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December 18, 2006

Hezbollah Acknowledges Higher Losses than Previously Admitted

While much of the media continues to contend that almost all of the 850-1191 Lebanese fatalities in this summer's conflict between Israel and Hezbollah were civilians, the Associated Press reported on December 14 that a senior Hezbollah official now admits that Hezbollah lost 250 dead . This is more than three times the 68 to 74 dead that Hezbollah previously admitted - a tally often cited by major media organizations like AP, AFP, the Wall Street Journal and many others.

The figure was given by Mahmoud Komati, deputy chief of Hezbollah's politburo, who dismissed claims of Hezbollah dead as high as 800 or more (see here for CAMERA's analysis of Hezbollah casualties.) While the figure given by the Hezbollah official is still much lower than Israel's own estimates, it nevertheless corroborates CAMERA's contention that Hezbollah was understating its losses and it casts further doubt on the claim that Lebanese casualties were overwhelmingly uninvolved civilians.

The admission by Hezbollah also contradicts the analysis provided by former Middle East adviser to the EU Alistair Crooke who, along with Mark Perry, wrote a piece titled "How Hezbollah Won the War" that appeared in the Asia Times and the online magazine, CounterPunch. In their piece, Crooke and Perry wrote:

Perhaps the most telling sign of Israel's military failure comes in counting the dead and wounded. Israel now claims that it killed about 400-500 Hezbollah fighters, while its own losses were significantly less. But a more precise accounting shows that Israeli and Hezbollah casualties were nearly even ...

Considering that 120 Israeli soldiers were killed vs. at least 250 Hezbollah fighters, will Crooke and others who boast of Hezbollah's "victory" admit their error?

Posted by SS at December 18, 2006 04:46 PM


You seem to have proven that the reporting of the deaths from Isreali attacks on Lebanon communities in July 2006 was accurate and that they were in fact "mostly civilian" deaths.
Out of more than 1000 people dead 250 Hezbullah militants still leaves the majority of deaths as civilian.

Posted by: Journalist at June 16, 2009 04:53 PM

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