The United States claims the war on ISIL is "one of the most precise air campaigns in history", saying that only one in every 157 airstrikes in Iraq results in a civilian death.

A recent New York Times investigation, however, found that civilians in Iraq are actually dying at 31 times that rate. So, why do so many of their deaths remain uncounted?

"What we found is that in about half of the total airstrikes...that resulted in civilian deaths, of those civilian death airstrikes, half of them were the result of poor or outdated intelligence, most likely. We were unable to discern an ISIS target nearby," says Azmat Khan, co-author of the New York Times Magazine investigation, The Uncounted.

"I came to the conclusion that many internally know that these numbers are vastly wrong, and have done very little to try to correct them".

John Tirman, executive director at MIT's Center for International Studies and author of the book, The Deaths of Others: The Fate of Civilians in America's Wars, says: "I think it's the unwillingness to confront the horror of what has occurred on the ground that creates this turning away and indifference, basically."

In this UpFront special discussion, Azmat Khan and John Tirman shed light on whether the US military is lying about the real impact of its airstrikes in Iraq. 

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Source: Al Jazeera