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Mental Health: “ARMY STRONG”?

Stephen M. Raffle, M.D.

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Curriculum Vitae

By Stephen M. Raffle, M.D.

MILITARY SUICIDES DROPPED LAST YEAR AMID CHANGING “CULTURAL MINDSET”

CBS AP, April 25, 2014

ARMY PSYCHIATRIST, NIDAL HASAN, CONVICTED OF 2009 FATAL SHOOTING OF 13 PEOPLE AND INJURING 31 OTHERS (Dr. Raffle was first contacted about this case shortly after the shooting…at which time it was thought that Major Hasan, himself a psychiatrist, had had a mental decompensation….on August 23, 2013, he was found guilty after he chose to represent himself at trial and characterized his acts as faith based.  You are encouraged to read about the trial, as well as the articles below. No diagnosis is made here, nor medical opinion expressed or side taken.  We hope, however, that these articles will engender thought and discussion.)

NIDAL HASSAN FOUND GUILTY

Rick Jervis and Doug Stanlin, USA Today, August 23, 2013

Maj. Nidal Hasan, an Army Psychiatrist, was found guilty of fatally shooting 13 and injuring more than 30 others in the November 5, 2009, Fort Hood shooting. The mass shooting occurred less than a month before he was due to deploy to Afghanistan.)

…read the complete article

“NIDAL HASAN  CONVICTED OF FORT HOOD KILLINGS”

By Billy Kember, Washington Post, August 23, 2013

….”Nidal Malik Hasan faces a possible death sentence after being found guilty Friday of killing 13 people and wounding dozens more when he opened fire at the Fort Hood Army post in Texas in November 2009.”

..”Aside from a very brief opening statement and a few questions of prosecution witnesses, the military psychiatrist has shown little interest in mounting a defense. Hasan, who was prohibited by military law from entering a guilty plea, declined to call any witnesses, testify himself or give a closing argument.”  …read the complete article

WALTER REED OFFICIAL ASK: WAS HASAN PSYCHOTIC?

By Daniel Zwerdling, NPR, November 11, 2009

“Deeply Troubling, Schizoid Behavior

“…When a group of key officials gathered in the spring of 2008 for their monthly meeting in a Bethesda, Md., office, one of the leading — and most perplexing — items on their agenda was: What should we do about Hasan?

“Hasan had been a trouble spot on officials’ radar since he started training at Walter Reed, six years earlier. Several officials confirm that supervisors had repeatedly given him poor evaluations and warned him that he was doing substandard work.

“Both fellow students and faculty were deeply troubled by Hasan’s behavior — which they variously called disconnected, aloof, paranoid, belligerent, and schizoid. The officials say he antagonized some students and faculty by espousing what they perceived to be extremist Islamic views. His supervisors at Walter Reed had even reprimanded him for telling at least one patient that “Islam can save your soul.” …read the entire article  (This article from 2009 provides an interesting glimpse into a man who, at his trial presented himself as a man acting on his faith, and did not claim mental incompetence.)

“STUDY: MENTAL HEALTH WOES, NOT DEPLOYMENT OR COMBAT, RAISE MILITARY SUICIDE RISK”

By Ryan Jaslow, CBS News, August 6, 2013

Military suicide rates have increased sharply in recent years, drawing the attention of government officials and mental health experts looking for ways to reverse the trend.”

…”But, “The findings from this study do not support an association between deployment or combat with suicide, rather they are consistent with previous research indicating that mental health problems increase suicide risk,” the authors added. “…read the complete article

DISCLAIMER: The information provided on this website does not constitute legal or medical advice. Readers should consult with their own legal counsel or physician for the most current information and to obtain professional legal advice or medical advice before acting on any of the information presented.

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