A glimpse into PTSD

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Comments (6)
  1. Mike says:

    I wonder about this. The scenario this soldier went through wouldn’t bother me at all. PTSD seems to be mostly a Western thing that began rather late. The German army, for instance, which didn’t recognize PTSD and didn’t remove soldiers from the field, had much lower rates of it.

    I wonder if the Jihadis have PTSD? Somehow I doubt it. Man has been warring for millenia and seems to enjoy it tremendously. We fight wars for any reason or no reason at all, often just boredom. And mobs become murderous and savage in the blink of an eye. Ordinary people.

    I think most men have no problem killing and don’t have such exquisite moral sensitivities. Its probably something that Western culture encourages.

    If this soldier didn’t believe that war was right, what was he doing there? If he did, tragic things happen in war. You don’t beat yourself up over it – unless your culture encourages you to.

    I think in the West, there are certain kinds of emotional rewards society holds out to encourage people to “develop” PTSD, and some soldiers succumb to it.

    Its kind like women complain because they’ve been taught that it works – it gets them attention and help.

    1. barbarossaa says:

      interesting food for thought ill think on it

    2. braininavat says:

      This is a perfect example of how human experience bifurcates. Some people can kill with enthusiasm and without regret; some are tortured by their actions and ultimately are unable to live with it.

      While “PTSD” is a term of western medical science, there is ample literary evidence that some human beings who experience combat, regardless of ethnicity or culture, experience symptoms that we would now call PTSD.

      Do jihadis experience PTSD? Not likely the specific “moral injury” here discussed, because they have spent their lives being indoctrinated in a moral code that rationalizes and legitimizes killing in the name of their faith (Sam Harris in his many books hammers away on this element of Islam, but it is of course found in many faith traditions). Those raised in a faith tradition in which the value of every soul is judged to be beyond price are likely to have much more difficulty in accepting the casual brutality and death of combat.

      “If this soldier didn’t believe that war was right, what was he doing there?”

      Many soldiers enlist out of feelings of patriotism or duty, many are transferred from their preferred theater of action to a mission with which they are morally uncomfortable–there are countless reasons an individual might enlist and serve. They of course have no idea what they will experience in combat, nor how they will respond. No one knows if and until they are exposed to the experience how they will react. Even those confident that they can kill without regret in the context of war sometimes find themselves devastated when they reflect after the fact on what they did in the adrenaline-soaked atmosphere of combat. It is an atmosphere conducive to extremes, and many soldiers do things they later regret, even if it does not later cripple their lives.

      “I think in the West, there are certain kinds of emotional rewards society holds out to encourage people to ‘develop’ PTSD, and some soldiers succumb to it.”

      There is some truth to this, but the larger truth is that human temperaments span the bell curve–some will love combat, and some will hate it. Most will simply endure it, and they will try not to think about it later.


      yeah, it’s possible guys fake PTSD but so-called shell shock is a real thing…

      ironically, it is psychopaths who seem to be able to endure long stretches of battle…

      “Swank and Marchand’s World War II study of US Army combatants on the beaches of Normandy found that after 60 days of continuous combat, 98% of the surviving soldiers had become psychiatric casualties. And the remaining 2% were identified as “aggressive psychopathic personalities.” Thus it is not too far from the mark to observe that there is something about continuous, inescapable combat which will drive 98% of all men insane, and the other 2% were crazy when they got there. Figure 1 presents a schematic representation of the effects of continuous combat.”

      another thing I’ve read, and wish I could dig it up…

      for the invasion of Normandy, virgin soldiers were chosen as experienced soldiers who had seen what explosives and ammunition could do to human body were much more cautious and would move slowly-duck and cover-ala gears of war rather than running towards an enemy position…

  2. Jessie Nagy says:

    PTSD is not only based by seeing graphic scenes, abuse, etc.. PTSD is also based on crooked morality. This is why women are emotionally stronger. It’s not because they have an “ethereal wisdom.” It’s because they have lesser morality.

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