Iraq’s Forgotten Toll: The ‘Rebuilders’

719 Civilian Contractors and Specialists Slain During Occupation

The US military occupation of Iraq took a lot of heavy tolls. 4,488 US soldiers, 300 plus allied soldiers, an Iraqi civilian toll that by some estimates is probably in the millions. Counting the real numbers is still going on, however.

Today a new report has compiled the figures for another “forgotten” death toll: the foreign civilian workforce that was sent to the country to take part in reconstruction of the country for years.

The Special Inspector General for Iraq (SIGIR) put the toll at 719 confirmed “rebuilders” killed in the occupation, but conceded that the toll was almost certainly much higher. While US military deaths at the time were widely reported, civilian workers, even Americans, rarely got reported in the media.

Even this 719 is a drop in the bucket for the overall “contractor” death toll, as it does not include the contractors working in various military capacities. Estimates have put that death toll at roughly on parity with the military’s losses, though again the figures were not tracked.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of