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Comparing Japanese, Jihadist &
UK-US War Crimes

By Gideon Polya

11 August, 2005

Our horror at the senseless and evil killing of so many innocent people in the London bombing atrocities should reinforce our profound objection to all terrorist violence, whether "non-state terrorism" by jihadists or "state terrorism" by the US-led Coalition. As we celebrate the 60th anniversary of the final end of World War 2 , it is useful to compare the human cost of jihadist terrorism and UK-US state terrorism with other violent crimes against humanity such as WW2 war crimes. The following statistics demonstrate the profound dishonesty, racism and disproportionality of the UK-US "War on Terror".

The average annual death rate of Australian POWs under the Japanese in World War 2 was 10.4% (10.4 per 100 per year) (8,000 deaths out of 22,000 POWs over 3.5 years) [1]. For war crimes such as this the Japanese Prime Minister Tojo and General Yamashita were tried, convicted and hanged.

The violent Iraqi civilian deaths associated with the invasion and occupation of Iraq have totalled about 23,000 - 26,000 according to Iraq Body Count [2]. However post-invasion "avoidable mortality" (excess mortality) and "under-5 infant mortality" have totalled about 0.4 million and 0.3 million, respectively, for Occupied Iraq, 1.5 million and 1.2 million, respectively, for Occupied Afghanistan and have totalled 1.9 million and 1.5 million, respectively, for the Occupied Iraqi and Afghan Territories as a whole [3].

The latest UNICEF report (2005) [4] estimates that in 2003 the under-5 infant mortality was 110,000 in Occupied Iraq, 292,000 in Occupied Afghanistan and 1,000 in the invading and occupying country Australia noting that in 2003 these countries had populations of 25, 24 and 20 million, respectively, and that the under-5 year olds in these countries totalled 4.2, 5.0 and 1.3 million, respectively. From this one can calculate that the current annual under-5 infant death rate is about 2.6% (2.6 per 100 under-5 year old infants per year), 5.8% (5.8 per 100) and 0.08% (0.08 per 100), respectively, for Occupied Iraq, Occupied Afghanistan and the occupying country Australia [5, 6].

It can be estimated that jihadists and insurgents have killed about 5,000 Western civilians over the last 20 years (mostly on 9/11 and in Israel, with the remainder from atrocities such as those of Bali, Madrid and London). One can calculate that the average annual death rate of Western civilians (current population about 760 million) from jihadist and insurgent violence has been 0.00003 per 100 per year i.e. 0.00003% (over the last 20 years) [7] and 0.0001 per 100 per year or 0.0001% (over the last 5 years).

Thus the annual death rates of under-5 year old infants in US-occupied Afghanistan (5.8%) and in US-occupied Iraq (2.6%) are of a similar order of magnitude to the annual death rate of WW2 Australian POWs under the Japanese (10.4%), these death rates being 26,000-350,000 times greater than the annual death rates of Western civilians from jihadist violence of 0.00003% (over the last 20 years) and 0.0001% (over the last 5 years).

Notwithstanding some horrendous terrorist atrocities (most notably that of 9/11), Western laws and security procedures are clearly very effective in protecting Western civilians from the evil of jihadist terrorism. Nevertheless the full human cost of jihadist violence has overwhelmingly been realized through the utterly disproportionate carnage of the US-led war against Iraq and Afghanistan. Thus the total of Western civilian deaths at the hands of jihadists over the last 20 years (about 5,000) is only 0.26% of the post-invasion avoidable mortality (excess mortality) in the Occupied Iraqi and Afghan Territories (1.9 million).

The horrendous post-invasion avoidable mortality (excess mortality) and under-5 infant mortality in the Occupied Iraqi and Afghan Territories cannot be dismissed by racist assertions that such conditions are somehow "normal" for such non-European countries. Avoidable mortality is defined as the difference between the ACTUAL mortality in a country and the mortality EXPECTED for a peaceful country with the same demographics [3]. Thus my estimates of avoidable mortality for Iraq (which sits on about 20% of the World's oil) are based on comparisons with its impoverished and resource-poor but peaceful neighbours Syria and Jordan. Further, the Ruler is responsible for the Ruled and responsibilities of Occupiers for subject civilians are set out explicitly in the Fourth Geneva Conventions that were ratified in 1950 [8].

Thus Article 56 of the Fourth Geneva Convention for protection of civilians in time of war [8] states (in part): " To the fullest extent of the means available to it, the Occupying Power has the duty of ensuring and maintaining, with the cooperation of national and local authorities, the medical and hospital establishments and services, public health and hygiene in the occupied territory, with particular reference to the adoption and application of the prophylactic and preventive measures necessary to combat the spread of contagious diseases and epidemics. Medical personnel of all categories shall be allowed to carry out their duties".

Article 59 states (in part): "If the whole or part of the population of an occupied territory is inadequately supplied, the Occupying Power shall agree to relief schemes on behalf of the said population, and shall facilitate them by all the means at its disposal".

The horrendous post-invasion and under-5 infant mortality in the Occupied Iraqi and Afghan Territories clearly derives from non-provision of life-sustainig requisites by the occupying Coalition powers in clear contravention of Articles 56 and 59. Thus a powerful indicator of Coalition criminality is that the annual per capita medical expenditure in the Occupied Iraqi and Afghan Territories is less than 1% of that in metropolitan USA.. The consequent mass mortality must be described as passive genocide [9, 10] and the UK, the US and their Coalition partners should be indicted before the International Criminal Court for egregious war crimes committed against defenceless civilian populations, noting that a very high proportion of the victims are infants under the age of 5.

The obscenity of the US-led "War on Terror" can be summarized by the following list of ascending death statistics: about 2,000 US military deaths [11]; 3,000 deaths on 9/11; about 5,000 Western civilian deaths from jihadist violence over the last 20 years; 23,000-27,000 post-invasion violent civilian deaths [2]; 1.5 million post-invasion under-5 infant deaths in the Occupied Iraqi and Afghan Territories (of which about 90% have been avoidable); and a total post-invasion avoidable mortality (excess mortality) in Occupied Iraq and Afghanistan of 1.9 million [3, 12].

The carnage continues because mainstream Anglo-American media steadfastly refuse to report the horrrendous avoidable mortality and infant mortality in the Occupied Iraqi and Afghan Territories. Over 60 years ago the Jewish Holocaust (6 million victims) was not officially recognized as such by the Allies until 30 months before the end of World War 2. Now everyone very properly knows about the Jewish Holocaust but the WW2 man-made Bengal Famine in British-ruled India (4 million victims) is a "forgotten holocaust" - it has been largely deleted from British history and from general public perception by a continuing process of racist holocaust denial by media, politicians and academics [3, 13].

Lying by omission and commission by mainstream Anglo-American media permitted the US Administration to make war and continues to hide the horrendous human consequences of the US-led "War on Terror".
The Jury of Conscience of the World Tribunal on Iraq (spokesperson the famous Indian writer and humanitarian Arundhati Roy) has issued a final declaration that charges the UK, the US and their Coalition partners with war crimes over Iraq and also lambasts complicit media [14, 15].

Non-reportage of the horrendous human consequences of the Coalition invasion of Iraq and Afghanistan has made the cowardly, racist and dishonest Anglo-American mainstream media complicit in horrendous UK-US war crimes. We all know the adage attributed to George Santayana that history ignored yields history repeated. Racist Anglo-American corporate media are bent on denying horrendous war crimes as they are being committed.


[1] ABC Radio National, January 2003, "Prisoners of war: Australians under Nippon" (see:
[2] Iraq Body Count (see:
[3] Global Avoidable Mortality (see: )
[4] UNICEF report (2005) (see:
[5] Gideon Polya, News Central Asia, July 2005, "Global Terror & UK-US state terrorism"(see: )
[6] United Nations Population Division (2005) (see: )
[7] Gideon Polya, News Central Asia, "Global Terror and UK-US state terrorism" (see:
[8] Office of the UN Commissioner for Human Rights, Geneva Convention relative to protection of civilian persons in time of war (see:
[9] Gideon Polya, Countercurrents, March, 2005, "Passive genocide in Iraq" (see:
[10] Gideon Polya, Al-Jazeerah, March 2005. "Passive genocide by Coalition in Iraq" (see:
[11] Coalitian military deaths in Iraq and Afghanistan (see: )
[12] Gideon Polya website (see: )
[13] Jane Austen and blog (see: )
[14] Declaration of World Tribunal on Iraq Jury of Conscience (see: )
[15] Gideon Polya, "UN, World Tribunal & Arundhati Roy expose UK-US war crimes" (see: )

Dr Gideon Polya
Melbourne, Victoria, 3085, Australia
Credentials: Dr Gideon Polya published some 130 works in a 4 decade scientific career, most recently a huge pharmacological reference text "Biochemical Targets of Plant Bioactive Compounds" (CRC Press/Taylor & Francis, New York & London, 2003), and is currently writing a book on global mortality - numerous articles on this matter can be found by a simple Google search for "Gideon Polya" and on his website:











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