Soldier suicides outnumber combat deaths

In 2012, suicide rates worsened and 212 troops died in combat in Afghanistan


Natasha Lennard
December 29, 2012 2:24AM (UTC)

The number of soldier suicides this year has outnumbered combat deaths. Combat-related deaths in Afghanistan were down to 212 this year, compared to over 400 in 2011, but the number of soldiers taking their own lives continues to rise. According to stats cited by CBS from the Department of the Army, 303 active-duty, Reserve and National Guard soldiers committed suicide.

177 of the suicide cases were active-duty soldiers, CBS noted. Throughout much of this year, the suicide rate amounted to one soldier taking their own life per day. In response, the military introduced a number of suicide awareness and prevention programs, including dedicating a day in September in which all active troops had to go through suicide prevention training.

Advertisement:

Earlier this year, the Washington Post attributed high suicide numbers “in part [to ] the stress on the force after more than a decade of lengthy and multiple deployments for many troops in support of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.” Defense Secretary Leon Panetta also noted that “Substance abuse, financial distress and relationship problems — the risk factors for suicide — also reflect problems … that will endure beyond war.”

 


Natasha Lennard

Natasha Lennard is an assistant news editor at Salon, covering non-electoral politics, general news and rabble-rousing. Follow her on Twitter @natashalennard, email nlennard@salon.com.

MORE FROM Natasha LennardFOLLOW natashalennardLIKE Natasha Lennard

Related Topics ------------------------------------------

Afghanistan Big Story You Missed Military Suicides Suicides U.s. Military

BROWSE SALON.COM
COMPLETELY AD FREE,
FOR THE NEXT HOUR

Read Now, Pay Later - no upfront
registration for 1-Hour Access

Click Here
7-Day Access and Monthly
Subscriptions also available
No tracking or personal data collection
beyond name and email address

•••






Fearless journalism
in your inbox every day

Sign up for our free newsletter

• • •