The Era of Women in Korea’s Armed Forces

Article from YTN:

The Era of 8,000 Female Soldiers. Active Even in Artillery and Armored Units


The number of female soldiers has swelled from a paltry 400 people during the June 25th Battle of the Korean Strait [1st day of the 1950-1953 Korean War] to now 8,000 people, helping bolster our national defense.

From earlier this year, the army decided to have the artillery, armored, and air defense units open their doors to women, broadening the scope of female contribution for the nation’s defense.

Reporter Hwang Hye-gyung has our report.


An emergency order has been issued to the artillery battalion to keep the front line protected.

All soldiers promptly moved to take their positions as trained.

The centerpiece of the firepower battle was the artillery unit.

At the heart of the artillery unit operation stands Second Lieutenant Hong Ji-hye, who was commissioned earlier this year.

With her artillery unit notorious for its grueling work, and stringent discipline, Hong volunteered to serve the military and executed her mission as artillery officer.

Her service is made possible after three units off limits to women–the artillery, armored forces, and air defense–opened the door to female soldiers.

Interview: Lieutenant Hong Ji-hye of the 76 Artillery Battalion, 6th Division of the Army

I know there is a lot of attention on me as the first female artillery officer, and doubt that I can do well, but I will do what I can to dispel any doubts about my performance.”

korean female soldier era armored forces

This year marks the 13th year of service for Sergeant First Class Yoo Eun-mi, who people say was “born to be” a soldier.

Sergeant Yoo has dreamed of becoming a soldier since middle school, and is now very competent at training new recruits.

The mother of a five-year-old daughter juggling her family and career, she has proudly taken on her mission to defend our nation.

Interview: Squad Commander Yoo Eun-mi of the 19 Regiment, 6th Division of the Army”

“I can take my daughter from and to the kindergarten by adjusting my working hours. So the flexible work hours program provided by the army is really good for me. I was allowed to commit myself to taking care of my daughter by taking a one-year maternity leave after I gave birth.”

Female soldiers now number about 8,000.

Next year, the figure is projected to surge the 10,000 mark, demonstrating stronger female presence in the military.

Comments from Naver:


Ya, right. So women can do everything except serving as a regular enlisted solider, no matter what.

jun0****[Responding to above]:

It would be better to ask [women] for additional national defense taxes. Before then, it is an urgent priority to decrease the number of generals and eradicate corruption in the military.


Please serve as regular soldiers as well…


They all became soldiers in the Tang Dynasty.


It would be great if [training] in the military becomes safer.


Will they really be able to play a role? There were two females in my search party. I was busy taking care of the equipment and female soldiers.


I don’t intend to belittle female soldiers but let me speak as an officer who served in an armored unit. Do you truly think female soldiers can repair, reload and install camouflage nets on armored vehicles? If a tank thread goes wrong, can female soldiers carry a metal level heavier than 20 kg? Will they just watch over if they have to work with heavy things? I don’t understand why they allowed females for this.


Just have women start at the bottom like men.


Why don’t they be regular enlisted soldiers then? Keke. Because they are women?


It seems female soldiers enter the army for a career rather than for their country. They hate to death to be an average enlisted soldier. I really don’t get why there are many women who want to enter the army as officers.


If women are capable of serving any roles, why do they say absolute no to serving as regular enlisted soldiers?


Didn’t the Constitutional Court say women are physically incapable of serving in the army? Aren’t those women too? Or are the judges on the Constitutional Court brainless?


If you look at their faces, they deserve to be in the army…


Please say concretely what active role they can play.


So now they can also take an active role as an enlisted soldier.


The pressure of arbitrary service in the army and intentional service in the army is different.

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