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Nate Self's military record was impeccable. A West Point graduate, he led an elite Army Ranger outfit and established himself as a war hero in March 2002 for his leadership during a 15-hour ambush firefight in Afghanistan. The battle resulted in a Silver ...

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Displaying 1–11 of 11 comments

Adam S

July 07, 2009  7:52pm

I am not a proponent of the wars in either Afghanistan or Iraq, but the two commenters that seemed to either deny the existence of PTSD or think it is a just reward for service do not understand the consequences. I have friends who's son served one term in Iraq. Including the several that died in Iraq, just over half have not attempted or achieved suicide in his reserve unit. My friend's son has attempted suicide several times, is currently in a rehab program, has several legal issues directly related to PTSD. This is serious and the role of the church should exactly be helping people who's souls have been wounded. All attempts to publicize and work with vets (whether you support the war or not) should be celebrated. Thank you for the article.

Joe Chip

July 07, 2009  5:02pm

So you mean to tell me that joining a military force, invading other countries and killing the natives there has lasting, detrimental emotional and psychological consequences!? Who knew? Please spare me. Killers and their enablers sometimes suffer for their choices. It's actually a blessing, and should serve as a strong deterrent to anyone considering choosing the wicked career path of spilling blood for our government's gain.


July 06, 2009  1:46pm

In this great article, you note that "The local church is a particularly critical resource for veterans. . . ." ACCTS, Military Ministry and other organizations are having a conference on "Helping Military Families" at the YMCA of the Rockies in Estes Park, CO, August 17-21, 2009. The conference will bring together churches, military members, chaplains, and para-churches to discern how we can minister to the military family needs you've identified. Keynote speakers Myles Munroe, Richard Blackaby, and Rob Parker will address prayer for the military, and MG (Ret.) Bob Dees of Military Ministry, MG Doug Carver, Army Chief of Chaplains, and BGen Dave Kettle, Chaplain General of the Canadian Forces will lead discussions on the military deployment cycle. Complementary workshops on Military Family Issues, Christian Leadership, Military Ministry, and Prayer will also equip churches for ministry to their military. For more information about this conference, go to

E. Humphrey

July 06, 2009  10:23am

Thanks for this great article; I'm posting a link to it at our blog,

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July 04, 2009  7:51pm

Maybe PTSD claims has substance maybe not, who can tell? We are deluged with all kinds of syndromes attempting to give clinical status to every conceivable social ill. This article has the flavor of being one sided, if its claims are to be taken seriously a separate report is needed to give perspective. Attempting to blame the Church for "dropping the ball" in dealing with PTSD regarding Vietnam vets significantly weakens this writer's case, at least enough to ask more about her background and positions taken on other subjects.

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July 04, 2009  2:07pm

How does someone get ptsd from a 10 month deployment to Kuwait, there wasn't any combat going on there in 2003.

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D Jameson

July 03, 2009  11:04am

This article helps me (a military spouse) understand the effects of PTSD MUCH BETTER! Appreciate the transparency of the information contained in this article! My husband is a Chaplain Assistant in the Army but has not suffered from PTSD! We are committed to serving!

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Pastor/USArmyChapl "Hans"

July 03, 2009  10:06am

My personal (Vietnam) experience with PTSD taught me that my Evangelical training about God was not adequate for the sometimes painful realities of life. Fragmented theology creates a fragmented world-view. God either is or is not responsible for suffering, death and war. In Evangelicalism, as long as it's in the academic setting of the seminary, etc., you can kind of go with the choice that suits your temperament at the moment- or your favorite professor/author. But in the hell of war and suffering that won't work. Not only do you question who's right, you begin to realize that if either could be right, then why can't both be wrong. So, yes, it's a "spiritual" problem at heart, as the article says. But just helping and comforting these tragic sufferers is not going to prepare those who go to war next. You'd better make sure you've gotten your picture of God right! The "church's role"? 1. Which "church"? 2. That's its "role".

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Jojo Bive

July 02, 2009  10:23pm

It is deplorable that governments have used wars in the name of religion to obtain their selfish ends. Huge terms as, "National Security", "Global community" and "World Peace" have been used to justify mass massacre under the guise of humanitarian concern and with the blessing, so it seems of the Evangelical world. But then again, it all boils down to money. Without war, there is no profit. Nowhere to use military arms that are rusting from military Silos. But whatever profit we have gained from this is that, as of date, we have 40,000 soldiers diagnosed with PTSD, and the number is still counting, not to mention their families who were and are as stressed with those diagnosed. In the end, no one really wins in a war.

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Ted Voth Jr

July 02, 2009  7:41pm

Yeah, Paul; My Mennonite forebears have something in their pacifism. I'm not a pacifist; there are wars and wars. My father, the staunchest and most sincere man, and pacifist I'll ever know, enlisted in WWII. I expected to serve my time and there came along Vietnam, a fight we, the US picked, as much as we picked our fights with Iraq, Afghanistan… Pakistan? Iran? I sat out Vietnam. The Church must be a great deal more careful than we have been not to identify false gut patriotism with our Christianity. Our responsibility as Christian citizens is out of a thoughtful sanctified true patriotism to require just careful government of our public servants. The citizens of a democracy, and God knows this, are the sovereign rulers of the state. We must not take the sword, or we'll die by the sword; THAT'S a promise!

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July 02, 2009  4:10pm

These types of articles are needed to thoroughly understand the dynamic influence of war on the human psyche. This is the reasoning as to why I can't seem to comprehend why some Christians sponsor violence in the name of God. It will destroy those to whom it is wielded and will destroy those who wield.

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