Confirmed Again: Gun Violence In The US Since 1968 Has Killed More Americans Than All Wars Ever

PolitiFact has confirmed again from the latest data available that domestic gun violence in the United States has killed more Americans than all wars the country has fought, beginning from the Revolutionary War.

PolitiFact is an initiative by the Tampa Bay Times. Reporters and editors from the Times and affiliated media outlets fact-check statements by members of Congress, the White House, lobbyists and interest groups in the US.

According to data available, the US has fought 12 major wars (Revolutionary War, War of 1812, Mexican War, Civil War (Union and Confederate, estimate), Spanish-American War, World War I. World War II, Korean War, Vietnam War, Persian Gulf War, Afghanistan War, and Iraq War). The country has also fought some minor wars in these countries:  Lebanon, Grenada, Panama, Somalia and Haiti.

Deaths from these wars are estimated to be 1,396,733. This data was first published by the Congressional Research Service on Feb. 26, 2010. PolitiFact updated it with data from up-to-date deaths in Iraq and Afghanistan using the website PolitiFact also used the broadest definition of “death” — that is, all war-related deaths, not just those that occurred in combat.

On domestic gun violence, PolitiFact used a conservative estimate of data from a 1994 paper published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to count gun-related deaths from 1968 to 1980. For 1981 through 2013, it used annual data sets from CDC. Finally, for 2014 and the first eight months of 2015, PolitiFact estimated that the number of gun-related deaths were equal to the rate during the previous three full years— 2011 to 2013.


Adding these figures, PolitiFact said from 1968 to 2015, there have been 1,516,863 firearm-related deaths in the US, which is more than deaths the country has recorded in all wars it has fought.

Below is the full statistics of deaths America has recorded from domestic gun violence, and wars it has fought in the past years.

Wars Fought and deaths recorded

War Deaths
Revolutionary War 4,435
War of 1812 2,260
Mexican War 13,283
Civil War (Union and Confederate, estimate) 750,000
Spanish-American War 2,446
World War I 116,516
World War II 405,399
Korean War 36,574
Vietnam War 58,220
Persian Gulf War 383
Afghanistan War 2,363
Iraq War 4,492
Other wars (includes Lebanon, Grenada, Panama, Somalia and Haiti) 362
TOTAL 1,396,733


Domestic gun violence and deaths recorded


Years Firearm-related deaths
1968 to 1980 377,000
1981 to 1998 620,525
1999 to 2013 464,033
2014(estimated based on rate from 2011-2013) 33,183
2015(estimated based on rate from 2011-2013) 22,122
TOTAL, 1968-2015 1,516,863

 The Virginia Center for Public Safety, a gun control advocacy group said the confirmation again by PolitiFact shows why it has become necessary for the US to embrace gun control policy. The group has held public rally, distributing fliers to people to raise awareness of how gun violence is harming the American society.

Earlier this month, President Barack Obama announced new anti-violence actions that would, among other things, close the gun show loophole that allows certain purchasers to bypass background checks.Huffington Post reports that President Obama’s announcement has sent gun manufacturers’ stocks soaring. Many people are rushing to get their guns before these new actions by Obama could be implemented.

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