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Forty-four Percent of “386” Generation in Seventeenth National Assembly Received Military Exemptions

Forty-four Percent of “386” Generation in Seventeenth National Assembly Received Military Exemptions

Posted June. 10, 2004 21:19,   


Four in 10 national assemblymen of the so-called “386 generation”--who are aged between 35 to 44--didn’t do their military service.

On June 10, the Military Manpower Administration reported the military service statistics of the seventeenth national assembly members in its official gazette. The statistics include 260 members themselves (excluding 39 female members) and 205 members’ lineal descendants (sons or grandsons who are 18 or older).

Twenty-one out of 48 assemblymen in the “386 generation” were exempted from military service. Among these, 14 were for serving prison time for liberal (civil) activism, and seven for medical reasons.

The general trend of Korean men in the same age group averages a 30.5 percent military exemption rate.

Overall statistics including all age groups indicate that 197 male assembly members out of 260 did their military service in a general or defense army, or by performing community service. Only 63 assemblymen (24.2 percent) got exempted from military service overall.

The rate of those seventeenth assemblymen serving in the military is higher by 12.3 percent than that of the general public, which is 63.5 percent. Even compared to the previous sixteenth assembly’s 75.5 percent, the rate is higher this time by 0.3 percent.

The total number of sons and grandsons of assembly members is 205. Among these, 22 people did not receive a physical examination for conscription yet. Among the 183 members’ lineal descendants who have gone through a physical, 158 people are either done with their service or serving it right now. The exemption rate was lower than the general public’s 14.5 percent.

The main exemption claim is being made due to medical reasons. Twenty-five out of 63 exempted assemblymen (39.7 percent), and 20 out of 25 lineal descendants (80 percent) did not do their military service due to medical reasons. The types of medical exemptions vary from hypertension, to near sightedness, chronic dislocation, bronchitis and asthma.

Ho-Won Choi bestiger@donga.com