Mental Illness on the Rise in Israeli Army

The head of the Mental Health Unit in the Israeli army warned that the number of patients with mental illnesses among IDF soldiers will triple over the next ten years, as reported by the Quds Press Service.

During a hearing held in the Israeli parliament on Wednesday, Col. Karen Ginat said that thousands of fighters in the Israeli army are being treated, revealing that there are pilots in the Israeli Air Force who are taking antidepressants.

Ginat warned against allowing these soldiers to go out of their bases with their weapons because they would pose a danger to society.

She added that military officials have warned of such danger; however, they decided to allow soldiers to take their weapons home.

Ginat said that young soldiers often avoid asking for help regarding their mental illnesses; which creates a crisis for the army. This makes it difficult for the military to identify the psychological and mental disorders afflicting these soldiers.

She pointed to the recent suicide of four soldiers who were suffering from serious mental illness, which they did not disclose.

The Israeli newspaper Haaretz has recently revealed that the Israeli army has hired psychologists to work in its ranks, in response to a growing of phenomenon of mental illness and suicide among Israeli soldiers.

(MEMO)

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