Sunday, July 31, 2011

To serve proudly for your country

The first time I heard of Israel was 1967 when Six-Day War broke out and she became the world news headline. I was particularly impressed by the news report that all men and women of Israel needed to serve in the military. Later I learned that Israel is a small country like Taiwan, but unlike Taiwan which is an island that has the geographic advantage with the sea as her natural defense Israel is a country which is surrounded by land from three sides with hostile Arabic nations so she needs strong military industry and might to defend herself. All Israeli citizens, men or women, must serve three or two years in the military for three or two years. Few Israelis were heard trying to dodge military service. In contrast, during the several wars after 1967, many overseas Israelis tried hard to return to their country asking to bear arms to defend her.

In Taiwan some male entertainers were reported to escape their military service by prolonging their status as college students. The trick they often use is to register at a college and deliberately fail some courses, so they could be exempted from being drafted because they have not graduated. Some even stay in school for seven or nine years when normally it only takes four years to complete college education.

That was rarely heard of in Israel. Esti Ginzburg, an Israeli world-class top model, photos of her in sexy bikini can be googled easily, answered her country's call at the peak of her career to serve in Israel Defense Force for two years in 2009. She was 19 then and considered serving for her country something very important in her lifetime beliefs.

Comparing to Israel, Taiwan is "safer." Nevertheless, we shall not forget that such safety is only guaranteed that we have power to defend ourselves, and our defense capability comes from unselfish contribution offered by every man and woman.

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