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After A General’s Suicide, The Army’s Looking At Officer Health
On July 31, 2016, Maj. Gen. John Rossi took his own life, just days before being pinned a third-star and taking over Army Space and Missile Command. His death made him the highest ranking soldier ever to commit suicide, and sent shockwaves through Army leadership.
As a result, Army Secretary Eric Fanning asked Lt. Gen. Edward Cardon, who recently led Army Cyber Command, to review the general officer corps’ health after 15 years of continuous war.
It’s not because we felt we had some burgeoning, endemic problem,” Fanning told Army Times. “It’s because one is too many, and it’s always good to take a knee, take a breath, and see if there’s something new or that has developed because something’s changed.”
Upon his death, his family released a statement that read, “To all the other families out there, to the man or woman who may be facing challenging times, please seek assistance immediately.”
Just a few months prior, Rossi spoke at a suicide prevention conference. He led his speech with anecdote about ten men who perished under his command. Four died by suicide.
Cardon’s review, Fanning hopes, will analyze how the Army is preparing and taking care of its top leaders.
Investigators didn’t find any specific event, instance of infidelity, misconduct, or drug and alcohol abuse, that led to Rossi's suicide, said a U.S. government official told USA Today, adding that Rossi was instead overwhelmed by his responsibilities.
“It’s been a very long time since we’ve had a general officer commit suicide, and it’s worth looking at and seeing if there’s anything we’re not recognizing that we’re not getting at,” Fanning said.
According to the most recent data released by the Pentagon, the Army’s rate of 23.9 suicides per 100,000 soldiers was the highest among the services.
“It always makes you stop and wonder, ‘do we have a problem?’” Fanning added. “The trends are all in the right direction, but like anything, like sexual assault, suicide, we need to get to zero.”
'What happens after that is out of their control' — Former military leaders and lawyers react to Trump's war crimes pardons
On Friday, President Donald Trump intervened in the cases of three U.S. service members accused of war crimes, granting pardons to two Army soldiers accused of murder in Afghanistan and restoring the rank of a Navy SEAL found guilty of wrongdoing in Iraq.
While the statements coming out of the Pentagon regarding Trump's actions have been understandably measured, comments from former military leaders and other knowledgable veterans help paint a picture as to why the president's Friday actions are so controversial.
Raccoon infestations and extreme rust didn’t stop an anonymous buyer from nabbing this Soviet-era submarine
A former Soviet submarine that became a tourist attraction docked adjacent to the Queen Mary in Long Beach is expected to be sold soon to an anonymous buyer, with plans to remove the rusting sub by mid-May.
The 48-year-old Russian Foxtrot-class submarine, known as the Scorpion, had hosted paying visitors for 17 years before it fell into such disrepair that it became infested with raccoons and was closed to the public in 2015.
Former Army 1st Lt. Clint Lorance, whom President Donald Trump recently pardoned of his 2013 murder conviction, claims he was nothing more than a pawn whom generals sacrificed for political expediency.
The infantry officer had been sentenced to 19 years in prison for ordering his soldiers to open fire on three unarmed Afghan men in 2012. Two of the men were killed.
During a Monday interview on Fox & Friends, Lorance accused his superiors of betraying him.
"A service member who knows that their commanders love them will go to the gates of hell for their country and knock them down," Lorance said. "I think that's extremely important. Anybody who is not part of the senior Pentagon brass will tell you the same thing."
"I think folks that start putting stars on their collar — anybody that has got to be confirmed by the Senate for a promotion — they are no longer a soldier, they are a politician," he continued. "And so I think they lose some of their values — and they certainly lose a lot of their respect from their subordinates — when they do what they did to me, which was throw me under the bus."
Fifteen years after the U.S. military toppled the regime of Saddam Hussein, the Army's massive two-volume study of the Iraq War closed with a sobering assessment of the campaign's outcome: With nearly 3,500 U.S. service members killed in action and trillions of dollars spent, "an emboldened and expansionist Iran appears to be the only victor.
Thanks to roughly 700 pages of newly-publicized secret Iranian intelligence cables, we now have a good idea as to why.
A U.S. Air Force combat controller will receive the nation's third highest award for valor this week for playing an essential role in two intense firefight missions against the Taliban in Afghanistan last year.
Tech. Sgt. Cody Smith, an airman with the 26th Special Tactics Squadron, 24th Special Operations Wing at Air Force Special Operations Command, will receive the Silver Star at Cannon Air Force Base, New Mexico on Nov. 22, the service announced Monday.