Notable quote by Leong Kai Yan

‘Serving NS in non combat positions just as taxing.’ By Leong Kai Yan.
This is an article in the ST forum today by a Kaiyan Leong. I didn’t know that Kaiyan is a western word like Tom or Jerry to be placed in front of a Chinese surname, or is this the right way to write Chinese name? I am getting out of touch with the new generation. Anyway, a better version will be ‘Serving NS in non combat positions just as dangerous.’ Ok, this is my version.

How so, sitting in the comfort of aircond offices can be dangerous meh? Why not? He can be electrocuted when typing on the keyboard. Or he could trip over a carpet or a slippery office floor and hit his head against a sharp corner of a furniture.

Or the secretary may pour a cup of hot kopi on his face by accident and burn his whole face. What about a ceiling fan dropping down and chop off his head?

Mine, non combat positions are terrifying and truly dangerous. A jeep or tank can overturn. So can a car on the road. Both equally dangerous. A hand grenade exploding? What about the danger of a letter exploding when opened?

I concede that non combat positions are equally dangerous, and taxing too. No wonder not many PES A NSman were allowed to be in non combat positions. Oops, there are some exceptions to the rule.


Anonymous said...

He din say 'dangerous' - he said 'taxing'.

How do you know he is lying? Have you done it and found it not taxing? Do you know that MINDEF work can involve a lot of paperwork and calculations? Do you know that combat vocations do not require thinking, just SOP? Do you know some support vocations are very switched off?

He was downgraded becos of injury - so what can he do?

OTOH, there are school and national athletes who are PES E for God knows what reason. There was even an ASEAN junior bodybuilding champion who had backache.

You should comment on these people, not people who have a bona fide reason to be in non combat vocations.

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

Ahem, you didn't read my article properly. I never contend against his comments huh. Dangerous is my contention.

Anonymous said...

Doing housework also damn bloody taxing AND dangerous. The housewives are much tougher than the combat and non-combat NS people. 24 hr on duty everyday of the year.

Anonymous said...

What can be more taxing than waving hands and kissing babies? This is the job that is paid $4 million a year. If not taxing, why paid so much?

Anonymous said...

Doing nothing can be 'taxing'. I'm sure prata man can attest to that cos he did nothing for the past 12 years and said he's stressed. So you can imagine, doing nothing in NS can be very, extremely and absolutely 'taxing'.

Anonymous said...

Compelled to do anything that pays peanuts or peas will always be taxing.
Can You imagine someone paid Sin$4 million+ had found his job taxing, what more when one is paid in the hundreds only!
Singaporeans should fight for the abolishment of National Service.

We should have professional soldiers.


notanotherspinstory said...

Risked my life blowing things up.
Risked injury carrying heavy equipment. Could have ended up maimed or dead. This is the experience of every combat soldier and also mine.

Now which idiot is trying to tell us it is just as taxing as a desk job?

Anonymous said...

anon 1200pm is the lice that refused to go away.

Anonymous said...

Hi redbean,

I was an Ammo Storeman during my NS. We were constantly exposed to live explosives and I even witnessed severe injuries due to unintended explosions. The first thing they showed us in Ammo School are pictures of gruesome injuries due to accidents in the depots.

Some of us had to move more than 20 tonnes of ammo a day, by hand, and continue with guard duties during the night, patrolling at least 16km of depot grounds, on foot.

Even combat engineers and guards from neighbouring camps who were seconded to help our company during times of low manpower, complained to their superiors that we "tortured" them, not realizing that we actually gave them the easy work!

More than half of my company mates ultimately suffered back and limb injuries due to all the heavy lifting. All of us, except our sergeants, PC and OC, are PES C or lower.

I was PES C and was subsequently downgraded to PES E due to a spinal and eye injury sustained during NS. I went back to heavy lifting after my hospitalization because I cannot let my company mates down.

So much for being a non-combatant, huh? ;-)

A Proud Soldier

Anonymous said...


Every chap, young or old, I met nowadays will always tell me that his job is the most tiring, boring or stressful.

Teachers complain. Cleaning ladies at hawker centres complain. NTUC cashiers complain. Taxi drivers complain. Post office workers complain. MPs complain. Even the EP complains that we make too much noise.

I think these people should do what the cabinet does. Just change jobs with each other and see. You will not be surprised if each of them wants his old job back. Of course the MP and EP job holders would not want to change for sure.

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

Hi Proud Soldier, welcome to the blog. This discussion and the quote by Leong Kai Yan are a follow through from PES A NSmen becoming clerks.

There are many non combat vocations in the military that are part of the main army and very likely move together with the rest of the army. These are field soldiers even if they are non combatants, the cooks and drivers included.

The thing that irritates many NSmen is cosy jobs for PES A clerks in technically non military or non field jobs.

A friend's son was PES C and fought to be in the OCS. He did not get in because his condition was just not fit for the course. He really wanted to be an officer.

I had my tour of staff jobs in Mindef as well. But no amount of taxing staff jobs can be comparable to the risk of injury faced by field soldiers. Some losing limbs and lives.

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