A bugler to play ‘Taps’ during the 2009 funeral for Army Spc. Stephen Mace at Arlington Cemetery in Arlington, Va.
Some 15,851 active U.S. service personnel and reservists mobilized have died while serving in America’s military since 2006, but according to a new report, the greatest opponents are not directly related to America’s involvement in global wars or deployment abroad.
According to the “Recent Trends in the Active-Duty Military to Kill,” performed by the Congressional Research Service and made available to the public by the Federation of American Scientists, 72 percent of the total number of deaths – 11,341 – happened under circumstances outside the battlefield, reinforcing the idea that military service comes with many dangers, even for those who have never seen fighting.
The report, which was compiled using data provided by the Defense Manpower Data Center and the service of the Casualty and Mortuary Affairs database, categorized the deaths under two big umbrellas: “Overseas Contingency Operations” (OCO) is defined as military operations “, in which members of the armed forces, or may become involved in military actions, operations, or hostilities against an enemy of the United States or against an opposing military forces,” and non-OCO.
“Approximately 11,341 service members have died in circumstances independent of OCO operations since 2006. On average, there are 920 deaths per year,” the report stated. “Staff were killed in more than 70 countries (and the sea), with the majority of 93 percent of the deaths in the United States.”
The data showed that the majority of the service members whose deaths expanded outside of OCO activities during this period died as a result of an accident, self-inflicted wounds, or disease.”
“The figures show that a significant percentage (14 percent) of non-OCO accidental death were related to substance abuse. In general, alcohol or drug abuse played a role in 8 percent of all deaths,” the report continued.
About 16 percent of all non-OCO-death – on some 1,807 – involved cars, trucks or other vehicles.
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In terms of OCO deaths, approximately 4,510 soldiers have died in more than 25 countries and locations at sea since 2006 with improvised explosive devices (ied ‘ s) attributed as being caused half of these deaths occurring in operating theatres of war.
Since 2006, around 2,177 U.S. troops were killed in Iraq – 1,756 in “hostile” conditions, and 421 in the “non-hostile circumstances.
“Half of these military deaths are attributable to ied’s that killed most of the AMERICAN staff between 2006 and 2009,” the report explained. “About 38 per cent died under non-hostile circumstances, especially of accidents, including the loss of the aircraft or on the ground of the vehicle or as a result of injury inflicted.”
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Of the total deaths in Iraq, 211 were classified as accidents, 151 as self-inflicted, 29 illnesses or injuries, 24 as murders and 6 not determined. 1,082 were caused by ied’s and 674 were killed or died as a result of the injuries sustained.
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And since 2006, 1,961 U.S. soldiers killed in Afghanistan – 1,658 in “hostile” conditions, and 303 in “non-hostile circumstances.
Almost half, 47 percent-were derived from ied’s, while the remaining “hostile” deaths were a result of gunshot wounds or other action, to physical trauma. A “significant number” — 162 –died in connection with the loss of an aircraft, mass of vehicle, however, the report found that the majority of such incidents were classified as “accidental” — 69 percent — occurred in the context of non-hostile circumstances.
Hollie McKay, is a FoxNews.com staff reporter since 2007. She has expanded from the Middle East about the rise and demise of terrorist groups, such as ISIS in Iraq. Follow her on twitter via @holliesmckay