Survey citing youths' refusal to fight is a 'non-issue': MND
By Joseph Yeh, The China PostThe Ministry of National Defense (MND) yesterday reacted strongly over a recently released survey which shows that over 40 percent of students in secondary level said they would not defend the country if a war breaks out.
November 30, 2011, 12:06 am TWN
Saying that the survey conducted by the CommonWealth Magazine is a “non-issue,” military spokesman Lou Shuo-he said the MND would not comment on the survey results.
Lou said he was not aware how the survey was conducted or what kind of questions were asked to respondents that lead to such results. Therefore, he would not comment on the matter since there are many factors that could affect the result of a survey.
He would not say if the reluctance of Taiwanese youths in serving the country in wartime could be interpreted as a failure of the all-out defense education the ministry has been pushing for years.
Lou stressed that the military has been educating its soldiers and civilians alike, calling them to be proud of the Republic of China and promoting the importance of defending the country when needed.
He believes all military personnel abide to such strong beliefs, Lou added.
The survey released on Monday with the aim to test local youngsters' citizenship and national identity shows that 44 percent of junior and senior high school students are not willing to fight for Taiwan if the country is engaged in warfare with another nation.
There are another 39 percent of survey-takers said they would do so, it said.
The survey, however, also reveals that nearly 70 percent of youths said serving the compulsory military service is an obligation and a qualified male should not dodge the draft or avoid service by prolonging their studies.
The survey results were based on a sample of 3,715 students aged between 12 and 17 randomly selected across the country and was conducted from Oct. 17, to Nov., 14, according to the magazine.