Lieutenant Neil Bucken was stationed in Afghanistan and couldn’t make it home for Christmas or his sister’s birthday, so he did what any normal guy might do — he sent his family in Staten Island, NY, a life-sized ice sculpture of himself holding a bouquet of red roses. Sure. The seven-foot-tall statue includes a photo of himself with sister Sullivan encased in the ice. Bucken has been in the military for the past two years, and stationed in Afghanistan for the past nine months. His mother Donna said, “Half the family was bawling their eyes out. It was just amazing. It was very touching.” [Splash News] Keep reading »
More bad news out of the Middle East: Fresh off Time magazine’s cover story on the state of Afghanistan (with accompanying extremely disturbing cover photo), a new report from Afghanistan’s Health Minister found that more than 23,000 women and girls attempted suicide there last year — a “several-fold” increase on previous years.
Around 48 percent of Aghanistan’s 23.6 million people are women — so that means around .2 percent of the country’s female population has attempted suicide. Compare that with the U.S. — where 2005 statistics found that 6,730 women committed suicide — or .004 percent — and you’ll see how shocking that really is. (Attempted suicide statistics are unavailable but most reports say there is one death for every 12 to 25 attempts.)
Why are so many Afghan women taking their own lives? Keep reading »