Real Afghanistan Casualty Numbers

Yochi Drezen has a scoop on the Wall Street Journal‘s website. He reports:

U.S. military investigators have concluded that roughly 50 people — including at least 20 militants — died in a controversial American air strike in western Afghanistan this week, disputing Afghan and Red Cross reports of a much higher civilian death toll, according to senior American officials.

In other words, assuming this report is accurate, civilian casualties were probably 30, not 120. That’s quite a discrepancy. Don’t expect such findings to quiet the hysteria over American-caused casualties — any more than facts will spoil outrage over alleged Israeli-caused casualties. But at least it would be nice if, for a change, Afghan President Hamid Karzai tried to dampen this hysteria rather than stoking it. It would also be nice if there were half as much outrage over the civilian casualties deliberately caused by groups like the Taliban or Hamas. I know, I know. Dream on.