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Sat Feb 2, 2013, 07:01 AM

325 Army suicides in 2012 a record. How many of these were by gun?


By Tom Watkins and Maggie Schneider, CNN
updated 3:41 AM EST, Sat February 2, 2013

(CNN) -- The U.S. Army reported Thursday that there were 325 confirmed or potential suicides last year among active and nonactive military personnel.

"Our highest on record," said Lt. Gen. Howard Bromberg, deputy chief of staff, manpower and personnel for the Army.

The grim total exceeds the number of total U.S. Army deaths (219) and total military deaths (313) in Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan, according to figures published by the military's Defense Casualty Analysis System.

For all of last year, 182 potential active-duty suicides were reported, 130 of which have been confirmed and 52 of which remain under investigation, it said.

And 143 potential not-on-active-duty suicides were reported (96 Army National Guard and 47 Army Reserve), 117 of which have been confirmed and 26 remain under investigation.

The total for 2011 was 283 -- 165 confirmed active-duty suicides and 118 confirmed not-on-active-duty suicides (82 Army National Guard and 36 Army Reserve). No cases were under investigation.

The toll comes despite what the military touts as extensive support and counseling programs.

more at link:
http://www.cnn.com/2013/02/02/us/army-suicides/index.html

Does it even matter how they did it? Doesn't this speak to the broader issue that the support needs to be more Extensive and the programs for Counseling even more Intensive?





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Response to Tuesday Afternoon (Original post)

Sat Feb 2, 2013, 07:10 AM

1. I heard a story on Thom Hartmann's Show

That said Israel had a lot of suicides amongst its young new soldiers in training. They stopped allowing the soldiers to take home their guns over weekends, and suicides dropped 40%. Committing suicide can frequently be tied to having, in the moment, a weapon as lethal as a gun. If there is no available gun, they will usually get over what is hurting them or get help.

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Response to Ilsa (Reply #1)

Sat Feb 2, 2013, 07:15 AM

2. doesn't this give conclusive, albeit anecdotal evidence to the fact that it is the Mental Health

System in our country that needs overhauling re: Israel.

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Response to Tuesday Afternoon (Original post)

Sat Feb 2, 2013, 08:05 AM

3. israeli suicide

article link: The toll comes despite what the military touts as extensive support and counseling programs.
tues aft (to article in general): doesn't this give conclusive, albeit anecdotal evidence to the fact that it is the Mental Health System in our country that needs overhauling re: Israel.

this was posted recently by someone: I’ve read about suicide in Israel, and it’s striking there, because there’s an age discrepancy. Between ages 18 and 21, when people are in the army and have access to guns, firearm suicide is very common. At other ages, strangulation is very common. So it does seem to suggest that people commit suicide with what they have access to even in the same society.
...your paper is your recounting of the Israeli military’s effort to cut suicides among soldiers by restricting access to guns.
..JR: Yes, it’s very striking. In Israel, it used to be that all soldiers would take the guns home with them. Now they have to leave them on base.. there’s been a 60% decrease in suicide on weekends among IDS soldiers. And it did not correspond to an increase in weekday suicide. People think suicide is an impulse that exists and builds. This shows that doesn’t happen. The impulse to suicide is transitory. Someone with access to a gun at that moment may commit suicide, but if not, they may not.
.. in Israel, they’re very limited in who is able to own a gun. There are only a few tens of thousands of legal guns in Israel, and the only people allowed to own them legally live in the settlements, do business in the settlements, or are in professions at risk of violence.
Both countries require you to have a reason to have a gun. There isn’t this idea that you have a right to a gun. You need a reason. And then you need to go back to the permitting authority every six months or so to assure them the reason is still valid.
The second thing is that there’s this widespread misunderstanding that Israel and Switzerland promote gun ownership. They don’t. Ten years ago, when Israel had the outbreak of violence, there was an expansion of gun ownership, but only to people above a certain rank in the military. There was no sense that having ordinary citizens would make anything safer.
http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2012/12/14/mythbusting-israel-and-switzerland-are-not-gun-toting-utopias/

tues aft: doesn't this give conclusive, albeit anecdotal evidence to the fact that it is the Mental Health System in our country that needs overhauling re: Israel.






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Response to jimmy the one (Reply #3)

Sat Feb 2, 2013, 08:42 AM

4. science has determined that the brain is not fully developed til the age of 25. Personally,

I think the age of legal consent should be raised to that number. That we ask/demand of our Children to fight our wars is beyond sick.

Brain research shows that the human brain goes through a slow maturation process between ages 10 through 25. The emotional make-up of a child is generally fully developed by age five.
A Dartmouth College study reveals there is a significant shift in a person’s brain after age 18, when the individual is emerging into young adulthood.
The human brain reportedly becomes fully developed at age 25.
Prior to full brain development children exhibit the following behaviors more coincidentally vs. consistently:
• Decision making
• Use of appropriate judgment
• Rational thinking
• Integration of emotion & critical thinking
• Ability to think clearly about long-term outcomes that stem from behaviors
• Global thinking vs. self-centered thinking
more at link:
http://www.examiner.com/article/a-child-s-brain-fully-develops-by-age-25

Brain Development
Although the brain reaches its full adult weight by the age of 21, it continues to develop for several years. In fact, a study done by the National Institutes of Health found that the region of brain that inhibits risky behavior does not fully form until age 25. This is the final stage of brain development.
Read more: At What Age Is the Human Brain Fully Developed?
eHow.com http://www.ehow.com/facts_6371486_age-human-brain-fully-developed_.html#ixzz2JkUcxPIO

plenty more links if needed may be provided if asked.

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Response to Tuesday Afternoon (Reply #4)

Sat Feb 2, 2013, 10:18 AM

8. I agree with you about brain development.

I think Pediatric specialties (including Ped Psychiatry) are more appropriate for the below-25 group. I've been on this team for years.

No doubt, availability of mental health services and elimination of prejudice and bias against those seeking help would be the best thing in combatting suicide.

But I still think that removing the most convenient instruments of death is helpful in lowering suicides, particularly for those who haven't had time to be identified and referred for help.

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Response to Ilsa (Reply #8)

Sat Feb 2, 2013, 10:36 AM

10. convenience for whom would be the question. I agree that elimination of products that could be

misused by those in acute stages of depression and/or other mental illness is proper and mandatory in facilities. These includes a lot of :things:

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Response to jimmy the one (Reply #3)

Sat Feb 2, 2013, 10:19 AM

9. Thanks for the links! nt

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Response to Tuesday Afternoon (Original post)

Sat Feb 2, 2013, 09:27 AM

5. Jobs....it's all about jobs, our returning heros

would readjust better to civilian life if they had a goal each morning.

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Response to ileus (Reply #5)

Sat Feb 2, 2013, 09:33 AM

6. that is part of the problem, I agree. That they need a safe evironment in which to process what has

happened is also part of it. That they no longer require weaponry could also be a consideration, at least, until they have been debriefed and stabilized and are fully functioning members of this society. An adjustment period is not unreasonable.

That we ask them and that they are allowed to volunteer at such a young age also needs to be addressed, imvho. YMMV.

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Response to Tuesday Afternoon (Original post)

Sat Feb 2, 2013, 09:46 AM

7. US military struggling to stop suicide epidemic among war veterans

Last year, more active-duty soldiers killed themselves than died in combat. And after a decade of deployments to war zones, the Pentagon is bracing for things to get much worse

Libby Busbee is pretty sure that her son William never sat through or read Shakespeare's Macbeth, even though he behaved as though he had. Soon after he got back from his final tour of Afghanistan, he began rubbing his hands over and over and constantly rinsing them under the tap.

"Mom, it won't wash off," he said.

"What are you talking about?" she replied.

"The blood. It won't come off."

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/feb/01/us-military-suicide-epidemic-veteran

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