Why so many combat veterans commit suicide:

1. War is crazy-making, especially for those in combat arms.

2. Prolonged war and multiple deployments destroy morale; in other words, a person’s spirit is so damaged that the joy of life is removed.

3. War fought without honest, easily explained, and understandable reasons is especially crazy-making.

4. Killing folks produces sorrow, shame, and guilt. When the sorrow, shame, and guilt is not equally assumed and shared by the civilians at home, the emotional load becomes overwhelming for the young soldier.

5. Many returning soldiers feel very isolated from civil society because of the extremely violent nature of their military experiences.

The shame, guilt, and sadness are so punishing that death appears to offer them their only avenue of relief.


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