The problems that come with going to war...(Digital Journalism Assignment part 1)
A US soldier killed 16 innocent Afghan civilians and 9 of these were just children. He went into 3 different houses and opened fire on the families, walked off base and then turned himself in. Reports say that he is possibly going to face the death penalty. The reasons behind this aren’t yet known to the public but in my opinion, it’s the war that caused it. In past wars (Gulf, WWI and WWII etc.) there have been worse crimes done by our soldiers because of social and psychological problems like post-traumatic stress, depression and other severe mental health issues . Even if soldiers are monitored before they are sent on duty, their health problems could come at any time so it’s not good to simply monitor them every now and again. They need full health checks all the time so they don’t end up ‘snapping’ and becoming a danger because severe health problems can hit the soldiers at any time, it doesn’t have to happen straight away. According to a mental health website, 41% of ex-service people had gone to prison and after the Gulf war more ex-service people committed suicide than were actually killed in combat. The website told me that around 329 cases had been confirmed.
Reports also show that many soldiers after the war end up homeless. Soldiers Off The Street is a charity which aims to help get these soldiers help and get them in houses. I read an article which said over 10,000 ex-servicemen were homeless this past Christmas. After they come back from war, many find it hard to readjust to life out of combat and some turn to drink and drugs. This mixed with depression or other serious mental health issues can make them dangerous. Why have they gone from fighting for the country to being left on the street without help? The government should surely help them since they are fighting their battles for them. It’s a disgrace that they’re forgotten about and there should be more done to help them because if they do have mental health problems and they’re homeless then they aren’t going to last long. I never thought the war in Iraq was a good idea, bring our troops home and stop the war!
Websites I used for research:
Photograph is copyright free and was found on Flickr:
I researched this after seeing the news story last week, I looked at a few websites and charities so I could get all of my information. I also emailed a charity called Soldiers Off The Streets for more information to help my story. The only problem I had was that I don’t have any videos or pictures to help support my post but finding, researching and writing the story came easy to me because this issue, as well as anything to do with war, is something that I’m very passionate about. I would like to distribute this throughout newspapers so everyone could help get the troops home because they’re fighting for nothing. I would want everyone to see my work so they could realise what problems are going on. I could do this via radio, TV, social networking sites and basically any platform people use to get their news from.
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