Suicides Among Active-Duty Troops Rose in 2011, U.S. Army Says

Suicides among active-duty soldiers hit a new high in 2011, Army officials said on Thursday, although there was a slight decrease in suicides overall, if non-mobilized Reserve and National Guard troops were included in the calculation.The Army also reported a sharp increase, of nearly 30 percent, in violent sex crimes last year by active-duty troops. More than half of the victims were active-duty female soldiers between 18 and 21.“This is unacceptable,” Gen. Peter W. Chiarelli, the outgoing vice chief of staff of the Army, said of the violent sex offenses, “We have zero tolerance for this.” General Chiarelli, speaking at a news conference, said the factors driving the increase in sex crimes were alcohol use and new barracks that offered soldiers more privacy than in the past. He also said it was possible that more victims were stepping forward to report crimes.