MIT developing sketchy vaccine for soldiers' PTSD

01/01/2014 19:07

Researchers at MIT are developing what could possibly be a vaccine to prevent soldiers and others in high-trauma jobs from getting PTSD, or post-traumatic stress syndrome. It works by blocking ghrelin, a hormone produced in the stomach that regulates metabolism and is tied to cognitive functioning. It's another example of treating a symptom, not the problem, with a drug that has dangerous side effects. The Resident (aka Lori Harfenist) discusses. Follow The Resident at http://www.twitter.com/TheResident

Hollywood is great at making war seem so simple and strait forward. It makes the watcher believe that people kill each other because they are told, because it is kill or be killed, the enemy is hated or whatever. Hollywood tries to make us believe that all soldiers fire at each other, desperately attempting to hit and kill each other. While there is some truth in the matter, it is mostly wrong.

An excellent book to read on this subject is "On Killing : The Psychological Cost of Learning to Kill in War and Society" by Dave Grossman. I highly recommend you read this book as it goes into great detail on the subject, much more than can be covered here.

When most people talk about killing, they are like virgins talking about sex. You can talk about it all day, you can fully understand the mechanics involved but when the time comes there is so much more involved than the person thought.

When bullets start flying emotions start running high and that can have a powerful effect on how a person sees things. Five hundred combatants can see five hundred different things. In war every fighter see's things differently. The movies like to make people think that the world is black and white, not different shades of gray.

A look at history might help illustrate what I am talking about. In World War Two, it is a fact that only 15-20 percent of the soldiers fired at the enemy. That is one in five soldiers actually shooting at a Nazi when he sees one. While this rate may have increased in desperate situations, in most combat situations soldiers were reluctant to kill each other. The Civil War was not dramatically different or any previous wars.

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