Excerpts from RawStory–
…unnamed military affairs blogger has published a list of recent air strikes against militants in Afghanistan and Pakistan, and an amazing pattern has emerged: It seems that just about every time an air strike is reported in the news, the Taliban casualty figure cited is 30.
Why 30, well…
(LA TIMES) in 2007, Marc Garlasco, the Pentagon’s former chief of high-value targeting, offered a glimpse when he told Salon magazine that in 2003, “the magic number was 30.” That meant that if an attack was anticipated to kill more than 30 civilians, it needed the explicit approval of then-Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld or President George W. Bush. If the expected civilian death toll was less than 30, the strike could be OKd by the legal and military commanders on the ground.
(RAWSTORY)… the Rumsfeld-era casualty policy applied to civilian casualties, not insurgent casualties. Yet the series of news reports this year cite the 30 number for Taliban casualties, and cite varying figures for civilian casualties, if any are cited at all. It would be hard to argue that the Pentagon believes the American public can only stomach 30 Taliban casualties at a time.
So the likelier explanation is that the Pentagon doesn’t know how many insurgents were killed…
So the 30 figure is made up, so the military do not get into trouble for not asking the higher ups (plus having to ask slows things up) and the rest is no revelation, they just kill a bunch of people and say ‘insurgents’ to the press who dutifully print it, when there has ever been any investigations the military has been found to have lied, try and act surprised. So…we have no idea how many people are being killed in the airstrikes in the Afghan war and how many of those are civilians and… our militaries do not care and do not want you to know both that they do not care (we are there to protect the Afghans from extremists blah de blah etc) and how many people our taxes are slaughtering in the Nobel Prize winning war. All of which reminds me of a Slowpoke cartoon I saw yesterday-
NHS walk-in centres near railway stations are not popular with commuters and are a waste of money, say University of Sheffield researchers.
…a study has found they are seeing as few as 30 patients a day and cost twice as much as other GP surgeries.
While they are paid for by the NHS, they are actually run by private health firms.
The Department of Health-funded evaluation found that the clinics were seeing between 33 and 101 patients a day, despite having capacity for 150 to 180 patients.
Four of the centres were in a poor location away from the beaten track, the study – reported in the British Journal of General Practice – concluded.
It was estimated that the price per attendance at the clinics was £33 compared with an estimated £13 for walk-in centres provided by the NHS.
At some centres, the cost per patient was as high as £62.
Study leader Dr Alicia O’Cathain said the results showed that walk-in centres should be provided by the NHS, rather than private companies.
And she added that they needed to be placed near where people work, rather than at train stations. “One of the problems was location, so one for example was near the train station but wasn’t on the commuter track and there were very few people who went through that way. At the start and end of the day people are in a rush, but the way that people use walk-in centres is to go in their lunchtime.”