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A Journalist's Guide to Islam by Gordon Legge

By Gordon Legge

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The first factor is that while the loss of life is still under 2,000, there have been large numbers of serious injuries. The reason for this, as noted in earlier briefings in this series, is that a combination of body armour and very high levels of battlefield emergency medical treatment have meant that far more soldiers have survived, but have often done so with severe injuries including limb amputations and head, throat and groin injuries. Well over 10,000 troops have been evacuated from Iraq with combat injuries and an even larger number have returned to the United States with physical or mental illnesses or non-combat injuries.

The final factor, relating to recruitment, takes us back to the issues of casualties. By and large, the US Army recruits from relatively poor communities, rather than from across all sectors of society. This has been a long-term trend and it means that in those districts that are more likely to provide recruits, there will already be many people serving in the Army. As a consequence, there is likely to be a greater knowledge of the level of casualties in Iraq because they disproportionately affect such communities.

This alone is a significant factor in Rogers 01 chap01 47 14/9/06 21:32:32 48 I N T O T H E LO N G WA R militating against a genuine long-term peace process leading to a two-state solution. Iran and its Nuclear Ambitions One positive effect of the successful withdrawal from Gaza is that it removes fears that a sudden Israeli air strike on Iranian nuclear facilities might be engineered if there was a major political crisis in Israel. Such a diversionary tactic may have seemed implausible but was not ruled out in high political circles in Western Europe.

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