As we celebrate the New Year let us not overlook US troop deaths in Afghanistan

While many Americans will be out celebrating the New Year in a few hours we need to pause, pray for, and reflect on all those brave men and women who have made the ultimate sacrifice in the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, that war-ravaged country thousands of miles from our shores.

During the last years of the Bush administration  the LA Times would publish the names and photos of every American soldier who died in combat be it Iraq or Afghanistan to send a message  to their readers that president Bush was accountable for their untimely deaths. Although I have since canceled my subscription to the Times I believe that after president Obama was sworn in they have curtailed that obituary confirmation of the true impact of war where death and casualties is the price paid for freedom.

The following year end statistics are from the AP:

KABUL — U.S. military deaths in Afghanistan doubled in 2009 compared with a year ago as 30,000 additional troops began pouring in for a stepped-up offensive and the Taliban fought back with powerful improvised bombs.

A tally by The Associated Press shows 304 American service members had died as of Dec. 30, up from 151 in 2008. The count does not include eight U.S. civilians killed by a suicide bomber on a base in eastern Afghanistan on Wednesday.

Also, the annual death toll of international troops, including U.S. forces, surpassed 500 for the first time in the war. The total this year was 502 compared with 286 in 2008, according to the AP count.


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