Monday, February 28, 2005

Lull or Trend?

US combat casualties are down significantly this last month (from a February 21 article):

The number of coalition military forces killed by hostile actions has declined significantly since Iraq's Jan. 30 election, according to military officials.

As of Monday, the 28 coalition forces killed from hostile fire or roadside bombs in February represented the lowest fatality rate since last March, according to The daily average of 1.33 soldiers killed in hostile actions after the election compares to 2.42 during the previous 10 months, based on Philadelphia Inquirer calculations.

The question is, is this a lull prior to an insurgent offensive (as last February proved to be), are insurgents targeting Iraqis more as they tire of getting waxed by US forces and as they grow to fear Iraqi forces more, are we pulling back into a force protection mode to minimize casualties, or are the insurgents losing heart?

We'll see whether this is a trend that continues or not.