Army suicides at a record high last month
A soldier on patrol in Afghanistan. Photo by ROMEO GACAD/AFP/Getty Images
August 16th, 2011
06:00 AM ET

Army suicides at a record high last month

By Larry Shaughnessy

The U.S. Army reported 32 suicides and potential suicides in the month of July, the highest total since the service began publicly releasing such statistics 2 ½ years ago. And the problem is even worse than the Pentagon's news releases would indicate.

Each month the Army sends out a press report saying how many soldiers have committed suicide.
According to those news releases, as of July 31 of this year 151 soldiers had apparently taken their own lives.
But a document obtained by CNN shows that the Army has actually counted 163 suicides this year.
The Army counts them in terms of confirmed suicides and "potential" suicides, which are deaths that are suspected of being suicide but the official investigation has not been completed. Most of the time, potential suicides are confirmed as actual suicides.

As for why 12 of the suicides were not included in the news releases, Lt. Col. Laurel Devine explained that sometimes, long after the news releases go out, investigators realize a soldier's death is at least a "potential" suicide.

The problem may also come from the fact that of the four branches of service, the Army is the most transparent about the issue of suicide.
The Army is the only branch that sends out a monthly news release, while the other services will release the suicide information only when asked.

"Every suicide represents a tragic loss to our Army and the Nation. While the high number of potential suicides in July is discouraging, we are confident our efforts aimed at increasing individuals' resiliency, while reducing incidence of at-risk and high-risk behavior across the Force, are having a positive impact," Gen. Peter Chiarelli, the Army vice chief of staff and its point man on the issue of suicide, said in a statement.  "We absolutely recognize there is much work to be done and remain committed to ensuring our people are cared for and have ready access to the best possible programs and services."

Chiarelli spends much of his time dealing with the suicide issue and looking for answers, in part because the problem appears to be much worse for the Army than the other branches.

So far in 2011, the Air Force has had 28 suicides, the Marines 21 and the Navy 33. Even though those three services have a combined total force equal to the Army's, their number of suicides are about half the Army's 163.

No one knows why it's worse among the Army other than the fact that it's the biggest branch of service.

"Any act of suicide is a tragedy," said Bryan Whitman, a spokesman for the Pentagon. "It's often very difficult to have any sort of causal relationship to these trends. Each one of them is an individual set of circumstances that range from broken relationship to stress from deployments."

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Filed under: Military
soundoff (476 Responses)
  1. christie maida

    Don't join the military if you don't want to go to war. Like workingfor burger king if you are a veggie. Oh btw, muslims like to suck dick, same with muhhamed, the fag

    August 16, 2011 at 7:18 pm | Reply
    • sftitan

      Yea, I did hear that the muslims that are most homophobic are actually the most wanting to perform gay acts. True story.

      August 16, 2011 at 7:42 pm | Reply
    • Tee Dude

      Consume human defication and expire christie maida.

      August 16, 2011 at 7:45 pm | Reply
    • Christ

      Yeah. Sit them muslims right next to the pedophile christians in hell!

      August 16, 2011 at 7:46 pm | Reply
  2. Fig1024

    I'm fairly certain there would be a lot less army suicide if we did not engage in unwinnable and unending wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. We still have troops in Germany and Japan, how sad is that

    August 16, 2011 at 7:15 pm | Reply
  3. beenthere

    The meds themselves cause way more suicidal thoughts and behavior than anything else.
    The reason seeing more suicides is that more troops are being given ssri's like prozac and antipyschotics like zprexa, or dumped off their meds suddenly, or given prozac with their guns waiting handy for when the two week after starting or any other change occurs when the flouride in the ssri's kills all your nerve endings and you are left when no serotin at all and a really handy gun, etc. Suicide rates in military is simply an amplified example of what the public has been having to deal with in the mental (non) health profession for way, way too long. Take a really good look at mental health delivery and the meds and you will see why so many suicides in military.

    August 16, 2011 at 7:10 pm | Reply
    • Mike

      I suspect you may be on to something. Too bad there is not any reporting on this.

      August 16, 2011 at 10:07 pm | Reply
      • beenthere

        This is a real problem not for just those serving, but for their families as well.
        The meds change the brain and behavior. If you are a person who's strength to keep yourself alive is honor and duty or using your emotional intelligence to feel the enemy and to feel your own ethics and morality – which may include thoughts of suicide – if you are taking a med that numbs these – they are essentially blinding you to the very thing that helps to keep you alive.

        August 17, 2011 at 2:38 am |
      • beenthere

        essentially what is needed then is the forces to teach meditation, yoga, tai chi, and being in the moment of now – and being totally aware that the moment of now contains the moments of the past, present and future. Be aware, relax, breath, sleep or don't sleep as is needed – do not fight yourself – be aware in every moment and truly learn to breath, relax, and be aware.

        August 17, 2011 at 4:16 am |
      • beenthere

        there is another thing that is very very important for forces to understand NOW and put into instant awareness globally.
        WE have recently entered a solor maximum – read and understand here: spaceweather.com
        these solor flares will cause earthquakes and other disturbances in electromagnetic forces in ALL
        this will cause mental disarray and thoughts and behavior of suicide in ALL
        study earthquakes at earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes
        this is happening to ALL

        August 17, 2011 at 4:27 am |
  4. maggie

    My husband sustained a brain injury in the Persion Gulf War....and he committed suicide almost two years ago....I did an inteview for the Military Channel about the issue of suicide...I had hoped it would have help....obviously not....
    I now am in therapy every week because I cannot bear the sight of having found my husband, I never leave the house, frinds just check in with me.....Clearly this issue is not going to change unless they DO something and stop the body count of suicides.......

    August 16, 2011 at 6:47 pm | Reply
    • sftitan

      Hi Maggie, I'm so sorry to hear about your loss and I hope you find the closure and can move on with your life eventually. Life is too short to lock yourself up in your home.

      August 16, 2011 at 7:44 pm | Reply
    • Raphael

      Sorry about your husband.

      August 16, 2011 at 7:48 pm | Reply
  5. what?

    sometimes you just don't know why some people commit suicide. I have seen to many times soldiers wives cheating on them and steal all of their money during deployments, then have the nerve to divorce them! For another soldier! Yet they come back rebuild and keep it movin. Some just aren't, and I wouldn't say they aren't stronger, but you never know when someone will reach their breaking point. I see each person that commited suicide as a battle we failed. Someone didn't listen, someone said drive on when that soldier was screaming that they can't, and everyone blaming the politians and such, who gives a damn, your only trying to vote for the lesser of two evils, none, not one, is perfect. They are not going to change this world in a way where it is completely safe, everyone is not going to be rich, o stop waiting on some magical man to fix everything, and do the world a favor and change your damn self. Help your community, help the soldiers when they get home. Listen to someone else instead of waiting for someone else to do something for you. Obama is just a man, not a God all of these potential presidents will fail, the system is designed to. But you can help those around you. My battles to my left and my right, my ears are open and so is my heart, I know where you have been and where you are going and you are not alone.

    August 16, 2011 at 5:56 pm | Reply
    • mm

      I partially agree with you. What makes Army suicides differ from others (civillian, other military group, other countries,etc) is this: (1) those committing suicide are already in the military "care" system where medical malpractice and coverup is rampant, and then (2) forced to return to companies/battalions where 'old school' prisoner mentality continues to reign (i.e., if anyone ever mentions any "weakness" you are "beaten" until strong – especially regarding mental illness).
      These men and women are regularly pushed beyond any human limit (sleepless nights, unimaginable stress/anxiety, war trauma, etc.) Then they are NOT given appropriate normal care (instead of reducing stressors, and getting sleep, they are given MANY psychotic drugs worsening the situation entirely).
      These soldiers NEVER want to be pampered. Some may have genetic/personal issues adding to thier job/war stressors. Just like any civillian – regardless of trials/obstacles they want to overcome them.
      When those "caring" for them (medical and command) refuse to see that they are the very ones worsening this situation, then this problem will never be solved.
      This is based on facts reported regularly not only by media investigations, but the Army's own Inspector General reports.
      The problem is simple. The solution is simple. It is made more complicated by actions or non-actions from some medical and command, thus playing "political coverup games" with people's lives.
      If the army and war broke the crud out of you (mentally and physically) to the point you'll never be able to function normally again - you too would consider ending your life. Why live in such pain which will alienate you from people?

      August 16, 2011 at 7:27 pm | Reply
  6. gary

    military madness is killing the country

    August 16, 2011 at 5:46 pm | Reply
    • 11BravoPapa

      And so is your breath

      August 16, 2011 at 5:47 pm | Reply
  7. Gravis

    Soldiers haven't been "fighting for our freedom" for 60 years. Every war we've been in sing WWII has been a mistake. Soldiers who died in Vietnam, Korea, etc. didn't keep me "free", they wasted their lives. Today it's even worse. This all-volunteer army is merely a last chance for losers, dropouts, and morons to have a government-paid "job". They're simply idiot pawns used for political purposes. No wonder the suicide rate is high. What the hell else can they do if they can't hack the army?

    August 16, 2011 at 5:45 pm | Reply
    • 11BravoPapa

      And this a perfect example of how bitter you become when a Marine bones your wife

      August 16, 2011 at 5:53 pm | Reply
    • From the Land of Obama Trama

      As a Vet of that era I agree that we were had. We now send our jobs to the same communist we fought. Ashley Furniture is an example.

      August 16, 2011 at 5:53 pm | Reply
    • 11 Bang Bang

      Wow..... you are seriously short sighted if you think the entire Army is comprised of high school drop outs.

      August 16, 2011 at 6:12 pm | Reply
    • Thinkbeforeyoutype

      Obviously you don't know about the armed forces. Officers have to have a 4 year bachelors degree.

      August 16, 2011 at 7:22 pm | Reply
    • tracy miller

      If you can"t stand behind our troops you can always stand in front of them.

      August 16, 2011 at 7:28 pm | Reply
    • Raphael

      OMG!!! I can't believe you feel that way. I am not in the military, but talking about about our military men and women like that is just shocking and hurts. I can't tell you why but it hurts! If you are that stupid to write what you wrote, I will never be smart enough to help you see the ignorance of your statement!

      August 16, 2011 at 7:56 pm | Reply
  8. 11BravoPapa

    On another note the soldier in the picture doesn't look like he's on patrol at all. He looks like he's on a FOB trying to find the port-a-john. Get it together CNN

    August 16, 2011 at 5:42 pm | Reply
  9. wolvenshadow

    im sure the newly proposed retirement and benifit cuts on top of the already active and wretched force shaping measures will bestow a fresh wave of suicides, but hey its probably saves money for them in the long run and thats all that matters, all they care about.

    August 16, 2011 at 5:38 pm | Reply
  10. NinjasLeadTheWay

    Oh I don't know. How could this be? Oh wait...Service Members that come forward with a mental health issue are punished. So they don't come forward. They self medicate and get caught doing that and get kicked out without a treatment or diagnosis for their issues. Or could it be that there is almost no training before a deployment on what kind of mental health issues that may occur upon your return. Not that you could get help with them anyways without throwing away your career. I've spent 6 hours in front of power points learning about the Repeal of Dont Ask, Don't tell. But not one minute has been spent teaching all of us about what could happen to our mental health on a deployment. EPIC FAIL DOD. EPIC FAIL.

    August 16, 2011 at 5:27 pm | Reply
    • 11BravoPapa

      I have to cosign this. The only thing they really stress before deployment are the OPSEC briefs. It's about the mission before deployment. They worry about you when you get back

      August 16, 2011 at 5:33 pm | Reply
      • NinjasLeadTheWay

        We have heard it many times. Hell, I remember GI JOE as a kid. KNOWING IS HALF THE BATTLE. Well they're not telling anyone enough. No one knows enough. The Army has a year long deployment. That's a year to battle with not only the enemy and your potentially idiotic chain of command, but a year dealing with an ROE that doesn't allow the battle to be won. Then you come back, and you battle some more with your chain of command and probably a shrink or two, then you get out of the military and you battle with the VA. And also when you're out to have to battle with idiotic civilians that don't know jack about the military other than what CNN has told them. It's a mess. But I think some seriously pre-deployment training about mental health issues and a cease and desist in regards to "punishing" us by coming forward with our issues to get help would probably go a long way. By punishing I mean losing your leadership position, involuntary separations to push you into the VA system faster, and medical flags that keep us from getting promoted or awards.

        August 16, 2011 at 5:40 pm |
      • 11BravoPapa

        They need to tell people about these issues BEFORE they sign the contract. The military isn't for everyone. It wouldn't stop suicides all together but it might deter a few people who need to be deterred.

        August 16, 2011 at 5:51 pm |
  11. From the Land of Obama Trama

    I now leave you all and wish you peace of mind. I have been harsh in my statement but this was my experience. I found that we my own effort and refocusing my self on other that I slowwwly worked my way out of my dark times. I kept in mind that everyday would be better, after a while it was. God bless all of you in your time of need and sorrow but YOU can see a lot better times if you try. I would not have been here to enjoy my grandchildren if I had not tried.
    Good Bye.

    August 16, 2011 at 5:26 pm | Reply
    • FormerUSMC

      Don't let the hole cave in on you when you climb back in.

      August 16, 2011 at 5:29 pm | Reply
      • From the Land of Obama Trama

        Former I am truly sorry you think of me this way. I would rather have the world hate me than to be in my dark spot of life. I know though that with effort there is hope and sitting on my duff feeling sorry for my self only made it worse. I LOVE life now and my desire is the same for you.

        August 16, 2011 at 5:50 pm |
  12. Cat

    I'm willing to bet a lot of those people were people who decided to take the "easy way" out and joined the military because they didn't want to attempt anything else. I'm sure some of these people don't fall into this category and I'm not bashing them but the rest, for those of you even considering suicide, grow a pair or get out of my military. The way I see it, the military doesn't need weak minded individuals.

    August 16, 2011 at 5:22 pm | Reply
    • FormerUSMC

      Cat, you can't just leave the military. Your obvious lack of knowledge on this issue is disturbing.

      August 16, 2011 at 5:25 pm | Reply
      • Cat

        You can if you seek help. You would receive care while serving and if they couldn't get you back on your feet, you're medically discharged WITH benefits.

        August 16, 2011 at 5:31 pm |
    • FormerUSMC

      May I ask which branch of the service you were in?

      August 16, 2011 at 5:33 pm | Reply
      • Cat

        Me? I'm too fat and too lazy to actually join the service. My grandparents served, my parents served and my little brother is currently serving. My parents and grandparents were Navy. My little brother is a Marine and when he when he was shot in the face last year, the Marines told us this same thing. The fact is, options are available. It's whether or not these people are willing to accept them. And, to be perfectly honest, I don't view suicide so much as a tragedy but more as something to be ridiculed, regardless of one's position in life.

        August 16, 2011 at 5:38 pm |
    • 11BravoPapa

      Do you know how long a med board chapter takes and what process you have to go through? *sigh* It's because of people like this that I hate talking military issues with people who don't have the slightest clue

      August 16, 2011 at 5:36 pm | Reply
    • Ken

      Cat knows so much, he hunt down Bin Laden with a mouse and a Gerber.

      August 16, 2011 at 6:22 pm | Reply
  13. David Han

    There's a lot of trouble going on with the servicemen and women that most people never see...Add to that the stress of war and that's a lot to handle for anyone...

    August 16, 2011 at 5:12 pm | Reply
  14. jonathan

    This may sound like a cop out but it's Satan.. He is that unseen dark force in the world today. he is at war with every individual..it appears that those in the service are most vulnerable to him..many have ways of fighting this unseen horror..but also too many fall under that spell almost like some drown in a body of water sometimes.

    August 16, 2011 at 4:47 pm | Reply
    • Ken

      It's called Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome and depression.

      August 16, 2011 at 4:52 pm | Reply
    • no_sattan

      You think that Satan causes evil in the world today and makes people commit suicide? Do you still believe in Santa Claus as well? People commit suicide because they choose to. Morality is human- we should take responsibility for it as opposed to believing in "evil forces."

      August 16, 2011 at 4:57 pm | Reply
    • Sam

      It is apparent that you've never been in the military. If you had, you would know that war is much worse than tv or movies. The mention of Satan is ridiculous.

      August 16, 2011 at 5:07 pm | Reply
    • 11BravoPapa

      Johnathan has a point. Dod you stop to think that "satan" can mean all your problems instead of som horned person living at the bottom of the earth? Just like "god" doesn't have to mean some old man in the sky. I don't get why people get their panties in a bunch over these terms. Quit taking things so literally

      August 16, 2011 at 5:17 pm | Reply
      • Sean

        @11BravoPapa – negative on the “new age”

        Are we making up our own definitions again? Those are not ‘terms’ they are nouns as in referring to specific mythical beings. I am of course using “God” in this due the reference to Satan and there for Christianity. Which admittedly is not really a noun but is in common usage by Christians. Seems many have forgotten his name.

        August 16, 2011 at 5:35 pm |
      • 11BravoPapa

        You don't know my beliefs. I keep them away from these blogs unless the post is about religion. Maybe you should do the same

        August 16, 2011 at 5:39 pm |
    • FormerUSMC

      I know for a fact it wasn't Satan. He was a former Drill Instructor of mine that is now living peacefully in California.

      August 16, 2011 at 5:23 pm | Reply
  15. From the Land of Obama Trama

    I apologize for multiple posts but with my eyesight it is hard for me to tell the diff between a post and a reply.
    I once could have been a vic of self inflicted death. It was tough love and my own self strength that saved me. Looking back 45+ years I know that it is a selfish, self centered action that deserves NO pity. It hurts those who are left behind and punishes them for no reason. I look at those who wish to do this as pitiful animals who need to get a grip. Now I am sure there are a few who have physical conditions that exclude them from my statements. I know if I had a loved one considering this despicable act I would take personal action and it would be harsh. Those of you who have lost loved ones to this action you must understand YOU are NOT responsible and YOU should not grieve. I sure know that had I done this my parents and family would have said their good byes to me and gone on with life as it should be as suicide is a cowardly dishonorable action that craves attention which is undeserved.

    August 16, 2011 at 4:33 pm | Reply
    • Ken

      Trama maybe you are the pitiful animal who lacks the compassion for those who are hurting inside so much that they feel no end in sight in physical world.

      August 16, 2011 at 4:57 pm | Reply
    • From the Land of Obama Trama

      My Father had a chat with me after he learned about my selfishness. He said son you mother and I have worked hard, sometimes staying together, for the past 20 years in order to provide you with what you need to be happy. I see we have failed in our efforts and had we known what it took we could have saved ourselves the effort and focused more on your brothers and sisters. Now if you are intent on doing this deed then please make your brother and sisters the beneficiaries of a Life insurance policy in order to repay them what YOU have cost them of course you will have to wait 2 years but that is YOUR problem. By the way I took the time to find several funeral homes in the area one which has specialized in you type of demise I recommend you visit with them and save us the grief.
      I love you son but YOU dont love us enough to stay with us so do what YOU must.
      That was over 40 years ago and I am still ticking and kicking YOU cowards can too.

      August 16, 2011 at 5:07 pm | Reply
      • dooney borke

        Whatever Mr. Macho Man! You're clueless....

        August 16, 2011 at 5:34 pm |
  16. Ray

    they have help if they call the Veterans Administrations suicide hotline

    August 16, 2011 at 4:18 pm | Reply
    • Monica Morton

      To the moron who says they have the VA suicide prevention hotline to call: yes, they do, but by the time they are ready to do it, they have been planning it for some time and don't 'bother' with phone calls....and sometimes it's just too late.
      To some of you morons who call these people "weak" or "soft" or whatever: KISS my 100% disabled Navy Vet behind!
      You never really know what your brothers-in-arms are thinking of, you never really know what cross they are bearing...you never really know they need help.....unless they tell you....

      August 16, 2011 at 4:33 pm | Reply
    • Eric

      1-800-273-TALK

      August 16, 2011 at 5:15 pm | Reply
      • Reality check

        Sure, try dialling that number from some godforsaken FOB in Afghanistan or Iraq. Love some of these comments from the entitled, "military members must be the scum of the earth for actually caring enough to want to serve others," all-about-themselves trolls. Thanks, you're only proving what I realized returning from deployment, which is that "thanks for your service" is lip service from the self-involved who are relieved that they don't actually have to work as hard for their money, risk their lives in service to their country, are travel halfway around the world on a moments notice in the name of security, law enforcement, or humanitarian aid. It's a pretty sorry commentary on our society when you get off a plane with a group of military in uniform returning from Afghanistan and no one in the airport will meet their eyes. In fact, they'll stand next to you in line whining about having been travelling since 7am (when it's only 4pm) and totally lack the SA that you started your first leg home from Kabul three days earlier.

        August 16, 2011 at 6:18 pm |
  17. 31uniform

    Suicde is the most tragec loss of any human being. i can only pray they find what it is they need the most to bring some peace to their tortued souls before they cross that line.

    August 16, 2011 at 4:14 pm | Reply
  18. John

    They say suicide is one of leading causes of teen deaths

    August 16, 2011 at 4:02 pm | Reply
    • ahmed

      Causes of suicide
      Many sins and the sins
      Boredom and narrow, and bile
      Sense of shame and shame and sin
      Hatred and racism
      Adultery and manipulation of emotions
      Away from the Lord and not to go to places of worship

      أسباب الإنتحار
      كثرة الذنوب و المعاصي
      الملل و الضيق و النكد
      الشعور العار و الخزي و بالذنوب
      الكراهية و العنصرية
      الزنا و التلاعب بالعواطف
      البعد عن الرب و عدم الذهاب الى أماكن العبادة

      August 16, 2011 at 4:07 pm | Reply
      • jonathan

        Has suicides told you this ?

        August 16, 2011 at 4:34 pm |
      • Thomas Hanson

        Which is why JESUS CHIRST is the only name whereby one can be saved. Amen.

        August 16, 2011 at 4:49 pm |
  19. FU

    Evolution at its finest...

    August 16, 2011 at 4:01 pm | Reply
    • Ray

      your brain needs to evolve into maturity

      August 16, 2011 at 4:14 pm | Reply
  20. Name*Ruby caan

    Yep, women serving with you on deployments, long army deployments with bad chow, and rules of engagement have bad effects.

    August 16, 2011 at 3:54 pm | Reply
    • FormerUSMC

      While I agree that many factors affect morale, I fail to see how women serving their country can be anything but positive. I served side by side with some of the finest women I have ever known.

      August 16, 2011 at 4:03 pm | Reply
  21. Roger

    Being in the Army, going to shorter tours would definitely be one way to lower this number. When u compare a 6 month deployment (USAF) to the 12 months of the Army it is no wonder there is too much stress for Soldiers to deal with when they get home.

    August 16, 2011 at 3:40 pm | Reply
    • 11BravoPapa

      9 months on paper seems like it might help but I don't know. I never delt with suicide until I joined the military. It was an urban legend to me. I saw people in suicide watch in basic... basic training of all places. There's no combat time involved there. I don't know what the problem is. Wish I knew.

      August 16, 2011 at 4:06 pm | Reply
    • Reality check

      It's not just the length of deployment, but the number. I served with Army in Afghanistan who were on 4th and 5th deployments, had been away from spouses 8 out of 10 years, missed 2 of three years of their children's lives. Add to that the helplessness of being in the crosshairs of a "force shaping" board when you're not even home to start looking for other work, having a spouse with a medical issue you can't go home to help with, children with problems in school or issues related to their missing a parent. . .

      August 16, 2011 at 6:24 pm | Reply
  22. justme

    The father of my child was one of those counted in this statistic. It's not the Army or the governments fault. They made every arrangement I could think to help him. The fact of the matter is these men and women seem to think they can do it on their own. In my case, only after a night terror that resulted in a physical fight during my pregnancy did he decide to seek help. I'd begged and pleaded since he'd come home that he would take the help available to him. Even after that he would go for a while and stop for a while. There is no rhyme or reason as to why. He had even spoken with other vets from different wars and they told him to stick with it and it would help but he chose otherwise. I have many friends with PTSD from different circumstances in life and they all endured the same battle of thinking they were stronger than a pill. If anything needs to be done it needs to be reinforced to them that it is perfectly fine to ask for and receive help in any form-pill, therapy, whatever it takes. I don't know about anyone else's situation but his therapist would call him regularly and would try and work with him. If she couldn't get him she would talk with me about him. They did the best they could and I appreciate it to this day.

    August 16, 2011 at 3:27 pm | Reply
    • FormerUSMC

      I am very saddened by your loss.

      August 16, 2011 at 3:37 pm | Reply
      • justme

        Thank you.

        August 16, 2011 at 3:52 pm |
    • Proudvetwife

      It breaks my heart to hear about your loss. My husband, who is an infantry combat vet, came home with PTSD. I worry every day that he is not coping the way he should. Some days are better than others. He's one to say he is fine and doesnt need help. I only know a portion of what hes done and seen, I cant imagine how thats taken its toll. Everyone handles that stress differently and all a loved one can do is listen and be there for them. I try my best every day to do that, pray its enough and hope he doesnt give up either, because I know I never will.

      August 16, 2011 at 4:12 pm | Reply
      • justme

        Thank you. Your support will go a long way with your husband. The fact that he is battling the issue without pressure is a huge positive. Good luck to you both.

        August 16, 2011 at 7:04 pm |
    • noyb731

      My condolences to you and your child for your loss. Yes, it's perfectly fine to ask for help to cope with all the stress. Our warrior brothers and sisters shouldn't have to go through it alone. My best wishes to you.

      August 16, 2011 at 4:39 pm | Reply
      • justme

        Thank you. I fully agree.

        August 16, 2011 at 7:15 pm |
  23. tony

    So many of your servicemen commit suicide and I find this truly sad. I not big on war but respect the men and women who put their lifes on the line every day. Please find a solution to this rather sad problem.........

    August 16, 2011 at 3:23 pm | Reply
  24. From the Land of Obama Trama

    I ASK YOU ALL WHY
    Obama has put the finishing touches on destroying our Military. Tell my why political correctness has allowed the Muslim Traitor that killed our honorable military personnel to live this long. Eddie Slovak's trial lasted ONE day and he was put to death for desertion. Why are we silent on this matter.

    August 16, 2011 at 3:19 pm | Reply
    • 11BravoPapa

      Have some respect and take this somewhere else. I'm sure it might be fun to cause a stirr over the internet but please leave it alone at least in here. Thanks

      August 16, 2011 at 3:34 pm | Reply
    • FormerUSMC

      When you pin your hate on one culture or people you are doomed. It starts with rhetoric from individuals and if left unchecked can infest an entire nation. Other governments in the past, and presently, with this line of thinking cause atrocities on a much larger scale that I believe you are aware of. Should someone with your views be placed in a position of power with such hate? When you are finished wiping one group out who is next? It's a never ending cycle that you need to free yourself from. I truly hope you do not have children that you are passing your doctrine of hate down to.

      August 16, 2011 at 3:52 pm | Reply
    • From the Land of Obama Trama

      I once could have been a vic of self inflicted death. It was tough love and my own self strength that saved me. Looking back 45+ years I know that it is a selfish, self centered action that deserves NO pity. It hurts those who are left behind and punishes them for no reason. I look at those who wish to do this as pitiful animals who need to get a grip. Now I am sure there are a few who have physical conditions that exclude them from my statements. I know if I had a loved one considering this despicable act I would take personal action and it would be harsh. Those of you who have lost loved ones to this action you must understand YOU are NOT responsible and YOU should not grieve. I sure know that had I done this my parents and family would have said their good byes to me and gone on with life as it should be.

      August 16, 2011 at 4:28 pm | Reply
    • From the Land of Obama Trama

      I once could have been a vic of self inflicted death. It was tough love and my own self strength that saved me. Looking back 45+ years I know that it is a selfish, self centered action that deserves NO pity. It hurts those who are left behind and punishes them for no reason. I look at those who wish to do this as pitiful animals who need to get a grip. Now I am sure there are a few who have physical conditions that exclude them from my statements. I know if I had a loved one considering this despicable act I would take personal action and it would be harsh. Those of you who have lost loved ones to this action you must understand YOU are NOT responsible and YOU should not grieve. I sure know that had I done this my parents and family would have said their good byes to me and gone on with life as it should be as suicide is a cowardly dishonorable action that craves attention which is undeserved.

      August 16, 2011 at 4:31 pm | Reply
      • jonathan

        is sounds like only love of your SELF has saved you..

        August 16, 2011 at 4:40 pm |
      • Reality check

        Sounds like one thing hasn't changed – you're still selfish and self-centered and have no empathy for anyone else.

        August 16, 2011 at 6:26 pm |
      • Richard

        Only love of self can save you, when it comes right down to it. I've been in constant pain for over 10 yrs now. I have been able to distract myself, couse it would hurt my family, bosh they don't live in pain they don't live a crippled 1/2 life dependant on fools who don't care.
        I make no judgement do what you need to do, In the end its between you and yourself, can you find an excuse to go another day??? if so great, if not well try not to leave a mess for the coroner 🙂

        August 16, 2011 at 7:26 pm |
    • noyb731

      Stop being such a Fred Phelps and take your disrespect of the fallen elsewhere.

      August 16, 2011 at 4:44 pm | Reply
  25. Bobo

    But no one seems to offer an explanation for these suicides? Is it the horrors of war? An aversion to death? Inability to cope with civilian life/fellow soldiers/army food?

    August 16, 2011 at 3:17 pm | Reply
    • noyb731

      It depends on person to person, as the last sentence states: "Each one of them is an individual set of circumstances that range from broken relationship to stress from deployments."

      August 16, 2011 at 4:46 pm | Reply
  26. MJSouth

    Thanks to all that serve, past, present, and the future!!!

    August 16, 2011 at 3:12 pm | Reply
  27. patrick

    usar.....God will sort out the trash.

    August 16, 2011 at 3:10 pm | Reply
    • Ray

      god tthe garbage collector

      August 16, 2011 at 4:16 pm | Reply
  28. 11BravoPapa

    As an airborne grunt with 4 combat stripes all from Afghanistan I can tell you that the suicide problem isn't fully PTSD. AfghanMC hinted on the suicide briefings we receive. What we really need is marrage briefings and a "how to tell a w-hore from a housewife class. I personally have known several soldiers that killed themselves and they all did over a woman. Civilians might not understand that but anyone who as served can see my point. I've seen far, far too many soldiers come back from their first deployment only to marry the first woman they touch back in the states. Later their marrage falls apart because they didnt know this person and the court system is sucking their bank account dry. Or they deploy and their marrage falls apart during deployment because they hardly knew eaxh other before spending a year apart. There is nothing worse than having a soldier crying in your arms because his wife sucked his account dry from thousands and moved in another man. Combat stress is nothing compaired to marrage stress

    August 16, 2011 at 3:10 pm | Reply
    • FormerUSMC

      This is a reality that is never considered but should be. While in the the Desert Shield phase of the Gulf War a Staff Sergeant committed suicide over a wife that decided to leave him while he could do nothing about it. It happened four tents down from mine and rattled the nerves of many of us. The surprising reaction by those in command was to have us turn all of our rounds in, leaving us with weapons that were showpieces for the remainder of Desert Shield. There was not even a talk from superiors about suicide.

      August 16, 2011 at 3:21 pm | Reply
    • JuneH

      How to tell a whore from a housewife class you say? Would female soldiers be required to attend such a class? I get your point but as a former female soldier I find it particularly offensive. Also, learn how to spell marriage.

      August 16, 2011 at 4:18 pm | Reply
      • 11BravoPapa

        I'm a grunt. What do you expect?. If you found THAT to be offensive well it's a good thing you weren't in my unit.

        August 16, 2011 at 4:28 pm |
      • Reality check

        Go gender neutral then; I've known more than a few women who've lost husbands during deployments to screwing around, moving on to where the grass is greener, etc. I nearly lost mine b/c the stress of having to stay home with the kids was almost more than his male ego could survive.

        August 16, 2011 at 6:31 pm |
    • noyb731

      I'm a civilian, but totally sympathize with those who have been betrayed by their wives while being deployed. I doubt any briefings will help tell you apart and hoor and a honorable housewife. Someone who isn't offended by your typos is a good start. ☺

      August 16, 2011 at 4:57 pm | Reply
  29. 11Bangbang

    Anybody who has spent time in todays army would know why it is this way!!! The unit leaders are poorly trained and do not take morale and welfare into consideration. Further more the units no longer try to pull from the bus, but they their you under it!!!

    August 16, 2011 at 3:07 pm | Reply
  30. USAR

    To FormerUSMC, Once a Marine, always a Marine. Semper Fi

    August 16, 2011 at 3:06 pm | Reply
    • From the Land of Obama Trama

      And once a Muslim always a Muslim. Allah Akbar or what ever.

      August 16, 2011 at 3:23 pm | Reply
      • FormerUSMC

        Your hate will end up destroying you, if it already hasn't.

        August 16, 2011 at 3:39 pm |
      • Reality check

        I've served alongside American Muslims and advised Afghan Muslims on building a strong national security force. I'll stand next to them in a hail of bullets any day before I'd trust your sorry ass to have my back or that of any of the American servicemembers I've served with.

        August 16, 2011 at 6:35 pm |
  31. USAR

    I can tell you that 12 months down range is rough, but I have seen some extended involuntarily for 18 months. Time away is rough, and things happen that are beyond your control. Kids grow up, and in some cases are born. We know what we get ourselves into when we sign that line. I hope everyone appreciates all that we do for our country. We give up our rights to defend the rights of every American. They say "if you love your freedom, thank a vet". I totally agree. Altho the military isn't for everyone. I have seen people serving that never should have joined. And while it is true we are paid for our service, when you calculate the pay rate then divide it by 24 hours a day, 7 Days a week, 52 weeks a year... It's pretty low. Altho it is better than it was for those serving prior. We do not join to get rich, we all do it for our own reasons. Danger pay... Well you hafta be in a danger area to get it. We know what that means too.
    To topic,the ones that did kill themselves, well who knows what one is going through in life. It's not all roses. And I also wonder if some of those suicides were more a friendly fire issue. I know any incoming fire isn't friendly, but I have a feeling some of you feel me. I do feel for their families. As far as people that protest a funeral, that's bad. But to protest a serviceman's... Well that's wrong in soooo many senses of the word. Love it or leave it...

    August 16, 2011 at 3:01 pm | Reply
  32. patrick

    oh yeah.i did serve.1967-1969.

    August 16, 2011 at 2:59 pm | Reply
  33. patrick

    i am as anti war as anyone.that said ,every military person deserves our utmost respect.this includes those that have a problem caused by the military or other organic issues.God bless all soldiers and sailors and airmen.

    August 16, 2011 at 2:58 pm | Reply
  34. AfghanMC

    The Marine Corps may not treat their Marines the best. But, per unit, we may get better treatment then the Army. Yes that suicide prevention class is dull, and long, and very gray scale. We have a little joke in my platoon, that it actually increases risk of suicide.
    One thing you have to understand about the Army, it is too big. It cannot worry about individual troop welfare. It is impossible for the Army as a whole to do. Now, those individual brigades, companies, or platoons. They need to be able to adapt and overcome these challenges. Which, in all honestly does not seem like it is getting done.
    With that being said, to counteract what I previously stated, it is impossible to eliminate all suicides. Absolutely impossible.

    August 16, 2011 at 2:54 pm | Reply
    • FormerUSMC

      From time to time my unit needed to interact with Army units. We were always amazed at how undisciplined and shabby the Army always appeared to us. There seemed to be pride in their ranks. We also had the chance to work with Air Force and Navy from time to time. There was definitely a more defined unity in both of these services as compared to the Army. I believe your observation of the Army being too big is spot on.

      August 16, 2011 at 3:03 pm | Reply
      • FormerUSMC

        That sentence should have been, "There seemed to be no pride in their ranks."

        August 16, 2011 at 3:08 pm |
      • 11BravoPapa

        Undiciplined and shabby? Funny because I worked with Marine grunt units and we were amazed on how shabby their battle drills and SOP's and TTP's were. Guess it depends on which side of the fence you look over huh. Lol Just fun brother

        August 16, 2011 at 3:21 pm |
      • FormerUSMC

        Oh, believe me, we ran across Marine units as well that needed a kick in the pants.

        August 16, 2011 at 3:27 pm |
      • 11BravoPapa

        I agree with you on your observation on Army units. Most of the discipline in the Army you will see in Airborne units, Ranger Batt, and SF. Regular Army mech units are sloppy from what i've seen.

        August 16, 2011 at 3:57 pm |
      • FormerUSMC

        I believe the original post stating the Army is too large is the cause of this. I don't want to focus on the fact that they seemed unkempt, but the fact that there is a reason for this. The whole "Army of one" campaign threw me for a loop when I first saw it. In the Corps being an individual was against doctrine, and while I see where the campaign appears to try and bring unity, I believe the message delivered was one of being an individual. A tight knit group is paramount for any service group and once that is lost individuals can feel isolated and cliques can form.

        August 16, 2011 at 4:12 pm |
  35. 11BravoPapa

    Why are people killing themselves in the Navy and Air Force? Life is great over there

    August 16, 2011 at 2:53 pm | Reply
    • AfghanMC

      Maybe life is too good?

      August 16, 2011 at 2:57 pm | Reply
      • 11BravoPapa

        Lol true. I'd kill for 3 month deployment like the Air Force

        August 16, 2011 at 3:12 pm |
      • Reality check

        Just to set the record straight, your brethren in blue are now on 6-12 month deployments:) Although our deployment tempo still can't touch what the Army has to shoulder.

        August 16, 2011 at 6:38 pm |
  36. david da nurse

    i thought that a military was meant to DEFEND ones country and freedoms. To me, that means if some other country tried to invade our country and tried to make us live the way they want us to live, we would then deploy our military and stop such acts. to me, thats wat defending our country and freedoms mean. i completely understand why these soilders have such problems. you are told that u will be defending your country but then find urself in some other country trying not to be killed. i wonder how many suicides there would be if our military was used for wat it was meant for....jus sayin.

    August 16, 2011 at 2:47 pm | Reply
  37. lnc

    Yes its random and slightly confusing (my choice of examples). The point is that information about suicide all levels including statistics, personal stories, preventive methods, and so on...that information should be shared(doesn't matter the source), available, and revised as time goes on. This topic is scandalous because its deemed as wrong?? Suicide is just the end point and all the issues leading up to the act (which varies per case) if shared, or even addressed, that info could help, and be a lead to future problems for others to use.

    August 16, 2011 at 2:39 pm | Reply
  38. blacklion128

    It IS NOT THE MILITARYS FAULT... IT IS SOCIETIES.... PEOPLE TODAY ARE NOT ACCUSTOMED TO THE HARSHER EALITY OF LIFE... We are all babied – i believe it all starts with childhood- if kids these days werent prone to watching tv and playing video games and more in tune with working and chores- theyd understand the value of the life we are given... The old west- the big lesson there was tragic things happen and you move on... Lonesome Dove... But since there is NO reversing this effect- we have to learn how to handle it- how to fix people and have them become more aware of what theyre are asking to do- this is a volunteer military... It may sound cold- and that i am not... I find it more sad than anything when someone kills themself... But if everyone could say im going to kill myself and have everyone jump to their needs- Things wouldnt function properly.... I dont know- It sucks to have a fellow soldier die- either by his/her own hand or by that of another- its definitly a problem... The fact that tours have been minimized to what- 9 months now? from 18.... it may help... but then again it may not- it is a persons choice to do so... Reasons may not always be linked to the military – it may be something from back home... It a crap move to make... but just like with anything else- the only way someones really gonna get help- is if they want it... Go to church or something

    August 16, 2011 at 2:31 pm | Reply
    • Mandy

      amen to that!

      August 16, 2011 at 2:49 pm | Reply
    • Mandy

      @blacklion... It doesn't matter if they were overseas for 18 months, 9 months or 18 days, you obviously have no ideas what these brave men and women have to endure. Could you say with a straight face that it you and your best buddy were in the heat of battle and he was blown up right beside of you and pieces of his flesh, bones and blood flew over your uniform and, yes, in your mouth that you would just spit him out, brush off your uniform and continue in battle... Could you also say that this would never cross your mind ever again, and again and again???? This is a true story. Is there any wonder there are so many suicides. It's easy to be an armchair critic, isn't it!!! Most people have no idea what the military have to endure, yet are ready to condem them and more or less call them wimps.
      Salute to all the men and women in uniform and please come home safe!!!

      August 16, 2011 at 2:49 pm | Reply
      • Mandy

        Must be two Mandys here. I am Mandy 2, second entry.

        August 16, 2011 at 3:27 pm |
      • Vanlandinghale

        Armchair critics....I doubt any of them would truly know what it feels like to be in the hot sun, sweat rolling down your forehead, blinding your eyes. Heat waves simmer the horizon, causing illusions that aren't there. You don't remove your helmet for fear of being sniped. They don't know what it is like to have complete and utter chaos envelope you in a split second. They don't know what it is like to have the men you trained and became good friends with, killed right beside you..all the while making you feel helpless and pissed off at the same time. The adrenaline pumps faster, your heart races, blood of your comrade trickling down your face with your sweat. You line your sights and take the shots. BAM...haji down. BAM....another. tat tat tat from the rear flank...reassuring you that you aren't the only one left.

        It is sad that our men and women take their lives due to PTSD mainly. I on the other hand...fought not for the armchair critics that the closest thing to combat they had was call of duty.....but for the ones that supported the troops and for the comrades I lost.

        As for raising a bunch of pu$$ies....no. The true pathetic pu$$ies are the ones that ridicule the ones that actually have a pair of balls to stand and fight far from home for a cause that has been lost on most in the states.

        Those that ridicule the armed forces...I will see you in hell.

        August 16, 2011 at 3:48 pm |
    • Matt

      You hit the nail on the head. Society is raising a bunch of pu $$ ies that can't cope with life. The military is just following suit.

      August 16, 2011 at 2:49 pm | Reply
  39. Glades2

    Sounds similar to the days of the 1800's Indian Wars – soldiers or not, they are still human beings. Of course suicide is not an option for anyone, but each person has their limits, and being in such a terrible situation for as long as some have must be pushing them to the brink. Former Soviet Generals have repeatedly said Afghan is an unwinnable war – we need to take their advice and leave...

    August 16, 2011 at 2:27 pm | Reply
  40. TheLeftCoast

    What most people don't realize is that PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder) is treatable. There are two therapies that have been proven effective: EMDR and Somatic Experiencing. If you or someone you know has a history of trauma, please find a therapist in your area. You can find practtioners in your area using Google.

    August 16, 2011 at 2:26 pm | Reply
  41. 68w

    Who deploys the longest

    August 16, 2011 at 2:25 pm | Reply
  42. RAVEN 987

    Please, continue to excercise your First Ammendment Rights if you choose to do so. If you hide behind them, same on you. Its people such as yourself that cheapen our Consitution and belittle those who actually STNAD for something.

    August 16, 2011 at 2:11 pm | Reply
  43. lnc

    Side note...a huge reason that reality TV is a success is bc people can relate to some portion of it. Also, even if the dialogue is scripted, information about another's life is being shared. That information intrigues the audience, meaning being exposed to other ways of coping,living, and reacting to personal issues concerning ones self and or others is wanted. The point is everyone can comment and express their opinions but the reality to this issue of suicide is that we will never know why unless we experience it first hand, remember that doesn't mean being the parent, friend, sibling, spouse, NCO, CO, and so on of a deceased soldier, you would have to be the one contemplating suicide and being successful at it, and in that case, we would all be dead. Information needs to be shared, and these issues should be discussed. Statistics can be gathered, released, and analyzed by all in informal places like this...Resulting in weighing/identifying possible variables that could help prevent more suicides from occurring.

    August 16, 2011 at 2:06 pm | Reply
    • FormerUSMC

      I'm not sure your overall point is clear? On one hand you state that getting information from another point of view is what is needed, such as what reality TV provides. But on the other hand you state the only way to get that is from someone who is successful at suicide, which as you point out would be problematic.

      August 16, 2011 at 2:15 pm | Reply
  44. Gail

    This is just terrible.. In times like this, for the people involved, it is important to stay logical instead of emotional. This concept is the main focus in my Systematic Attitude Development-Technique...

    -Gail Kasper
    Author of Another Day Without A Cage and Unstoppable: 6 Easy Steps To Achieve Your Goals
    http://www.gailkasper.com

    August 16, 2011 at 2:03 pm | Reply
    • Zeppelin

      Are you SERIOUSLY using this article as a sales pitch?!

      Moderator(s) please delete this blatant ad from "Gail".

      August 16, 2011 at 2:36 pm | Reply
    • Mandy

      Shove your book in your a$$.

      August 16, 2011 at 2:51 pm | Reply
      • FormerUSMC

        This is a bot designed to search out key words in blogs.

        August 16, 2011 at 2:54 pm |
  45. Dj

    I remember my first tour, the problemb i have noticed as far as suicide goes is not only did the army concider a small card ACE card and a 20 minute power point enough to stop suicides, the simple fact taht soldiers couldent get proper help. The oprotunity was there, however it is not as secretive as they say. I had some problembs towards the end of my first tour on marez, and was told by my squad leader to turn my bolt into the commanding officer or first seargent. Problemb is i only wanted to go to combat stress to vent, had nothing to do with being suicidle. Long story short fix the problemb not the looks.

    August 16, 2011 at 1:58 pm | Reply
    • FormerUSMC

      This is the removal in a dignified manner I mentioned in an earlier post. Just as you stated, many members who need help are reluctant to ask for it for fear of shame, mockery, or in your case, misunderstanding.

      August 16, 2011 at 2:07 pm | Reply
  46. Anzizle

    Maybe, just maybe, life sucks way the hell more when you are in the service and you aren't able to escape to americas got talent every week with your old navy shorts and your bachelors degree from dicknose U. There ya go, problem fffing identified.

    August 16, 2011 at 1:50 pm | Reply
    • wethepeople

      Prescott Bush is the devil. maybe you ignorant American should look up you history and you might not be so surpried. but you wont you will keep watching CNN while they kill our children. WE THE PEOPLE HEARD OF THAT SAYING AMERICAN

      August 16, 2011 at 2:09 pm | Reply
      • xtremcyber

        what?

        August 16, 2011 at 2:36 pm |
  47. ROLYAT

    Obama's exact words . . . . . I'll have an uphill battle trying to get re-elected. That was an understatement.

    August 16, 2011 at 1:44 pm | Reply
  48. linzw84

    I've been AD for just over 9 years, and my recommendation for military leaders on all levels is this: use common sense. Don't expect to interact with soldiers based on a power-point slideshow you saw during your one hour of suicide awareness training or by handing out cards. Just be a real person and really get to know your troops, and you'll see the signs long before things get serious. I've seen leaders be so worried about protocol or how to approach a troop in trouble that they just act way too formal or flat out awkward, and the troop obviously then wants nothing to do with the situation.Truly knowing your troops is the best way forward.

    August 16, 2011 at 1:44 pm | Reply
    • FormerUSMC

      It's the protocol you mentioned that makes this a very hard thing to accomplish. An NCO is trained to lead in a certain manner, the protocol, and breaking from this is often seen as fraternization by their superiors. The thinking is that this will lead to troops that are less disciplined and less inclined to follow orders due to the fact that they feel they are on a friendly basis with the immediate superior. The military culture is in need of an upgrade in all aspects of structure and command.

      August 16, 2011 at 1:56 pm | Reply
  49. Reggie Williams

    The military is a killing machine. If you survive your very lucky. I watched drill sargents in basic training push a man to the point he jumped in a fox hole on the shooting range and turned a M16 on himself. It was after that they decided to let anyone go home who couldn't handle the training. The problem was they had sargents etc coming out of the war in nam to train new soldiers at a time of no war. The military is a killing machine like it or not.

    August 16, 2011 at 1:42 pm | Reply
  50. david da nurse

    afganistan does not have oil but it does have opium. of course america wants a piece of the pie...it is so sad that families are being distroyed, innocent people are dying, and the citizens back in america also have to suffer because the country is running out of money to support these pointless wars...i truly believe that money is the ROOT OF ALL EVIL!

    August 16, 2011 at 1:39 pm | Reply
    • HUGO

      YOU ARE RIGHT. FOR GOVERMENT IS MORE IMPORTANT THE MONEY THAN THE LIVE OF OUR KIDS: AFGANISTAN.
      FOR HUMANITY IS MORE IMPORTANT THEIR OUWN MONEY THAN THE LIVES OF CHILDREN: SOMALIA....
      THE UNION OF MONEY AND EGOTISM MAKE THE GREAT PROBLEM OF HUMANITY. SLUTION: LOVE AND NO MORE CAPITALISM.

      August 16, 2011 at 1:52 pm | Reply
  51. From the Land of Obama Trama

    Obama has put the finishing touches on destroying our Military. Tell my why political correctness has allowed the Muslim Traitor that killed our honorable military personnel to live this long. Eddie Slovak's trial lasted ONE day and he was put to death for desertion. Why are we silent on this matter.

    August 16, 2011 at 1:38 pm | Reply
  52. lnc

    As mentioned in the article, these statistics are newly released, 2 1/2yrs; therefore, this topic of suicide is a shock. The reactions on how to prevent this or not be associated with it seems to be equivalent to other issues such as well for example HIV. The reactions and research and perceptions of that issue reminds me of this. What can we do? Who knows? We can at least make people feel comfortable about seeking help, sharing stories, and if all statistics and information available were accessible people would realize that this is nothing new.

    August 16, 2011 at 1:31 pm | Reply
  53. FormerUSMC

    I was in the USMC from 86 to 92. During my time in Desert Shield/Storm my wife at the time had a very hard time dealing with the fact that I might die. Upon my return she tried to commit suicide over the some issues that occurred while I was away. The Corps handled my family's troubles very honorably, stepping in immediately and getting her the help she needed and myself in a position where I could stay home to help. I feel that help is, and always has been, available in these issues if the service member asks for it. The key factor in my experience was asking for help. If a service member is in trouble and fails to ask there is the potential for that member to fall through the cracks. The pressure to act like a man and suck it up are great and immediate superiors (NCOs and Staff NCOs) are not trained to properly identify a member on the verge of breakdown. Instead, the member trying to maintain the discipline he/she was taught to uphold only exasperates the problem. Any breakdown in this discipline is seen by NCOs as unruly behavior bringing reprimand and escalating the situation even further. The key to limiting suicide is to identify the potential for it by immediate superiors through training and proper implementation of that training. Once a potential problem has been identified that service member needs to be removed from the collective group in a dignified manner so the pressures of being a proper soldier can be put aside while the issue at hand can be resolved.

    August 16, 2011 at 1:25 pm | Reply
  54. kingsley Omeihe

    Quite an unfortunate expose.A lot of work has to be done most especially in the Army,the suicide rate is very alarming.Besides the right questions haven't been posed,what are those at the helm of affairs doing to prevent further suicide attempts?
    Kingsley Omeihe

    August 16, 2011 at 1:25 pm | Reply
  55. heyheyhey

    Good, these soldiers are a waste of space and tax money. No wonder the military is turning our men into wussies.

    August 16, 2011 at 1:24 pm | Reply
    • Your an idiot

      Your an idiot

      August 16, 2011 at 1:48 pm | Reply
    • drea

      Wow jackass, these are young every day people like me and u, some of them didnt hav a choice, or did but didnt know what they were getting into, they wer just trying to find answers. Why dont u try it and come back and see if you want to live in a world that doesnt understand what uv seen being out there in a war zone...

      August 16, 2011 at 1:58 pm | Reply
      • Shael

        Please don't feed the trolls.

        August 16, 2011 at 2:10 pm |
    • onedayatatime

      Why don't you move to Afghanistan you jerk?

      August 16, 2011 at 2:40 pm | Reply
  56. Robert

    As a retired Air Force MSgt and father of an airman who comitted suicide in 2002, I live everyday asking what did I miss?, What could I have done different? Throughout my entire Air Force Career I had numerous training classes about suicide and how to see the danger signs.It's BS... These soilder, sailors, airmen, and marines need help... You just cant submit someone to the things these youngsters have seen and go through. And not expect for them to change.. I was always told that the military would take care of me. Where is this now?? The system is broke... I blame the military itself for not demanding and ensuring these kids are taken care of upon their return. Battle Buddy, Wing Man what ever they are calling it now days.. We all need to bend over backwards to help them. Capitol Hill needs to stop the fighting over the bugets that cause nothing but cuts to services needed to protect the lives of the individuals and ask themselves what did I do today that could save a life?

    August 16, 2011 at 1:04 pm | Reply
    • JB

      Sorry to hear about your loss, Robert. I joined in 2000 and got a short taste of the tempo before all hell broke loose. Seems like things keep getting worse every year – more and longer deployments, longer hours, more inspections, bigger workload, more programs to manage.... all while getting rid of people left and right and cutting the money in the process. They tell us that taking care of our people comes first... I've yet to see it.

      August 16, 2011 at 1:58 pm | Reply
      • Robert

        And the VA is nothing but a JOKE.... Thier health care for Vets is substandard... Look how much has been in the news about them... They have been hiding things for years... Just read an article today that in LA a Vet was dropped off at a homeless shelter from the VA hospital dressed in hospital clothing, a robe and carrying a urine bottle sitting in a wheel chair. When it was investigated the VA hospital blocked everything they could.... Go Figure.... No wonder this is happeneing.....

        August 16, 2011 at 2:12 pm |
  57. gman

    Thank you for your service, but the real cause is centered around our troops fighting to preserve our rights only to come home and be told they have no choice after risking their lives for choice. Now they have no choice, now they have to buy Obama care because our Socialist leader does not respect sacrafice to protect our freedoms.

    August 16, 2011 at 1:03 pm | Reply
    • Gene S

      Shame on you.

      August 16, 2011 at 1:25 pm | Reply
    • devilrot

      You shouldn't try and sway the loss of a service member to suite your political views. We are not pons in chess game.

      August 16, 2011 at 2:10 pm | Reply
  58. CA GAL

    Stop sending our service members to fight wars in coutries we have no business being in.

    August 16, 2011 at 1:00 pm | Reply
    • Darryl Phillips

      Yes. Yes! YES!!!

      August 16, 2011 at 1:53 pm | Reply
  59. Sgt Pete

    I counsel those that are OEF/OIF Vets, many suicides are precipitated by some smaller problem, (a drunk driving ticket, a fight with a spouse, financial difficulty). These offenses/issues, coupled with the pending legal action add stressors to an already stressed person. If that Soldier, Sailor, Marine or Airman had an outlet outside of their chain of command, they are more likely to get help, before they reach the stage of hopelessness. I volunteer with Buddy to Buddy to offer that help. For those of you with criticizms, I challenge you to make a difference. For those of you who are supporters, Thank you. To my fellow Veterans, THANK YOU for your Service to our Great Nation!

    August 16, 2011 at 12:52 pm | Reply
    • Squid

      Thank you for your support... We (veterans) need guys like you more than ever after a deployment. When I got back, I was pretty messed up. I tried to seek out help, but was harassed by my shipmates for trying to get the necessary attention. So, I bottled up everything until I got out. Talk about just wanting to scream everyday... I see a counselor every week now at the VA. I'm so thankful that I have someone that can help me get over my issues. It's been a long time coming, that is for sure. Thanks again....

      August 16, 2011 at 1:20 pm | Reply
  60. logicareason

    If I had to live with the fact that i killed innocent people for oil or to follow orders, I might kill myself too. Especially if any of them were children.

    August 16, 2011 at 12:38 pm | Reply
    • MarineSSgt

      But you can make vicious false accusations against military personnel, anonymously hiding behind some username on the web. Why wait? Why don’t you kill yourself now, before you reproduce and infect the world with more of your spineless breed

      August 16, 2011 at 1:12 pm | Reply
    • Darryl Phillips

      The Army accepts anybody into their ranks, the other branches are more selective. Is it any wonder the Army has the highest suicide rate?

      In WWII the soldiers knew they were defending their country, since they they know they aren't, and that certainly contributes to the hopelessness and guilt of having killed other peoples.

      Unlike WWII. these soldiers know, at some level, that they did not "serve" America. They served the government, a very different concept. They served the military-industrial complex, the only reason we're over there.

      August 16, 2011 at 1:36 pm | Reply
  61. vet

    Everyone please chill; it's a hard job. We will continue to do it unit told to stop. We cannot prevent all suicides, people will always have problems. In the military those problems are just compounded. I'm glad that the DoA releases these facts civilians need to know that we know we are having problems, and really are trying to fix them. 11B3V6B 3 tours – thanks.

    August 16, 2011 at 12:34 pm | Reply
  62. Mike

    As an active duty ENLISTED soldier and an NCO, I can tell you the some of the more serious reasons that soldiers are committing suicide is because of the lack of care and the lack of attention that us as leaders and higher ranking officials in the military fail to recognize. Soldiers are treated with disrespect all the time. They always give us classes on equal opportunity and suicide prevention ONLY because they are required to do so! When a soldier has a problem and they bring it up to their chain of command, they brush it off their shoulders and act like it's not a big deal. Yes, keep thinking it's not a big deal and don't do anything about it, but sit there and wonder why we have had more suicides than any other branch of service COMBINED! 163 soldiers are laying in graves and their families are sitting at their tables with one empty spot because the leaders of in the Army are not paying attention to the problems at hand! Wake up leaders! It's time to reflect on your soldiers problems and address them as needed! Listen to what your soldiers have to say and care for them instead of wondering if your getting a four day weekend this weekend! It's what you are getting paid to do! Step up, make the commitment, and be a leader! Take care of your soldiers so that we can mitigate these problems!
    Military Police NCO, Active Duty

    August 16, 2011 at 12:32 pm | Reply
    • heyheyhey

      your job is to go into battle and kill or die for the US. Stop complaining about not being treated nicely. You're in the military, what do you expect? Milk and cookies. Toughen up and do as you're told. Don't like it? Get out.

      No wonder the army is the way it is now. In ww2, they fought through snow, bullets, hunger, etc. Now, they're complaining about wanting to be treated nicely. what a shame

      August 16, 2011 at 12:48 pm | Reply
      • gmualum08

        You make a valid point that no longer applies to modern society. As an example, thousands of years ago in Greece, the spartans had different roles that each person had to play in their society and they did only that. The Spartan soldiers for example were soldiers who fought in war, and were toughened up from 6 years old and up to be brutal, skilled, killing machines. When they weren't fighting a war they were training for the next war. In this society, soldiers are told they have to be brutal killing machines, yet when the war is over they are expected to go back to a 9 to 5 job and act like a regular civilian, that part doesn't make sense to me. Either you are a solder or you aren't, you can't expect them to play both roles and think it's not going to cause psychological conflicts.

        August 16, 2011 at 2:10 pm |
    • Michelle

      I could not agree with you more. I was married to a soldier and our marriage fell apart because of the continues stress with his job, because of domestic violence in the marriage, everything was going wrong you name it. I will never forget the one time when one of his NCOs was driving me home because all they could do was keep him in the baracks unable to see me and on our way I was telling him about the issues I thought needed to be addressed that my husband had and the only thing he told me was that if i was to bring those issues up higher that it could ruin his career and if that is what I wanted. At the time I didnt know how to deal with any of it, two months later I left. I often think of him and wonder how he is doing and always hope that he got the help that he deserved.

      August 16, 2011 at 12:50 pm | Reply
    • AI Soldier

      I wouldn't say that. I was Airborne Infantry with the 82nd Airborne and they took suicide attempts very seriously; even if you haven't acted on the suicide yet. My unit realized the significance of this problem and did everything in their power to prevent all suicides. Once a soldier was recognized to have suicidal ideations, they were given a full physical evaluation then sent to psych to have a mental evaluation. From there, proper treatment was given and if the soldier was still having these ideations, they were then given an option to either change jobs in the Army or leave the service all together. Since 99% of all soldiers with these thoughts are Vets, they were referred to their hometown VA clinic for further treatment; if they chose to leave the military. The VA hospitals and clinics have been extremely helpful in the past couple of years and are starting to offer better treatment options for all veternas in need. There is some kind of responsiblilty on the veteran to seek this treatment but when they do, it's there for life; or until they don't need it anymore. Granted not all vets will seek treatment or help before they act on their thoughts but a half decent chain of command will recognize the signs and help their soldier out. I know for most of the gung ho soldiers out there, their pride will get in the way because of how they were trained in basic. There is no shame going to sick call or talking to your chain of command about this, because it is serious. They will want to help you because you'll only hurt the team if something happens. All the means of help are there, in and out of the military, the person just has to speak up.

      August 16, 2011 at 12:57 pm | Reply
    • Kyle

      @heyheyhey: " In ww2, they fought through snow, bullets, hunger, etc. Now, they're complaining about wanting to be treated nicely. what a shame"

      You're a sub-human being troll. No soldier expects to be treated nicely out in the areas of a war zone. But when they come home to their own country, you're saying that they should expect to be treated like crap? They do as they are told, which is why they do fight through bullets, snow, hunger, etc...in war zones. Not at home. Spare the world of your gene pool, and do not reproduce.

      August 16, 2011 at 1:05 pm | Reply
      • heyheyhey

        I'm not a troll idiot. I'm just stating the truth. You joined the military knowing its risk and consequences. You choose to do so. You do as you're told.

        So what if you go home and people are saying bad things about you? What are we supposed to suspend freedom of speech for your sorry self. I guess the army is only good for one thing, making a bunch of wimps who "feelings are hurt." These aren't men, they might as well put on a dress and go to the ball.

        Save yourself the trouble kyle, just go kill yourself. It's people like you that these troops are committing suicide.

        August 16, 2011 at 1:23 pm |
      • First Class Sergeant in A'stan

        @HeyHeyHey, you seem like a very angry military hating individual. Telling someone to go kill themselves is just downright nasty giving what this story is highlighting. Soldier have the right to want to be respected and should be treated with respect, not because they are Soldiers but because they’re humans. Following orders and being respected are two different things. We are expected to go into battle and defend our country, but doing so under maltreatment is not expected and not acceptable by any means.

        August 16, 2011 at 1:53 pm |
      • SoldierReady

        Very well said Kyle. @heyheyhey, you are an idiot. Don't criticize someone for playing a game that you won't even suit up for. You have no idea what it's like and I bet you don't have the balls to do it....shut up or put up. Wuss....

        August 16, 2011 at 2:37 pm |
    • Junior soldier

      What do you expect. I am a Specialist in the army and I currently am in a command that doesnt care about its soldiers. The only thing most of these NCO's and officers care about is making them selves look good and our training is a reuiremnt and they only follow it because they have too. Even speaking out aginst certain areas in th emilitary can affect your carrer and many soldiers like myself feel hopeless when it come sto the army. Suck it up is the implied message since even if you go to mental health they will hold it against you by thinking your weak on your evaulations. Everything you do is so highly regulated that you have no outlets sometimes. So throw in some combat stress and fatigue into already hostile work enviroments what do you expect happns? We are told all the time how even something as small as being late or disagreeing with an NCO can lead to punishmnet which can affect your carrer. People dont realize that if we do not get an honorable discharge we lose all benefits. So go and put a person in a situation where they have fought and bled for this country threatn to take away the few benefits he fought for and then kick him to the curb what do you expect will happen? I love and respect most the soldiers i work with but the Army is a fate i do not wish on my worst enemy. Just look at the toxic leader survey the army just came out with. They are everywhere.

      August 16, 2011 at 1:32 pm | Reply
    • Shael Christian

      @heyheyhey – I take it your either in the military and subscribe to the "suck it up" crowd or one of the military haters who need to relise that your "good life" would not exist with out the military. Personnally, if you had ever been in the military(Army especially) you would know that joining the military as a fresh face from high school, does not mean that you know what your getting into. The Army is one of the worst branches of military in terms of "quatlity of life" (a term the miltary uses a lot of). Even the marines are treated better than some low ranking soldiers in the Army. It's obvious that you have NEVER served any time in a war zone or you probably wouldn't so vocal about the "suck it up" part. Tell you what, serve 4 years in the Army (which would be at least 3 tours of duty in a war zone). Sit back as they tell you that you are part of the stop loss for your career field and that you will be going back OEF to serve another tour maybe two, and THEN come here and say "suck it up". Assuming that your rear does not get blown off by some IED, hit by some sniper or that you come back in a pine box. Then get stuck in some barracks that house 4-8 men to a room, chow that sucks most of the time, and oh that precious "freedom of speech", yeah, that does not exist in the Army or any branch for that matter. Yep, we sure knew what we signed up for at 18. - Signed Shael, Retired USAF ... Confirmed Army Brat.

      August 16, 2011 at 2:35 pm | Reply
  63. shaughnessyl

    I am the witer of this post. Thank you all for responding. Most of the responses have been enlightening and informative.
    Suicides in the military is not a problem the will go away and not one we at CNN will stop covering.
    But it's not easy to tell the complete story without talking to rank and file soldiers, marines, sailors and airmen who have seen the problem, and the various "solutions" the services have tried, up close. Needless to say the Pentagon Public Affairs machine isn't bending over backwards to put us touch with such people.
    If any of you wish to contact me to help us with future stories, please feel free to email me at Larry.shaughnessy@turner.com. Nothing you write in your email, or say to us in future conversations will be used until and unless you agree that it is ok.

    Again, thank you for posting here and thank you all for your service to our country.

    Larry

    August 16, 2011 at 12:10 pm | Reply
    • Thomas

      Our military members are under so much pressure, it is sad that this many of them think that suicide is the right answer.
      The desperation that would cause someone to kill themselves must be very deep.

      Wars are full of causalities and that includes causalities that could be prevented. I salute the honour of all our causalities, especially the ones still alive.

      All gave some, some gave all.

      August 16, 2011 at 12:34 pm | Reply
    • Jeff

      Larry, I am a rank and file SFC in the Army and I'm telling you – we work in a culture of death and the emphasis is not on life. We equate winning war with numbers of enemy killed and or captured and NOT hearts and minds won – though, that is arguably what we are said to be trying to do. Jesus told his disciples before his crucifixion as recorded in John 16:33 – "In the world you shall have tribulation; but be of GOOD CHEER, for I have overcome the world." – LIFE, not as the world can give it but as can only be eternally depended on – and not in a suicidal vest manner as fanatics from all religions have claimed.

      August 16, 2011 at 12:35 pm | Reply
  64. Stephen

    When I was in the Navy, we would get these BS required training things that were apparently coming from the top dogs of the armed forces. It was just a stupid video about suicide. No changes are ever made, it is just shut your mouth and so your job. The chain of command pretend like they were listening to sailors thoughts and possible changes, but nothing ever happened. I felt like I was a robot in the military, but unlike some of these other people who were scared to step up to their division officers and leaders, I was not afraid. I paid for it on my evaluations, which was perfectly fine with me, I knew I was getting out of the Navy anyway, but I was not going to let them walk all over me and the people I worked directly with. It is no wonder why the suicide rate is so high.....these people volunteer to fight for there country, but they are treat like absolute crap.....So, yeah, the pentagon can sit their and say they are concerned with the high suicide rates, they really don't care, they know that there are thousands of other recruits in basic training and awaiting basic training at this very second to fill that dead mans boots. If we could only send someone to the military for 4 years undercover.....It would make one hell of a movie, and raise a lot of eyebrows......

    August 16, 2011 at 12:04 pm | Reply
  65. Shannon

    The Army needs to stop doing powerpoints and cards about suicide prevention and so something productive. Make it so that if someone seeks counseling it will not negatively affect their careers. I don't care what the upper officers in the Army say- on the unit level if you have to go to counseling or go on antidepressants it will have a negative effect. A powerpoint and singling someone out to put on suicide watch does no good. If someone needs to be on suicide watch they need a professional counselor to do this- not another soldier- other soldiers are not equipped and trained to deal with other's emotional issues. They need to open their eyes and see what really happens on the unit level. Seems to me some Army officers and administrators need to be an undercover boss to see how things really work in their organization. Most of the times things get done but not effectively or efficiently.

    August 16, 2011 at 11:53 am | Reply
  66. ActiveDutyProfessional

    Ihateliberals: you are very angry, obviously young, and apparently not working as your comments are during the duty day. Do push-ups and get back to work. Also, conduct yourself better. You are an embarrassment to a very time-honored profession who does care about its Soldiers and cares to inform the general public in a professional manner how much we do care about helping our wounded; either psychologically or physically. Leaders deal 80% of their day with the troubled few. Believe me; ask any spouse of a 10+ year veteran... they will tell you how much effort is put into PTSD Soldiers. There is no “man” or “great conspiracy”. The Army is simply a large conglomerate of individuals working together to help one another, keep an Army ready to defend, and maintain awareness of what threats will come in the future. In time you will understand. For all civilians out there, forgive his ignorance and immaturity. Your thoughts and comments are welcome. We exist to keep you speaking freely and we don’t require anything for it other than support in times of need. For my fellow vets, "take the high ground."

    August 16, 2011 at 11:52 am | Reply
    • Ready to retire

      STFU! YOU are an embarrassment to the military!

      August 16, 2011 at 1:01 pm | Reply
  67. Ralph in Orange Park, FL

    I wonder how long the Army will keep reporting the suicide figures if a Republican wins the next presidential election.

    August 16, 2011 at 11:49 am | Reply
    • Wikdj

      Maybe as long as the networks kept the daily death toll of the wars as their nightly headlines once a democrat got into office......

      August 16, 2011 at 12:04 pm | Reply
  68. Dr. Mumbai

    ___ Mission Accomplished !! ___

    August 16, 2011 at 11:48 am | Reply
  69. sarf

    BRING 'EM HOME!!!!!!!

    August 16, 2011 at 11:46 am | Reply
  70. Jeff

    The problem with the Army's approach to combatting suicide is this: it is overly focused on the problem and not on the solution. The solution is to cultivate a culture of life. Leaders do this by ensuring that their soldiers get enough quality time to experience the Life, Liberty, and Pursuits of Happiness that they have sworn to defend. THAT'S IT!

    August 16, 2011 at 11:45 am | Reply
  71. Woodpecker

    So this is an interesting article as just this past weekend at drill I was handed yet another Suicide prevention card and was told it’s an inspectable item. (FML) So now this is three suicide prevention cards I am required to carry. To further add insult to an already incompetent display of policy we were forced to have six other soldiers sign a form saying they would be my suicide prevention battle buddy. Does the Army not see that passing out cards and treating you like a child does not help but rather pushes you further away from respecting anything the Army puts out. This is a half assed attempt to push responsibility away from our Army leaders and down on the young solider required to do things we would not ask our worse enemy to do and treat them like assholes in the process. You know why the Marines have such a low suicide rate? Anyone? They have pride in their branch of service or at least the majority of them do. They feel like they belong to something important. Most soldiers will not tell their Friends they are in the Army. They would rather be known for spending time in jail before spending time in a Army unit. You want suicides to go down don’t blow smoke up my ass treat me like an adult and not a child. Give me the option to contribute rather than look busy because of the lack of planning on our leaders part. Give me something to be proud of rather than saying you enlisted your recruiter should have told you this organization was worthless. Most things wrong with the Army can be corrected rather quickly but they need to change the way they look at their soldiers. Hold them to a higher standard not a lower one, Get rid of the idiots “ They get people killed”, and actually train their leaders to think and use common sense.

    MP Sgt North Carolina

    August 16, 2011 at 11:41 am | Reply
    • Bama

      Agreed, Sergeant.

      Commo SPC Alabama

      August 16, 2011 at 1:24 pm | Reply
  72. dyoungyo1

    The army has a high suicide rate because it is the only service that treats its troops like crap. And their suicide prevention is an hour long powerpoint that is honestly one of the most boring classes in the world. The army needs to revamp how they train soldiers, and begin to recognize, appreciate, and understand a soldiers family circumstances by allowing soldiers to make their families a larger part of army life, instead of someone you just go home to.

    August 16, 2011 at 11:19 am | Reply
  73. GC

    Yes, that is exactly what I am saying! Some of young kids that are enlisting are signing up for the thrive of looking and being cool and can wanting to kick some ass, but then they come to the reality of it all and realized they made a terrible mistake and there is no way of getting out of it. They look for help some emotional support from us living the great American dream and wishing they can go back in time and not have sign their lives to the government.

    August 16, 2011 at 10:58 am | Reply
    • Ben

      WE NEED RON PAUL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
      WE NEED RON PAUL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
      WE NEED RON PAUL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
      MORE THAN EVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      August 16, 2011 at 11:21 am | Reply
      • Ralph in Orange Park, FL

        I am assuming you are touting Ron Paul as a solution because he is promising to get the troops out of the endless wars that are contributing to the problem.

        August 16, 2011 at 11:45 am |
      • Jeff

        I concur
        I concur
        I concur

        August 16, 2011 at 12:04 pm |
      • Bob

        Yes. Support our troops: Bring them home!

        August 16, 2011 at 12:19 pm |
      • ladydi

        WHO THE HELL IS RON PAUL? I DONT READ NEWSPAPERS – ALWAYS BAD NEWS THERE – SO IM REALLY IN THE DARK AS TO WHO HE IS.....PLEASE ENLIGHTEN ME.

        August 16, 2011 at 12:33 pm |
      • Bama

        Exactly Ben!

        Ron Paul 100%!!!

        August 16, 2011 at 1:27 pm |
  74. rex

    Why the Army has a higher rate of suicides is easy to answer.
    1. They have the longest deployments. No other branch goes for as long of a period as the Army. Now down to 12 months but still the longest. Going to 9 months next year but not bringing the soldiers back earlier.
    2. They fight the ugly part of the war. The infantry is out there everyday in the middle of it. They do not get to go back to a FOB at night but stay in a COB in the middle of the war. There is no down time for them.
    The marines and the special forces are the only ones that are also in the middle of the enemy zone each day. Air Force & Navy do not get into the middle of this war.
    3. The Infantry is not treated the same as the other branches. A loss in the infantry is not looked on the same by the powers that be. It's just seen as a cost of the war which is sad.

    August 16, 2011 at 10:49 am | Reply
    • Ben

      WE NEED RON PAUL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
      WE NEED RON PAUL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
      WE NEED RON PAUL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      August 16, 2011 at 11:22 am | Reply
    • Boz

      I think you will find both Navy and Air Force are in the middle of the war, just because you don't know about it doesn't mean it isn't happening.

      RIP the 22 sailors and 3 airmen who died in the helo crash last week.

      August 16, 2011 at 11:34 am | Reply
      • fp

        The Army was in Afghanistan before any other force because it has Paratroopers, Rangers, Green Berets, Delta Force. They dont need landing strips to land toops unlike the Marines. So no they are not first to fight. They were all in 3 months before the Marines. The Army does 1 1/2 yr tours at some points. These long tours reap havoc on families all the way around. Its much harder on the Army than any of the other branches. The Air Force and Navy have a very very very small group of people that see any combat and even then not for long periods at a time which wears on a Service member.

        August 16, 2011 at 11:55 am |
      • Boz

        fp – actually Navy was first in, and there have been no "paratroopers" jumping into afghanistan, in fact the last jump was by the 75th and that was Iraq. Might need to do some research on your facts bud.

        August 17, 2011 at 10:21 am |
  75. DMAN

    The truth of the matter from the inside is this. I am a 17 year veteran on AD, been on several deployments and deal with a great deal of stress at work. I see a psychiatrist at my local Army Hospital. I started about eight month ago when I felt I could no longer deal with things myself (walls closing in feeling like I had no other options to calm and clear myself-but death!) While I know this is said to be a "permanent solution" to a "temporary problem" that's far easier to say and may be true, but when you deal with some of these issues, it's more difficult than one can imagine: first, to recognize the need for help, Second, to accept the reality of that need and to take action. Then, you have the fear of losing things such as family, security clearances, promotions, job opportunities..... This puts you in an endless cycle.
    So I am seeing this Psychiatrist, (thinking I am finally getting help-who cares what it cost-short of my family!) It takes a month to actually get in to see him, we sit in this room and he starts getting baseline information from me... I am opening up because I want and need the help. We discuss my habits, needs fears, and issues. He prescribed me a medication (with instructions) I took as prescribed. I went back and forth adjusting the medicine trying to get the desired results. In the meantime I had several episodes and breakdowns. I told him I was still having these feelings, the meds were not working. So he said we need to put you on something different, same pattern: inadequate medicinal response, followed by increased dosage,.... I have even attempted to research some of my issues myself and present them to him, but he responds -more or less: We can sit and talk all day long, but it's not going to change anything...... I have spoke with another psychiatrist and he asked what the other psych was doing then said I agree with him!
    I am sure if this is happening to me and I am at this point in my career I can only imagine what is happening to the newer/younger individuals with worse issues!

    August 16, 2011 at 10:46 am | Reply
    • Ihateliberals

      HOLY CRAP!! Your are a god damn liar! You cant even be in the military before your 17 so how the hell could you have possibly graduated basic, ait, been on several deployments, AND be seeing a shrink for 8 months??? You should be ashamed of the lies you just wrote... Again if you dont like it pack your bags and get the hell out we dont need you!

      August 16, 2011 at 10:51 am | Reply
      • DMAN

        Dumb-Azz not a 17 y/o veteran a 17 yr vet. Learn to read!

        August 16, 2011 at 10:54 am |
      • Ihateliberals

        Maby a 17 yr vet shouldnt bash his organization, but being in for 17 years i guess you should Know That

        August 16, 2011 at 10:57 am |
      • Please Read

        He said he was a 17 year veteran not 17 years old

        August 16, 2011 at 10:59 am |
      • Proudvetwife

        He said 17 year vet, meaning hes been in for 17 years, hes not 17 years old

        August 16, 2011 at 11:01 am |
      • Vet

        The military sucks in the way it treats depression and post-traumatic stress disorder. Anyone who has been in any length of time knows this. Unless brave individuals speak up, the military is not going to do anything about it and the Army is going to continue to have high numbers of suicide. It seems that liberals are the only thing you hate.

        August 16, 2011 at 11:02 am |
      • mosbo

        You need to learn to read. He said he is a 17 year veteran meaning he has been in the army for 17 years

        August 16, 2011 at 11:03 am |
      • Leatherneck

        17 year veteran, not 17 years old. You're forgiven though, expected from a republican.

        August 16, 2011 at 11:03 am |
      • Haydee

        I believe he means 17 years of service, not 17 years old.

        August 16, 2011 at 11:03 am |
      • SkepticInNJ

        Too bad you didn't take the time to actually read what was written. He said he was a veteran of 17 years. Your knee-jerk reaction only exposes you, along with your name here, as ignorant and spiteful with an agenda to promote. Without so-called liberals you wouldn't be enjoying the freedoms you enjoy today, including the right to publish your ignorant, compassionless remarks.

        August 16, 2011 at 11:03 am |
      • ae.nat

        This person wrote "17 year veteran," not that they joined at 17. Before writing such vitriol to a complete stranger, especially someone who is commenting honestly about a very serious issue, perhaps you should read a bit more carefully.

        August 16, 2011 at 11:05 am |
      • jdogg

        He means he has been in the military for 17 years, not that he is 17 years old, you goddamn moron. By now he must be mid to late thirties, or early forties.
        Have a little respect for the sacrifice that he has put himself through. DMAN is obviously desperate for help.

        August 16, 2011 at 11:27 am |
      • Thomas

        Damn Ihateliberals,

        I bet you feel pretty embarrassed at this as you should be. Not that you had a lot of credibility before, but after this, you are a nobody.

        August 16, 2011 at 12:41 pm |
      • Ready to retire

        Please Do everyone a favor and STFU, YOU are an idiot! He said a 17yr veteran, gosh you're stupid!

        August 16, 2011 at 1:07 pm |
      • cj

        What he said means that he has been in the Army for seventeen years.Go expand your mind,go read a book for the love of god.Stop being so pointlessly hateful.

        August 16, 2011 at 1:50 pm |
      • Old Fool

        Boy, are you stupid. He is a 17 year veteran. Been in the Army 17 years. Tell us all about your service, goofball. Nobody who served would say what you say. You're the kind of dumba$$ that gave us 8 years of GW Bush. This is all your fault you false patriot.

        August 16, 2011 at 8:01 pm |
    • Vet

      I hate Liberals– please learn to read. He is a 17 year veteran which means– HE HAS BEEN IN THE SERVICE FOR 17 YEARS. Not that he's 17 years old...

      August 16, 2011 at 11:00 am | Reply
    • Snoot

      Ihateliberals: and how many years did you serve, super patriot?

      August 16, 2011 at 11:10 am | Reply
    • First Class Sergeant in A'stan

      DMAN,
      Thanks for sharing your experience as a 14 year veteran myself currently deployed to A’stan I know all too well what you are going through. For that reason I make it a daily mission of mine to talk to soldiers not only mine but others to see how they are doing in this environment. Sometimes, something as simple as “Hi, soldier how is your day? “goes a long way. Being deployed we at times get so wrapped up in our world and our own stuff that we forget that our Battle Buddies and even our Soldiers are experiencing the same issues the same issues we are. Speaking from experience the system does work. I had the opportunity to meet with a great Army Psychiatrist (they really do exist) that wasn’t quick to push meds but to find alternative routes to helping my deal and I was fortunate enough that he deployed with the unit and I can use him as a sounding board or refer other soldiers to him that may need his assistance.

      August 16, 2011 at 1:33 pm | Reply
      • DMAN

        @First Class Sergeant in A'stan,

        Thanks, glad to hear that you are keeping an active role with the troop around you and you have good psych help. In my initial writing it wasn't at an attempt to bash the the any Psychs, but as a bit of insight. I believe (especially after hearing your view) that there are some really good Psychiatrist in the Army (military) on that note there are some not-so-good ones out there too.

        Take care and watch your six!

        August 16, 2011 at 4:31 pm |
      • Old Fool

        Thank you doubly for your service. As a Viet Era vet I worked with vets while going to college in a program to get them GEDs and into school or training. after their service. I still have good feelings from those days. It is also good that you are smart enough to realize your weaknesses, under that strong exterior, and are taking care of your self. When you get back to what we called "the World" back then you be more able to cope with how different it is. Hang in their soldier, and thanks again.

        August 16, 2011 at 7:53 pm |
      • beenthere

        when you have the docs, therapists, psychiatrists, public, all brainwashed by corruption and lies – which is rampant in the mental health field due to the pharmaceutical companies, major universities that do the testing, research, and recommending – and have way to easy access to unaware vets in the VA system and otherwise – as well as ready access to the vet's families ... then you get what you are experiencing and describing and trying to survive. if your still reading this board – read how to survive what you have fallen victim to like so many others in the mental health field from one perspective of someone still trying to survive – but only from the outside looking at the military soldiers and veterans and their families becoming far dangerous toys in this deadly game of mental health corruption, distortion, coverups, and lies and screaming straight in the faces of those resposible – – – and knowing that they still are listening.

        August 17, 2011 at 8:15 am |
      • beenthere

        i mean't knowing that they still are NOT listening
        some of them anyway
        the ones who are still making money off the corruption and lies mostely
        because their the ones who made and endorsed the lies and total waste of so many liives and so much money
        and their the ones who are preventing healthy needed change and direction from the leaders who are responsible

        you have to learn meditation, breathing, yoga – releases toxins in the body and brain and mind and joints like hips where much emotion is stored – picture sitting crosslegged and learning the power of ohmmm and the release of total awareness in stillness of breath. also learn tai chi and other martial arts – as it teaches breath and action and the duality of war and peace

        also study sunweather at spaceweather.com and other environmental stressors from magnetiics and electronics as it changes brain patterns and moods, etc. be more aware – in stillness – not less in medicated numbness that only causes you to be less in control of yourself – forgive yourself for being sick – there are so many sick right now – you are only human but therefore can than use visualization and the true realization of life and power to heal and survive

        namaste

        August 17, 2011 at 8:28 am |
  76. Ken

    A localized problem is the Ft Riley Warrior Transition Battalion (WTB), a unit chartered to facilitate the healing and transition back to active duty or military separation is treating the soldiers like prisoners. All soldiers regardless of medical condition should be treated with dignity and respect.

    August 16, 2011 at 10:45 am | Reply
  77. Al

    There are 5 branches of the service

    August 16, 2011 at 10:42 am | Reply
    • linzw84

      actually, there are 4 and the marines fall under the navy. i bet you wanted some coast guard recognition.

      August 16, 2011 at 1:27 pm | Reply
  78. From the Land of Obama Trama

    Suicide is an act of cowardice and selfishness. This tells you a little about our PC military strategy does it not.

    August 16, 2011 at 10:39 am | Reply
    • Ben

      No it doesn't you idiot. And No, suicide is not an act of selfishness, nor is it an act of a coward.
      Suicide is an act of desperate saddness that seems like it will never go away.
      You don't know what they are going through.
      Wow, next time you look in the mirror, repeat this phrase – I am an idiot!!! over and over

      August 16, 2011 at 10:57 am | Reply
    • Dave

      Suicide is a symptom of depression and a reaction to mental or physical pain, coupled with feelings of hoplessness and helplessness. We have to respect the pain people feel

      August 16, 2011 at 11:10 am | Reply
    • Snoot

      You're wrong. You're ignorant. End of story.

      August 16, 2011 at 11:11 am | Reply
  79. howdoyoulikeyourwarsnow

    still want to keep sending your boys of to wars to "defend freedom and liberty"? why don't u all think about this before dropping bombs everywhere. i bet most of these poor kids have to live with the fact that they had to kill women and children to satisfy the thirst for blood of fat lazy dumb americans. if the taliban doesn't kill'em, they'll do it themselves.

    August 16, 2011 at 10:30 am | Reply
    • Ihateliberals

      Are you really that ignorant? Being a soldier who has deployed twice i can say we dont kill women and kids, so unless you have first hand experiance shut your mouth, pack your bags, and go live in iran where they have freedome, rights, and everything else your lookibg for.

      August 16, 2011 at 10:47 am | Reply
      • heyheyhey

        Yes, you're absolutely correct. The fact that CNN reports that NATO killed a bunch of women and children and wikileaks as well must mean they're both lying. I mean come on, those women and children died on their own. The US is some godly country that has never harmed any civilians, like we did in Iraq, Afghanistan, Vietnam, Laos, Japan, Kosovo, Yemen, somalia, libyia, etc.

        August 16, 2011 at 12:53 pm |
    • Ben

      YES!|!!
      I believe that is the case. These poor soldiers are sent to kill without question. We are fighting no real enemy and are pretty much shooting anything that moves. Unless you are a psychopath, you are going to have a problem with that.
      Think about it, our soldiers are killing in the name of OIL, not to save any American lives. Soldiers who are good, kind hearted people will have a serious inner conflict when they are ordered to kill the people who's country they have invaded!!

      August 16, 2011 at 11:03 am | Reply
      • mosbo

        Since when does Afghanistan have large amounts of oil and how has the oil in Iraq helped America

        August 16, 2011 at 11:07 am |
      • rex

        You have no clue what you are talking about. Before they can engage they must get the OK from above. No one is just shooting anything that moves. They are trained daily and know what they are doing.
        Proud of our military!

        August 16, 2011 at 11:15 am |
      • Guy

        I'm a veteran of Iraq and Afganistan, and in the infantry. The army creates alot if it's own problems. The just deal with it attitude needs to come back to an extent. The army spends touch time and money with online suicide prevention training, power points, sending us NCOs to courses that give us "resiliency" training that we have to give to soldiers. They make privates from
        Basic training carry suicide privation cards in there wallet. There are posters all over buildings on post that talk about it. This doesn't do anything, people can walk in and get help if they need it, all soldiers know that they cannot be stopped from getting metal and physical health services. They stigma has gone away for the most part which is good, it rarely affects security clearance and promotion now. But some times the chain of command just needs to tell soldiers to grab there testicles and man up. Almost 1/3 rd of our suicides in our battalion were after people were pending ucmj, and they try and use the, I'm going to kill myself route to get out of it. I have had friends who have really tried to kill them selves, and none of them were deployment related. War sucks, but it's our job. Most soldiers, especially combat arm soldiers, get that. Also, for you peace lovers out there, I lost people in Iraq, I never agreed with the war, but we did our job as a soldier does it. Please, stop blaming conflict for every problem the army has. The military is getting softer, and the high level leaders and congressional men and women need to analyze how thing were to where they're going now. They will see that there's a break down in that you can't always be soft and deal with issues like you would in a civilian job, in a job that requires stress, hardship and some times the ultimate sacrifice.

        August 16, 2011 at 11:50 am |
  80. Ronski23

    Bush's mess.

    But I doubt he cares.

    August 16, 2011 at 10:29 am | Reply
  81. GC

    Doesn't matter who is governing the U.S. when it comes to this issue. A lot has to do with the entire military system that is at fault with what is happening to these people. Many of these people are showing signs of depression as early as in boot camp and really there is nothing the military does to help them out other than some psychiatric help. They are still treated like crap and have to deal internally with their feelings of the reality that they are stuck. I know this is happening for a fact and it's so sad that we can't really help them out, only try to understand and support them as much as possible. It's so sad. ;-(

    August 16, 2011 at 10:29 am | Reply
    • From the Land of Obama Trama

      Yes our Military and our Past and present Presidents are at fault. PCness has brought us to this mess. Look people getting shot at tend to get depressed real quick like. It use to be that you maned up or died now with our diluted military that cant happen.

      August 16, 2011 at 10:35 am | Reply
      • Lisa C

        From the Land of Obama,
        You are what is wrong with this country. You are ignorant beyond words

        August 16, 2011 at 10:57 am |
    • Ben

      You can support them by voting for RON PAUL!!!
      PLEASE SPREAD THE WORD!!!

      August 16, 2011 at 11:04 am | Reply
      • Avg American

        Yeah, I don't think so.

        August 16, 2011 at 12:56 pm |
    • From the Land of Obama Trama

      Dear Lisa How diverse are the SeaBees??? NOT they only take the best and Women cant hack it. This used to be the standard but no more. Just wait till you face the Chinese who will be brutal and our militarys technology will no longer shield us. YOUR BAD

      August 16, 2011 at 12:16 pm | Reply
  82. blacklion128

    i was a soldier... And ill tell you that in the first 9 week basic training alone- 3 guys offed themselves... I was infantry- 3 guys offed themselves at my unit... And for None of them- did anybody know why... Out of those 6 guys- that I knew.... They were older- so age- im not so sure is the problem- each one had stuff goin on with their family or their partner- or their kids- and none of them really wanted help... They got it when they needed it- but- imuh say that ALOT of joes- threaten themselves- and much of the time- it is not taken seriously til its too late... I find it sad as much as it is stupid.. You can fix anything as long as you have the time too... And ya sorta run outta time when your hanging from a rope- turnin the weapon on yourself-or jumpin from the top of 4 story buildings. I personally feel that it was because of the soldiers really just wanting out- weither it was-they wanted to be back home where they didnt feel alone-boredom-or felt trapped and wanted out.. Idk- its always fucked up

    August 16, 2011 at 10:22 am | Reply
    • Ihateliberals

      BS! You were not infantry you pog, infantry has a 16 week osut like all other combat MOS. Dont like it? Pack your bags and get the hell out!

      August 16, 2011 at 10:44 am | Reply
      • mosbo

        Maybe as a lower enlisted soldier you can't grasp that the military has changed over time. When I enlisted 11b was only 14 weeks and that was just 10 years ago. And don't think you are hot shit BC you are infantry, pretty much an male can do your job

        August 16, 2011 at 11:13 am |
      • SkepticInNJ

        Clearly the military experience you had did a lot for your personality, turning you into an angry, hateful, aggressive, intolerant jerk. Or maybe you were always that way. Did you consider perhaps that what he meant was that in the first 9 weeks of basic training 3 men killed themselves? Being always on the attack – perhaps paranoid as well? – you can't give anyone the benefit of the doubt. One wonders why you're such an apologist for the Army. Perhaps because you can't face your own anger at it and abuse by it? Has hate always been your core value?

        August 16, 2011 at 11:14 am |
      • GetReal

        @Ihateliberals...you should do society a favor and off yourself. You seem to have a lot of pent up anger.

        August 16, 2011 at 11:17 am |
      • blacklion128

        excuse me... Who are you? do you know me? i am the queen of battle dickhead- shut your co^^sucker

        August 16, 2011 at 1:57 pm |
      • blacklion128

        excuse me... Ihateliberals
        Who are you? do you know me? i am the queen of battle dickhead- shut your co^^sucker
        ...... and to the rest of you- who were NOT in the military- you dont have the knowledge to know- what goes on in the ranks... IT is NOT the militarys fault- its societies.... Individuals make their own choices- selfish it is to take your own life... Im sure their mother didnt cross their mind- and if she did- ignorance is bliss and they ignored the thought of how she'd take it at the funeral

        August 16, 2011 at 2:00 pm |
      • blacklion128

        Ihateliberals
        I said 9 weeks because NO ONE KILLED THEMSELVES tryin to go the fuck home after that... dont be stupid- you make yourself sound so with your assumptions... reattatch your head to your shoulders an snap back to reality- for all i know- your a POG- i was 11B2B- know what that is??? i really dont care whos what- i wasnt and still am NOT the asshole type- if your in uniform your doin more than some hippie living in trees or thinking your christian holding signs at funerals like them kansas fucks- im done here- your an idiot dude- do push ups... lol-

        August 16, 2011 at 2:06 pm |
  83. truth

    THOSE BOY'S,ARE SOFT...

    August 16, 2011 at 10:10 am | Reply
    • Putney

      Truth,
      What has soft got to do with someone who decides to take his life and actually does it? The reality is war and combat affect soldiers differently. Have you ever been in the military and served during a war or military crisis? I will pray for you.

      August 16, 2011 at 10:47 am | Reply
    • Ben

      Can you imagine how wrong you are?
      Is it soft to feel bad about killing men, women, and childern for the sake of making the worlds rich – richer?
      IF you can kill people for that reason, you are NOT hard, your a psychopath.......

      August 16, 2011 at 11:06 am | Reply
      • Military Brat

        I agree with you! These men and women who sign up to fight for our country are brave regardless! Not everyone can make that kind of commitment, or are strong enough people to not knowing the full extent of the tours and what can come of them. Until you are in there shoes in a foreign country praying that they will make it home to their loved ones alive and not in a casket while being strong and fighting for our country they have no room to talk... Thank you for all that is serving our country!!!!

        August 16, 2011 at 1:48 pm |
      • blacklion128

        i agree with you ben
        well said

        August 16, 2011 at 2:09 pm |
  84. This has been occurring for a while

    I know someone who has worked for the military and she said they have been having a lot of suicides for the last several years. And when these kids come back they have a hard time getting jobs and supporting themselves and their families. I wish that the republicans would vote for the ten jobs bills offered over the last 200+days and think about Americans instead of just their party.

    August 16, 2011 at 10:05 am | Reply
  85. chris

    Would like to thank George W. Bush for this moronic war we are in. One trillion dollars out the window. How is that for defense spending? Chasing taliban members in their mountains, efficient...NO.

    August 16, 2011 at 9:57 am | Reply
    • Jake

      I think you commented on the wrong article.

      August 16, 2011 at 10:29 am | Reply
  86. WomenOnGuard

    The army recruits VERY YOUNG people to be soldiers. Maybe they should move the age up some. I think if they recruited men and women that were more mature, perhaps 21 and up, it would not happen as much. We are practically recruiting children, as far as I'm concerned.

    August 16, 2011 at 9:54 am | Reply
    • Guy

      The average age of suicides was 22 or 23 in my unit.

      August 16, 2011 at 10:06 am | Reply
      • S1N

        Unfortunately, that will have little impact. Most of the guys committing suicide, at least from my experience, were doing so after coming back or going to their third, fourth, fifth, etc. deployments. By that time, they're at least 22-23, often times older.

        The solution is simpler than you might think. The Army needs to remove the stigma currently associated with seeking help. A lot more people need to be showing up to the mental health clinic than currently are, long before they currently are. Commanders and First Sergeants who try frown upon this, and continue to degrade soldiers seeking help need to be relieved of command and chaptered out OTH. End of story.

        August 16, 2011 at 10:17 am |
    • Stu

      Children are easier to brainwash.

      August 16, 2011 at 10:25 am | Reply
      • Ihateliberals

        Your ignorant, the Army doesnt brainwash, if you dont know dont open your mouth.

        August 16, 2011 at 10:55 am |
    • Ben

      OHh so what you are saying is that age is the big difference? SO a 21 year old can stomach killing woman and children, but an 18 year old cannot? Seriously?
      Did you even spend a second analizing that logic before you posted it? I hope not, becasue if you did and thought it was a good idea, than your an idiot@!@@@

      August 16, 2011 at 11:09 am | Reply
      • Avg American

        What war do you keep talking about where women and children are being targeted? I know it's not happening in Afghanistan or Iraq. If you think it is, you need to do a little more research and find some facts.

        August 16, 2011 at 1:04 pm |
  87. Are you on Meth?

    From the Land of Obama Trama you must be deep into the drug culture to blame Obama for the Bush war. He would bring those precious troops home tomorrow and stop this stupid modern day Vietnam if he could. Don't pull the smoke and mirrors crap because this is strickly a Bush war and will always be a Bush war. The Bush presidents love war and they are the ones who are responsible for the human mayhem and financial ruin of this country. Stop taking meth and face the facts – Bush deserves the blame.

    August 16, 2011 at 9:37 am | Reply
    • S1N

      All presidents love war. There is not a single one in the past century who has not been actively engaged in warfare, especially bombing raids. So, what's your point?

      August 16, 2011 at 10:19 am | Reply
      • Say it ain't so

        Ummm JFK to name one. He wasn't involved in warfare but I see your point.

        August 16, 2011 at 10:27 am |
      • Are you on Meth?

        Damn lie all Presidents do not love war. Yes, some are forced to become involved but they don't relish it like others. The smart ones know the consequences and try to avoid war to ensure Americans are not sacrificed needlessly. Bush had the world against him and thought this was going to be another easy war like daddy's war. Well he was dead wrong and the soldiers always pay the price. My point is because of Bush we have another Vietnam and he should take the blame.

        August 16, 2011 at 10:49 am |
      • John J

        Say it aint so, check the history books gain! How about the Bay of Pigs? That was JFK 3 months into his term. Also don't forget Vietnam, under JFK military advisors and troops increased tri-fold each year he was president.

        Granted official Us combat ops didn't start until '65 we had boots on the ground "advising" the South.

        August 16, 2011 at 11:01 am |
    • Ben

      Your saying Obama can't bring the troops home? His campain promis was the first day he became president, the troops are as good as home.
      As a president you can do anything. Apparently bush proved that.
      So your basically saying, against the will of the people, and the president, we still can't get our troops home? Your disillusioned.
      WHY DON"T WE ALL CHECk OBAMAS' BACK ACCOUNT TOTAL AFTER THIS IS ALL DONE AND WE WILL SEE HE HAS MADE MONEY OFF OF LETTING THE TROOPS STAY.
      LOOK AT DICK CHENEYS" BOTTOM LINE BEFORE AND AFTER THE BUSH REIGN. CHENEY IS A MUCH RICHER MAN, AND SO WILL BE OBAMA.
      LETS PUT IT THIS WAY, OBAMA SECURED HIS PLACE ON THE ARC, WHILE THE REST OF US DROWN!!!!!!!!

      August 16, 2011 at 11:15 am | Reply
    • Old Fool

      He deserves to be behind bars.

      August 16, 2011 at 7:39 pm | Reply
  88. GerC

    It seems pointless for a soldier to kill himself. If a soldier wants to die, wouldn't it make more sense to go to the front lines?

    August 16, 2011 at 9:35 am | Reply
    • Judy

      What a strange statement, "If a soldier wants to die" he should go to the front lines. People who don't understand suicidality are sadly judgmental. It's a complicated, horrific kind of suffering and like many illnesses, the thing which causes people to commit suicide are each unique to that person. But unless one has suffered from this debilitating situation, don't judge. You can't "know" anything about it if you haven't walked a mile in their shoes.

      August 16, 2011 at 9:52 am | Reply
    • Frederick

      Fucking idiot!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      August 16, 2011 at 9:59 am | Reply
    • RAVEN 987

      Your logic is speciously simplistic and merely underscores your lack of knowledge of the military, military service and the stresses from combat and/or deployment. Thanks for being a dick. Please remove yourself from the gene pool.

      August 16, 2011 at 10:07 am | Reply
      • S1N

        Raven, while I agree with your statement, I don't like you stealing my line. Please remove yourself from the gene pool is a registered trademark of S1N, and I will expect royalties immediately.

        Original Poster – Raven gives good advice. Please kill yourself immediately. We wouldn't want to infect the rest of the gene pool.

        August 16, 2011 at 11:07 am |
    • McLuhan

      Most soldiers/sailors/airmen/marines want to go to the "front lines" and actually attempt to pull rank or favors to get there. This is not the draft of the Vietnam era. The suicides are a collateral effect.

      August 16, 2011 at 10:21 am | Reply
    • From the Land of Obama Trama

      Judy Judy Judy I guess we need to be more gentle on our troops. May be more counseling and tittty would help..

      August 16, 2011 at 10:38 am | Reply
      • Guy

        Lol yes! More counseling! And power points, and safety briefings! That will fix everything! Hahaha

        August 16, 2011 at 12:07 pm |
    • Old Fool

      You're not very bright, are you? I expect that some choose your method and we will never know who or how many have done so. But rest assured, for the most part suicide is not a rational process. I dont believe anyone wakes up one day and says I think I will take my life today. It's a process, kind of like the creation of a storm. it's gonna hit when it hits.

      August 16, 2011 at 7:43 pm | Reply
  89. tim

    what exactly is "obama trama" ? did you mean to say " TRAUMA" ? as in traumatic....or blunt force trauma... next question: ( disclosure: i actually do believe we should bring our men and women home as soon as possible.).. you realize we have 1800 bases around the world–obama did not put each one there– we have drwan down in iraq– we are currently preparing to draw down in afghanistan....so my question: exactly how do you formulate your opinions on american foreign policy? what books, reviews, political tracts, magazines, organizations, lectures, classes, seminars, forums etc are you taking advanatge of ....blame obama, blame his supporters, blame liberals....honestly you sound like an 8th grader...grow up– develope a world view...look at all the shades of gray involved in every decision–from every president...instead of whining–which you do quite well–why don't you take that high school diploma and run for office?

    August 16, 2011 at 9:34 am | Reply
  90. John

    An old saying: "Everyone fails at times,but you don't become a failure until you start blaming others for your failures."

    August 16, 2011 at 9:29 am | Reply
    • Ben

      There are lots of things that are old and don't apply.
      Just because its an old saying, doesn't make it right!

      August 16, 2011 at 11:18 am | Reply
  91. atypical

    does the military really see a suicide as a tragedy –or are they merely sorry to lose their pawn?
    it's a rhetorical question, by the way. I already know the answer.
    Nunti Sunya– to the era of transparency and expansion.

    August 16, 2011 at 9:25 am | Reply
  92. Frank

    Not everyone can take the mental stress of war. It will eat you up alive. Being on a rifle line is like being on death row with all appeals' lost...... Before anyone is sent to any training, prospective soldiers should be taken to an underground bunker, where they are safe, close it up and have mortar teams mortar the bunker night and day for 3 days.......... Let the prospective soldiers feel the concussion, blast and shock. After three days the ones who are not talking to themselves or crying or screaming get me out of here, there soldier material................................... The rest may leave no questions asked.................

    August 16, 2011 at 9:10 am | Reply
    • Cavalier581

      Surely you exaggerate. While I agree that the military could benefit from being more selective as well as tougher training, your proposal is more than a little asinine.

      August 16, 2011 at 10:08 am | Reply
    • RAVEN 987

      A little Draconian, but interesting. Would you be willing to volunteer for such a selection process or are you just pondering the pain caused to better people than yourself for the sake of seeing your post and excercising your false bravado? Go back to your patato chips and soda. Let the grown ups talk for awhile.

      August 16, 2011 at 10:14 am | Reply
  93. From the Land of Obama Trama

    We have diluted the military by taking in children women and mommas boys. Now not all severing are in this category but in order to be PC we have taken people NOT fit for battle and the military life.

    August 16, 2011 at 8:55 am | Reply
    • I can't believe you can work a computer

      Suicide in the military is not a new phenomenon, if you read anything by any human ever on war you would know that.

      August 16, 2011 at 9:16 am | Reply
    • Jason

      Which is a good reason why you aren't in it.

      August 16, 2011 at 9:16 am | Reply
    • From the Land of Obama Trama

      I am a Vietnam Vet and I was enlisted for four years and I did NOT hear of any one offing themselves, non of my buddies from other bases ever ever mention this as a problem. The military is taking warm bodies and that is the problem. I know when I was at the recruiters office one of the questions I was asked was HAVE YOU EVER CONSIDERED SUICIDE>

      August 16, 2011 at 10:27 am | Reply
      • DPUSABOT

        They asked me if I had ever considered suicide too and I said "I'm trying to enlist ain't I?" He laughed. It didn't seem a serious question in 1971.

        August 16, 2011 at 4:21 pm |
      • noyb731

        Good for you and your buddies for not ever thinking or committing suicide. However, the CDC Vietnam Experience Study Mortality Assessment showed that during the first 5 years after discharge, deaths from suicide were 1.7 times more likely among Vietnam veterans than non-Vietnam veterans.

        August 16, 2011 at 5:12 pm |
    • From the Land of Obama Trama

      How many of you have had to do KP now, scrub floors and latrines or do you call them potties now. Look there are brave people in the military but it is becoming more and more of an exception. Our Military iis a political experiment and was becoming that way in the 70s. What did Patton do to the fellow who would not fight and was in the hospital, there were no
      counselors in Patton army. War is tough by nature and there will be people die. The tougher the recruite the tougher the soldier. but now we worry about being PC more than the mission the military has.

      August 16, 2011 at 10:32 am | Reply
      • Your a Genius Obama Trama

        So Basically your saying are military is soft! What do you know Old timer. I deployed a few years ago and yes we still do KP, scrub floors, scrub latrines and burn our own feces. Go F yourself! Do some home work over 100,000 Vietnam Vets "offed themselves". This is a part of War and has been for past wars.

        August 16, 2011 at 11:14 am |
      • From the Land of Obama Trama

        Yes I am saying they are soft. NOT all but many too many. When we face a brutal enemy like China all bets are off.
        How tough was your training in Basic? I had a skinny wreaking friend who decided to enlist in the Marines, My showed me a knot on the back of his head, I ask did you get that in combat?. No he said in boot camp, you see I was told to hold to buckets of sand out at arms length and told NOT to let them down. He said during this time the were calling him a weakling fagot, mommies boy. He said after a brief time the lights went out. When he came to his drill SGT was standing over him with a broom stick screaming at him because he left the sand drop. Now they would call a counselor to help the poor boy understand why he could not hold the sand..

        August 16, 2011 at 12:25 pm |
  94. paddlefeet

    Lets put this into the mix,what percentage of these tradgic events were x-or current combat vets/how many posted/shared/with friends/relatives that they were distraught because of the realization that they were the bad guys occupiing a nation based on absolute lies.Seeing children slaughtered for oil and Israeli zionist greed would tend too make a normal man die inside. Wake-up America we've been neo-conned...for all that is good and just please wake up investigate ask questions please investigate!

    August 16, 2011 at 8:48 am | Reply
    • Cavalier581

      Makes a good theory, but the facts don't bear it out. A suicide is just as likely to have never been deployed. No one who has been on active duty can deny that there are rampant morale problems, but this suicide problem doesn't 100% correlate.

      August 16, 2011 at 9:44 am | Reply
  95. J

    "No one knows why it's worse among the Army other than the fact that it's the biggest branch of service." Um, how about the fact that the army is the only branch that sits in a combat zone for longer than six months? Air Force and Marines rarely stay in a combat zone longer than six to nine months, and I can tell you from personal experience months nine to twelve are the hardest to get through. The navy can spend that much time on ships, but I imagine they have plenty of events and fun stuff to do when they get off work: there is no getting off of work in Iraq or Afghanistan for practically the entire time you are there. This seems self-evident to me, I can't understand why it isn't to the people creating this article or the people who's job it is to make sense of these stats...

    August 16, 2011 at 8:23 am | Reply
    • Cavtanker28

      I wish it were that simple to decipher. Unfortunately the Army is finding no easily discernible pattern. There are almost as many suicides among Soldiers who have not deployed as those who have. Nor is financial difficulty among returning reservists a blatant marker. Again, there were as many suicides among those who were in good financial shape as had hard times on REFRAD.

      There must be some deeper psychological trigger we're missing. I did 2 tours in Iraq, one of which was 16 months long, and the thing I found most peculiar when I de-mobed wasn't that I was angry or felt things more deeply – it was that I felt less if at all.

      August 16, 2011 at 8:39 am | Reply
      • RAVEN 987

        I hear you and there are a lot of people out there who feel the same way. I recommend, "One Source" as an option. Time and distance help, but sometimes someone with a similar background helps. Don't quit Tanker... you've got geniuses like, "Frank" who need your insight on military education and selection processes.

        August 16, 2011 at 10:22 am |
    • RAVEN 987

      I agree with much of what you've said. The Air Force provides top cover and clears the skies. The Navy protects the sea lanes and provides force projection. The Marines provide the muscle needed to sieze ports and push an amphibious landing forward. The job of the Army is that of an occupying force. Its the reason we can't just bomb a place and say we won. On the positive side, the Army has just said they are going to shorter tours. Perhaps a little late, but its a step.

      August 16, 2011 at 10:30 am | Reply
  96. From the Land of Obama Trama

    Good thing Obama fixed that pesky DADT problem this one can wait.

    August 16, 2011 at 8:16 am | Reply
    • Chuck in Jasper, Ga.

      No matter how many of you anti-Obama trolls try to blame everything on him, twist items to fit your warped reality, it will not work. It simply shows how ignorant you are.

      August 16, 2011 at 8:23 am | Reply
      • From the Land of Obama Trama

        Yes I am anti obama just as I was anti bush and clinton. These globalist have us involved in matters that are none of our business, Libya comes to mind. Obama and his supporters have never heard the buck stops here. If Obama were 1/10the the man Truman was he would be taking the blame he rightly deserves.

        August 16, 2011 at 8:29 am |
      • priderunsdeepSS

        Yeah. Truman was real great... *eye roll*

        August 16, 2011 at 11:07 am |
      • From the Land of Obama Trama

        Truman led men in Battle in WWII and never lost a soul. He was very respected by his men. Obama might get his white shirt dirty at a luncheon.

        August 16, 2011 at 12:19 pm |
    • gary

      Dubya was a deserter and chicken .. barry has much to do to clean up Dubya's messes .. we will all suffer Dubya's blunders for decades

      August 16, 2011 at 5:48 pm | Reply
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