"As I mused, the fire burned"

Reflection on life as a person of faith.

Non-Combat Soldier/Chaplain and PTSD

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I’ve written before about the subject of ‘non-combat’ versus ‘combat’ soldiers, mostly in response to comments I’ve seen on news websites – that say a ‘non-combat’ soldier should be treated like any civilian if injured on duty.

This story is yet another example of a ‘non-combatant’ coming down with PTSD after service in a theatre of operations – in this case a chaplain. Chaplains bear the burdens of those under their care, and frequently suffer as seriously as those to whom they lend support.

The stresses upon this chaplain were due solely to his military deployment – which means this is an injury caused by his military service…even while he never fired a shot in anger (or was only rarely shot at in anger, if at all).

Sometimes the psychological injuries are worse for those who can’t shoot back – because you have no means to express your frustration.  Sebastian Junger in his excellent book, “War”, talks about how the soldiers could not believe that he didn’t want a chance to fire their 0.50 cal, which for many of them was the only good thing about the deployment.

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Written by sameo416

February 23, 2013 at 2:13 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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