The number of people killed in Syria since March 2011 is variously estimated to be between 250,000 and 470,000. The number of estimated casualties in Iraq ranges from 19,000 to 41,650 deaths since January 2014.
A new report from the Congressional Research Service somewhat clinically discusses “the difficulties of collecting war-related casualty data in both countries and provides an overview of some of the current estimated figures available through selected organizations.”
“CRS is unable to independently track casualties in Syria and Iraq, and cannot verify the data presented.” Nor does CRS suggest that U.S. policy would be affected in one direction or another by casualty data that were verified to be accurate. See Counting Casualties in Syria and Iraq: Process and Challenges, CRS Insight, April 12, 2016.
Other noteworthy reports from the Congressional Research Service that have been withheld by Congress from online public distribution include the following.
Coalition Contributions to Countering the Islamic State, updated April 13, 2016
The Islamic State Woos Jihadists in Africa but Faces Competition, CRS Insight, April 14, 2016
Arms Control and Nonproliferation: A Catalog of Treaties and Agreements, updated April 13, 2016
The New START Treaty: Central Limits and Key Provisions, updated April 13, 2016
Air Force B-21 Long Range Strike Bomber, April 14, 2016
Mens Rea Reform: A Brief Overview, April 14, 2016
Zika Response Funding: In Brief, April 14, 2016
Zika Virus: Global Health Considerations, CRS Insight, updated April 14, 2016
U.S. Postal Service Rolls Back Its Prices, CRS Insight, April 13, 2016
Highway Bridge Conditions: Issues for Congress, April 13, 2016
The Electoral College: How It Works in Contemporary Presidential Elections, updated April 13, 2016
Senate Judiciary Committee Hearings for Supreme Court Nominations: Historical Overview and Data, CRS Insight, April 13, 2016