New Pentagon data show U.S. troops are killing themselves at the rate of nearly one a day so far in 2012, 18% above 2011’s corresponding toll. “The continual rise in the suicide rate has frustrated all in the military,” says Elspeth “Cam” Ritchie, a retired Army colonel and chief psychiatric adviser to the Army surgeon general. “The rise in the suicide rate continues despite numerous recommendations from the Army and [Department of Defense] task forces.”
There were 154 U.S. military suicides in the first 155 days of 2012, the Associated Press reports, compared with 130 over the same period last year. That’s 50% more troops than were killed in action in Afghanistan, and the highest suicide toll in the U.S. military since 9/11.
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