The Chilcot Inquiry And The Human Cost Of The Iraq War

800,000 orphans and counting.

06/07/2016 10:38 | Updated 06 July 2016

With the release of the The Chilcot Inquiry today, all eyes will be on Tony Blair et al with the aim of pinning blame on those it responsible for the Iraq War and its failures.

Amid all this, it's easy to forget that while the British military mission ended in 2009, the legacy of the war is still being played out to this day, with millions of Iraqis, injured servicemen and relatives of those killed continuing to suffer.

1) 3,700,00 displaced Iraqis

According to a 2007 interview with Antonio Guterres, the then-U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees, there were nearly 2 million Iraqi refugees who had fled their country, and another 1.7 million were internally displaced. Since the end of the war the situation has not improved owing to continued instability and the rise of Islamic State.

Ali Jarekji / Reuters
An elderly Kurdish woman looks out from her tent at Ruweished, near Jordan's eastern border with Iraq October 10, 2004. The Ruweished refugee camp houses hundreds of refugees who fled insecurity in post war Iraq.

2) 800,000 orphans

Although an exact figure is almost impossible to calculate, a UNICEF report in 2012 concluded Iraq has approximately 800,000 orphans, many orphaned either directly or indirectly by the war and ensuing sectarian violence.

Faleh Kheiber / Reuters
Ali Ismail Abbas, 12, wounded during an airstrike according to hospital sources, lies in a hospital bed in Baghdad, April 6, 2003. Abbas was fast asleep when war shattered his life. A missile obliterated his home and most of his family, leaving him orphaned, badly burned and blowing off both his arms. "It was midnight when the missile fell on us. My father, my mother and my brother died. My mother was five months pregnant," the traumatised boy told Reuters at Baghdad's Kindi hospital. "Our neighbours pulled me out and brought me here. I was unconscious," he said.

3) 179,195 Iraqi civilians killed by violence to date

Without doubt, those who suffered most in the Iraq war were Iraqi civilians who are still dying in huge numbers to this day. Just this Sunday at least 160 were killed in a suicide bombing in Baghdad carried out by the so-called Islamic State.

AHMAD AL-RUBAYE via Getty Images
The mother of Rami Saad, 4, and Sami Saad, 6, cries out during the funeral of her two children who died the day before in a mortar attack that hit their house situated near a Baghdad hotel complex, 10 July 2004 at a Chaldean church in Baghdad. Three other people were wounded when mortars hammered into a house behind the capital's Sadeer hotel often used by foreigners.

4) 18,802 Iraqi victims of Islamic State

So-called Islamic State grew out of the power vacuum left in the wake of the Iraq War and spread - physically - to neighbouring countries and - ideologically - across the globe. This number does not include those killed in Syria or by worldwide terrorist attacks for which the group has claimed responsibility.

AHMAD AL-RUBAYE via Getty Images
An Iraqi man kisses a body-bag lying amidst other bags containing the remains of people believed to have been slain by jihadists of the Islamic State (IS) group lie on the ground at the Speicher camp in the Iraqi city of Tikrit, on April 12, 2015. The Islamic State (IS) jihadist group executed hundreds of mostly Shiite recruits last June in what is known as the Speicher massacre, named for the military base near which they were captured. Thirteen grave sites have been found - 10 in the palace complex and three outside.

4) 1,645 US soldier amputees

According to the Congressional Research Service, 1,645 American soldiers suffered either "the loss of one or more limbs, the loss of one or more partial limbs, or the loss of one or more full or partial hand or foot".

David S. Holloway via Getty Images
Iraq war veteran SGT Luis Rosa-Valentin, who lost both of his legs, left arm and hearing while serving in Iraq plays video games while recuperating in the Mologne House at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, DC on July 30, 2008. He loves games strategy and first-person shooter games like 'Ghost Recon' but finds them much more difficult to play with one hand. His encounter with the improvised explosive device that almost ended his life came in April, during his second tour in the combat zone. Rosa-Valentin is still recovering at Walter Reed. He speaks of his time in the Army with no regrets. ' I was born for it, really, I loved every second of it, he said. Despite my injuries, I still don't care, I love it. I love the infantry, I love the life that I led. I wouldn't trade a second of it for anything else'.

5) 179 British soldiers killed 

From March 2003 to the end of British operations in Iraq, 173 servicemen and six servicewomen were killed in the conflict. 

Lewis Whyld/PA Archive
Emma-Jayne, the fiancee of Lance Corporal Richard Brandon of the Corps of Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers (REME) who was killed in Afghanistan, weeps with their daughter Kaitlin as his coffin passes them in Wootten Bassett, Wiltshire, in October 2009.

 6) 150 journalists killed

The Committee to Protect Journalists recorded the deaths of at least 150 journalists and 54 media support workers in Iraq between the invasion in March 2003 and December 2011, when the war was declared over.

Getty Images via Getty Images
ITN journalist Terry Lloyd is seen making his last televised news report on March 21, 2003 in Iraq. Lloyd was killed by American forces when he and his team of two cameramen and an interpreter were caught in crossfire in Basra. A British court later ruled his death unlawful.

7) 15 British soldier amputees

According to figures released by the Ministry of Defence, 15 service personnel suffered amputations between October 2001 and March 2014 though this pales in comparison to the 145 in the Afghan theatre over the same period.

Peter Macdiarmid via Getty Images
Private Chris Herbert, 19, from the Territorial Army 4th Battalion Yorkshire Regiment shows his injured leg and prosthetic limb to reporters at the Headley Court Rehabilitation Centre on July 18, 2007 near Leatherhead, England. Private Herbert lost his leg when an improvised explosive device (IED) hit his patrol in southern Iraq in February 2007.
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