Since FAIR sent out an action alert (10/27/08) about the Washington Post‘s weekly chart, “Iraq War Casualties,” the newspaper has ceased using the misleading term “maximum count” to refer to an Iraqi civilian death toll figure 2 to 10 times lower than the casualty figures reached by household surveys (Washington Post, 11/1/08, 11/8/08, 11/15/08). FAIR appreciates the change.
However, as the Washington Post foreign desk confirmed to one FAIR activist in a letter, the newspaper is still using Iraq Body Count figures, which, as FAIR’s alert pointed out, are “almost certainly a very serious underestimation”:
As FAIR’s alert argued, readers would get a more accurate picture of the actual range of estimates if the Post were to include a line pointing out that household surveys in Iraq suggest likely Iraqi death tolls 2 to 10 times greater than Iraq Body Count’s statistics.
Thanks to all the activists who wrote to the Post encouraging them to make the Iraq casualty feature more accurate. FAIR will keep you posted on any further communication we receive from the paper on the issue.