Estimated war dead World War II

 

AXIS MILITARY CIVILIAN TOTAL
GERMANY

3,500,000

700,000 4,200,000
JAPAN 2,000,000 350,000 2,350,000
ROMANIA 300,000 160,000 460,000
HUNGARY 140,000 290,000 430,000
ITALY 330,000 80,000 410,000
AUSTRIA 230,000 104,000 334,000
FINLAND 82,000 2,000 84,000
AXIS TOTAL 6,582,000 1,686,000 8,268,000
ALLIED MILITARY CIVILIAN TOTAL
SOVIET UNION 10,000,000 10,000,000 * 20,000,000
CHINA 2,500,000 7,500,00 10,000,000
POLAND 100,00 5,700,000 5,800,000
YUGOSLAVIA 300,000 1,400,000 1,700,000
FRANCE 250,000 350,000 600,000
CZECHOSLOVAKIA 200,000 215,000 415,000
UNITED STATES 400,000 400,000
UNITED KINGDOM (ENGLAND, SCOTLAND, WALES, AND  NORTHERN IRELAND) 326,000 62,000 388,000
NETHERLANDS 12,000 198,000 210,000
GREECE 20,000 140,000 160,000
BELGIUM 12,000 76,000 88,000
CANADA 37,000 37,000
INDIA 24,000 13,000 37,000
AUSTRALIA 23,000 12,000 35,000
ALBANIA 28,000 2,000 30,000
BULGARIA 10,000 10,000 20,000
NEW ZEALAND 10,000 2,000 12,000
NORWAY 6,400 3,900 10,300
SOUTH AFRICA 7,000
ETHIOPIA 5,000 5,000
LUXEMBOURG 5,000 5,000
MALTA 2,000 2,000
DENMARK 400 1,000 1,400
BRAZIL 1,000 1,000
ALLIED TOTAL 14,276,800 25,686,900 39,963,700
EST. TOTAL 20,858,800 27,372,900 48,231,700

* The majority of Soviet Union civilian casualties were Ukrainian.

Sources

Gregory Frumkin, Population Changes in Europe Since 1939 (European estimates)

B. Urlanis, Wars and Population (Soviet Union and the Far East)

Singer and Small, Wages of War (the Americas and Ethiopia)

I.C.B. Dear, editor, The Oxford Companion to World War II (British Commonwealth)

Why Obama’s assurance of ‘no boots on the ground’ isn’t so reassuring

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A U.S. Marine on patrol. (Rebecca Sell/For The Washington Post)

Rosa Brooks, a law professor at Georgetown University and a senior fellow at the New America Foundation, was an Obama administration appointee at the Defense Department from 2009 to 2011. She is married to an Army Special Forces officer.

Each time I hear President Obama assure us that there will be “no boots on the ground” in Iraq or Syria, I think of my husband’s Army boots, lying in a heap in the corner of the downstairs study. They’re covered in fine dust from his latest Middle East deployment, one that came nail-bitingly close to being extended by an unplanned stint in Iraq.

In the end, he wasn’t sent back to Iraq. He came home in July, though a last-minute change in assignments left most of his civilian clothes stranded in some Army transport netherworld. Deprived of his sneakers and sandals, he wore his Army boots pretty much everywhere this summer, even on playground outings with the kids. Watching grass stains from the local park gradually displace nine months of Kuwaiti dust gave me more happiness than I can say.

Even so, I can’t help feeling queasy every time I hear the president pledge that there will be “no boots on the ground” in America’s newest war. I wonder what that pledge really means — and just why we’re supposed to find it reassuring. It’s a pledge that seems to have everything to do with politics and little to do with the imperatives of strategy or security.

Here’s what “no boots on the ground” apparently doesn’t mean: It doesn’t mean that no U.S. troops will be sent to Iraq or Syria. Reportedly there are already 1,600 U.S. military personnel in Iraq. True, they’re present in an “advisory” role, not in a combat role — but surely one lesson of Iraq and Afghanistan is that combat has a habit of finding its way to noncombat personnel. Enemy snipers and IEDs don’t much care about a soldier’s mission or occupational specialty, and you can bet that fighters of the self-proclaimed Islamic State would be content with the heads of a few American advisers.

It’s also hard to know what publicly reported troop numbers really mean. When the Pentagon issues a Boots on the Ground report (known colloquially as a “BOG report”), it often excludes military personnel on “temporary duty” in combat areas, even though temporary duty may mean an assignment spanning five or six months. Similarly, Special Operations personnel assigned to work under CIA auspices are often left out of the BOG numbers. This makes it hard to know just who’s being counted when officials say there are 1,600 military personnel in Iraq.

“No boots on the ground” also ignores the many nonmilitary American boots (and shoes and sandals) present in Iraq and Syria. Our Baghdad embassy personnel presumably wear some kind of footwear, as do thousands more civilians working as U.S. government contractors in Iraq. In both Iraq and Syria, scores of American civilians also work for nongovernmental organizations and humanitarian aid groups.

The Pentagon keeps careful count of dead and wounded U.S. troops, but the government doesn’t systematically track dead or injured civilians or contractors (many of whom, of course, are U.S. military veterans). Though few Americans know it, there were often more contractors working for the U.S. government on the ground than there were U.S. troops at the height of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, and some estimates suggest that there were as many U.S.-employed contractors who died in those conflicts as there were U.S. troops killed.

Cynics might even suspect that this heavy reliance on contractors was part of an effort to keep those BOG numbers down while outsourcing military risk. After all, no one likes high BOG numbers — the very acronym is suggestive of that most dreaded military outcome, the “quagmire.”

If “no boots on the ground” means playing games with numbers and offloading military risk onto U.S. government civilians and contractors, we should take little solace in presidential reassurances.

And we should feel even less comfort if “no boots on the ground” ends up putting vulnerable local civilians at risk. Remember Kosovo? President Bill Clinton’s refusal in 1999 to put U.S. troops on the ground forced us to rely solely on airstrikes to prevent Serbian ethnic cleansing. To further minimize any risk to U.S. military personnel, we mainly flew sorties at a safe 15,000 feet above the ground. This worked out well for us: Aside from two Americans killed in a helicopter accident in Albania, there were no U.S. fatalities in the 78-day air campaign. It worked out less well for some of the civilians we were trying to protect; in several cases, for instance, NATO pilots mistook convoys of refugees for troop transports, causing scores of civilian deaths.

The primary goal of the current U.S. airstrikes in Syria and Iraq isn’t civilian protection, but Obama has suggested that this is at least a secondary motivation. In his speech this past week to the U.N. General Assembly, for instance, he asserted that the Islamic State “has terrorized all who they come across in Iraq and Syria. Mothers, sisters and daughters have been subjected to rape as a weapon of war. Innocent children have been gunned down. . . . Religious minorities have been starved to death. In the most horrific crimes imaginable, innocent human beings have been beheaded. . . . The only language understood by killers like this is the language of force. So the United States of America will work with a broad coalition to dismantle this network of death.”

It’s hard to argue with the importance of dismantling a “network of death,” but no matter how careful we are, U.S. airstrikes in Syria and Iraq will also end up killing some innocent civilians. Without eyes and ears on the ground, we’re more likely to make tragic targeting mistakes. We have to hope we’ll do more good than harm, but it’s hard to feel confident of that.

Numerous respected military and defense leaders — from Army Gen. Martin Dempsey , current chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, to retired defense secretary Robert Gates — have argued in recent weeks that ground troops will probably be required if our strategy is to be effective. So far, events seem to be proving them right: In Iraq, seven weeks of airstrikes have done little to push Islamic State fighters out of the territories they control, despite close U.S. coordination with Iraqi army units. In Syria, we have no similar local force with which to coordinate, creating a risk that U.S. airstrikes will increase the chaos without fundamentally reducing the threat to local civilians — or, in the longer term, to the United States.And that’s most worrisome of all — the possibility that our insistence on “no boots on the ground” also offloads present risks onto the future. Relying on airstrikes alone may merely prolong a bloody and inconclusive conflict, or strengthen other actors who are just as brutal as Islamic State fighters, from the regime of Bashar al-Assad to the al-Qaeda-linked rebels of Jabhat al-Nusra.Insisting that we’ll never commit U.S. troops to this fight plays right into every jihadist narrative, reinforcing America’s image as an arrogant but cowardly nation — happy to drop bombs from a distance but unwilling to risk the lives of our troops. Each time we reinforce that narrative, we give jihadist recruiting another big boost.

 

For a decade, we’ve relied on drone strikes as a top counterterrorism tool in Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia, but a few thousand dead terrorism suspects later, it’s far from clear that we’ve made ourselves safer. If anything, the global jihadist movement appears to have gained strength. As a former Defense Intelligence Agency director, Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, recently noted: “In 2004, there were 21 total Islamic terrorist groups spread out in 18 countries. Today, there are 41 Islamic terrorist groups spread out in 24 countries.” Ultimately, our efforts to destroy the Islamic State from afar may similarly spark the creation of even more jihadist groups.

“I will not commit you . . . to fighting another ground war in Iraq,” Obama told troops at Central Command headquarters this month. I appreciate his desire to do right by America’s military personnel: My husband’s boots, like those of so many other members of the armed forces, have already gathered too much dust in too many dangerous places, over too many years. Right now, I want those boots to stay exactly where they are: here, at home.

But I don’t want to trade the safety of U.S. troops today for the safety of our children tomorrow. If Obama’s promise of “no boots on the ground” means we’ll be fighting a war of half-measures — a war that won’t achieve our objectives and that may increase the long-term threat — I’m not sure, in the end, that it’s a promise I want him to keep.

Putin: Downing of Russian jet over Syria stab in the back by terrorist accomplices

2713698 10/07/2015 A Russian Sukhoi Su-24 lands at the Hmeimim air base in Syria. Dmitriy Vinogradov/Sputnik

2713698 10/07/2015 A Russian Sukhoi Su-24 lands at the Hmeimim air base in Syria. Dmitriy Vinogradov/Sputnik

 

Turkey backstabbed Russia by downing the Russian warplane and acted as accomplices of the terrorists, Russian President Vladimir Putin said.

“This incident stands out against the usual fight against terrorism. Our troops are fighting heroically against terrorists, risking their lives. But the loss we suffered today came from a stab in the back delivered by accomplices of the terrorists,” Putin said.

Objective monitoring data confirmed no attempts of Turkish plane to establish communication or visual contact with Rus crew

 

Жители столицы провели митинг протеста у посольства Турции в Москве

 

Follow LIVE UPDATES on Russian warplane shot down at Syria-Turkey border

Putin said the plane was hit by a Turkish warplane as it was traveling at an altitude of 6000 meters about a kilometer from the Turkish border. It was hit by an air-to-air missile launched by a Turkish F-16 jet. The crash site is four kilometers from the border. The plane posed no threat to Turkish national security, he stressed.

Putin said the plane was targeting terrorist targets in the Latakia province of Syria, many of whom came from Russia.

Russia has for a long time been aware of oil going from Syria under the control of terrorists to Turkey, Putin said. The money finances terrorist groups.

IS has big money, hundreds of millions or even billions of dollars, from selling oil. In addition they are protected by the military of an entire nation. One can understand why they are acting so boldly and blatantly. Why they kill people in such atrocious ways. Why they commit terrorist acts across the world, including in the heart of Europe,” the Russian leader said.

The downing of the Russian warplane happened despite Russia signing an agreement with the US to prevent such incidents in Syria, Putin stressed. Turkey claims to be part of the US-led coalition fighting against IS in Syria, he added.

The incident will have grave consequences for Russia’s relations with Turkey, Putin warned.

We have always treated Turkey as not only a close neighbor, but also as a friendly nation,” he said. “I don’t know who has an interest in what happened today, but we certainly don’t.”

The fact that Turkey did not try to contact Russia in the wake of the incident and rushed to call a NATO meeting instead is worrisome, Putin said. It appears that Turkey want NATO to serve the interests of IS, he added.