US Troop Deaths in Iraq Lowest Since War Began
Troops, militants shifting to Afghanistan as America's Iraq strategy succeeds
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 31, 2008 4:40 AM CDT
A U.S. Marine from Regimental Combat Team 2 walks to dinner at his base in Qaim, an Iraqi border town with Syria about 200 miles west of Baghdad.    (AP Photo/Jacob Silberberg )
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(Newser) – October is on course to tie July's record for the lowest number of troop deaths in Iraq, USA Today reports. Thirteen US troops have died so far in October in combat and non-combat incidents. For the first time since the war started in 2002, no US troops died in combat in Baghdad. The US plans to start shifting resources to Afghanistan next month.

Commanders say the improved security situation is a result of truces with militias, better counterinsurgency techniques, and a huge improvement in Iraq's military—as well as a migration of extremists to Afghanistan. Fifteen US troops have died in combat in Afghanistan so far in October, surpassing the Iraq death toll for the second month in a row.