The Spark

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.” — Karl Marx

More Soldiers Die in Suicide than in Combat

Apr 14, 2014

On April 2nd, a soldier at Fort Hood in Texas committed suicide after killing three sergeants and wounding 16 others on the base. He had served in Iraq in 2011 and was being treated for depression.

Every day an average of 22 former soldiers kill themselves in the U.S., often shortly after their return to civilian life. This information came from the army journal Stars and Stripes.

Psychological traumas play the principal role in the deaths of veterans, but also for those on active service – like the soldier at Fort Hood.

The U.S. army congratulates itself for providing the necessary psychological services to deal with the problems of soldiers returning from war zones. It says it has reduced the number of suicides.

“Reduced”? Maybe so. But it remains true that more U.S. soldiers die by taking their own lives than died in combat during the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.

The U.S. army has very sophisticated weaponry to reduce as much as possible the numbers of its soldiers killed in battle. But war kills not only the people who are victimized by imperialist aggression; it also kills U.S. soldiers, and not just on the battlefield.