In the news...

February 5, 2014

Report: U.S. troop morale higher in Afghanistan

Pauline Jelinek
Associated Press

U.S. soldiers had higher morale and suffered fewer mental health problems in Afghanistan last year as they handed off more duties to Afghans and saw less combat themselves, according to a report released Feb. 3.

The Army report was drawn from a battlefield survey and interviews in June and July. It was the ninth time since the practice started in 2003 in Iraq that the service had sent a team of mental health experts to the field of war to measure soldier mental health and assess available care.

The report says rates of soldiers with depression, anxiety and acute stress – as well as tendencies toward suicide – were lower than in the most recent previous surveys.

In a survey of nearly 900 soldiers, 20.2 percent said last year that their morale was high or very high, compared with 14.7 percent and 16.3 percent in 2012 and 2010, respectively. During those earlier survey years, there were more U.S. troops in Afghanistan – 100,000 at the height of the surge that started in 2010. Now, there are about 34,000 U.S. troops.

ìThe differences in individual morale in 2013 relative to 2010 and 2012 may reflect differences in combat experiences during those 2 years … years with the highest combat experience levelsî of the war, said the report by the office of the Army surgeon general and command surgeons at U.S. Central Command and in the Afghan warzone.

Last year, the U.S.-led international forces in Afghanistan suffered the lowest number of casualties in the past six years, while Afghan security forces saw their casualties mount as they took the lead in the 12-year war against the Taliban. According to an Associated Press tally, U.S. deaths fell to 118 from 297 in 2012, while casualties among Afghan army and police rose to 2,767, up from 1,870 the year before.

Other details of Monday’s report included:

  • The number of surveyed soldiers who thought they would be better off dead or had considered hurting themselves – was 8.5 percent last year compared with 9 percent and 13 percent in 2012 and 2010, respectively.
  • The rate of troops who met the criteria for acute stress was recorded as 8.5 percent last year compared with 11.2 percent and 14.9 percent in 2012 and 2010, respectively. For depression, it was 3.1 percent last year, compared with 3.8 percent and 6.5 percent in 2012 and 2010.
  • Nearly 25 percent of soldiers said they had high or very high concern about not getting enough sleep during deployment. Though that was the lowest rate seen in the last four surveys, more than 18 percent reported falling asleep on guard duty and more than 47 percent while riding in convoys. About 12.5 percent blamed lack of sleep for an accident or a mistake that affected the mission.



All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Headlines October 20, 2014

News: Navy grounds ‘Top Guns’ - The F/A-18s needs spare parts and in too many cases they’re being taken from brand new jets. This is a risk to national security and pilots’ lives.   Business: Boeing seeks revised schedule for U.S. aerial tanker - Boeing is revising its master schedule for developing the new U.S. Air Force...
 
 

News Briefs October 20, 2014

New military medical team to help with Ebola in U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel has ordered the military to prepare and train a 30-member medical support team that could provide short-term help to civilian health professionals if there are more Ebola cases in the United States. His spokesman, Rear Adm. John Kirby, says the team...
 
 

Dragon ‘fires up’ for flight

The Air Force and NATO are undergoing a cooperative development effort to upgrade the avionics and cockpit displays of AWACS aircraft belonging to the 552nd Air Control Wing at Tinker Air Force Base, Okla., and the NATO E-3 Sentrys from Geilenkirchen, Germany. The Diminishing Manufacturing Sources Replacement of Avionics for Global Operations and Navigation, otherwise...
 

 
Boeing photographs

Boeing-built X-37B successfully completes third flight

Unmanned spacecraft concludes record-setting 674-day mission   Boeing photograph A third mission of the Boeing-built X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle was completed on Oct. 17, 2014, when it landed and was recovered at Vandenberg...
 
 

Boeing concludes commercial crew space act agreement for CST-100/Atlas V

Boeing has successfully completed the final milestone of its Commercial Crew Integrated Capability Space Act Agreement with NASA. The work and testing completed under the agreement resulted in significant maturation of Boeing’s crew transportation system, including the CST-100 spacecraft and Atlas V rocket. NASA in July approved the Critical Design Review Board milestone for Boeing’...
 
 

AF to release small business research solicitations

The Air Force Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer program office is set to release its fiscal year 2015 list of topics Oct. 22, on the SBIR/STTR website.  Small businesses and research institutions with expertise to address the topics’ technology challenges are encouraged to submit proposals. During 2014, the Defense Department SBIR...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>