tarawa 1943
I don't know which, the webpage or the man, was your source for the statement that the Marines "lost 3000 men," but per Wikipedia, the statement "3000 casualties" would be more accurate, consisting of 1000 dead and 2200 wounded. But you aren't the first place I've heard that 3000 Marines died, since it's usually placed in the contexted of "losing 1000 Marines/mile of Tarawa." Thanks to a clueless modern media, casualties and deaths are often confused, but casualty refers to anyone or anything that can't fight any more. In the language of damage control, it's common enough to refer to equipment casualty.

Then there was Iwo Jima which, again per Wikipedia, the Americans suffered 7000 dead, part of 26000 total casualties (out of some 70000 who landed), while the est. 21800 Japanese defenders permitted only 200 of their number to be taken prisoner. 

Also, speaking of Marines, the USMC turned 230 last Thursday. Happy Birthday, Marines!
--LAN3 Sat Nov 12 20:22:35 2005
Duly fixed, I might have just made the same casualties/deaths mixup myself.

On a similar note, some observers note that the "2,000 dead" from our action in Iraq might be deflated relative to previous conflicts, because we now have the technology and know-how to save soliders that previously would have died. I haven't seen what the number for "dead and/or severely permanently wounded" is.
--Kirk Sat Nov 12 20:47:31 2005
Yeah, I haven't seen anything on counting wounded either; this war can't seem to count casualties. 

I was reading yesterday about the WWI Battle of Belleau Wood, in France-- it's one of those famous battles that established Marines as some of the toughest fighters, but it also produced their heaviest losses up until Tarawa. Wikipedia says 1811 out of 9777 casualties were fatal. 

The rest is an interesting read:

Other observers note, by the way, that 2000 men over 2 and a half years is a loss rate comparable to personel lost to mishaps in the US Armed Services in general, but I can't find a source for that right now. I also saw someone comparing the rate of US military dying in Iraq to the murder rate in several major US cities, adjust for population. But of course, all that really means is that by selecting the US military deaths out of the context of the large numbers of people being murdered by Al Qaeda and/or Baathist loyalists, you're discounting the actions of those hostile enemies. Add that to those people who credit the US Invasion as the cause for these deaths by carbombs etc., and, well, one gets the feeling that perspective has gone MIA.
--LAN3 Sun Nov 13 16:23:32 2005

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