Combat Stress Felt Far from Front Lines

10:03 AM, Mar 11, 2013   |    comments
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LANGLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Va. (AP) - The combat in Afghanistan is thousands of miles away, but the analysts at Langley Air Force Base in Virginia relive the explosions, the carnage and the after-battle assessments over and over again.

The military is grappling with the mental and emotional strains endured by personnel who may never come face to face with a Taliban insurgent, or dodge a roadside bomb or take fire - but who may be responsible for taking human lives or putting their colleagues in mortal danger.

For the first time, an Air Force chaplain and a psychologist are walking the floor of the operations center at Langley.

The analysts watch video feeds from surveillance drones and other military assets, and exchange data, update intelligence reports and talk in real time with commanders on the ground.

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