In 2012 "more soldiers, seamen, airmen and Marines died by their own hand than died in battle. Suicide was the No. 1 cause of death for U.S. troops." (Washington Post, 12/7/2012). 100,000 veterans of the Vietnam War have committed suicide- almost twice as many as the casualties of the war itself. PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder), formerly known as “combat fatigue” or “shell shock” is not new, but seems to be more frequent in Iraq and Afghanistan veterans due to multiple deployments and the nature of a “360 degree” war.
Dr. Jamshid Marvasti and Robert Caffrey, LPC, JD, Major (Retired), appear on Manchester Review in January to address issues related to war trauma. Jack Peak, host, questions them about the causes, symptoms and treatment of PTSD. Marvasti, a local psychiatrist, PTSD specialist and author, recently published the book "War Trauma In Veterans and Their Families." Caffrey, a certified counselor, contributed a chapter on ‘Warrior Values.” Caffrey served in Iraq, Haiti and Bosnia and now specializes in men’s counseling.
Both men believe the Purple Heart should be awarded to soldiers with PTSD and to those who commit suicide. They claim these are war related casualties just as much as if one were shot by the enemy or injured by an Improvised Explosive Device. Dr. Marvasti says prevention is the best approach- stop the wars! He feels that if the draft were reinstated our leaders would be more cautious about going to war and there would be less need of multiple deployments. Resources for veterans with PTSD are discussed.
“PTSD, War Trauma In Veterans and Their Families” can be seen on Manchester Review Mondays at 9 PM in January on Cox PATV Channel 15 or on YouTube.
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