How Big Is The Iraqi Resistance?

When the press describes as a "huge, fierce" battle wounds two or three soldiers, we know something is wrong with our sense of scale. This doesn't mean that we can't say infer real facts about the size of the resistance in Iraq. If we know the number of dead Iraqi insurgents, we can calculate at least the largest possible number of people fighting against the US. The lowest percentage of dead in conventional, modern wars is one dead for every sixteen fighters. This was the percentage of US dead in WW1, WWII, and Korean. Other nations in these wars (and the US in Vietnam) had higher percentages of dead to living, especially those fighting on the losing side. In some fights, kill rates have been as high as 50%, but let us use the lowest possible ration. During this "uprising," we have filled approximately 1,000 anti-American Iraqis. This means we are fighting a force that is AT IT LARGEST 16,000 people. Sounds like a lot, but in a nation of 25 million, this represents a tiny fraction (.06) of one percent of the population. Or one person out of 1,562 Iraqis. This is such a tiny part of the population, that they wouldn't even show up as a rounding error in a poll of the people. The only thing that gives this tiny percentage of the population any power at all is that they have guns and rocket launchers. This certainly isn't a broad-based insurrection. The sad thing is that the vast majority of Iraqis is not able to control this tiny group amongst them.