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a simple, repetitive diagram that visualizes the proportionality of deaths in the on-going conflict between Isreal & Lebanon. each coffin represents a single person killed.
see also Iraq war fatalities & US military death toll calendar & 1000 icons.




Doesn't Hezbollah have its own flag? I'd say it's oversimplistic to merely differentiate Lebanese vs. Israeli.

Tue 25 Jul 2006 at 2:05 AM

I Think terrorism is from Israel...

Tue 25 Jul 2006 at 2:56 AM

utterly tasteless

Tue 25 Jul 2006 at 7:29 AM

The graphic is over simplistic and gives a slanted viewpoint of the situation.

It's a shame that a terrorist organization has to hide among innocent civilians. They are the ones who are utterly and completely at fault.

Tue 25 Jul 2006 at 7:37 AM

while I condemn the aggressions from Hezbollah, the NYT reported last week that there were 200 dead at that point 18 of the dead were non civilians and 15 of the dead were Israelis. so I guess the graphic is not completely wrong and biased. all through the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the casualty numbers have mostly on the Palestinian side.

Tue 25 Jul 2006 at 11:34 AM

By bombing lebanese civilians and infrastructure, Israel can never protest the use of bombs against its own people.

Tue 25 Jul 2006 at 1:51 PM

Let the Muses speak, to drown out the sounds of war !

Heartfelt greetings to all my artist friends and colleagues everywhere,

These are terrible times here in the Middle East, with the citizens of our two countries under continual threat to their lives. The wailing of sirens, the bombs, the total destruction of everything that humanity has created and reconstructed after countless wars. Above all else, the loss of precious lives. Of children, of old people, of those too weak to get away and those who have nowhere to run to.

(note: comment heavily shortened as not relevant to information graphic)

Tue 25 Jul 2006 at 4:52 PM
Hedva Shemesh

This is a terrible graphic, it distracts from the important debate. While this may be an accurate depiction of the data, it obscures rather then illuminates the real issue. The deaths are obviously terrible, but trying to understand what is going on in the middle east by counting the bodies does not work. We need to look deeper. It seems much more important to understand the intentions of the various players and how they choose to act from choices they have. I am not sure how to depict those graphically, perhaps it is not possible. Never the less this image does more harm then good.

Wed 26 Jul 2006 at 4:12 PM

Wow. The graphic is quite striking. However the simplification is a bit...simplified.

It would be interesting to change the visualization to show combatants and non-combatants and then divide between Lebonese and Isreali.

Thu 27 Jul 2006 at 12:54 AM

This is an interesting graphic, but as others have mentioned, it doesn't really illuminate. Simple representations of the dead on each side tell us nothing about why the death totals are lopsided, what sorts of attacks led to the deaths, where the attacks occurred.

Comparing German and American casualty figures from World War 2 shows us that about 5.5 million Germans lost their lives, while around 300,000 Americans died. Do those numbers really tell us anything?

During the same war, approximately 27 million Soviet citizens died. The USSR also invaded Finland and took over half of Poland in the early stages of that war. Was the Soviet Union "in the right" or "in the wrong?"

Thu 27 Jul 2006 at 8:33 AM

Targetting civilians is a choice Israel made, they can't wash their hands with appeals to terrorist positions, and neither can you. It's hard to sympathize with murderers, isn't it? I'm sure some of you will find a way.

Thu 27 Jul 2006 at 3:18 PM

let's focus any discussion on the information graphic only.

Thu 27 Jul 2006 at 3:29 PM

Hi All,

First of all, thanks to Information Aesthetics to post this peice of mine... I never thought it would intrigue so many people around the world. Thank you all for all the comments and questions you've sent my way through this site and emails.

No matter how effective my information graphic is, it does not change the numbers. Numbers dont lie, they are not biased. My basic goal with this information graphic was to show the numbers and what they would look like represented as tiny coffins on your screen. What I wanted to show with this little info-graphic is what the great information design legend, Charles Joseph Minard (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles_Joseph_Minard), showed many years ago... that war is unnessesary brutality. It kills innocent people not even remotely connected to the real conflict at hand. Time and time again we see this happening but as they say we sure do have a short memory-span.

I suggest that we keep our discussion, at least on this website, related to the information graphic itself and not treat this blog as a place to vent out our personal feelings about a country, race or religion.

I would again like to thank Andrew Vande Moere for posting my rather naive attempt at showing this huge social/political conflict through numbers.

Best Regards,

Thu 27 Jul 2006 at 3:48 PM

simplistic, uninformed, and -- worst of all - not particularly attractive to look at. You fail.

Thu 27 Jul 2006 at 4:11 PM
You Fail

Hedva: Thanks for posting those words. The concern for civilian Lebanese civilians is slim, the US and the Israeli authorities do not seem to care that they are actually supporting and carrying out a form of state terrorism against the Lebanese and are slowly destroying any chances of ever achieving peace.
Your words give me and my beloved in Lebanon much hope, it proves there are sane people on both sides, people who want nothing rather than a working solution and lasting peace. Israel and Lebanon could be such strong allies for peace and stability.
I hope your relative is returned safely and that we will see an end to the hostilities soon. Take care and be safe.

Fri 28 Jul 2006 at 12:07 AM

"It seems much more important to understand the intentions of the various players and how they choose to act from choices they have. I am not sure how to depict those graphically, perhaps it is not possible. Never the less this image does more harm then good."

The road to hell is paved with good intentions. How can we be convinced of Israel's good intentions when they *accidentally* bomb a UN post for 8 hours straight?

Get real & realize who the real terrorists are.

Fri 28 Jul 2006 at 6:29 AM

(comment deleted as irrelevant to the information graphic)

Sat 29 Jul 2006 at 11:27 PM

Question of life and death. The graphic shows clearly
1 Israeli (big) life = 10 to 20 Lebanese (small)
(note: rest of comment deleted as irrelevant to the graphic)

Sun 30 Jul 2006 at 4:55 AM
Israelis Victims

1 Israeli life (big coffins) = 10 to 20 Lebanese lives (small coffins)

the body count graphic shows only 1% of the big picture though.
What this doesn't show, for comparison, what caused the deaths, i.e. the number (20,000+) of 155mm shells or precision missiles by the Israelis and (1,400+) of rockets by the Hezbollah.
It doesn't show either, again for comparison, the number of infrastructures destroyed.

but war isn't only a simplistic body count
or else, trying to compare that with people killed in the late tsunami will minimize even more the whole issue of a WAR purposedly conducted by men (some men, not Man). The all-smaller coffins could also derive to meaning "only small children's corpses" or perhaps dogs? In other words, a too childishly simplistic graphic distracts from the continuation of otherwise dramatic real facts.Regards

Mon 31 Jul 2006 at 1:19 AM

This graph is useless.
It is a shame that a website for infographics is being used for propaganda,

Tue 01 Aug 2006 at 2:11 AM

I think the pictorial representation of the actual coffins, here in virtual form of course, but in reality corresponding to real people's lives, is an excellent way to think about this war. It's message is simple but not overly simplistic as some have alleged (without sufficient or most of the time any reason to back it up with): at the end of the day, here's the bodycount. And this does not even begin to touch on the misery experienced by the grieving families. I think it's important to think about these individuals' lives when we think about war as too often we deal with aggregated statistics that hide and dehumanize war's victims.

Tue 01 Aug 2006 at 7:56 AM

John- how the HELL is this propaganda? How the hell is this baised/slanted? The numbers are the numbers. Who cares how they died? This shows the huge discrepancy between Lebanese and Israeli deaths, while the media tries to make it seem the battle is even-handed as is the death count. The reality is evben worse than this shows- as it is widely reported that the vast majority of Lebanese deaths are civilian, while the majority of Israeli deaths are military up til now. You don't have to take my word for it- go do your own research.

Mon 07 Aug 2006 at 9:27 AM
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