All lives matter in war in Iraq

Published 12:00 am Saturday, March 4, 2006

The U.S. military death toll in Iraq reached a milestone this week, with 2,000 members of the armed forces killed in the war.

But Staff Sgt. George T. Alexander of Killeen, Texas, who died in his home state of injuries received from a roadside bomb, is more than a statistic.

He and the other 1,999 service men and women who have given their lives during the war have families and friends who loved them and cherish their memories, and each is as important as the other in the grand scheme of the toll from the war.

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Beyond the American casualties, estimates put the number of Iraqi civilians dead since fighting began in 2003 at more than 30,000.

Their lives mean no less than the thousands of Americans who have been wounded or killed in the fighting. Their families grieve just as much.

History will judge whether going to war in Iraq was the right decision in order to bring democracy to the region.

For now, as families across the country and right here in the Miss-Lou await the safe return of thousands of soldiers &8212; including Mississippi&8217;s 155th Infantry &8212; we can only pray they will all make it home.

And we can be thankful for their service to our country and their dedication to democracy.