US Soldier Suicides In Afghanistan Rose Sharply Last Year

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by Skynet, Jun 19, 2009.

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  1. Soldier Suicides In Afghanistan Rose Sharply Last Year

    By MATTHEW KAUFFMAN | The Hartford Courant
    January 14, 2009
    Soldiers in Afghanistan committed suicide in record numbers in 2008, in step with a dramatic spike in combat deaths in the country, new military figures show.

    Seven Army soldiers committed suicide in Afghanistan last year, compared with 15 suicides in total during the previous 75 months of Operation Enduring Freedom, according to figures from the Defense Manpower Data Center.

    Col. Elspeth Ritchie, a top Army psychiatrist, said military officials during the past several years have tracked an increase in mental health problems among soldiers serving in Afghanistan. In 2004, she said, anxiety and depression were far less common among soldiers in Afghanistan, compared with those in Iraq. But by 2007 and early 2008, soldiers in Afghanistan were suffering depression and anxiety at the same rates as their counterparts in Iraq, she said.

    "In Afghanistan, there are considerable barriers for providers getting to the troops due to the difficulties in travel and weather, compared to Iraq," Ritchie said.
    More on the link,0,6573425.story
  2. That'll be US soldiers then!
  3. Title edited to define which Country the report refers to.

    FORMER_FYRDMAN LE Book Reviewer

    Sorry but, under the circumstances, why is seven dead in this timeframe, even by suicide, remotely remarkable? That level of loss gets you about half an inch up the Normandy beaches. Have a word.
  5. A fair number of which, I would guess are on national service? And may not of wanted to be a soldier in the first place.

    FORMER_FYRDMAN LE Book Reviewer

    I thought the US had abandoned conscription?
  7. I dont know, just a guess. I'm sure we will be informed shortly.
  8. Are you some sort of cnut?

    How can you compare the needless deaths (suicide) of a modern fighting force to the deaths involved in a very bloody method of attack?

    Why don't you have a fcuking word with yourself.

    If these deaths could be avoided, then we need to find out how, and make sure that we reduce such deaths.

    FORMER_FYRDMAN LE Book Reviewer

    1. Suicides in this circumstance are not needless deaths - they are probably commensurate with the number of soldiers subjected to combat strain and commited to a given campaign on a demonstrably statistical basis - I hate the maths as much as anyone but I can't change it.
    2. In terms of "How I can you compare the needless deaths (suicide) of a modern fighting force to the deaths involved in a very bloody method of attack?" quite simply - attack Omaha in a "modern manner" and see what you get.

    Yes, we need to find out if and how we can minimise death by suicide and minimise the overall effects of PTSD as a whole but don't come to me with seven dead as part of the main effort of a global superpower's military main effort and tell me how horrible it all is (and please don't do so in the vicinity of anyone wearing a star).

    If you're part of a decent unit (i.e. any in the British Army) you've lost more than seven men in a year before now and in a good cause (and not just because of 'a bloody method of attack'). If that definition doesn't qualify you, then I don't give a sh1t for your view and I will pass on to you the details of the first noose-making class I happen upon.

    In short, stuff off you grandstanding knob and 'holier than thou' pr1ck. I am painfully aware of PTSD and its possible effects and, if I wasn't, I have my former comrades to remind me.

    That said, I'd hate to be considered a dinosaur or a bully so, do us both a favour - next Rememberance Day, find the bloke with the most authentic bling on his chest and tell him about your view of the unacceptability of taking seven casualties on a military operation, and then post his response.

    Chocolate Frog? You're not even that useful.

    Edited once for spelling and to add that I am not denigrating seven deaths, I'm just trying to put them into perspective.
  10. Draft ended in 1973. We have been All-Volunteer since then.
  11. Sixty

    Sixty LE Moderator Book Reviewer
    1. ARRSE Cyclists and Triathletes

    I suspect he meant National Guard rather than national service, Goldbricker.

    There were reports over here (that I can't find at the moment) which suggested TA blokes coped less well with the transition from ops to civilian life than regulars.
  12. A Sergeant from My former Unit Killed Himself in January down at Ft. Bragg.

    He had been shot in the forearm(by a 7.62X54R in Kunar Province), round traveling up his arm and exiting his shoulder blade after shattering the ulna and shoulder joint in April 2008.

    He was assigned to the Wounded Warrior Transition Unit and assigned to rake leaves and pick up cigarette butts, in between therapy and operations. Bragg tends to have the mindset if you are on profile, hurt, or in the WWTU your a Malingerer. Currently a Congressional Investigation is being done after statistics showed you were 3 times more likely to recieve UCMJ punishment while assigned to that unit. So far we have had 2 Soldiers die there after surviving the evacuation process to the States. The other Sergeant died of a staph infection contracted at Womack Army Hospital

  13. Hmmm, My last unit ( 27th Light Infantry Brigade-NYARNG) finished it's Afghan tour in December 2008(sent a 2,000 man element for TF Phoenix) and has been already informed the Entire Brigade is going back this time within the year.
  14. Isn't Task Force Pheonix mentoring the ANA in Kabul? A maqssive difference to the fighting in Helmand and to a certain extent in Kandahar.
  15. still!! just over one a month is a pretty bad statistic for topping themselves!

    with out putting a downer on the subject!! i think it will probably start affecting many more who have served or are serving over there !!

    not good times!!