Friday, March 26, 2004

# Posted 12:43 AM by Ariel David Adesnik  

ABANDONING OUR SOLDIERS: An Army survey conducted last summer reports that the suicide rate among soldiers in Iraq was far high than that of the Army as a whole. This unfortunate trend seems to reflect a lack of preparation to care for the mental health of soldiers taking part of the invasion. The same survey found that a majority of soldiers in Iraq described their morale as low and a disturbing three-fourths felt that they had been poorly-led by their officers.

It is possible that this situation has improved since last summer, when the survey was conducted. At that time, soldiers had to endure intense heat without the benefit of some of the amenities that began to arrive as the occupation progressed. Regardless, I think it is important to recognize that each and every soldier in Iraq has made substantial sacrifices on behalf of the nation.

According to the officer responsible for the survey, "This is the first time we've ever gone into an active combat theater and asked soldiers how they are doing, so we have no comparative data." One hopes that the compilation of such data will help the army address soldiers' concerns, which are no doubt extremely serious.
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