Seems the soldier that killed 16 innocent civilians, mostly children, in Afghanistan did have a post-traumatic stress disorder diagnosis. I don’t know how many brownie points that gets me, but it should garner a few. Here’s another psychiatrist offering his 10 cents worth of wisdom in TheLeafChronicle.com under the heading, Reasons for killings uncertain. This Harry Croft shrink should know. He’s interviewed, he says, at least 7,000 PTSD cases. Next question, who rubber stamped ‘em all?
Dr. Harry Croft of San Antonio, Texas, has worked with PTSD since before it even had a name. As a major in the U.S. Army serving as a psychiatrist during Vietnam, Croft said that he and others had known of the disorder as early as 1973, and that since then, he said he has interviewed no less than 7,000 PTSD sufferers in his practice and as a contracted specialist working for companies in conjunction with the Veterans Administration (VA).
At this point, not only does this soldier have a certified mental health condition, but he also has a name. He’s Staff Sargeant Robert Bales.
Dr. Croft, to quell fears that any soldier may be labeled PTSD, explains that only 1 in 5 or 20 % of the troops sent to Iraq and Afghanistan are likely to become so labeled. He thinks that a small figure. He doesn’t want people to blame the PTSD as matter of course. As he explains, mass murder is rare, and he wouldn’t attribute the killings to PTSD just off the cuff.
Reports in recent days have cited a past diagnosis of PTSD and possible traumatic brain injury as a result of a rollover accident in Iraq, but have also uncovered financial problems and past incidents of erratic behavior that conflicted with a picture of a “super soldier” painted by former commanders and others.
This doctor blames multiple deployments as a possible factor involved in the shootings. He also mentioned incidents where supposedly friendly Afghans shot in the back, or blew up, American soldiers.
Bogeyman of bogeymen, demon of the courthouse, where’s this discussion leading? Why to psychosis as the culprit, of course.
“There was rage and a possible flip into a psychotic state,” said Croft. “I just don’t think this was simply PTSD, and I worry that people are going to generalize from this and say that everyone coming back from over there is a potential murderer. Nothing could be further from the truth.”
Uh, we hope so, too.
Realistically we know if an ex-troop is stuck in a bad situation, and he wants out, all he has to do is get some shrink to certify him a PTSD case, and it’s fun in the sun time. Keep those benefits coming, thank you, Uncle Sam. Of course, these disturbed regular troops wouldn’t do anything of the order of the things that Sgt. Bales did. That goes without saying.
Sgt. Bales couldn’t have been in his right mind either for that matter. I imagine he was possessed by the schizophrenia demon, and the schizophrenia demon perpetuated those vile deeds. If a court buys it, no need to exorcise him by electric chair, or do they still use a firing squad in the military these days? We can sweep him into the loon bin and all’s forgotten. All’s forgotten, that is, until the next soldier snaps under the strain, and let’s loose on the innocent.