Here are some recent articles about the US army, under great stress from our current wars.
- “Task Force Takes Up Effort to Prevent Suicides“, American Forces Press Service, 1 October 2009
- “Army Releases September Suicide Data“, DoD, 8 October 2009
- “Pentagon, VA Team Up to Improve Mental Health Care“, American Forces Press Service, 26 October 2009
- “Suicide Toll Fuels Worry That Army Is Strained“, Wall Street Journal, 3 November 2009
- “Is There a Lot of Crime on Military Bases? Not as much as you’d think“, Daniel Engber, Slate, 5 November 2009
- “Fort Hood FAQ – Can you carry a concealed weapon on military bases? And other questions answered“, Slate, 6 November 2009
- Update about the killings in Texas, perhaps another crack in an Army near the breaking point (second post), on the FM website, 6 november 2009
- “Fort Hood tragedy rocks military as it grapples with mental health issues“, Los Angeles Times, 9 November 2009 — “Psychological problems are rampant, leaders admit. The Iraq and Afghanistan wars have been long, and repeat deployments are highly stressful. Doctors, too, fall prey to mental illness.”
The comments to the previous posts in this series have been largely by scum denying the problem and castigating those who draw attention to it. As if “rah-rah” for America’s wars equals support for our people in the military. Fortunately many in the Department of Defense takes these things seriously. As expressed by SecrDef Robert M. Gates to the Association of the United States Army on 5 October 2009:
At the same time, we have added funds for the wounded, ill, and injured; traumatic brain injury; and psychological health programs to make sure our troops get the care they need when they return home. This includes a major effort by the Army to educate the force to prevent suicides and address the unseen wounds of war – to approach mental health in much the same way as physical health.
The dramatic rise in suicides is a huge concern of mine – and I take heart that the Army is every bit as concerned. The vice chief of staff is spearheading the service’s effort to reduce suicide, and I can tell you that it is both General Casey’s and General Chiarelli’s personal mission to address this problem. Aside from the conflicts themselves, taking care of our wounded warriors must be our highest priority.
This concern is shared by many journalists and outside experts, whose writings highligt these problems so that public pressure will support stronger efforts to support the people in uniform fighting these wars.
Lastly, let’s not forget the civilian support groups helping our men and women in uniform. Such as…
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