Confirming once again that war, to those who are sent to fight them, is absolute hell, newly released Pentagon statistics show that suicide — not combat — is the leading killer of US troops deployed to the Middle East.
According to a report in USA Today this week, of the 31 troops who have died as of Dec. 27 in Operation Inherent Resolve, 11 have taken their own lives. Eight died in combat, seven in accidents and four succumbed to illness or injury.
These new numbers confirm a trend that’s been in place since the beginning of the prolonged occupation of the Middle East.
Earlier this year, the DoD released a similar report from 2014 that revealed some startling numbers. In all of 2014, a total of 55 US troops, in both hostile and non-hostile situations, lost their lives in foreign occupations. The number of soldiers who killed themselves was nearly 5 times that amount.
According to the DoD report, in 2014, there were 269 deaths by suicide among active component service members (compared to 259 deaths by suicide in 2013).