519 US service members died by suicide in 2021, Pentagon says. (Source: U.S. Department of Defense)
More than 30,000 US service members have died by suicide in the past decade, and that percentage is set to rise, the Pentagon said in a report the day before President Donald Trump’s inauguration in January.
An accompanying list of the suicides of US troops in combat zones is “only the tip of the iceberg,” Defense Secretary James Mattis said on Friday during an event focused on how to recruit and retain military veterans.
“We’ve got about 30,000, which sounds like a lot. That number is actually closer to 40,000 over the last decade alone,” Mattis said, noting suicides had “not gone up” due to the ongoing drawdown in US troops in Afghanistan and Iraq.
“We’d like not to have that happen in the future,” he added. “But the number of deaths in service to our nation, by and large, has been climbing steadily.”
An additional 30,000 US troops in the Middle East will be taking part in a mission by the end of January to accelerate the drawdown announced by Trump last September, Defense Secretary James Mattis said on Friday. (Image source: Zuma Press)
Dow, which tracks the performance of stocks on a monthly basis, rose 1 percent immediately following the release of the report to hit an intraday high of 24,840.75.
The number of US troops who died by suicide in the past decade was up 1 percent from the number in 2010, while it was up 3 percent from the number in 2017, according to the report.
The number of US troops who died in battle rose by 11 percent over the past decade.
The total number of suicides by service members in the years 2015 and 2016 was the highest since 2007, while the number of US troops who died of traumatic brain injury, a leading cause of death among American soldiers