Well a follow up on my last post and for once the USA isn't blamed but man somebody sure was...
This is from the Korea Times:
The ideals of the young generation, with high value on freedom and individuality, conflict greatly with the military culture that gives priority to discipline and regulation. The younger generation, with fewer siblings and many of them being the only children in their families, feel less comfortable with group life than older generations. Soldiers have to share a single room with many others for 24 hours a day, sleeping and eating together, and they are simply not used to it, Lee said.
To young people who are used to a variety of activities, the military's simple routine, such as getting up and going to sleep at set times, is also stressful. Their freedom is limited and they are even punished if they do not eat their meals.In the case of privates, they have to study the subtle communication of a seniors face to avoid being punished. Many young people have never experienced harsh punishment or insults from their parents or teachers. That inordinate hierarchy and abusive language still prevail in the army, even among young soldiers. Critics say commanders should change their approach and recognize soldiers as their partners, not as those who must passively follow their command.
``Leadership is required for officers and ordinary soldiers so that senior soldiers can make junior soldiers follow their command without physical violence or abusive language. Soldiers have to learn better communication skills and build respectful relationships with others,’ Lee pointed out.
Now this beauty form the Chosun: (I am not making this up)!!!
The armed forces don't exist outside the flow of social change. Above all, the young who join the military today are not the young of the past. There exist some fundamental differences that cannot be glossed over with conventional reference to the generation gap. These are new people: their thinking is quite different from their parents, as are their patterns of behavior and values. Most of them, for instance, are only sons who lack the socialization larger families provide. Though they have enjoyed parental love, they have never shared the love of brothers and sisters. Such youngsters put themselves above anything else in setting their values, and they are that much less likely to think of sacrificing themselves for an organization. By the same token, they are less skilled in resolving conflicts with their comrades-in-arms.
The ROK military is now unable to explain against whom the soldiers should defend the state. Last year a Navy boat was reprimanded after repulsing a North Korean naval vessel that had crossed the Northern Limit Line into South Korean waters. Last week, meanwhile, a sizeable South Korean delegation took part in what was touted as a festival of national unity; in Pyongyang. Is it any wonder, under these circumstances, that no order to carry out their sentry conscientiously can appeal to the frontline soldiers? Outside the military, it is not uncommon to hear that the U.S. is a greater threat to our national security than North Korea. Many of the frontline soldiers must feel that what they are doing is pointless.
So let me see if I can understand this, Army life is too hard? The kids cant play computer games all day in a PC room while they are in the Army and they want their freedom but do not want to defend it? The government cares more about giving North Korea money than the welfare of its own soldiers?
Well lets discuss each question that I just brought up.
1. Army life is too hard? Let me see here in the Army you must be willing to do what is done to save your fellow soldiers lives and yours when war comes to Korea. ITS EASY: DO WHAT YOUR TOLD, BITCH WHEN YOU NEED TO, SHUT UP! DO YOU JOB AND IN 3 YEARS YOUR TOUR IS UP AND YOU CAN GO HOME KNOWING THAT YOU DEFENDED YOUR MOTHERLAND. Sorry about the caps, but I was in the USA Army for 7 years and I did my time with honor and have the honorable discharge to prove it. It just upsets me that all the time armies get advice on what they should do from those who never even served in the Army.
2. Cant play computer games all day while in the Army. Well your job is too defend your homeland, not play maple story, star craft or what ever new game is being played in the local pc rooms.
I have see protest against the USA Army being here but if they leave: Will the average South Korean youth be willing to take the USA Army's place and fight and defend South Korea from the North? I think not.
3. You want to have freedom but you are not willing to pay the price for the freedom. If you want to be free and play with your computer and do the things you like then you must pay the cost when the bill comes due, in South Korea is called a draft and for 2-3 years you are in the Armed services. If you do not do you think that your uncle from the north will let you play games if he takes over South Korea. Look at his own county and you can see that answer. Rember ladies and gentlemen, freedom isnt free. It will cost alot of soldiers lives, but if you don't stand up to bully nations when they arise then your freedom is worth nothing.
4. This point was the hardest for me to understand i will list a few examples here...
Kim Jong-seon, the widow of Petty Officer Han Sang-guk, who was killed in a June 2002 naval battle with North Korea in the West Sea, turned her back on her homeland Sunday and boarded a flight bound for the United States. Before getting on her flight, she said, ÂIf the indifference and inhospitality shown to those soldiers who were killed or wounded protecting the nation continue, what soldier will lay down his life in the battlefield?Â
In the battle on June 29, 2002 -- one day prior to the closing ceremony of the Korea-Japan World Cup -- six sailors were killed and 18 wounded when a North Korean patrol boat that had crossed over the northern line of control ambushed a South Korean naval vessel. The bereaved have spent the last three years in an atmosphere where it was difficult to even grieve. Nervous government officials, worrying that the incident might cast a pall over the Sunshine Policy, even warned the families to please be quiet. The father said, My son is buried in the National Cemetery. But Im going to take my sons remains to my family burial site in my hometown. Having watched the situation develop, he thought his son who was killed by North Korean soldiers was considered nothing more than a criminal. Some parents said that they are more scared of people who consider the U.S. a bigger enemy than North Korean leader Kim Jong-il, who killed their son. We lose courage to defend the country, when we hear that a wife whose husband fell in the battle is preparing to leave this country. Reading a condolence letter from the USFK commander to mark the second anniversary, the wife said, "The Americans remember my husband and his brothers-in-arms better than Koreans... Frankly, I hate Korea."
GI Korea Bog had this comment about the article:
The point of my post last summer was how hippocritical things here in Korea are when USFK is still having protests about the two girls killed in an accident in June 2002 which everybody up the chain of command including President Bush apologized for and we the military have made huge improvements to further improve safety and reduced total convoy movements to prevent another accident in a country where thousands continue to die from domestic traffic accidents anyway while in the same month a few days later the North Koreans deliberately kill six South Korean sailors in an ambush to draw media attention away from the World Cup finale the next day and nobody cares. Where are the candle light vigils, demands for apologies, demands for compensation, and calls for a more equal relationship? Obviously the North Koreans are getting the better end of this relationship and the families of the victims are getting a cold shoulder from their own government.
this is the whole article from the link above...........
Can We Ask Soldiers to Die for Such a Country?
Kim Jong-seon, the widow of Petty Officer Han Sang-guk, who was killed in a June 2002 naval battle with North Korea in the West Sea, turned her back on her homeland Sunday and boarded a flight bound for the United States. Before getting on her flight, she said, If the indifference and inhospitality shown to those soldiers who were killed or wounded protecting the nation continue, what soldier will lay down his life in the battlefield?
In the battle on June 29, 2002 -- one day prior to the closing ceremony of the Korea-Japan World Cup -- six sailors were killed and 18 wounded when a North Korean patrol boat that had crossed over the northern line of control ambushed a South Korean naval vessel. The bereaved have spent the last three years in an atmosphere where it was difficult to even grieve. Nervous government officials, worrying that the incident might cast a pall over the Sunshine Policy, even warned the families to please be quiet.
During the first two remembrance ceremonies in 2003 and 2004, not one high-ranking government official, let alone the defense minister, showed up. The person who did send condolence letters to the bereaved was not a Korean government official but the commander of the U.S. Forces in Korea. A request by the families to move the bullet-riddled South Korean patrol boat to the Yongsan War Memorial, to show people that here were men who gave their lives for the country, were ignored. Our children who lost their lives to the enemy are being treated like criminals who tried to ruin the atmosphere of intra-Korean reconciliation, one family member said.
From the time of the 2002 battle to the end of that year, there were nationwide candlelight vigils to mourn the death of two schoolgirls killed when they were run over by a U.S. armored vehicle. Any civic group worth its salt was there. In June 2004, right around the time of the second anniversary, a crowd of 5,000, including party and government figures, gathered at the funeral of Kim Sun-il, who was killed in Iraq. Their deaths, too, were heartbreaking, but they were not killed defending their country like those who were killed in the West Sea fight.
The Republic of Korea is a nation that does not remember soldiers who answered the countrys call and died fighting for it. It is a nation that silences the bereaved for fear of upsetting the enemy who shot their sons for no reason. Is it a nation that has the right to ask the soldiers who even now guard the DMZ to give their lives for it?
Damn good question the paper brought up, The Republic of Korea is a nation that does not remember soldiers who answered the countrys call and died fighting for it. It is a nation that silences the bereaved for fear of upsetting the enemy who shot their sons for no reason. Is it a nation that has the right to ask the soldiers who even now guard the DMZ to give their lives for it?
If you know what the hell you are fighting for it makes a soldiers job easier but when your own brothers are killed and you can not morn, then the ultimate question must be asked, Is your counrty worth fighting for and worse: is it work saving? The next generation of Koreans will have to answer that one. I can't.