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Oh, he’s an Adventist

You may have heard about the recent study that estimates 655,000 Iraqis have died as a result of the American war and occupation. The Washington Post points out:

“Of the total 655,000 estimated ‘excess deaths,’ 601,000 resulted from
violence and the rest from disease and other causes. . . .  This is about 500 unexpected violent deaths per day throughout
the country.”

As many folks are pointing out, this is an unmitigated humanitarian disaster. Due to the ignorance and incompetence of the Bush administration plan, America is now caught in a Kafkaesque plot, trapped in overseeing an increasingly genocidal death toll ala Bosnia and Rwanda. Training and funding the very partisans who are helping the numbers rise. Although some in the Bush administration claim that the numbers are too high, neither Bush nor General Casey has released any peer-reviewed studies to support their smaller numbers. The Post adds, “Ronald Waldman, an epidemiologist at Columbia University who worked at
the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for many years, called
the survey method ‘tried and true,’ and added that ‘this is the best
estimate of mortality we have.'”
Who is behind this significant study, published in the medical journal Lancet? It is a group of public health and international studies folks from MIT and Johns Hopkins University.
“We’re very confident with the results,” said Gilbert Burnham, a Johns Hopkins physician and epidemiologist. Who is Dr. Burnham? He is the study’s lead researcher. Oh, and he’s a graduate of Loma Linda University and he attends the Sligo Seventh-day Adventist church in Takoma Park, MD.
“Burnham said that the estimate of Iraq’s pre-invasion death rate —
5.5 deaths per 1,000 people — found in both of the Hopkins surveys was
roughly the same estimate used by the CIA and the U.S. Census Bureau.
He said he believes that attests to the accuracy of his team’s results.”

According to his faculty page:
Dr. Gilbert M. Burnham is the co-director of the Center for Refugee and
Disaster Response at Johns Hopkins. . . . He has worked with numerous
humanitarian and health development programs for multilateral and
non-governmental organizations, regional health departments, ministries
of health (national and district level), and communities in sub-Saharan
Africa, Asia, and Eastern Europe. A major current activity is the
reconstruction of health services in Afghanistan.

Thank you, Dr. Burnham, for making Adventist faith count for the common good.
Update: Adventist Peace Fellowship has a post on the report.
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