Tag Archives: suicide

HEADLINES FROM WORLD PRESS

Each day we offer a sample of headlines that appeared in the world press along with our comments.

Israel, Haaretz: “Cop Gets 15 Months For killing Illegal Israel Arab”
I guess you get a free pass for killing a legal one.

Finland, Sanomat: “Man Kills Parents”
I assume one goes light on orphans.

Denmark, Copenhagen Post: “Danish Youth Drink Early”
At least we have happy youth in this country.

Sweden, The Local: “Student Skips School For Year”
This is one bright kid who found the perfect way to save his mind from what passes for education.

South Africa, Argus: “Tea Party For Cop”
After all, these nuts are against authority figures.

Saudi Arabia, Saudi Gazette: “Indian Gets Lashes And Jail For Suicide Attempt”
If he succeeded in the suicide attempt, it would have been death.

UAE, Khaleej Times: “Hunt On For Chopper After Politician Disappears”
We anxiously await news of the missing chopper and hope it is not damaged. As for the passenger, it’s only a politician.

UK, The Independent: “Wife Killer Studying To Be Taxi Driver”
Of course, he needed a quick exit from the scene.

The Unnecessary Death Of A Soldier

The overwhelming majority of those who serve in American armed forces are individuals who respect their comrades in arms, but, as in all large organizations, there are sadists who enjoy inflicting punishment upon those they command. Pvt. Keiffer Wilhelm was in Iraq less than four days before he placed a weapon to his head and committed suicide. His parents not only have lost a son, but must deal with the reality he was driven to death by four comrades in arms. “They just acted like a bunch of hoods,” said Wilhelm’s father. “They thought they were above the law.”

No one can ever prove any connection between soldiers placed in a war situation in which cruelty and sadism are allowed by those in command of the American army and the rising incidents of suicide among men and women deployed in combat. His parents describe Keiffer, a high school wrestler, as a “non-threatening person” who simply was not prepared “for the brutality from his own troops.”

There is need for a Truth and Reconciliation Commission in America which compels those who violated laws of decent human conduct must publicly confront their behavior. Once these incidents are in the open, fewer young men and women will be driven to suicide.

Army Recruiter Suicides Raise Alarm

Wars in Afghanistan and Iraq have daily body figures as to how many members of the military were killed or wounded in action, but there is another count of thousands who manifest the wounds of serving in combat. Between 2001– 2008, seventeen Army recruiters committed suicide while attempting to fulfill their responsibilities in getting more civilians to join the armed forces. Most of the seventeen had served in combat positions which suggests they had the mental toughness to confront combat, but something created even more stress while they worked as recruiters. Army Secretary Pete Geren ordered an investigation of the suicides and has now decided to close down all recruiting efforts on February 13 in order to discuss with recruiters their mental health and review procedures.

General Del Turner studied the situation over the past few months and concluded there “are some things that are disturbing” including a poor command structure and low morale due to demands for ever increasing higher rates of success. He also found examples of recruiters being pressured by their superiors to lie about conditions.

Ironically, the economic collapse has solved the problem since now recruiters have too many applicants to serve.

Suicide Center Of The World?

The people live in rural areas in a rather colder part of the world. Sometimes, the cold is so severe that ice forms on the inside walls. It is common for men to arise early in the mornng, reach for a bottle of liquor and use it as a way of trying to cope with the unrelenting poverty and lack of jobs in their environemnt. Although its economy has experienced a boom since joining the European Union in 2004, poverty is still an important component of rural life. The people of Lithuania have been ranked by the World Health Orlganization as number one in the world for the highest amount off recorded suicides last year at 42 for every 100,000 inhabitants.

A significant portion of those resorting to suicide comes from elderly members of society who have witnessed dramatic changes in their lives as a result of ceasing to be part of the Soviet Union and now belonging to the European Union which has sparked economic advances in urban areas. The nation most probably lacks social services and sufficient mental health personnel who have training working with suicide prevention as well as dealing with needs of the elderly.

Congress Takes Action On Veteran Suicides

One of the most under reported stories in American politics is the work of the Democratic Congress to reform treatment of veterans that became a national scandal of the Bush administration. Several bills have been passed to extend assistance to veterans in need of counseling and to protect family members who must leave their jobs to care for a wounded veteran. On Tuesday, Congress passed a suicide prevention bill to confront problems arising from ever increasing evidence that many veterans are resorting to suicide. According to Congressman Bob Filner, chair of the Veterans’ Affairs Committee, “as many Vietnam veterans have now committed suicide as died in the original war. That’s over 58,000.” The new bill requires mental health training for VA staff, screen suicide risk factors for veterans who receive VA care, refer at-risk veterans for counseling and treatment, and designate a suicide prevention counselor at each VA medical facility. It also allocates funds for out-reach programs to families.

These obviously necessary steps should have been taken years ago. A bill passed in 2007 about veterans who have been dying for years is a sad commentary on how this nation assists its veterans.