More U.S. Soldiers This Year Have Died of Suicide than in Combat

Monday, August 03, 2009

Suicide has become the biggest killer in the U.S. military, surpassing combat-related deaths in Iraq and Afghanistan. So far in 2009 there have been 129 reported suicides by active duty soldiers and reservists, which is more than the number killed-in-action during the same period in both conflicts. In 2008, the total of self-inflicted deaths was 192, which was twice as many as in 2003, when the war began.

 
The New York Times reports that suicides are a problem not only for combat troops but those supporting frontline operations. It found that four members of the 1451st Transportation Company of the North Carolina National Guard—which only has 175 personnel—have killed themselves. And at Fort Campbell, Kentucky, 14 soldiers have committed suicide.
 
The U.S. Army is currently conducting a five-year, $50 million study to determine the causes of suicide among soldiers.
-Noel Brinkerhoff
 
After Combat, Victims of an Inner War (by Erica Goode, New York Times)

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