Friday, July 16, 2010

The price of an expendable, short-attention span culture....

The U.S. Army on Thursday reported a record number of suicides in a single month among active duty, Guard and Reserve troops, despite an aggressive program of counseling, training and education aimed at suicide prevention. 

Suicides for the first half of the year are up 12 percent over 2009. In June, 32 soldiers are believed to have committed suicide, including 21 on active duty.

Army officials have been grappling in recent years with how to prevent suicides among soldiers dealing with the stress of multiple deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan. Last year, suicide claimed the lives of 163 soldiers on active duty and 82 Guard and Reserve soldiers not on active duty.
The problem is not isolated to the Army. In 2009, 52 Marines and 48 Sailors took their own lives in 2009, according to a report by the American Forces Press Service. Air Force officials reported 41 active-duty suicides, a 12.5 per 100,000 ratio, in 2009.


  1. I wonder how many of them have TBI. NPR did a great series on this last month:

    It's inconceivable that brass management would play politics but at some point they bust out the PowerPoint slide and blame soldiers for being too prideful to come forward and seek help. I usually attribute that kind of trick-fucking to generals.

  2. The Army has made better progress in evaluating and persuading Soldiers to come forward if they believe that they have MTBI or PTSD.

    But, the fact remains that a great many Soldiers, especially senior NCO's don't go to sick call....preferring instead to 'suck it up' and continue to lead Soldiers. I know...I was one of them....


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