activist agencies spin the numbers in their favor. Many commentators, both on blogs and in print, have already pulled that website apart.

Critical reading, please.

I will take a look at Raed's database soon.

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#6/12/2004 09:12:00 pm Assalam Aleikom Blogger Jeffrey

The IBC methodology is a joke. It counts ANYONE who dies as a civilian casualty because the Coalition forces are responsible for the safety of all Iraqis. Check out the supporting material on the website and you will have a good laugh. In classes, I have used the IBC website and methodology as an example of how activist agencies spin the numbers in their favor. Many commentators, both on blogs and in print, have already pulled that website apart.

Critical reading, please.

I will take a look at Raed's database soon.

*

 
#6/12/2004 09:15:00 pm Assalam Aleikom Blogger Jeffrey

The IBC methodology is a joke. It counts ANYONE who dies as a civilian casualty because the Coalition forces are responsible for the safety of all Iraqis. Check out the supporting material on the website and you will have a good laugh. In classes, I have used the IBC website and methodology as an example of how activist agencies spin the numbers in their favor. Many commentators, both on blogs and in print, have already pulled that website apart.

Critical reading, please.

I will take a look at Raed's database soon.

*

 
#6/12/2004 09:24:00 pm Assalam Aleikom Blogger Jeffrey

The IBC methodology is a joke. It counts ANYONE who dies as a civilian casualty because the Coalition forces are responsible for the safety of all Iraqis. Check out the supporting material on the website and you will have a good laugh. In classes, I have used the IBC website and methodology as an example of how activist agencies spin the numbers in their favor. Many commentators, both on blogs and in print, have already pulled that website apart.

Critical reading, please.

I will take a look at Raed's database soon.

*

 
#6/12/2004 11:38:00 pm Assalam Aleikom Blogger Jeffrey

Sorry everyone for the triplicate post. I didn't need to do that but Blogger was frozen for a long time and I stopped the transfer and tried to re-send the comment later at two different times.

Emigre, I would suggest getting Haloscan. It's not perfect but I think it's better than this message board.

Okay, here we go. Let's see if it will publish my comment.

(BTW, IBC would count my death three times!)

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#6/13/2004 02:53:00 pm Assalam Aleikom Blogger emigre

Dear Jeffrey

Before you complain about other peoples counting practices perhaps you need to brush up on your own. You say "sorry for the tripiclate post"? you posted it 4x, thats quadriplicate.

I have read Iraq Body Counts methodology and supporting material thoroughly and have found it to be sound. Perhaps you ought to read it completely yourself. Then you can move on to exercising a little critical reading of your own where "commentators" on blogs are concerned. You are willing to accept the opinion of a blog comment that supports your view without questioning it? Nobody has succeeded in pulling that site apart, they have tried, but not succeeded, primarily because those commenters/bloggers own motives are extremely biased and uninformed.

I have one word for you Jeffrey; borscht.

 
#6/13/2004 05:44:00 pm Assalam Aleikom Blogger Jeffrey

Emigre,

You don't read closely enough. This is pulled from the IBC website:

>Each side can readily claim that indirectly-caused deaths are the "fault" of the other side or, where long-term illnesses and genetic disorders are concerned, "due to other causes." Our methodology requires that specific deaths attributed to US-led military actions are carried in at least two reports from our approved sources. This includes deaths resulting from the destruction of water treatment plants or any other lethal effects on the civilian population. The test for us remains whether the bullet (or equivalent) is attributed to a piece of weaponry where the trigger was pulled by a US or allied finger, or is due to "collateral damage" by either side (with the burden of responsibility falling squarely on the shoulders of those who initiate war without UN Security Council authorization). We agree that deaths from any deliberate source are an equal outrage, but in this project we want to only record those deaths to which we can unambiguously hold our own leaders to account. In short, we record all civilians deaths attributed to our military intervention in Iraq.

I'm going to walk you through this VERY slowly. Let me repeat:

>This includes deaths resulting from the destruction of water treatment plants or any other lethal effects on the civilian population.

>The test for us remains whether the bullet (or equivalent) is attributed to a piece of weaponry where the trigger was pulled by a US or allied finger, or is due to "collateral damage" by either side (with the burden of responsibility falling squarely on the shoulders of those who initiate war without UN Security Council authorization).


>In short, we record all civilians deaths attributed to our military intervention in Iraq.

Emigre, do you understand what this means? I don't know what you do for a living, but I teach writing and critical thinking for a living and this is pathetic. Someone dies of pneumonia in Baghdad and Marc Herold -- whose counting in Afghanistan has already been discounted by serious statisticians, just google that -- counts that death as due to the Coalition forces because they are "responsible" for the health system. If you can't tell that's bogus, you have no right to even run a blog.

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#6/13/2004 06:03:00 pm Assalam Aleikom Blogger Jeffrey

أ‰migrأ©,

I emailed Jeff Jarvis at Buzzmachine over six months ago. He responded immediately on his blog.

January 05, 2004

Iraq miscount
: Reader Jeffrey Schuster emails me shocked that Iraq Body Count is stacked. It counts every death, even at the hands of insurgents/rebels/terrorists/outsiders, as our fault because we should have stopped it. I'm shocked it's bogus. Shocked.
Glenn Reynolds, meanwhile, sends us to the counter-counter that adds up lives that have been saved by getting rid of Saddam.

For anyone interested, here's the paragraph that needs to be read very closely:
>In the current occupation phase this database includes all deaths which the Occupying Authority has a binding responsibility to prevent under the Geneva Conventions and Hague Regulations. This includes civilian deaths resulting from the breakdown in law and order, and deaths due to inadequate health care or sanitation.
www.iraqbodycount.net/bodycount.htm#db
If an Iraqi just happens to die from SARS, I imagine that the IBC will mark it down as another civilian death caused by the Coaltion forces. The reason given will be "inadequate health care," ultimately the Coalition's fault, in their eyes.
Posted by Jeffrey -- New York at January 6, 2004 12:53 AM

Recap:

An Iraqi dies of pneumonia. Whose fault? The Americans.
An Iraqi is killed by terrorists or Saddamites. Whose fault? The Americans.

Okay, Emigre, let's hear your rebuttal -- with EVIDENCE and appropriate quotations, please.

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#6/13/2004 06:08:00 pm Assalam Aleikom Blogger Jeffrey

Emigre,

Jason van Steenwyk has also written on the bogus IBC.

Enjoy and learn.

I have no more patience for knuckleheads like you.

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#6/13/2004 06:15:00 pm Assalam Aleikom Blogger Jeffrey

Emigre,

If you are serious about learning, I would suggest that you go out and buy Joel Best's "Damned Lies and Statistics." I have used it in the classroom and it's very good.

BTW, I never talk about my own political views in the classroom. We take apart statistical claims by analyzing the methodology, the people behind the methodology, and the ways in which numbers are skewed.

Joel Best's book is a very good introduction for anyone who wants to become a critical reader and thinker.

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