Tuesday, July 5, 2011

building military resilience

According to an article in The Washington Post, the army is running a multi-million-dollar experiment in the face of a rising suicide rate, PTSD, spousal abuse and drug difficulties. The army is acknowledging stress in ways that the suck-it-up past did not.

The Army’s vice chief of staff, Gen. Peter W. Chiarelli, said day-to-day pressures on the modern soldier are enormous.
“We are putting as much stress on a soldier in the first six years in the United States Army” as many 80-year-old civilians have experienced in an entire lifetime, he said.

 The program aims to instill a kind of mental fitness:

“It used to be that you just kind of joined the Army and lived your life . . . and there wasn’t anything very dangerous about it,” Cornum said.
“When I came in the Army, which was 1978, nobody was going anywhere and doing anything. Vietnam was over.”
Now, she said, almost everybody who joins is quickly deployed to a hot zone and faces redeployment over and over. “It’s a different Army, and nobody sees peace breaking out.”

Nobody sees peace breaking out. In the meantime, the wounds go deep, horrifyingly deep. I don't mean to be simplistic, but the whole thing sounds a little like a fellow who finds a hangover remedy that works really well ... and is delighted because now he can go out and get drunk some more.


  1. I pray for peace in all the countries that are at war.

    Great post!

  2. Why blame the hammer for bending the nail?