2008
08.25

In News of the World Douglas Wight writes about Andy’s upcoming non-fiction novel Seven Troop.

I can’t say that I like the article very much, for I’m sure it (Seven Troop) is meant to be more then this article suggests. I think it’s a very welcome change PTSD is recognised (or getting there) but I think this article doesn’t do right to the subject as it should not be read out of context. This seems just sensational journalism to me. But then that’s only my opinion. Decide for yourselves when you read the whole article. I’m only giving you some snippits here.

“THEY are Britain’s elite troops—but after the last whiff of gunsmoke in their careers of courage disappears, the men of the SAS often find themselves in a new kind of hell. And unlike their famous motto, when it comes to coping with life after danger, Who Dares does not always Win. In a gripping new book, Seven Troop, SAS hero Andy McNab—author of best-seller Bravo Two Zero—today reveals how some comrades were driven to madness, suicide and murder when their glory days were over.”

“After years of fighting in the army’s elite, McNab himself knows what it’s like to stare into the abyss of madness. He needed to undergo therapy after a failed mission in Iraq. “Until quite recently PTSD had been perceived in the military as a sign of weakness—guys often wouldn’t admit they were suffering,” he says. He claims today’s soldiers are exposed to horrors in Iraq and Afghanistan that used to be reserved for special forces. And he calls for more counselling to be made available for our crack troops before a “major mental-health crisis faces those who have served our country”.

“Special Forces men are never going to have an easy time of it in the real world. They just have to try to get on with it, and some do that better than others. “But it’s a chilling fact that more guys—about 300—have killed themselves since returning from the Falklands than the 255 that were lost in action there.”

“Meanwhile at night McNab deals with a recurring dream . . . about his three “brothers” who are now dead — Al, Frank and Nish — all of them freefalling in a parachute exercise. “We scoffed at the notion of brotherhood but that’s what we were—brothers in arms,” says McNab. Now he’s the only one left alive, fighting for the kind of treatment for our troops abroad that could have saved his SAS mates.”

You can read the full article here