SEOUL, March 15 (Korea Bizwire) — Korean Naval Academy has reportedly penalized some 40 cadets who turned themselves in for engaging in romantic relationships during their freshman year, placing them under detention. And some say that these measures are excessive.
All military academies in South Korea ban first year cadets from engaging in romantic relationships with senior students.
“These measures are in place to protect the plebes,” a source from the Naval Academy said.
In a military organization in South Korea, it isn’t easy for a junior officer to ‘disobey’ the senior’s request to start a romantic relationship.
These rules, however, have been subject to constant criticism for being excessive, and the Naval Academy last year allowed plebes to engage in relationships with other plebes. The Army and the Air Force are also considering introducing similar policies.
Since each branch of the military has its own culture and traditions, differences in the code of conduct are inevitable, experts say.
However, military academies in the United States and other foreign states allow cadets to get married as long as they are over 19 years old, serving as a basis for criticism that the military academies in South Korea should leave their outdated, conservative school institutions.
“I’d like to question if these policies help at all, when it comes to educating cadets to become ‘elite military staff’,” said Choi Gi-il, a military professor at Sangji University. “Basic rules of operation and curriculum should be overhauled.”
M. H. Lee (firstname.lastname@example.org)