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Iraq’s Health Ministry Directed to Withhold Mortality Figures to United Nations

by Kenneth J. Theisen Saturday, Oct. 21, 2006 at 1:12 PM

News Item: Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al Maliki’s office has instructed Iraq’s Health Ministry to stop providing mortality figures to the U.N. in an attempt to keep the number of civilian war dead a secret. This comes in the wake of an American epidemiologist study which indicates that 650,000 more people have died since the 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq than would have died without the invasion. I have come into possession of a letter from U.S. Secretary of Defense, Donald Rumsfeld, to the Iraqi Prime Minister on how to deal with this subject. Here is the letter.

Dear Nouri:

As I am sure you are aware, the recent study by the John Hopkins School of Public Health has caused quite a stir in the U.S. and internationally. People seem upset that some 655,000 Iraqis have died since we liberated your country back in 2003. We were always afraid that a backlash may arise if people learned the true cost in lives of bringing democracy to your country. That is why we have always used low numbers from 30,000 to 50,000 deaths in the past when speaking about this volatile subject.

We figured no one would question our numbers and if they did we could always attack their research methods. We figured with all the violence in your country, no one could ever do an accurate count anyway. We figured any poll takers would get killed haha. But as you know, those John Hopkins people used a common survey method and they came up with these numbers.

Well we have attacked their research method, but too many other pollsters and survey takers have defended their study as having scientific validity. But as you know, we here in this administration routinely disregard science. It gets in the way of our reality.

Now you may be asked about this study and I would suggest that you use some of the standard answers I have used with the media in the past. Here are a few of my great quotes that you may wish to use:

* “Death has a tendency to encourage a depressing view of war.”

“I don’t do numbers.”

“Freedom's untidy, and free people are free to make mistakes and commit crimes and do bad things.”

“I am not going to give you a number for it because it's not my business to do intelligent work.”

“Reports…are always interesting to me, because as we know, there are known knowns; there are things we know we know. We also know there are known unknowns; that is to say we know there are some things we do not know. But there are also unknown unknowns -- the ones we don't know we don't know."

"I don't know what the facts are but somebody's certainly going to sit down with him and find out what he knows that they may not know, and make sure he knows what they know that he may not know."

"I'm not into this detail stuff. I'm more concepty."

"I believe what I said yesterday. I don't know what I said, but I know what I think, and, well, I assume it's what I said."

"Needless to say, the President is correct. Whatever it was he said."

By the time I give these answer, the press is usually confused and they move on to a new question. I am sure they will work for you too.

I also would suggest that you have your people in the Health Ministry zip their lips. Quit giving out information about deaths. The less said the better. Let this be an unknown. If you need an excuse, claim that it is in the interest of national security to keep this information secret. The mantra of “national security” always works for us. You would be amazed at what you can get away with using those two words. But I digress.

Just remember, “the less the public knows and sees the better” is always a good starting point. That is why we came up with the idea of embedded reporters. That is why we would not let pictures of flag draped coffins be taken by the media. It is also why the president never attends funerals for our American boys and girls killed in your country. We just pretend no one dies. We suggest you do the same. Remember, reality is not reality, perception is reality.

Your good friend,

Rummy

*All quotes are actual quotes from Donald Rumsfeld.

Kenneth J. Theisen is an organizer with The World Can’t Wait! Drive Out the Bush Regime! To learn more about driving the regime from power, see worldcantwait.org.

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THE DEVIL'S OWN (THE BUSHITES) on low Iraqi Bodycount THE DEVIL'S OWN (THE BUSHITES) Saturday, Oct. 21, 2006 at 8:39 PM

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