May 14, 2007
According to Save the Children, a U.S.-based humanitarian organization, Iraq has the fastest growing child mortality rate of any country in the world. In 2005, 122,000, or one in eight Iraqi children, died of disease or violence before age five. More than half these deaths were newborn babies in the first month of life.
Some of the deaths have come directly, from the shooting and the bombings in the war. But pneumonia, and diarrhea from the worsening health conditions, have been the major killers of children, especially infants. Since the beginning of the second Iraq war, conditions which were already bad have been getting progressively worse: electricity shortages, lack of water and insufficient clean water, deteriorating health services and lack of food have all contributed to the huge increase in deaths in children.
A study by Johns Hopkins University had already verified the unspeakable horrors that have rained on the Iraqi population, documenting the loss of more than 655,000 Iraqi lives resulting directly or indirectly from this war. This latest report only makes it clear how many of the victims in this war are babies and children, and it stands as another indictment of the U.S.
End this war now!