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Body count is disputed

Brent Seeley (Readers' Forum, Oct. 19) claims that Saddam Hussein was killing between 15,000 and 45,000 Iraqis a year, citing as his source. I wrote them to confirm and they responded: "We have no idea where the correspondent got the 45,000 figure. It is a complete fabrication. . . . We review evidence suggesting that Saddam was, perhaps, killing a few hundred per year, in the years immediately prior to the 2003 invasions."

Conservatively, 13,278 Iraqi civilians have been killed in the war on Iraq.

I have mixed feelings about the military efforts in Iraq, but fabricating numbers to try and make the war prettier won't help any of us to evade the awesome responsibility we have as citizens when electing leaders which will gauge the efficacy, consequence and necessity of war.

James Paul Hebdon

Salt Lake City