US Troop Deaths in Afghan War Under Obama Now Twice That Under Bush

US Deaths in Afghanistan: Obama vs Bush. Click here to learn more.

This weekend marked a new milestone for the war in Afghanistan: the number of US troops killed in the war since President Obama took office is now twice the number that were killed during Bush's term, according to icasualties.org and our US Troops in Afghanistan: Obama vs Bush web counter. That means that two-thirds of the total US troop deaths have occurred in the last two years and eight months, which accounts for roughly a third of the duration of the war to date.

1728 US troops have died in Afghanistan since October 7, 2001, with 1153 of those deaths having occurred since President Obama's inauguration. 575 US troops died in Afghanistan during President Bush's term in office.

We've all heard the argument before: Bush ignored Afghanistan, Obama did what he promised by escalating the war, and since more troops means more deaths, we shouldn't be surprised by the increased death rate.

Back in June, when US deaths in Afghanistan under Obama reached 1000, I wrote a piece about this argument. I'm not going to address it further here, because there are more pressing issues of concern than looking to the past.

Just weeks before US troop deaths under Obama hit 1000, the President announced his strategy for a troop drawdown in Afghanistan. In this speech, he outlined a proposal for removing 10,000 troops at the end of this summer, with 23,000 more following at the end of next summer. After that, troops will “continue coming home at a steady pace as Afghan security forces move into the lead. Our mission will change from combat to support. By 2014, this process of transition will be complete, and the Afghan people will be responsible for their own security.”

What many Americans inferred from this passage was that all US troops will be out of Afghanistan by 2014. This is quite understandable, and was perhaps the intention of the passage. To say that, by 2014, “the transition will be complete” and “the Afghan people will be responsible for their own security” seems to suggest little or no role for the US military.

Unfortunately, this inference is invalid. The key statement here is that “our mission will change from combat to support.” It is this transition that will be completed by 2014 and not the transition out of Afghanistan. That means that there is still no deadline for the full withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan.

Furthermore, if the Pentagon gets its way, it will be a long time before our military leaves Afghanistan. In August, the Telegraph reported that the Pentagon was in negotiations with the Afghan government to leave 25,000 US troops in Afghanistan until at least 2024. Just to give you a little context: there were 25,000 US troops in Afghanistan in 2007. So, a drawdown to 25,000 troops by 2014 would merely be a return to 2007 troop levels. Funny thing that a support mission would require just as many troops as a combat mission!

But perhaps you're thinking that the support troops will have a different role than the combat troops.

Former Secretary of Defense Robert Gates had something to say about that. When asked what the difference is between combat and non-combat troops, Gates said that non-combat troops have a “combat capability” and will engage in “targeted counterterrorism operations.” Which prompts the question: how, again, are non-combat troops different than combat troops?

In 2007, 111 US troops died in Afghanistan. Extrapolating from this data, if the US leaves 25,000 US troops in Afghanistan from 2015, the beginning of the support mission, until at least 2024, we may lose over a thousand troops under the guise of a support mission.

This is unacceptable. A recent CBS poll indicates that two-thirds of Americans support ending the war in Afghanistan within the next two years. If Americans knew that the war isn't coming to an end in 2014, if they knew how insufficient the proposed US withdrawal really is, I think that they'd be angry. I think they'd be angry enough to do something.

That's why we created a new site, countdowntodrawdown.org. Here, we plan to track the US withdrawal from Afghanistan, to educate Americans about the lack of a timetable for full withdrawal, and to mobilize Americans to demand an end to this war. You'll find a counter tracking the number of US troops still in Afghanistan, 10 facts about the US withdrawal, and a petition to President Obama.

Mark this grim milestone in the war by sharing this information with your friends and neighbors. With the Occupy protest movement gaining steam, and demands for ending the wars receiving more attention than they have in a while, this is the moment to make sure people know the reality of the situation we face so they can fight even harder and more effectively against it.

And to think that people are clamoring to vote for this guy. Killing people means nothing if you are a president. For anyone else, it is the death penalty.

And to think people are clamoring to vote for this guy. Killing people means nothing if you are a president. Everyone else gets the death penalty.

President Barry Soetoro Hussein Obama, the adpted son of Rothschild and the puppet of Illuminati's New World Order is a lier and must retun the Novbel Peace Price. This guy is worst than the fascist Bush and Chney together. I will nver vote again in the United States. I finish with this maffia of criminals globalists

Ron Paul 2012 Will make a Difference. Well that's what i think.

Ron Paul 2012 will make a difference. well i think, im berly turning 18 but he inspires many military people.

Well youngster, when you've been around a few decades you come to realize that what comes out of a politicians mouth during election time has nothing to do with how they really behave. With Ron Paul he's been around long enough that we can see what he really does. See, the problem with american voters is they watch a few paid for ads and listen to a couple sound bites and go vote for who ever is singing their song. Do your due diligence, something you better know about if you ever plan on investing or buying property. See what is behind the pretty facade. In Paul's case, he just LOVES federal pork no matter what he says and some of the things that he has said, in context, are real nut job ideas. There is a reason he is a Republican, no matter how hard he tries to portray himself as a liberal. Except for a very select group, I'll never again vote for a Repugnant Republican or a Damn Democrat.

Ron Paul 2012

Email me for a bumper sticker Abandon Afghanistan. I am happy to send them out! This war must STOP>

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Good riddance to you. You cannot speak too good of English in the first place and know nothing of Fascists or what this country is all about. I doubt you have ever voted (legally) in this country anyhow.

All you Paulie-boys and Girls have got to get over the idea that Ron Paul is anything but a nutter. Quit posting until you have something to say beyond Ron Paul 2012. Have something substantial to say before you open your mouth or type some words.IF Ron Paul was a good politician with foreign policy experience, he would understand and make you tools understand that we can't just pull out of a War. The people who supported us get left behind because we pulled out early and the job isn't done and they pay the cost initially. From that point on, no one wants your help or to help you because you won't finish what was started.

In this week’s Bible reading, Abraham becomes the leader of a great nation when he is 100 years old. Now you and I might consider this to be a rather dramatic life change to undergo at such an old age.-Jeffrey Kale Flagg

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I would like to point out to you less intelligent group of dingbats(author of article included)... that this very conviently leaves out how many troops died under Bush in Iraq. Allow me to crush your little delusion. 4222 troops died in Iraq under Bush... 264 died under Obama. When you run the death totals for BOTH of Bush's wars is 40% higher than Obamas. The fact that you think Americans will forget about an entire war is embarrassing.

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