I am not a war historian, though I do like knowing about history.
I am a self-professed numbers geek. While not a CPA or actuary, I know enough about numbers, spreadsheets and statistics to make heads and / or tails of a P & L or any client reporting tools.
As I was told early on in my career: a good accountant will ask you - what do you want the number to be?
You can slice data any which way to skew numbers just enough to tell the story you want. And even with just being presented with raw data doesn't mean the numbers are telling you what they or you think.
While numbers don't lie - how we interpret them, or what we do with them, does....or can.
Still, a friend of mine - Sal, from Philly - posted a video of World War II and the number of people killed (military and civilian) in both the Atlantic and Pacific theaters.
The video is extremely well done - graphically, aurally, and even possibly, mathematically.
That last part has a caveat. There are no specific records of how many people truly died in WWII. And as the narrator will tell you, some groups people might not be considered causalities of war.
At some point, they talk about the total number dead, "give or take". My only problem with the video is the lack of follow-up on that line. There is no quantifier. "Give or take........" what? What's the number?
I get why they did that. It's impossible to say - and unlike so many other historians, they don't claim to know.
Still, we know (or should) a lot about the U.S. and WWII. I didn't study Russian history, so my eyes were just amazed at the numbers they rack up. It's quite unbelievable.
And for all the conflict we think we've seen in our lifetimes (well, most of my readers, I should say), it's fair to say we are still living in the most peaceful time in history. Though, again, it's how you do the numbers.
Yes, the video is over 18 minutes long - and worth every second it takes to watch. I highly suggest you take the time.
I was fascinated. I think you will be too.