The Biggest Killer Of US Troops In The Middle East Is Not ISIS — It’s Suicide

soldier-suicideBy Matt Agorist

Confirming once again that war, to those who are sent to fight them, is absolute hell, newly released Pentagon statistics show that suicide — not combat — is the leading killer of US troops deployed to the Middle East.

According to a report in USA Today this week, of the 31 troops who have died as of Dec. 27 in Operation Inherent Resolve, 11 have taken their own lives. Eight died in combat, seven in accidents and four succumbed to illness or injury.

These new numbers confirm a trend that’s been in place since the beginning of the prolonged occupation of the Middle East.

Earlier this year, the DoD released a similar report from 2014 that revealed some startling numbers. In all of 2014, a total of 55 US troops, in both hostile and non-hostile situations, lost their lives in foreign occupations. The number of soldiers who killed themselves was nearly 5 times that amount.

According to the DoD report, in 2014, there were 269 deaths by suicide among active component service members (compared to 259 deaths by suicide in 2013).

As bureaucratic fatcats sit back from their lush taxpayer-funded offices in giant marble buildings debating on whether or not to send more troops to the Middle East, this crisis is being ignored. Partly due to the fact that they can’t seem to figure out why troops are killing themselves, the military ‘experts’ are unable to reverse it.

“I don’t think there’s one single cause for it,” said Rajeev Ramchand, a senior behavioral scientist at the Rand Corp. who has studied military suicide. “There are a multitude of factors. They are also picking up on a trend toward more suicide in the U.S. population as a whole. Maybe there’s a universal stress on everyone in the military that affects them in profound ways.”

However, many experts have come forward and noted that the increased prevalence in the prescription of antidepressants to active duty troops could play a large role. In 2010, Peter Breggin MD testified before the Veterans’ Affairs Committee of the U.S. House of Representatives:

“The newer antidepressants frequently cause suicide, violence, and manic-like symptoms of activation or overstimulation, presenting serious hazards to active-duty soldiers who carry weapons under stressful conditions.  Antidepressants should not be prescribed to soldiers during or after deployment,” said Breggin.

“In testimony before the U.S. House of Representatives Veterans Affairs Committee, I have pointed to a probable causal relationship between increasing rates of antidepressant prescription and increasing rates of suicide in the military,” he explained in his 2010 publication on SSRI Suicide in the Military (Antidepressant-induced suicide).

Couple the dehumanizing nature of treating human beings as fodder for wars of aggression with the known side effects of antidepressants, and you have a recipe for disaster.

In war, human lives become units to be traded as a commodity to aid in the expansion of the State. When they are no longer deemed useful, these human lives are then tossed out like yesterday’s garbage.

Treating human beings in such a brutal and inhumane manner is not without consequence.

Not only are active duty soldiers tragically ending their own lives at an increasing rate, but once they finish their service, these numbers skyrocket.

In a 2012 report put out by the Veterans Administration, it was estimated that up to 22 veterans a day kill themselves. That is 8,000 lives a year — almost one per hour.

If we look at attempted suicides, that number skyrockets to 19,000 attempts, of which 8,000 result in ending their own lives.

War is the plight of mankind that is perpetually waged by cowards too afraid to send themselves or their own children into harm’s way, but who do not hesitate to send the poor or ‘patriotic.’

When the State is done with its pawns of empire, it disposes of them like spent military gear. They then become unable to get the proper care they need for illness and injury related to their service. If they try to self-medicate to cope with the subsequent PTSD from being forced to brutally occupy a foreign country, these veterans have their children taken, face life in prison, or worse.

The Department of Housing and Urban Development estimates that nearly 50,000 veterans are homeless on any given night. Another 140,000 are currently in jail, many of them for victimless crimes like drug possession.

As if the numbers aren’t bad enough, veterans are often the target of unjust attention from law enforcement. On multiple occasions, the Department of Homeland Security has referred to veterans as potential terrorists and noted that they pose a threat to national security.

The Free Thought Project has reported on case after case of veterans returning home only to be beaten and locked up for speaking out, or killed by police during a PTSD-triggered episode.

Merely ‘supporting the troops’ is proving to be the worst possible thing for them.

If you really want to “support the troops” you’ll stop supporting wars of aggression in distant lands in which Americans are forced to kill people who pose no threat to the US.

If you really “support the troops” you’ll stop blindly standing up for your government whose proven track record shows that they do everything but support the troops.

If you really support the troops, you’ll educate yourself on who is behind these wars, why they are waged, and how US foreign policy actually creates enemies. ISIS would not exist had the US not remained hell bent on overthrowing the Assad regime for the benefit of special interests in DC.

Pledging blind obedience and unquestioning support for wars that one’s government illegally wages at the expense of our sons and daughters, brothers and sisters, and mothers and fathers, is the antithesis of what a free person should do — and anything but “supporting the troops.”

So what is the solution? How can the US rein in this epidemic of suicide among active duty troops and vets?

The answer to this question, while it may seem complex, is actually quite simple — Stop creating them.

As a former ‘troop’ I know how hard it can be to handle the woes faced by life in the military. If you or someone you know is feeling suicidal, please feel free to reach out to the Free Thought Project who is staffed by a number of veterans who understand your pain and who would be glad to help. Feel free to message us on our Facebook Page, or through email here. 

Matt Agorist is the co-founder of TheFreeThoughtProject.com, where this article first appeared. He is an honorably discharged veteran of the USMC and former intelligence operator directly tasked by the NSA. This prior experience gives him unique insight into the world of government corruption and the American police state. Agorist has been an independent journalist for over a decade and has been featured on mainstream networks around the world. . and now on Steemit

  • Rojam

    What a heart wrenching article that needs to spread far and wide to anyone who supports warmongering political candidates on both sides of the isle. The last two presidents in particular have been evil, cold blooded war criminals of epic proportions. They have each engaged in wars based on fraudulent reasons complete with the forming of an enemy to fight. They have each killed not only “the enemy” but American citizens who they have deemed enemies. No trial. No jury. They have signed laws written and passed by other warmongering politicians with patriotic titles that prohibit such things. They have also gone into countries and bombed innocent citizens and in the case of the current president, even hospitals. They have each even joked about their actions. GW Bush at a press dinner and Obama when answering a question about his daughter’s dating choices. They say they do this to “spread Democracy.” Must one wonder why our “enemies” wouldn’t want democracy after such actions? Both of these war criminals, acting as Presidents, tell us that the citizens in these countries hate us because of our freedoms. The really sad part is not the explanation of these war criminals (since they must lie to justify) but the gullibility of the American people to believe such nonsense. Is it a stretch to opine that they themselves are accomplices with these evil acts? They put their hand over their heart, say they are patriotic and loyal to the constitution they embrace. Yet these citizens fail to see that the wars they support, the enemies they hate and the politicians they pay homage to do their evil deeds without the declaration of war by congress, therefore against the constitution they say they embrace and politicians swear to uphold.

  • sallyM

    They probably realize that they are fighting a war that was made up from thin air.
    9/11 was a false flag and never investigated properly.
    All of their pictures should be sent back to every elected public servant in DeCeit land and Kissinger.
    read : ‘The Commission the Uncensored History of the 9/11 Investigation’ by Philip Sheldon

  • George Reichel

    US troops aren’t fighting ISIS

    • Wilfried Schuler

      You are right. They only pretent to do so. But the one and only aim is Assad.
      What would the total be since October 2001, the start of the Afghanistan war?
      Another grim fact. What about murder? Of course an even bigger tabou.

  • sotiredoflies13

    this article makes more sense than what TPTB will say, not that they seem concerned about the expendable pawns(soldiers) who are no more than “collateral” damage, just like all the civilians, woman, children, elderly, who are being killed, maimed, made homeless by the millions. It’s seems to be only about how much power and wealth can be gained, by those calling the moves, and there is a huge amount of money to be had, arms, munitions, rebuilding contracts, on and on, but the majority of citizens that had lives, in the “strike” zones, are paying the price, in BLOOD! As well as taxpayers who want nothing to do with these killings and destruction of countries.

    • Arrow

      Yes. Add as well, the exploitation of resources after they have destabilized a nation/region. Iraq, Libya, Afghanistan, etc. Unfortunately it will continue to ramp-up until the “taxpayers” become non-taxpayers and actively refuse to finance the genocide and exploitation. Note “actively,” which equates less to peaceful non-compliance than conscientious objection, resulting in withdrawal of consent. That’s what TPTB have been trying to avoid. No?

  • eddysachs

    “Military men are just dumb stupid animals to be used as pawns in foreign policy” -‘Henry Kiss-of-death-inger’
    …considering the Viet Nam War cost approx. 58,000 lives …the same amount of veterans from that era also committed suicide from the effects of the full spectrum of Post Traumatic Stress Disorders with recurrent nightmares & severely compromised perceptions exacerbated of course by the injection chimeric vaccines with undisclosed adjuvants they were mandated to receive …that can all be traced back from the vile & despicable unnatural acts directly committed by the 0.01%’Bankster’s’ that create All wars, using ye olde time tested Hegelian sorcery… by financing both sides to create a huge conflagration of odious war profiteering $$$ from the deaths of millions & millions of ordinary soldiers… but mostly civilians ….but these 0.01% generational psychopaths could care less! …& on & on it goes as reflected in the dehumanized way ordinary veterans are obviously being treated & witnessed.

  • Darkwing

    THANKS to Bush 2 and his admin for the lies and the war crimes. Bush 2 and his admin should be hung for war crimes, just like they did to the Germans

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