This piece discusses the psychological states of soldiers. A quick summary: studies after World War II found that most soldiers were not shooting to kill, training in subsequent decades effectively trained soldiers to kill, a recent study suggests that post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) rapidly increased among American soldiers, starting in Vietnam, but didn’t increase among British soldiers, and a new book argues that American soldiers have more PTSD simply because they were expected to.
Sounds like an interesting subject area: how are individual soldiers affected by training techniques that prepare them to kill? What seems most interesting here is the disparity in PTSD between British and American soldiers. It reminds me of a book I read years ago that suggests that ADD and ADHD diagnosis rates differed greatly between the United States and Britain. This finding was partly based on studies that had shown that the same kids who visited both American and British doctors were evaluated differently, suggesting that cultural differences might be behind the medical expertise. Has anyone done a similar study with the same British and American soldiers being evaluated by both British and American doctors?
While the interest here is in a psychological topic, this sounds more like a sociological question relating to cultural values and expectations.