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Thread: This war had the highest casualty rate of any war ever in the western hemisphere - yet hardly anyone knows about it.

  1. #1

    Angry This war had the highest casualty rate of any war ever in the western hemisphere - yet hardly anyone knows about it.

    War of the Triple Alliance

    The specific numbers of casualties are hotly disputed, but it has been estimated that 300,000 Paraguayans, mostly civilians, died; up to 90% of the male population may have been killed. According to one numerical estimation, the prewar population of approximately 525,000 Paraguayans was reduced to about 221,000 in 1871, of which only about 28,000 were men.

    90% of the men were killed!!!! Holy Mother of Science!

    They had to import men from other countries after the war was over!

  2. #2

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    The American Civil War had about 620,000 casualties, almost two times the amount of casualties in the War of the Triple Alliance.

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fingon View Post
    The American Civil War had about 620,000 casualties, almost two times the amount of casualties in the War of the Triple Alliance.
    The OP did specify highest casualty rate - not number of - the % of the American population / male population killed in the Civil War would be much lower than the losses suffered in Paraguay.

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fingon View Post
    The American Civil War had about 620,000 casualties, almost two times the amount of casualties in the War of the Triple Alliance.
    I think Lifeisabeach meant for the keyword there to be RATE. 90% of the men being the important statistic there. Either way, I'd imagine the west's war (we call genocide war to make ourselves feel better for some reason) on native americans had worse numbers and rates. Can't be bothered to google, but I'd like to see statistics comparing them.

    And what made you think of/post this? True, I've never heard of it. And it is a cool fact. But it's a bit random for the rest of us to read this don't you think? :P


    edit: damn you riddle

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by zultan View Post
    edit: damn you riddle
    You'd be surprised how often I get that ;-)

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by zultan View Post
    I think Lifeisabeach meant for the keyword there to be RATE. 90% of the men being the important statistic there. Either way, I'd imagine the west's war (we call genocide war to make ourselves feel better for some reason) on native americans had worse numbers and rates. Can't be bothered to google, but I'd like to see statistics comparing them.

    And what made you think of/post this? True, I've never heard of it. And it is a cool fact. But it's a bit random for the rest of us to read this don't you think? :P


    edit: damn you riddle
    then the title should read highest MALE casualty rate as that is the more stunning statistic stated.

    I would also have to say you must not be very familiar with the history of relations between colonists and native Americans, or even relations between tribes. Its not as clean cut as battalions of militias systematically slaughtering the tribes. I'm going to say its not hard for me to believe that you, and many others, see the native Americans as helpless innocent victims of white expansionist and racist aggression with no blood on their hands.

  7. #7

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    incorrect sir. I'm just as aware of colonist-native american relations as any other educated person. But I do concede that my post was a little bit misleading--I was including the unintentional spreading of non-native diseases that killed up to 80% of native americans in my "genocide" comment. The colonists lost quite a few people, but I think we know who lost a bit more.

    but that's not the topic of the discussion. heres the wiki page for those interested:
    War of the Triple Alliance

    anyways, the article suggests our info may be a bit misleading as well.


    One estimate places total Paraguayan losses — through both war and disease — as high as 1.2 million people, or 90% of its pre-war population. A different estimate places Paraguayan deaths at approximately 300,000 people out of its 500,000 to 525,000 prewar inhabitants.


    Regarding the population before the war, Dr. Whigham used a census carried out in the year 1846 in order to calculate, based on a population growth rate of 1.7 to 2.5 percent annually (which was the standard rate at that time and again the aforementioned omissions), that the immediate pre-war population in 1864 was approximately 420,000–450,000 Paraguayans. This figure produces a loss of 60 to 70 percent of the population.[33]


    The specific numbers of casualties are hotly disputed. It has been estimated that 300,000 Paraguayans, mostly civilians, died. It has also been written that up to 90% of the male population may have been killed, though this figure is without support.[32] According to one numerical estimate, the prewar population was approximately 525,000 Paraguayans (14 estimates went from 300,000 to 1,337,000; see F. Chartrain : "L'Eglise et les partis dans la vie politique du Paraguay depuis l'Indépendance", Paris I University "Doctorat d'Etat", 1972, pages 134–135. His own calculation based on a 1979 census and in the military forces, gives between 700,000 and 800,000 inhabitants). A 1871 census gave 221,079 inhabitants in 1871, of which 106,254 were female, 86,079 were children with no indication of sex or upper age limit and 28,746 were male. These figures, considering the local situation, cannot be more than a very rough estimate; many men and boys fled during the war to the countryside and forests. As such, accurate casualty numbers may never be determined.
    What I take from this is that nobody knows how many Paraguayans there were before the war. But it doesn't appear that the actual rate was 90%. So... good news there I guess.


    Anyways: thanks to the op. because of this, I google image searched a political map of south america and now I finally have a clue of where some of these famous south american football clubs I keep hearing about are. Does anyone else think it's weird that all the famous club and national teams are in the south?
    Last edited by zultan; 12-Jul-2011 at 20:46.

  8. #8

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    Well I can see why I and many others don't know about it. The reason is simply I don't care.


    Not to mention we don't even learn about many wars unless it has to do with america or more then a handful of Americans. I never even got to learn about the "Irish Republican Army" at all in school, not even a breif mention of it. Because in school it only matters when the colonist fought against the British. But when the Irish attempt it we don't care.

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