Image credit: Republic of Korea/Wikimedia Commons/CC BY SA 2.0/

May 19, 2022

Former South Korean defense official claims army training is 'very, very bad'

Featuring Dr. Duyeon Kim

Source: The Washington Examiner

Journalist Misty Severi

A former deputy commander of South Korea's First Army said the conditions for training soldiers are "very, very bad," partly because of a high turnover rate in the South Korean military.

In-Bum Chun, the former deputy commander, said he believes it will take the army five years to make a significant improvement in the preparedness of the troops, and it will need the help of the United States in the meantime.

"The only worse thing than fighting with allies is fighting without them,” Chun said in a news brief. “We are really at the stage where we need the Americans to help us for the next five years.”

Chun cited a 60% turnover rate in the South Korean army every year and said he knew of troops who had not experienced live fire training in a decade. Live fire training has been deemed crucial for preparing soldiers for war.

“We just can’t manage the kind of level of training that we used to be amazed that others require,” Chun said.

Chun was speaking during a panel at the U.S. Army’s Land Forces Pacific conference in Honolulu. Duyeon Kim, a senior fellow at the Center for a New American Security, said the situation with Korea is more complicated today than it was five years ago because the world has gotten more complicated.

Read the full story and more from The Washington Examiner.


  • Dr. Duyeon Kim

    Adjunct Senior Fellow, Indo-Pacific Security Program

    Duyeon Kim, PhD, is an adjunct senior fellow with the Indo-Pacific Security Program at CNAS based in Seoul. Her expertise includes the two Koreas, nuclear nonproliferation, ar...