Golf: Sang-Moon Bae Forced into Military Service
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Thread: Golf: Sang-Moon Bae Forced into Military Service

  1. #1

    Default Golf: Sang-Moon Bae Forced into Military Service

    (Andru Marin gives us his usual candor while elaborating on the implications for Mandatory Military Service - while living in Tropical/Army-less Costa Rica)
    Professional Golfer since 2004 with two PGA Tour wins, Sang-Moon Bae, has been denied his appeal to postpone mandatory military service in his native country of South Korea. Every able bodied male age 18 to 35, citizen of The Republic of Korea (South Korea) is required to serve two years in the nation's armed services. Bae is no exception and will have to put his very lucrative golf career on hold for two years while he fulfills his obligation as a South Korean National.






    -In his Own Words-

    Although this does not come as a surprise for Bae, it surely comes at a very inopportune time for him. The abrupt shift from making more than $2 million this season alone to earning about $130 per month in the military will most definitely take its toll on Bae's finances. Furthermore he has been making a solid name for himself since he became a professional. Bae holds the 107th position of the Professional Golfers’ Global Rankings. Not only has he won two PGA Tours but he has also won three Japan Golf Tours, three Asian Tours, and seven other, slightly lesser ranked tours as well, and in 2011 he was the leading money winner of the Japan Golf Tour.

    In quite well-mannered and awe inspiring fashion, Bae announced that he would "humbly accept" the court's ruling, adding that the court's decision reminded him that he should put his duty as a South Korean citizen ahead of his golfing career. He also noted that he can mature further as a golfer, by returning home and completing his military service. Bae said that he will play for as long as he can this season before having to report for his service. He says he will continue in the PGA Tour and into the FedEx Cup play-offs. For us here, living in a country where military service is not mandatory (Costa Rica for instance) it gets a little bit difficult to wrap our heads around the idea that any individual would -so graciously- accept mandatory military service and bow down from his or her position as a world class athlete.

    Earlier this year the PGA Tour board made a preliminary amendment to tournament regulations adding Mandatory Obligations to be treated in the same way major medical issues and family crisis are considered. The board is scheduled to ratify this amendment in their meeting next week. This would mean that the commissioner would be able to grant Bae an extension so he would be able to comply with his service and return to competition, with the same eligibility as if he has been granted an extension for a major medical or family crisis.






    K.J. Choi went about the same path

    South Korean has demanded of its male citizens two years of military duty since 1965. As South Korea is still technically at war with North Korea, the latter remains an active threat and the South Korean government has chosen to stand firm on its decision to require military service. After the sinking of the Cheonan, a South Korean naval ship, and the bombardment of Yeonpyeong island by the North Koreans, the government of South Korea said publicly that the two year term of mandatory service was not to be lessened, as shortening the term had been on the table prior to these events.

    Currently 26 countries around the globe including, but not limited to: Brazil, Egypt, Greece, Mexico, Switzerland, and Thailand, all have compulsory military service. Being born and raised in a culture where you are expected to serve you country, as your fellow countrymen all have done, must add to the feeling of brotherhood and surely adds strength and moral to the citizens of these countries.

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  2. #2
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    Default Re: Golf: Sang-Moon Bae Forced into Military Service

    Maybe he gets out early for good behavior, or the brass of the miltary gets to scratch sooner than later.

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