The report that refuses to go away

War apologists have uniformly condemned and worked overtime to try and debunk the findings of the Lancet Medical Jouranal’s study on both occasions that it published reports on excess deaths resulting from the Iraq war. Experts in statics and gathering such data have however been just as quick to defend the methods and results of that study. Indeed, the critics all but ignored the fact that the survey had been peer-reviewed.

Well, it appears that these included high ranking officials within the British military:

The British government was advised against publicly criticising a report estimating that 655,000 Iraqis had died due to the war, the BBC has learnt.

Iraqi Health Ministry figures put the toll at less than 10% of the total in the survey, published in the Lancet.

But the Ministry of Defence’s chief scientific adviser said the survey’s methods were “close to best practice” and the study design was “robust”.

Another expert agreed the method was “tried and tested”.

It’s easy to understand why the war party has been so determined to discredit the survey. With all the pre and post invasion rationales falling apart like pack of cards, the only altruistic reason for continuing the occupation is to prevent bloodshed, and this survey threatens to ridicule any pretense that the cure has been better than the illness.

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