Losing by numbers

posted 20 May 2004

Chez was crazy enough to venture this opinion:

Two British soldiers were wounded. Over twenty terrorists were killed.... If this carries on the terrorists will simply run out of people. We win.

Are you CRAZY? The numbers are against us.

There are 150,000 US and UK troops in Iraq. There are 25 million Iraqis. We'll make optimistic assumptions like they won't let women, old men or children participate (none of which are true of the Palestinians next door). We'll completely ignore the thousands more in Afghanistan, Saudia Arabia (where all the 9-11 bombers came from), Sudan (who sheltered OBL), Yemen (who hate our guts). So assuming there are only 10 million able-bodied Iraqi men, and that there no other countries who hates us, then if only 1 in 1000 of them wants to fight us, there are still 10,000 of them - how long does it take to kill 10,000 people, 20 at a time? If the number is 1 in 100 (and really, do we really think 99% of Iraqis love us?) then there are 100,000 of them. If only 2 out of every 100 able-bodied Iraqi men hate us, we are outnumbered. And the numbers are much less happy than that, as we all know.

Come up with any arguments you like that we're winning in Iraq, but dear god, don't try with numbers.

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