The American military death toll in the Iraq war reached 2,000 with the announcements of three more deaths, including an Army sergeant who died of wounds at a military hospital in Texas and two Marines killed last week in fighting west of Baghdad.
U.S. Army Lt. Col. Steve Boylan, director of the force's combined press center, described the number as an "artificial mark on the wall set by individuals or groups with specific agendas and ulterior motives."
The somber milestone came amid growing doubts among the U.S. public about the Iraq conflict, launched in March 2003 to destroy Saddam Hussein's alleged weapons of mass destruction. None was ever found.
FNC wants to hear from YOU —
Is the 2,000th U.S. death in Iraq an "artificial mark" or a tragic milestone?
E-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org and jump into the debate!
Check out what FOX Fans are saying:
"The number 2,000 is just being manipulated for political gain by the leftist media and those who want to see us lose this war. America's war on terror extends far beyond Iraq, and its ramifications will help shape the future of the entire world. Too many people in American have lost sight of this and would rather see our president look bad than secure a safer future for the coming generations. That is a tragedy in itself." — Matthew (U.S. Navy Reserve)
"So 2,000 dead soldiers dead in Iraq is an artificial mark, and is only mentioned by people with 'specific agendas and ulterior motives.' That must mean that every time the president mentions 9/11, or the right reminds us that 3,000 people died that day, that they have 'specific agendas and ulterior motives?' " — Eva (Phoenix, AZ)
"Every soldier that dies should be mourned and I feel for their families. I also realize that every soldier that is there enlisted on there own free will. They knew going in that there is always a chance a war can happen. Support our Troops and let them finish what we started." — Ken
"Every death is the ultimate milestone. How nice if war were death free. It isn't, so let's move on." — Pat
"Bush didn't care at the 1,000th mark, and he definitely did not show any signs of caring at the 2,000th. The number of dead and wounded will just keep rising for the so-called 'noble cause' as he continues to 'stay the course' in Iraq. Please note that we have surpassed the death toll in the Vietnam War (1,800 killed from 1961 to 1965) in half of the time." — Robert
"The death toll reaching 2,000 is an artificial mark. It is a disgrace to all the men and women in our armed forces to have just a number put on you when you sacrifice your life for the betterment of the world. This is not just a number, they are human beings. There should not be a milestone number! The way people want to turn this number into political gain frustrates me." — Jeff (Lenexa, KS)
"Even as tragic as the deaths in Iraq is the money being made by Bush and Cheney's buddies at Halliburton with their no bid contracts in Iraq. Let's make every millions of dollars made by these fat cats a tragic milestone as well. While they get fat off the war, the sons and daughters of our nation's middle and lower class are dying! This is more impeachable and tragic than anything Bill did. I love how Bush calls himself a Christian. I doubt seriously that Jesus would condone any thing Bush has done." — Jackie (Charlotte, NC)
"Every time an American life is lost in Iraq, a mistake was made. It was either made by a soldier letting his guard down, or it was a field general not reacting to a repeated threat. Either way, the loss could have been avoided. From the Army's point of view, Iraq is a training ground. I hope these generals are documenting what they are learning. The lessons will become critical when we eventually use them on Syria and Iran." — Scott (San Antonio, TX)
"Get the troops out of Iraq as soon as possible, we shouldn't be there in the first place. I hope that the bush administration receives all the indictments they deserve in the coming days." — Allen
"It is sad that there are those among us who will use this number to diminish the accomplishments of those brave and unselfish men and women in our military. They know why they are there. They understand the risks, as do their families. They understand their mission. I think it is a crime that events in Iraq and the accomplishments of our military are so misreported. It is the Cindy Sheehan's of this country who should be ashamed. I believe she is the one being used and is too stupid to know it." — Annamarie
"Bush and his cronies are artificial marks. Every death from the first to the 2,000th is a tragic milestone. Bush lying to the American people and the rest of the world is tragic. Rushing to an illegitimate war with no exit plan is a tragedy. How does Bush sleep at night?" — Jake (Portland, ME)
"The first thing I read this morning in big, bold headlines everywhere I looked was that the total casualties in Iraq had reached 2,000. As far as I’m concerned, any American military death, in any conflict, anywhere throughout our history is and was a tragedy. I don’t understand what the 'milestone' number 2,000 means. What point does the make? I’m sure the real reason is to point more fingers at President Bush and try to sway voters to the other political party. Using this for political reasons is also a tragedy." — Tony (Pittsburgh, PA)
"I can understand how can be seen as an artificial mark. The deaths are being used to politicize, but at the same time every military personnel who gives their life for their country must be honored. We must not forget their sacrifice. On one hand, we don't want the images and names of the dead to be misused by the terrorists or those here at home who would use it for political gain. But we must acknowledge their sacrifice. Asking why they died is an honor to them. I am sure that Bush would like you not to ask why most of the men and women who serve and die in Iraq are of middle or lower class and are fighting wars for the rich. I want Bush to send his two girls over there. Every elected official who supported this war should be forced to send his or her sons and daughters over to fight." — K.B. (Dallas, TX)
"Doesn’t really matter if it’s called an "artificial mark" or not. What matters is 2,000 American soldiers lost their lives and many more have been injured. It doesn’t even matter if I am for or against the war. I hope something good comes from their sacrifices and that everyone else comes home." — Chris (Groton, NY)
"Establishing a democratic nation that will not foster or support terrorism is priceless in the move toward freedom for all. Riding the world of terrorist and those that support terrorism is one reason that my grandson enlisted in the Marines last year. The fact that many thousands of people have been killed in terrorist attacks world wide in the last decade should only strengthen the resolve of all civilized people. It is a pity that the rest of the world doesn't care as strongly as the American people do about living and being free from oppression." — Paul
"Of course we mourn the soldiers lost, but they are there defending our freedom. Every time you report a number of soldiers lost you should also report the number of civilians who were unarmed and unaware of the danger that were lost on 9/11. Our President was thrust into this task by actions of terrorists. Yes, the job is huge and dangerous, but to allow it to continue festering under the bullies who seize control is not in our best interest." — Debra
"Was one death a milestone? Were ten? One hundred? One thousand? Every person lost in this war is an individual milestone of grief and tragedy for the family they left behind. We should mourn the loss of each person for who they were not for some symbolic number they've sadly become in the war." — Stephen (Murfreesboro, TN)
“An 'artificial mark?' Are you kidding me? What’s artificial about 2,000 brave men and women who have given their lives protecting us. 2,000 are dead. Period!" — Dan (New York)
"This is ridiculous! We have more deaths in this country in car accidents and murders. How about the amount of babies aborted every year? Don't hear too much about that do you! I do not take lightly the death of our soldiers and I bleed for the families, but the MSM makes me sick with this negative propaganda. We are at WAR!" — Diane (Louisiana)
"I am a veteran of the USAF (1974-1978) and realize it is important to list the amount of US personal killed in Iraq. My main concern or question is 'how many citizens of Iraq have died for their freedom.' This number has to vastly outnumber the U.S. killed. Both Iraqi and coalition forces have died for this freedom. Let’s not loose sight that the price of freedom is not free." — Kenneth
"2,000 dead is both an artificial mark and a tragedy. This death toll is being used to demonize the war and those fighting in it. It is shameful. The soldiers who are fighting and those that have died deserve more honor then they are getting from those who want us to lose the war." — Michelle (Jenison, MI)