PTSD NEWSLETTER #4, November 10, 2014.
Compiled by Dick Bennett for a Culture of Peace and Justice. (#1 Jan. 12, 2012; #2, Sept. 10, 2012; #3 March 11, 2013).
CHECK NEWSLETTERS ON INDIVIDUAL WARS!
Here is the link to all OMNI newsletters:
http://www.omnicenter.org/newsletter-archive/ For a knowledge-based peace, justice, and
ecology movement and an informed citizenry as the foundation for change.
See Blog, “IT’S THE WAR DEPARTMENT” http://jamesrichardbennett.blogspot.com/
“Estimated percentage change since 2007 in the number of
veterans committing suicide each day:
+22. Portion of all active-duty U.S.
service people who committed suicide in 2011 who had never been deployed:
½.” “Harper’s Index,” Harper’s Magazine (May 2013).
Contents PTSD Newsletter #4
IVAW, Another Shooting at
PTSD Cited Ft. Hood
Heather Courtney Film: Soldiers from Youth to PTSD
John Parrish, M.D., Vietnam War Doctor’s PTSD
Richard Drake, Sgt. Short PTSD?
Koon, Jacob George’s Struggle and Suicide
Richard Baker: Suicide
Soldier Facing 9th Deployment Kills Himself
Combat Journalists Too Experience PTSD
Dr. Shay, Diagnosing and Treating PTSD with Literature
From WWI Shell Shock to PTSD
Joseph Robertson, “Germans in the Woods,” WWII Battle of the Bulge
Contact Your Representatives
· Linking the Fort Hood Shooting to Terrorism: The Fort Hood Shooting Should Be Analyzed Within the Larger Context of US Militarism
Contribute to Our Movement
Last night, President Obama stated that he is "heartbroken" about the shooting on Fort Hood Army base in
When we first went to
Lopez was already being treated for common symptoms of PTSD - anxiety, depression, and insomnia - and was being evaluated for PTSD. Even after his death, the leadership at
We collected testimony from 31 soldiers during our time at
As long as soldiers continue to be punished for seeking care, tragedies will continue to occur.
We must demand the right to heal.
Please join us by making a financial contribution today.
Joyce, Matt, Maggie, and Julia
P.S. Our work at
From: Heather Courtney <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Sun, Apr 7, 2013 at 5:35 PM
Subject: Emmy-winning film on the costs of war
I contacted your Veterans For Peace chapter last year about my Emmy-winning documentary, WHERE SOLDIERS COME FROM. The film focuses on the four-year journey of childhood friends, from teenagers stuck in their small town, to National Guard soldiers looking for roadside bombs in Afghanistan, to 23-year-old veterans dealing with the silent war wounds of PTSD and Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI).
As an organization that helps the families of soldiers and veterans, I thought you might be interested in using the film as a community-based tool. Some Veterans For Peace chapters and other veterans and military family groups have organized community screenings of WHERE SOLDIERS COME FROM to build understanding of what soldiers, veterans and their families are going through, in a workshop setting to open up a dialogue between veterans and their families and loved ones, and as a fundraiser for their organization.
You can watch a trailer at www.wheresoldierscomefrom.com/trailer.php. It is a different war film in that it follows the full experience – over the course of the film, we see the young men before they become soldiers, during their deployment, and after they come home and work to reintegrate back into civilian society. It would be a great film to organize a Memorial Day or Armed Forces Day event around.
Community and veteran groups can purchase Where Soldiers Come From to for screenings from our educational distributor New Day Films. Feel free to share this information with others. If you have questions or want to discuss a possible event in detail, please email me at email@example.com, or call me at 512-565-1628. Also, we are very flexible on price so lets us know what works for you. Thank you for the important work your organization does, and I look forward to hearing from you.
AUTOPSY OF WAR: A Personal History
John A. Parrish, M.D. Thomas Dunne Books
On the outside, John Parrish is a highly successful doctor, having risen to the top of his field as department head at
School and .
Inside, however, he was so tortured by the memories of his tour of duty as a
marine battlefield doctor in Massachusetts General Hospital
that he was unable to live a normal life. In Autopsy
of War, the author delivers an unflinching narrative chronicling his four-decade battle with the unseen
enemy in his own mind as he struggled with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. Vietnam
Parrish examines his Southern Baptist childhood and the profound influence of his father, a fire and brimstone preacher turned Navy chaplain, while offering a candid assessment of the “God and Country” ethos that leads young men to rush wide-eyed into war. He describes the unimaginable carnage and acts of cruelty he witnessed in
experiences that shattered his world view leaving him to retreat from his
family upon his return stateside. Living virtually homeless at times, he
visited veteran shelters and relived the horrors of war in a series of
harrowing flashbacks as he dealt with suicidal thoughts. The author writes
honestly and probingly of his episodes of infidelity and battles with sex
addiction. Readers follow his steady journey toward recovery and his
professional contributions in the field of medicine and technology, as well as
a joint program with the Boston Red Sox and Vietnam General Hospital to aid
returning veterans. Perhaps most poignantly, Parrish speaks of his quest to
discover the identity of one particular soldier in Massachusetts he could not save—and whose
memory has haunted him ever since. Vietnam
Autopsy of War is a soul searching memoir that is both an intensely personal narrative and a universally relevant trip through the world of war and recovery.
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The Dog Killer: Is our war in the Middle East having a ripple effect in
Richard S. Drake/August 29, 2014
When she heard the news of his arrest, she was thunderstruck. As she told a
reporter from KFSM, “They said ‘animal cruelty’ and I said ‘what, you've got to
be crazy.’” She added that he had animals in his own home.
John Christopher Short of Fayetteville was arrested this week on suspicion of
aggravated animal cruelty. It seems that a dog which had belonged to his
girlfriend died some months ago under conditions which can only be described as
The dog Esther’s rear left leg was fractured, an injury so severe that its left
leg had to be amputated. Even that was not enough to save her life, though.
Soon after, his girlfriend took in a new puppy, Hector, to replace - what a
stupid word to use - Esther, her dead dog.
According to the police report, the woman came home from work one day only to
find her new puppy dead. Short is said to have told her that “It is not
He added that he thought the puppy was dead.
Hector was indeed dead, the victim of multiple skull fractures.
I don’t know John Christopher Short, and I don’t know anything about him, save
for what I have heard on the news.
But this is what I do know about John Christopher Short, and I will tell you in
the reverse order that KFSM told the story.
In 2005, Sergeant Short was in Afghanistan, when his Humvee was hit by an IED.
Besides having his own leg amputated, according to his aunt, in addition to
undergoing several surgeries on his elbow, he suffered a traumatic brain
Returning stateside, Short has been no stranger to legal troubles.
In the past two years, two women have filed protection orders against him.
In February of this year he entered a plea of guilty to assault and domestic
In 2012, he shot and killed a man while struggling over a gun at his home. No
charges were ever filed in that case.
So, just who is John Christopher Short? A violent man, evidently, but at least
one relative loves him and has nothing but kind words for him. Is it possible
she sees only the man who left for war, but not the man who returned?
Was he always the man he is today?
Or is John Christopher Short just another cast-off from a terrible war, a man
whose victims in peace time are like the fast-moving ripples in a pond?
The martyr of Danville Mountain
Jacob George, 'moral injury' and one soldier's losing struggle against the encroaching darkness of war [while living in Fayetteville]
From Larry W 10-24-14
RICHARD BAKER on SUICIDE
“Suicide by Appointment.” In These Times (April 2013). “The Current practice is to treat the injury, not prevent it. Preventing PTSD would be simple: Don’t send people to war. Treating the injury is more difficult, and currently, the VA’s efforts are a failure.” [Did he intend to over-generalize; did he mean to say the VA’s efforts to treat suicide have failed? Baker apparently has written a novel, entitled Incoming, about soldier suicide, but I was unable to find it in Google. --Dick]
Aug 16, 2011 – 13 Responses to “Facing 9th Deployment, Soldier Commits Suicide”. bjt Says: 16 August, 2011 at 3:37 pm. Why do these white Humans keep ...
A series of articles and multimedia about veterans of the wars in
who have committed killings, or been charged with them, after coming home. Afghanistan
THEATER REVIEW | CONNECTICUT
War Leaves Wounds Behind the Camera, Too
A Review of Time Stands Still, in Hartford
By SYLVIANE GOLD Published: August 23, 2013
Playwrights who know it all can often provide first-rate entertainment. But the very best plays usually come from writers who don’t necessarily have all the answers, who don’t insist on telling us what to think about the developments onstage and who don’t offer neat solutions to their characters’ problems.
Donald Margulies, who won thePulitzer Prize in 2000 for “Dinner With Friends,” has been writing that kind of play ever since “Sight Unseen” in 1992. And “Time Stands Still,” the 2010 Tony nominee currently in an outstanding production at TheaterWorks in Hartford, is his finest work to date. Like the earlier plays, it asks us to ponder the intricacies of love and friendship and the emotional perils of professional success. But this one, expertly directed by TheaterWorks’s producing artistic director, Rob Ruggiero, goes beyond the personal to explore the moral ambiguities of journalism, a subject that both producers and consumers of the news media tend to avoid.
Mr. Margulies isn’t worried here about journalists’ ethics; his concern is the very underpinnings of the enterprise. “I live off the suffering of strangers,” says Sarah, the conflict photographer at the heart of the play. “I built a career on the sorrows of people I don’t know.” Is she, as she sometimes feels, “a ghoul with a camera”? Or is she a crucial witness to truths that would pass unnoticed without her, as she believes in her less anguished moments? In the no-nonsense performance of Erika Rolfsrud, Sarah is clearly driven by both high ideals and an addiction to danger.
When the play begins, she has come a little too close to the latter. With one arm in a sling, one leg in a cast and a face pitted with shrapnel scars (the work of the makeup artist Joe Rossi), Sarah has returned home from a German hospital after falling prey to a roadside bomb in Iraq. Carrying her gear and watching her every painful move is James, the war correspondent who has been her companion for some eight years. Their Brooklyn loft has been designed by Luke Hegel-Cantarella with a keen appreciation for their shabby-chic taste and their extensive travels. And Harry Nadal’s costumes make it apparent that they prefer to dress for war zones.
The play’s title accurately describes what happens when a camera shutter clicks, but “time stands still” is also a lie. Time moves right along, and as John Lasiter’s sterling lighting takes the loft through the days and nights of Sarah’s recuperation, and her many mood swings, we learn that James, in the sympathetic performance of Tim Altmeyer, has war wounds of his own — and that the two of them appear to have very different definitions of healing.
We also meet their dear friend Richard, a photo editor who arrives with his latest flame, the much younger — “embryonic,” snarls Sarah — Mandy. His serious themes notwithstanding, Mr. Margulies is an astute social satirist, and Mandy is a delicious comic creation. The personification of perkiness, she’s a party planner who lets slip that an event set among the Egyptian sarcophagi at the Metropolitan Museum was “really intense” — this to people who chase gunfire for a living.
Liz Holtan gives Mandy an airheaded sweetness that is the stock in trade of many a pretty young blond actress. But Ms. Holtan also knows how to listen onstage. We see her Mandy taking in the barbs launched in her direction, both spoken and unspoken, and weighing their worth. For all her callowness, she’s no bimbo, and her sense of right and wrong is at least as well developed as Sarah’s. It’s a wonderful role, and Ms. Holtan makes it entirely her own.
As Richard, Matthew Boston has the rueful air of a man who knows he should know better, but who simply cannot resist the illusion that time will indeed stand still for him and Mandy. In his own way, he’s flirting with danger as recklessly as Sarah and James do when they head off to Sudan or Sierra Leone or Kurdistan. But the question of how best to stay safe has different answers for different people, and Mr. Margulies lets us decide whether, in the end, the one with the plane ticket or the one with the bicycle helmet has the better shot.
In the street-level lobby above the auditorium, TheaterWorks has installed a display of wrenching news photographs, including classic images by the famed combat photographers Robert Capa and Eddie Adams, that illustrate the issues raised by the play. They look very different on one’s way out than they do on the way in, before Mr. Margulies has moved us to think hard about the people who take them.
“Time Stands Still,” by Donald Margulies, is at TheaterWorks, 233 Pearl Street, Hartford, through Sept. 15; (860) 527-7838 or theaterworkshartford.org.
Dr. Jonathan Shay on Returning Veterans and Combat Trauma
Top of Form
Bottom of Form
By DEBORAH SONTAG and AMY O'LEARY
Published: January 13, 2008
Dr. Jonathan Shay is a psychiatrist who specializes in treating the psychic wounds of war. He is also the author of two books, "Achilles in
: Combat Trauma and the
Undoing of Character" and "Odysseus in
America: Combat Trauma and the Trials of Homecoming," which
examine the experiences of combat veterans through the lens of classical texts. Vietnam
Dr. Jonathan Shay
Over 20 years ago, Dr. Shay, then a medical researcher studying the biochemistry of brain-cell death, suffered a stroke. During his recovery, he moved from research into clinical work, taking a temporary job substituting for a vacationing psychiatrist at a Department of Veteran Affairs clinic in
When that doctor died, Dr. Shay stayed on, challenged and inspired by the
terrible psychological injuries of the combat veterans.
During his stroke recovery, Dr. Shay also began, as he put it, to fill in the gaps in his education by reading the classics: "The Iliad," "The Odyssey," and "The Aeneid." And it was clear to him that his patients at the V.A. clinic were echoing many of the sentiments expressed by the warriors in those ancient texts: betrayal by those in power, guilt for surviving, deep alienation on their return from war.
“I realized that I was hearing the story of Achilles over and over again,” said Dr. Shay.
For this series, Deborah Sontag spoke with Dr. Shay, who recently won one of the MacArthur Foundation’s coveted “genius awards,’’ about his unique perspective on the psychological impact of war.
What happens when someone who has adapted to war comes home?
What others view as a mental disorder — post-traumatic stress disorder, that is — Dr. Shay prefers to see as a psychological injury of war. Initially, when a service member returns from war, he or she often retains the behaviors that they adopted for their own survival while in a combat zone, he says.
“Most of it really boils down to the valid adaptations in the mind and body to the real situation of other people trying to kill you,’’ he said.
On PTSD, sleep and a breakthrough in treatment.
Dr. Shay has written about the connection between criminal behavior and combat trauma. He refers to the problem as "staying in combat mode." In his writing, he points out that the first adventure of Odysseus after the Trojan War was to sack the city of
Ismarus — essentially a pirate raid where the
soldiers applied their hard-earned wartime skills to a civilian environment. If
this kind of behavior is common, should the courts consider combat service when
a veteran has been charged with criminal activity?
On whether the effects of combat trauma should be considered in criminal cases.
Dr. Shay has become an advocate for preventing psychological war injuries as much as possible through a variety of methods. For example, he believes that soldiers should be deployed together, rather than trickling in and out of combat zones individually as was the practice during the Vietnam War. A sense of community and stability are key, he says, in preventing further damage.
On seeing another generation suffer the psychological aftermath of war
By Jerry Lembcke, CounterPunch.org, posted October 22, 2014
The author is a Vietnam veteran who teaches sociology at the College of the Holy Cross
Germans in the Woods (WWII)
Joseph Robertson was an infantryman in the U.S. Army during World War II, where he fought in the Battle of the Bulge. The stark black and white images in this short haunt the viewer, just as Robertson is haunted by his memories from that battle.
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US Capitalism and Climate Change 11-4
UN Day 10-24
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UN Food and Poverty Days 10-17
Indigenous People of the Americas Day 10-13
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Book: Philipps, David. Lethal Warriors
Hidden Battles Documentary Film
Poster Girl Documentary Film
Contents of #2
Chloe Fox: Rev. of Castner, The Long Walk
Suicides July 2012
Women Homeless Veterans
Staff Sgt. Robert Bales
Book: Lethal Warriors
Gandolfini’s documentary, Wartorn
: Jacob George, Music and Poetry
: Wounded Warriors Gather Arkansas
Obama To Troops: More Support
Zoroya, Guilt and PTSD
McClelland, PTSD Spreading to Families
PTSD IN EARLIER WARS
World War II
Animated Film about WWII Battle of the Bulge PTSD
Google Search First Page
Korean War Google Search
Vietnam War Google Search
Sen. John Boozman
Republican, first term
320 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20510
Phone: (202) 224-4843
Fax: (202) 228-1371
FORT SMITH: (479) 573-0189
JONESBORO: (870) 268-6925
LITTLE ROCK: (501) 372-7153
LOWELL: (479) 725-0400
MOUNTAIN HOME: (870) 424-0129
STUTTGART: (870) 672-6941
EL DORADO: (870) 863-4641
Sen. Mark Pryor
[Lost his Senate seat Nov. 4]
Democrat, second term
255 Dirksen Office Building
Constitution Avenue and
First Street NE
Washington, D.C. 20510
Phone: (202) 224-2353
Fax: (202) 228-0908
Little Rock office: (501) 324-6336
Rep. Tom Cotton
[Cotton beat Pryor Nov. 4]
Republican, first term
415 Cannon House Office Building
Phone: (202) 225-43772
CLARKSVILLE: (479) 754-2120
EL DORADO: (870) 881-0631
HOT SPRINGS: (501) 520-5892
PINE BLUFF: (870) 536-3376
Rep. Rick Crawford
Republican, second term
Independence Avenues SE
Washington, D.C. 20515
Phone: (202) 225-4076
Fax: (202) 225-5602
CABOT: (501) 843-3043
MOUNTAIN HOME: (870) 424-2075
Rep. Tim Griffin
[Lost his House position Nov. 4]
Republican, second term
1232 Longworth Office Building
New Jersey and
Independence Avenues SE
Washington, D.C. 20515
Phone: (202) 225-2506
Fax: (202) 225-5903
LITTLE ROCK: (501) 324-5491
Rep. Steve Womack
Republican, second term
1119 Longworth Office Building
New Jersey and
Independence Avenues SE
Phone: (202) 225-4301
Fax: (202) 225-5713
ROGERS: (479) 464-0446
HARRISON: (870) 741-7741
FORT SMITH: (479) 424-1146
END US WARS AND PTSD NEWSLETTER # 4