Monday, February 26, 2024

On Civillian Casualties In Urban Combat

Quite a number of ignorant people are complaining and falsely alleging Israel is inflicting "genocide" in Gaza based on the civilian casualties as a result of urban combat against Hamas. 

Urban combat unfortunately by its very nature leads to civilian casualties because that's where civilians are. Even under the best of circumstances, civilians often become collateral casualties of an urban battle.

Remember that Hamas is a foe that not only refuses to provide shelters for its civilians that it governs, but actively hides behind them using civilians as human shields and commits acts of perfidy by fighting from hospitals, mosques, schools, and UNRWA buildings - and then complaining about the resultant civilian casualties.

The critics of Israel point to the Gaza Health Ministry's claim without even a hint of skepticism, that 28,000 Gazans have been killed -  a number that includes combatants on the Hamas side as the GHM does not differentiate between combatants and civilians in their numbers - which is rather convenient for them.  The world accepts this number without any skepticism.

This, by the way, is the same Gaza Health Ministry that claimed 500 people were killed when an Islamic Jihad rocket landed in a hospital parking lot and they tried to blame Israel for it, claiming the entire hospital had been destroyed. The actual casualty count was probably around 100.  So you can likely divide the current estimate of 28,000 by 5 and you may get the actual casualty count.

Meanwhile, Israel has stated they have killed 10,000 Hamas fighters.  Assuming we accept the GHM number of 28,000 total casualties that means there were 18,000 Gazan civilians dead in the war so far.

This gives a ratio of 1:1.8 terrorists to civilians killed in this war.

 Israel has lost 422 service personnel in the war so far.

So let's do a comparison to another recent battle in an urban environment against a well entrenched terrorist group - The Battle of Mosul in 2016/2017.

Thew battle pitted US and allied forces, including the United Kingdom,  Iraqi Army, and others on one side and ISIS and friends on the other, with similar actions by ISIS to that of Hamas of using civilians as human shields and using protected structures to fight in violation of the laws of war.  

The casualty count in Mosul was:

Allied service personnel killed: 1,235. 

ISIS terrorists killed: 7,577-10,859

Civilians Killed: 40,000 (using the Arab estimate which again are likely inflated to a similar proportion of the GHM's estimates, in this case  it is potentially 4 times higher than the more reliable sources' reports of  9,000-11,000).

This gives a ratio of 1:5.2 terrorists to civilians killed on the low estimate of 7,577 ISIS terrorists killed or 1:3.8 terrorists to civilians killed on the higher end of 10,859 ISIS terrorists killed.

In short, even if we believe the inflated numbers coming out of the GHM, Israel is causing less than half the proportion of civilian casualties killed in urban combat than the lower of the two ratios, and doing a whole lot better with almost three times less the comparative ration of dead civilian casualties to dead terrorists than the higher ratio of civilians to terrorists killed in Mosul. 

Israel is killing far fewer civilians for every terrorist killed than the US & Co did in Mosul, by a lot and no one accused the US of committing genocide in Mosul or being "over the top" in its actions.

It's not genocide, it's instead sadly the byproduct of urban combat against an enemy that instead of protecting civilians hides behind them and uses them to up the casualty count.  

Credulous fools, including Biden, all should know better.


B said...

Never trust what a muslim (of any country)tells you if he has an agenda or a profit motive.

Just sayin'

Chuck Pergiel said...

Propaganda rules. Villains use large numbers as words to inflame. Facts are irrelevant.

Old NFO said...

Collateral damage is, and always has been, a fraught issue... And it will never go away.