The news you get from me comes straight from the SIGACTS pages of our secure website. There are some things I can divulge from these pages and some things I can't, but I've never seen anything that comes even close to the anti-American spin that makes it into those papers. Of those 100+ enemy killed, there were few (if any) events that resulted in more than 9 enemy deaths at a time. This makes it very easy for our forces on the ground to call in an accurate report. For instance, MANY events from that day's fighting looked something like this (not a real SIGACT):
2/14 CAV PATROL engaged NW of city hall building w/ SA/RPG Fire. Minor damage to M2. 1 x CF WIA / 6 x EKIA / 5 x AIF DET / 3 x NEU KIA /6 x NEU INJ
Translation: a patrol of Bradley Fighting Vehicles was making it's way to or from the city hall building when it was attacked by at least 11 bad guys with small arms (SA) and RPGs. 1 US soldier was hurt (Coalition Force Wounded in Action- CF WIA), one Bradley (M2) received minor damage, 6 of the attackers were killed (Enemy Killed in Action- EKIA), 5 of the attackers were captured (Anti Iraq Forces detained- AIF DET), 3 innocent bystanders (neutrals- NEU) were killed, and 6 bystanders were injured . Three things I would deduce from a report like this:
1) There were probably more than 11 attackers, but some or most of them fled (got away).
2) Most (if not all) of the detainees were injured and needed immediate medical assistance. Our guys do a great job of getting them to a hospital right away. Once at the hospital, the doctors will treat them while telling a nearby "information gatherer" that it's not "immediately clear" if these new patients are "insurgents." That's probably because insurgents look a lot like civilians. They don't wear uniforms, they carry no Geneva Convention forms of ID, and they make every effort to look as much like "regular people" as possible. Of course they feel no sense of responsibility when nearby civilians get hurt or killed.
3) The bystanders who were killed and injured were probably hit by a stray enemy RPG round or sporadic enemy gunfire. Of course there's a small chance that it was erroneous ammo from US forces, but that's usually not the case. Unfortunately, most of those tragic deaths are blamed on us in the local papers. In fact, it's darn near ALWAYS a result of insurgents using human shields or just firing about in every direction. It's the world's most cowardly way to fight- "I'm going to shoot you, but if you shoot me back, you're likely to hit this child as well. Or I just might blow my grenade while surrounded by a huge crowd of people, including my grandfather." Their media (often quoted by respected international media outlets) chooses to ignore this tactic, and instead places the blame squarely on our soldiers. Could you imagine if our forces used a similar tactic? If our soldiers went around fighting with a "baby in a harness" on their chests? The outrage would ring throughout the world. Yet, this is essentially what the insurgents are doing and they get a pass.
So that's the world we live in, and our guys in Iraq are doing everything they can to change it...