Difficulties in obtaining valid death tolls in Syria

Amongst the war in Syria lie difficulties in obtaining estimates for the death tool in this war. As noted in The Guardian, “Vital registration systems typically collapse, so official records of civilian deaths are unreliable. Governments and armed groups routinely exaggerate or distort the figures.” In the time of war everything seems to get disorganized with every actor engaging in the action, especially in a country like Syria where due to the significant damage from war may throw off any records citing estimates to the casualties. As a result, you have other countries reaching out help a struggling nation, which may be noted as soft power.

Even information from the United Nations hasn’t been able to be backed up due to the lack of feet on the ground, among other issues. According to The Independent, accounts logged in before 100,000 weren’t able to be verified due to troubles with its accuracy. So due to the lack of validity of international organizations, various activist groups have filled in, leading to this being consequential in the sense that different international groups are getting involved. This isn’t only a problem that the country of Syria is facing during its time of war, but rather most countries going through war and conflicts face this same problem. War leads to destruction of sources and can result in the lack of on-ground sources to keep information reliable and accurate.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/worldviews/wp/2014/12/03/200000-dead-why-syrias-rising-death-toll-is-so-divisive/

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/un-to-stop-updating-death-toll-in-syria-conflict-9045096.html

http://www.theguardian.com/global-development-professionals-network/2015/sep/08/from-syria-to-sudan-how-do-you-count-the-dead

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4 thoughts on “Difficulties in obtaining valid death tolls in Syria

  1. The crisis going on in Syria has been raging on for years. Since the beginning there really hasn’t been an accurate number of deaths. This post touches on different reasons that we have conflicting death tolls and some numbers are a lot higher then others. We must also look at the fact that there is a huge refugee problem going on. I think that it factors in also because so many people have been displaced and scattered all over the Middle East and Europe, that a lot of people could be thought of as dead by relatives or media sources because they are got out during a battle. The number has such a wide range that we really will never know how many deaths there are. I have not been able to find a single accurate number that will show us how many deaths have occurred during this conflict.

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  2. This post tells us the difficulty of counting the exact numbers of the casualty for many reasons. We learn that the rate or the number would be different by each institution, even if each institution deals with the same topic. It is quite bad to lose the information about citing casualty due to war. Also, in terms of history records, it is unpleasant that some heritages are destroyed by war or insurgencies because these heritages usually show the value of the people living at that time and keeps the accurate record for people living now. I have heard the news that ISIS destroyed the cultural heritage, like churches and mosques, in Syria. We should recognize these actions done by ISIS then think about why they act like this and how to stop these activities.

    Islamic State Palmyra Attack: All The Cultural Heritage Sites ISIS Has Destroyed In Iraq and Syria [PHOTOS]
    http://www.ibtimes.com/islamic-state-palmyra-attack-all-cultural-heritage-sites-isis-has-destroyed-iraq-2076059

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  3. As we explored in class, no accurate number has been given on the casualties in Syria, While most countries would see casualties on the lower side, Syria, during this crisis has no access to medical care for a large number of people therefore allowing us to assume that the number of casualties is higher than expected. An indefinite start to the conflict in Syria has also been an issue when identifying the number of casualties.

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  4. It’s interesting to see how there isn’t an accurate number of casualties in Syria considering how long this conflict has been going on. Because we don’t know it should show that the conflict there is serious and that obviously the conflict isn’t ending, and more help should be given. As stated in the previous comment they don’t really have the medical care they need for that large amount of people so even sending medical help to Syria would be beneficial for this conflict.

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