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Figures tabulated by The Associated Press from police and U.S. military reports put the March death toll as of Monday at 1,247 _ nearly double the February figure and the biggest monthly toll since August, when 1,956 people died violently.
The latest bloodshed and Iraqi military capabilities are expected to draw attention next week when the top U.S. commander in Iraq, Gen. David Petraeus, briefs Congress about prospects for further troop cuts.
The Pentagon is expected to reduce U.S. troop levels from about 158,00 to about 140,000 by the end of July.


American Former Prisoners of War - Main Page

Welcome to the U. S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) web site for Former Prisoners of War (POWs).   This site is designed to assist Former POWs, their families and survivors in obtaining needed VA benefits and VA health care services.

Where Do I Go For Assistance?

Each VA Regional Office has a coordinator for former POWs.   Any former POW who needs special assistance should ask to speak to the Former POW Coordinator.  The coordinator may be reached through the Internet, telephone or in person at the VA regional office.


STATUS OF THE POW/MIA ISSUE:  January 24, 2007

1,789 Americans are still missing and unaccounted for from the Vietnam War, though over 450 were at sea/over water losses: Vietnam - 1,367 (VN-486; VS-881); Laos – 361; Cambodia - 54; Peoples Republic of China territorial waters - 7. The League seeks the return of all US prisoners, the fullest possible accounting for those still missing and repatriation of all recoverable remains.  The League’s highest priority is accounting for Americans last known alive. Official intelligence indicates that Americans known to be in captivity in Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia were not returned at the end of the war.  In the absence of evidence to the contrary, it must be assumed that these Americans may still be alive.  As a policy, the U.S. Government does not rule out the possibility that Americans could still be held.
Unilateral return of remains by the government of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam (SRV) has been proven an effective means of obtaining accountability, as have joint field operations in recent years, though the first joint excavation in northern Vietnam occurred in 1985.  A comprehensive wartime and post-war process was established by Vietnam to collect and retain information and remains; thus, unilateral efforts by Vietnam to locate and return remains and provide records continue to offer significant potential. Hanoi’s earlier commitments to expedite interviews to obtain intelligence information and move forward on coastline cases, including working out a bilateral agreement for use of a US recovery ship, are welcome and appreciated.  These topics have repeatedly been raised during League Delegations, most recently in February 2003, and have now been raised by US officials at the highest levels. Archival research, also a high priority with Vietnam, has produced thousands of documents and photos, but to date all except 1+% pertain to returned POWs and Americans previously accounted-for, though recent commitments offer promise if implemented. .
Joint field operations in Laos are very productive.  Over the year, the Lao regularly increased flexibility and the number of US personnel permitted in-country in an effort to improve field operations. Recently, the Lao approved an archival research program that will begin implementation this summer.  Agreements between the U.S. and the Indochina governments now permit Vietnamese witnesses to participate in joint operations in Laos and Cambodia when necessary, but it is a time-consuming, expensive process that could be at least partially alleviated with a decision in Hanoi to unilaterally provide relevant documents, as President Bush stipulated in his certification to Congress, March 20, 2002, and Secretary of State Powell September 7, 2004 and Secretary of State Rice July 15, 2005, and August 8, 2006.  POW/MIA research and field activities in Cambodia have received excellent support, including a full-time DIA Stony Beach representative working out of the US Embassy in Phnom Penh..  Over 80% of US losses in Laos and 90% in Cambodia occurred in areas where Vietnam's forces operated during the war, but Hanoi has not responded to countless US requests for case-specific records on our losses in these countries.  Records research and field operations are the most likely means of increased accounting for Americans missing in Laos and Cambodia.
U.S. intelligence and other evidence indicate that many Americans can be accounted for by unilateral Vietnamese efforts to locate and return remains and provide relevant documents and records.  Despite this reality, President Clinton regularly certified to Congress that Vietnam was “fully cooperating in good faith” to resolve this issue. The League recognizes that legislation requiring certification includes punitive measures that would reverse political and economic relations to the level in place in 1994.  The League supported steps by the US to respond to concrete results, not advancing political and economic concessions in the hope that Hanoi would respond. The Clinton administration lifted the trade embargo, established the US Embassy in Hanoi, normalized diplomatic relations, posted a US Ambassador to Vietnam, signed a bilateral trade agreement and established normal trade relations.  The Bush Administration also issued the required certification that Vietnam is “fully cooperating in good faith,” but added criteria Vietnam should meet which the League welcomed.  These included the need to increase unilateral provision of POW/MIA-related documents and records on Americans missing in areas of Laos and Cambodia under wartime Vietnamese control, greater attention to locating and providing information on discrepancy cases, with priority on those last known alive in captivity or in immediate proximity to capture, and the need to locate and repatriate the remains of those who died while in Vietnamese control that can’t be recovered jointly and have not yet been returned.  Senior officials from the Departments of State and Defense regularly press Hanoi for answers.
Live Sighting statistics are provided by the Defense POW/MIA Office (DPMO)
Live Sightings: As of January 19, 2007, 1,989 first-hand live sighting reports in Indochina have been received since 1975; 1,942 (97.64%) have been resolved.  1,341 (67.42%) were equated to Americans now accounted for (i.e. returned POWs, missionaries or civilians detained for violating Vietnamese codes); 45 (2.26%) correlated to wartime sightings of military personnel or pre-1975 sightings of civilians still unaccounted for; 556 (27.95%) were determined to be fabrications. The remaining 47 (2.36%) unresolved first-hand reports are the focus of current analytical and collection efforts: 32 (2.16%) concern Americans in a captive environment; 4 (0.20%) are non-captive sightings.  The years in which these 47 first hand sightings occurred is listed below:
Year  Pre-76      76-80        81-85       86-90      91-95      96-2000      01-05        Total
   35       3               0              1     0         4               4          47
Accountability: At the end of the Vietnam War, there reportedly were 2,583 unaccounted for American prisoners, missing or killed in action/body not recovered. As of January 25, 2007, there are 1,789 Americans still missing, over 90% of them in Vietnam or in areas of Laos and Cambodia where Vietnamese forces operated during the war.  A breakdown by year of recovery for the *794 Americans accounted for from Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia and China since the end of the war in 1975 follows:
1965-1974  War years: (recently identified)         2 
1974-1975  Post war years:         28
1976-1978  US/SRV normalization negotiations:     47
1979-1980   US/SRV talks break down:          1
1981-1984   1st Reagan Administration        23
1985-1988  2nd Reagan Administration     162
1989-1992  George H.W. Bush Administration    120
1993-1996  1st Clinton Administration     257
1997-2001  2nd Clinton Administration        92
2001-2006  George W. Bush Administration         62 

According to CILHI, unilateral SRV repatriations of remains with scientific evidence of storage have accounted for only 179 of the 557 from Vietnam; two were mistakenly listed as KIA/BNR in Vietnam in 1968, but remains were actually recovered at that time.  All but 6 of the 205 Americans accounted for in Laos have been the result of joint excavations.  Four remains were recovered and turned over by indigenous personnel, one from Vietnam and five from Laos.  In addition, three persons identified were recovered in Vietnam before the end of the war.  The breakdown by country of the 794* Americans accounted for since the end of the Vietnam War in 1975:
Vietnam           557 (614)     Laos                          205 (211) 
China     3      Cambodia             29  
*An additional 63 US personnel were accounted between 1973 and 1975, for a grand total of 857.  These Americans were accounted for by unilateral US effort in areas where the US could gain access at that time, not due to government-to-government cooperation with the post-war governments of Vietnam, Laos or Cambodia.


personnel listed as missing and unaccounted for by the Department of Defense. 
Recently, the identifications of two Americans previously missing/unaccounted for
from the Vietnam War were announced:   


   Major Benjamin F. Danielson, USAF, USA, MN, MIA 12/5/69, Laos, RR
11/12/03, ID 8/6/046

     Sergeant First Class Lewis C. Walton, RI, MIA 5/10/71, SVN, RR 10/19/04,
ID 10/23/06


The League extends best wishes to the families and friends of both men and
hopes that these final answers bring long-awaited peace of mind. The accounting
for these Americans brings to 794 the number of US personnel accounted for
since the end of the Vietnam War in 1975.  Over 90% of the 1,789 still listed as
missing were lost in Vietnam or in areas of Laos and Cambodia under Vietnamese
wartime control.  


than a decade of repeated League efforts, reinforced in more recent years by
the current and former Commanders of the US Pacific Command, ADM Tom Fargo
(now retired) and ADM William J. Fallon, the Vietnamese leadership approved using
US Navy vessels; however, the detailed approval process utilized for the
recent official port calls will be necessary, as will details of the specific
mission proposed for such a recovery.  In most shallow-water recoveries, utilizing
this US Navy asset won't be required, but ensuring that both governments
support the process, if needed, is a significant policy change by Vietnam and
deeply appreciated by the League.    We were pleased that ADM Gary Roughead,
Commander of the US Pacific Fleet, headquartered in Hawaii, raised this issue
during his just-concluded visit to Vietnam, part of the evolving
military-to-military relationship between the US and Vietnam. 


Vietnam, having completed his first visits to Cambodia and Laos since being
appointed late last year.  All of the Southeast Asian government officials, as well as
US Ambassadors and JPAC, were known to be eagerly anticipating his
involvement and leadership on the issue.   He returns to Washington at the end of the
month, and plans to hold a briefing at DPMO for family and veterans group
representatives in mid-February.  Prior to this trip, Ambassador Ray visited Moscow
to reinforce to the Russian Government the importance of naming a Russian
Chairman as counterpart to US Chairman General Robert H. Foglesong, USAF (Ret). 


PRESIDENT BUSH'S VISIT TO VIETNAM:  The President visited Vietnam November
17-20th for the Asia Pacific Economic Conference (APEC). During his visit, he
held bilateral talks with the leadership of Vietnam during which he raised the
need for increased POW/MIA cooperation.  An important joint statement was
issued at the end of the meeting between the US and SRV Presidents, stating in
part:  "The two leaders expressed satisfaction with progress on resolving
outstanding issues from the war and agreed that the two sides would continue
co-operation in this respect.  President Triet reaffirmed his Government's continued
efforts to assist the United States to ensure the fullest possible accounting
for Americans who remain missing in action, through both joint and enhanced
unilateral actions. President Bush reaffirmed US contributions to help obtain
information on Vietnamese MIA cases."  (emphasis added).  This focus on unilateral
Vietnamese actions has been called for consistently by President Bush and two
successive Secretaries of State, Colin Powell and Condaleeza Rice.


LEAGUE TRIP TO SOUTHEAST ASIA:  Prior to the President's visit to Vietnam, a
League Delegation met with senior Vietnamese officials.  Meetings were to
define accounting expectations in the hope of increased cooperation and results. 
The timing of this visit was critical, and progress was obtained on improving
access to the Western Highlands where many incidents await excavation and
agreement to use US Navy ships for underwater recoveries, when needed. 


Although more circumspect on archival records, the Vietnamese accepted all
League requests for unilateral provision of archives and documents. The League
is hopeful that Vietnam's leaders will again, as in the mid-1980s, make a
significant decision to take needed unilateral actions, but the key is still


In Cambodia, meetings were held with the entire leadership, including Prime
Minister Hun Sen and all other officials with POW/MIA responsibilities.
Cambodia is fully cooperative with all US requests for POW/MIA support and
assistance.  Their cooperation is outstanding, and they allow whatever access is
requested. The new Cambodian monarch, His Majesty King Norodom Sihamony, already
revered by Cambodia's people, is also supportive and knowledgeable.  We thanked
all Cambodian leaders and urged officials there to again urge the Vietnamese to
provide relevant records, still the major gap.  


Officials in Laos were very responsive, as evidenced by many high level
meetings and assurances of practical cooperation and flexibility. From the Deputy
Prime Minister to the Defense Minister and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, all
officials reinforced their commitment to cooperate fully within existing
assets and resources.  Lao Government cooperation is high and increasingly
flexible.  In every instance, Lao officials were urged to press Vietnam for relevant
archival records, as in Cambodia, still the major gap, and to search their own
limited archives as well.  A JPAC-supported visit to excavation sites
reinforced the importance of these difficult operations and the League's appreciation
for their efforts.


FAMILY MEMBER DELEGATION FINALIZED:   As announced in the League's December
2, 2006 Newsletter, the League is organizing a small family member trip to
Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia in March.  The group will be led by League Chairman of
the Board Jo Anne Shirley, sister of Major Bobby M. Jones, MD, USAF, MIA in
SVN since 11-28-72.  Participating will be Sue Scott, Board Secretary, sister of
Captain Douglas D. Ferguson, USAF, MIA in Laos since 12/30/69; Pam Cain, VA
State Coordinator and daughter of Colonel Oscar Mauterer, USAF, MIA in Laos
since 2-15-66; and Karoni Forrester Gonzales, TX Assistant State Coordinator and
daughter of Major Ronald W. Forrester, USMC, MIA in NVN 12/27/72. 
Participants have been encouraged to raise funds from local citizens, churches, veterans
and other interested friends and neighbors to help defray the estimated
$10-12,000 cost per person, so try to help if you can, and clearly mark your
donation.   The League is a nonprofit, 501 [c] 3 humanitarian organization, Federal
Tax ID #23-7071242. 


UPDATE ON JPAC OPERATIONS:  Joint field operations resumed for the 37th time
in Cambodia on January 11th and for the 97th time in Laos on January 9th. And
will resume in Vietnam in March.  Field operations related to WWII  will take
place in Thailand in February and began January 18th in Papua New Guinea, plus
are ongoing in Palau.  Technical talks will also be held in Laos and Vietnam
in February, plus a DPMO-led team will visit Beijing for talks aimed at
renewing recovery operations there. A JPAC team recently returned from South Korea
and discussions on renewed joint cooperation to begin later this year.  South
Korea has now established its own recovery unit to locate and identify remains
of its citizens killed during the Korean War.  JPAC has provided helpful
guidance and advice in this process, especially Deputy JPAC Commander Johnie Webb
who just concluded talks in Palau and Papua New Guinea about WWII recovery
operations.  The US finally took the steps necessary to ensure a two-year
assignment for the JPAC Detachment II Commander, a step long ago approved by the Lao,
but slowed by the Pentagon bureaucracy.  


Ann Mills Griffiths
Executive Director
National League of POW/MIA Families
1005 North Glebe Road, Suite 170
Arlington, VA 22201
(PH) 703-465-7432 (FX) 703-465-7433

Forces: U.S. & Coalition/Casualties

There have been 3,254 coalition deaths -- 3,004 Americans, two Australians, 127 Britons, 13 Bulgarians, six Danes, two Dutch, two Estonians, one Fijian, one Hungarian, 32 Italians, one Kazakh, three Latvian, 18 Poles, two Romanians, five Salvadoran, four Slovaks, 11 Spaniards, two Thai and 18 Ukrainians -- in the war in Iraq as of January 3, 2007, according to a CNN count. (Graphical breakdown of casualties). At least 22,565 U.S. troops have been wounded in action, according to the Pentagon. View casualties in the war in Afghanistan and examine U.S. war casualties dating back to the Revolutionary War.
There have been 510 coalition deaths -- 353 Americans, one Australian, 44 Britons, 44 Canadians, three Danes, three Dutch, nine French, 18 Germans, nine Italians, one Norwegian, one Portuguese, four Romanians, 18 Spaniards, two Swedes -- in the war on terror as of January 3, 2007, according to a CNN count.The troops died in support of the U.S.-led Operation Enduring Freedom or were part of the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan. At least 1,084 U.S. personnel have been wounded in action, according to the Pentagon. View the list of casualties in the war in Iraq and examine U.S. war casualties dating back to the Revolutionary War.



There have been 3,604 coalition deaths -- 3,334 Americans, two Australians, 145 Britons, 13 Bulgarians, six Danes, two Dutch, two Estonians, one Fijian, one Hungarian, 32 Italians, one Kazakh, three Latvian, 19 Poles, two Romanians, five Salvadoran, four Slovaks, 11 Spaniards, two Thai and 18 Ukrainians -- in the war in Iraq as of April 26, 2007, according to a CNN count. (Graphical breakdown of casualties).  The list also includes seven employees of the U.S. Defense Department. At least 24,912 U.S. troops have been wounded in action, according to the Pentagon. View casualties in the war in Afghanistan and examine U.S. war casualties dating back to the Revolutionary War.

There have been 559 coalition deaths -- 377 Americans, one Australian, 53 Britons, 54 Canadians, three Danes, six Dutch, nine French, 18 Germans, nine Italians, one Norwegian, one Portuguese, four Romanians, one South Korean, 20 Spaniards, two Swedes -- in the war on terror as of April 26, 2007, according to a CNN count. The troops died in support of the U.S.-led Operation Enduring Freedom or were part of the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan. At least 1,184 U.S. personnel have been wounded in action, according to the Pentagon. View the list of casualties in the war in Iraq and examine U.S. war casualties dating back to the Revolutionary War.

One U.S. soldier is missing and another is currently listed as captured as of December 20, 2006. The list below reflects the names officially listed as Prisoners of War or Duty Status - Whereabouts Unknown by the Pentagon.
Sgt. Keith M. Maupin 20 724th Transportation Company, Army Reserve Batavia, Ohio Maupin was originally listed as missing after a fuel convoy was attacked near Baghdad International Airport by Iraqi insurgents using rocket-propelled grenades and small-arms fire on April 9, 2004. A videotape broadcast by Al-Jazeera on April 16 showed Maupin being held hostage by Iraqi insurgents, and the Pentagon later changed his status to captured. Maupin was promoted in absentia on May 1, 2004, from private first class to specialist. On June 28, 2004, Al-Jazeera reported that it had received a statement and a videotape from militants who claimed to have killed Maupin. U.S. officials, however, were unable to identify the man as Maupin and he remains listed as captured. He was promoted to sergeant in April 2005. (Full story)
Spc. Ahmed K. Altaie 41 Army reservist assigned Provincial Reconstruction Team Baghdad Ann Arbor, Michigan On October 23, 2006, Altaie was categorized as Duty Status Whereabouts Unknown when he allegedly was kidnapped while on his way to visit family in Baghdad, Iraq. The Pentagon changed his status to missing-captured on December 11.

This page was archived in May 2003 when President Bush declared an end to major combat. However, the coalition casualties list continues to be updated.
Nearly two years after the Hussein regime was toppled and major combat operations ended, U.S. and coalition troops are still fighting an Iraqi insurgency.
Casualties | Major combat day-by-day

'Decapitation attack' launched
'Shock and awe' bombing hits Baghdad
Iraqis attack symbols of Saddam
Marines advance into Tikrit
Bush says Iraq combat over
Munitions, aircraft, warships and other weaponry used in the war in Iraq
Full military details
Journalist killed by U.S. troops (1:24)
Iraqis helping U.S. officials (2:24)
Water pipeline explodes in Baghdad (1:22)
More Sights & Sounds
U.S., British and other coalition forces in Iraq
Full U.S. and allied arsenal
Special operations forces
Grange: Insurgency wasn't in Saddam's prewar plan
More On the Scene reports
Iraq's military, devastated during the Persian Gulf War, was soundly beaten by coalition forces
Full Iraqi arsenal
Iraqi leaders
Iraqi Army
The world watched the political, economic and emotional effects of war on the homefront and around the globe
More coverage
A graphical look at Iraq's military sites, population and geography
Compilation of maps

Read users' comments: For and against the war


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