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  1. #1

    Default Was military service good for people?

    I often hear people say that going to the army was good for them in hind site and that they learnt a lot while being in the SADF.

    Is it a good thing for us and our country that military service hasn’t been compulsory since the early 90’s?

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Was military service good for people?

    I reckon you pretty much came out of the military as you went in, probably just more skillful.

    But if your post is aimed at the acquisition of discipline, then I disagree. Discipline starts at home. If a person was a lazy no good bum before diensplig, he might conform to the rules of the military because he has no choice but to conform, but when its all done and dusted, he will just fall into the same old habits and routine.
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    Default Re: Was military service good for people?

    I think the army was good for me. Each person will have their own view. I matured, realised hard work/effort was required to succeed and complaining didn’t help much.


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    Default Re: Was military service good for people?

    Quote Originally Posted by Recovery View Post
    I think the army was good for me. Each person will have their own view. I matured, realised hard work/effort was required to succeed and complaining didn’t help much.
    Just that.
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    Default Re: Was military service good for people?

    When I got called up you had to be 21 to vote.

    Never could get my head around the fact that the then guavament reckoned that at 18 you're old/responsible/mature enough to kill people, but not to choose who governs you.
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    Default Re: Was military service good for people?

    Did 4yrs permanent force. Came out with a trade. Still apply some of the skills I learn't there.

    Then the Vasbyt. Use that often in modern times.
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    Default Re: Was military service good for people?

    Friend of mine got into trouble with the law so his parents packed him off to the army. He did his two years and was more of a messed up kid when he came out. Was dead within 6 months. I was involved in the same rubbish but stayed in school and then went to college. Joined PF and never left or got into trouble with the law again. Yes it does help some but not all
    My Life Loving It


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    Default Re: Was military service good for people?

    I firmly believe some form of national service is good.

    While it might not instill discipline in all, it does show those with an open mind the benefits that accrue from discipline, and also from team-work. It also teaches one how effective a good habit can be. And that keeping your head down, your mouth shut and your job done makes life easier.

    And I don't believe it needs to be military service.

    I think national service aimed at infrastructure development could be a great way to build the country and the economy and teach a lot of people some basic skills quickly and relatively cheaply. The problem of course is that with a government like ours, it would just turn into another opportunity for corruption and laziness.
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    Default Re: Was military service good for people?

    My afrikaans improved.

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    Default Re: Was military service good for people?

    My case was a bit different to South Africa. Finland has compulsory military service for males even today. They have increased number of those who are exempt but are changed that again because of the next door Czar. No border duty as it was here. Service gives a break from over doing parents where such has been an issue. For several years females have had the right to do the service on voluntary bases and they do so. There are different reasons including the long border with Russia

    I did the compulsory plus 6 months permanent as an officer as a gap job. Was good for me. My son had a trade in electronics before doing the service. Army picked this up and put him into a special unit enhancing his skills plus security clearance up to the sky.

    There are increasing number of call ups for additional training after the compulsory training. Most go cladly.

    As we are not the same for some army is no good but I would say majority it was good.
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    Default Re: Was military service good for people?

    Quote Originally Posted by plunger View Post
    My afrikaans improved.
    I wonder when the old toppies are going to start calling us young gentlemen "Rowe" on this forum.

    "Rowe! Laat sak jou gat, jy was nie wasgoed nie!"

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    Default Re: Was military service good for people?

    Passop, the Finns will give you a snotty Laaitjies.

    The Winter War[F 7] also known as First Soviet-Finnish War was a war between the Soviet Union (USSR) and Finland. It began with a Soviet invasion of Finland on 30 November 1939, three months after the outbreak of World War II, and ended three and a half months later with the Moscow Peace Treaty on 13 March 1940. Despite superior military strength, especially in tanks and aircraft, the Soviet Union suffered severe losses and initially made little headway. The League of Nations deemed the attack illegal and expelled the Soviet Union from the organisation.
    The Soviets made several demands, including that Finland cede substantial border territories in exchange for land elsewhere, claiming security reasons—primarily the protection of Leningrad, 32 km (20 mi) from the Finnish border. When Finland refused, the USSR invaded. Most sources conclude that the Soviet Union had intended to conquer all of Finland, and use the establishment of the puppet Finnish Communist government and the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact's secret protocols as evidence of this,[F 8] while other sources argue against the idea of the full Soviet conquest.[F 9] Finland repelled Soviet attacks for more than two months and inflicted substantial losses on the invaders while temperatures ranged as low as –43 °C (–45.4 °F).


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  22. #13

    Default Was military service good for people?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jouko View Post
    My case was a bit different to South Africa. Finland has compulsory military service for males even today. They have increased number of those who are exempt but are changed that again because of the next door Czar. No border duty as it was here. Service gives a break from over doing parents where such has been an issue. For several years females have had the right to do the service on voluntary bases and they do so. There are different reasons including the long border with Russia

    I did the compulsory plus 6 months permanent as an officer as a gap job. Was good for me. My son had a trade in electronics before doing the service. Army picked this up and put him into a special unit enhancing his skills plus security clearance up to the sky.

    There are increasing number of call ups for additional training after the compulsory training. Most go cladly.

    As we are not the same for some army is no good but I would say majority it was good.
    I’ve been to Finland for business in the winter months. Quite far north near Lapland. In those minus temperatures and deep thick snow, i don’t think border patrols would be good for anyone. Maybe that just resulted in a lot of alcoholics and vodka experts.
    Last edited by Therackermann; 2021/05/19 at 07:05 AM.

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    Default Re: Was military service good for people?

    Quote Originally Posted by Estee View Post
    Passop, the Finns will give you a snotty Laaitjies.

    The Winter War[F 7] also known as First Soviet-Finnish War was a war between the Soviet Union (USSR) and Finland. It began with a Soviet invasion of Finland on 30 November 1939, three months after the outbreak of World War II, and ended three and a half months later with the Moscow Peace Treaty on 13 March 1940. Despite superior military strength, especially in tanks and aircraft, the Soviet Union suffered severe losses and initially made little headway. The League of Nations deemed the attack illegal and expelled the Soviet Union from the organisation.
    The Soviets made several demands, including that Finland cede substantial border territories in exchange for land elsewhere, claiming security reasons—primarily the protection of Leningrad, 32 km (20 mi) from the Finnish border. When Finland refused, the USSR invaded. Most sources conclude that the Soviet Union had intended to conquer all of Finland, and use the establishment of the puppet Finnish Communist government and the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact's secret protocols as evidence of this,[F 8] while other sources argue against the idea of the full Soviet conquest.[F 9] Finland repelled Soviet attacks for more than two months and inflicted substantial losses on the invaders while temperatures ranged as low as –43 °C (–45.4 °F).


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    Default Re: Was military service good for people?

    From my perspective, Army taught you a few things, if you liked it or not, you just had to:

    - Follow basic instructions
    - Make your own bed
    - Wash and iron your clothes
    - Work together

    In addition, you got free clothes, food, accommodation and a bit of spending money... Plus you made friends for life.
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    Default Re: Was military service good for people?

    I experienced the complete range of outcomes. No single answer for this one. On the first day a guy scaled the floodlights at Valhala after ripping a tickybox from the wall and jumped. Dead. After completion of national service some were happy and stayed on, some were just too glad to get out of there. It certainly left some sort of mark on you.
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    Default Re: Was military service good for people?

    Quote Originally Posted by Recovery View Post
    I think the army was good for me. Each person will have their own view. I matured, realised hard work/effort was required to succeed and complaining didn’t help much.

    only thing i can ad is chronic joint rheumatism

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    Default Re: Was military service good for people?

    I believe that the K3s and the K1 s will have opposing views..

    Most K3s were K3 to gippo army
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    Default Re: Was military service good for people?

    Yes, in hindsight if SA continued with an all inclusive compulsory military service or some sort of civil service we would have had a more united generation comming up now after 26 years with some commonality and shared experiences.
    Last edited by Karol; 2021/05/19 at 07:38 AM.


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  31. #20
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    Default Re: Was military service good for people?

    I certainly did not learn discipline in the Army. What it did do was to push me to limits I wouldn't have done myself and it showed me what I was capable of. Other than that it was just an interesting experience. For others it was life changing for obvious reasons.

    Army life could take on many forms, so I guess the answer to the question also depends on where you found yourself during those 2 years.

    Although it is probably not something I would repeat given the chance, I'm glad to have experienced it.
    There is never a right time to do the wrong thing and never a wrong time to do the right thing!

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