More US soldiers are losing their lives to suicide than from enemy forces, the Pentagon reports.
"We are very concerned at this point that we are seeing a high number of suicides at a point in time where we were expecting to see a lower number of suicide,” Jackie Garrick, head of the Pentagon’s newly established Defense Suicide Prevention Office, tells the Associated Press.
In analyzing the report, the AP notes that the suicide rate among active-duty soldiers has plateaued in the preceding two years, creating confusion for researchers caught off guard by the alarming numbers released this week. Even with the Iraq War officially over and the Obama administration promising an expedited end to its military operations in Afghanistan, troops are taking their own lives in shocking numbers. Dr. Stephen N. Xenakis, a retired Army brigadier general and a practicing psychiatrist, explains to the AP that the latest figures aren’t all that surprising to him, though.
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