United States military death toll in Iraq reaches 4,000

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Monday, March 24, 2008

Mowaffak al-Rubaie

The death of four soldiers Sunday from a roadside improvised explosive device has raised the total of American soldiers to die in Iraq to 4,000. 3,263 have been killed in combat and other hostile action, while 737 have been killed in non-hostile incidents, such as traffic accidents and suicides.

The four soldiers were traveling in their vehicle in southern Baghdad around 10 a.m. local time, when the vehicle was hit by an explosion from the IED. A fifth soldier was wounded. Following standard procedure, the identities of those killed have been withheld pending notification of relatives.

The milestone was reached just days after the fifth anniversary of the start of the war on March 19, 2003 when the United States and the United Kingdom invaded Iraq "to disarm Iraq of weapons of mass destruction (WMD), to end Saddam Hussein's support for terrorism, and to free the Iraqi people." However, no weapons of mass destruction have been located yet.

A military spokesman, Navy Lt. Patrick Evans, gave condolences to the family and noted each death is "equally tragic." Evans also added, "There have been some significant gains. However, this enemy is resilient and will not give up, nor will we. There's still a lot of work to be done."

The U.S. military says that in 2007, 901 soldiers and personnel were killed, which made that year the deadliest year for U.S. troops since the beginning of the war.

This occurred on the same day when Mowaffak al-Rubaie, the current Iraqi National Security Advisor said that "This war is well worth fighting," on CNN's Late Edition with Wolf Blitzer.

This war is well worth fighting.

Mowaffak al-Rubaie, Iraqi National Security Advisor

"This is global terrorism hitting everywhere and they have chosen Iraq to be a battlefield. And we have to take them on. If we don't prevail, if we don't succeed in this war, then we are doomed forever," al-Rubaie stated. He further added, "I understand and sympathize with the mothers, with the widows, with the children who have lost their beloved ones in this country. But honestly, it is well worth fighting and well worth investing the money and the treasure and the sweat and the tears in Iraq."

Also on the same day, various separate attacks by Iraqi insurgents caused in total 40 deaths of Iraqi civilians. In Baghdad, mortars or rockets were fired into the high-security "Green Zone." Meanwhile, a suicide bomber killed six people in Shula, one Baghdad's Shia neighborhoods. Also, gunmen in seven cars open fired in a mixed neighborhood of Baghdad killing seven people.

Meanwhile, 13 Iraqi soldiers were killed at an army base by a suicide truck bomber and another four were killed by a roadside bomb in Tuz Khurmato.

The death toll of Iraqi civilians is estimated to be around 80,000 to 150,000 or more. However, the true death toll is unknown as the United States military does not keep records of civilian deaths.