[EDITORIALS]Trouble within armed forcesWith the promotions for army generals planned for June, rumors are just flying at the Ministry of National Defense. The nature of these rumors is mainly negative, like the one about a certain general who supposedly has accepted a bribe in return for a promotion.
Other rumors are about the favoritism received by some less-than-competent generals and how their home regions are said to have played a big role in their promotion. One four-star general who has been at the center of such rumors reportedly claimed his innocence in front of his subordinates and suggested an investigation so that any doubt can be quelled.
Now the situation is really getting out of hand. Our generals, who are supposed to be busy devising plans and training our forces, are spending valuable time explaining themselves to subordinates. The fact that generals have become subjects of accusation, regardless of the truth, just shows how low the prestige of the army has sunk.
These anonymous letter writers are the people with problems. These are people who are trying to get some benefits by stepping on someone’s toes. Many of the things written are false as well.
Nevertheless, the number of anonymous letters indicates that there is something wrong with the organization. If we had a clean history of promotion, we would not have this kind of problem.
Starting from the beginning of the year, scandals involving army officers have kept our memories of corruption fresh. The criticism that some generals have aligned themselves with political power and used their backgrounds to promote themselves stem from the same problem. The ongoing problems with the promotion system just keep providing constant fodder for whistleblowers.
We have to stop this vicious cycle. The armed forces need to deal with these problems swiftly and transparently. As rumors spread through the army, some junior officers are reportedly refusing to follow the chain of command, which is alarming.
The investigating authorities have to find out whether the anonymous notes are really true. Those who made false claims should be identified and those who are guilty of wrongdoing need to be punished, regardless of their rank.