Facts vs. Fiction
A report from the front in Iraq
By Karl Zinsmeister
(Article taken from The American Enterprise: March 2006 edition)
But don't American combat losses fall disproportionally on minorities and the poor?
That's another myth. Though blacks and Hispanics make up 15 percent and 18 percent of America's young-adult population respectively, they have each represented less than 11 percent of the fatalities in Iraq. Fully 75 percent of the soldiers killed in Iraq have been whites (who make up 61 percent of our military-age population.
Demographic data show, furthermore, that U.S. servicemembers come from a cross-section of American society, and basically match the wider population in family educational and socioeconomic status.
If there is an imbalance in who is carrying the military load in Iraq it is between Red and Blue America. In two years of fighting in Iraq, 33 percent of U.S. military fatalties came from rural areas, though only 20 percent of the U.S. population is rural. Both city dwellers (29 percent of the U.S. population, 26 percent of Iraq fatalities) and suburbanites (51 percent of the population, 41 percent of the dead) are underrepresented among today's war casualties.