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Beloved War Veteran Commits Suicide
Posted on Sep 19, 2014
U.S. veteran communities are reportedly grieving at news of the suicide of Jacob George, a three-tour veteran of America’s last decade-plus of war, after he failed to find relief from physical and mental injuries he sustained in battle. In a clip from a veterans event last year, he spoke of his experience with various types of therapy and performed his original song, “Soldier’s Heart.”
George’s suicide occurred after President Obama announced new war plans against the militant group Islamic State in Iraq and Syria.
In his presentation, which is viewable below, George spoke of the limitations of the Department of Veterans Affairs, which he said “isn’t designed to address the depths of the wounds we have.” The VA doesn’t “really look at the soul and how the soul has been injured in war.”
George regarded antiwar work as the most important part of his recovery. “I marched with my brothers and sisters to the NATO summit and I threw my medals back. And the act of throwing released something inside of me. I don’t know what it is. I’m still trying to figure it out. But it played a role in healing my soul.”
His therapist noted that “the VA could never endorse something like that. Because it’s so politically loaded. ... The VA couldn’t say ‘Hey, look, you need to organize a protest. You need to march to the Pentagon with 100,000 veterans.’ ”
George responded: “Do you hear what you’re saying? You’re telling me that you can’t offer me the actual healing rituals and ceremonies that I need, that an entire generation of people needs in order to heal their soul.”
See Jacob George’s website here.
First Unitarian Church:
—Posted by Alexander Reed Kelly
Editor’s note: The original headline on this post may have given the impression that George committed suicide in reaction to President Obama’s foreign policy. We regret any confusion or upset this may have caused.
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