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Thai Military Service

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Our son, who is 19 and dual national (US/Thai) is attending college in the USA and here for the summer. We're looking to get him a exemption from service. In other words payoff someone at the draft board. But what is the procedure and estimate of the cost? Has anyone done this recently and what were your experiences? We live in Bangkok (Kannayao).

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When his draft papers arrive, put a dress and some lipstick on him. I understand they don't take katoeys.

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where is he going to spend his post college life? Thailand or the US?

Is he registered on the housebook?

At the moment, it is possible to defer things based on his continued education.

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When his draft papers arrive, put a dress and some lipstick on him. I understand they don't take katoeys.

Not a good advise...!

Now he is in the US and doing his school. This can last for another few years...

I suggest you talk to a physician. He might find a "medical reason" for exempting him from service...

Hope you got my point.

Edited by webfact

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If he does get called up, he can pay to get out of it. Either beforehand, or (in the even that he goes in) before he draws the 'balls'. Advice would be to leave him off the tabien bahn. That's what they go off of when they call up potential soldiers for the draft. I was not placed on the tabien bahn until after I was too old for the draft, and I was never called up.

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When his draft papers arrive, put a dress and some lipstick on him. I understand they don't take katoeys.

No so. There were 3 katoeys living in the same barracks as my nephew when he was in the army. .

Edited by Farma

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Everyone on this board complains about the corruption in thailand until it is useful to them. Its HIS country they HAVE conscription so why cant he man-up and do his duty like all other thais ??? Unless you want to teach him thats its okay to buy your way out of his duty to his country, now thats a great life lesson.

It is a reality that children of the wealthy do not have to go to military, be it in Thailand or USA. In the USA it certainly isn't George Bush's kids that are getting blown up in Afghanistan or Iraq.

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Everyone on this board complains about the corruption in thailand until it is useful to them. Its HIS country they HAVE conscription so why cant he man-up and do his duty like all other thais ??? Unless you want to teach him thats its okay to buy your way out of his duty to his country, now thats a great life lesson.

It is a reality that children of the wealthy do not have to go to military, be it in Thailand or USA. In the USA it certainly isn't George Bush's kids that are getting blown up in Afghanistan or Iraq.

I can confirm this applies for many other countries too!

BTW does the US has draft laws again? And Happy 4th of July! :)

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Everyone on this board complains about the corruption in thailand until it is useful to them. Its HIS country they HAVE conscription so why cant he man-up and do his duty like all other thais ??? Unless you want to teach him thats its okay to buy your way out of his duty to his country, now thats a great life lesson.

Because a sizeable minority of conscripts are killed or permanently disabled during their 'training'. The numbers are much higher than for paid, professional Western armies. Don't expect there to be any stories in the Thai press about this.

In addition, it is a complete waste of 2 years of somebody's life, either doing nothing, or doing totally pointless tasks or acting as a servant to the division commander often in his businesses.

Thailand has a massive bloated military. It has no need of conscription. But the ruling military elite rather like the benefits.

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Everyone on this board complains about the corruption in thailand until it is useful to them. Its HIS country they HAVE conscription so why cant he man-up and do his duty like all other thais ??? Unless you want to teach him thats its okay to buy your way out of his duty to his country, now thats a great life lesson.

I agree all the way...........If the draft is allowed again in the US are you going to buy your way out

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Everyone on this board complains about the corruption in thailand until it is useful to them. Its HIS country they HAVE conscription so why cant he man-up and do his duty like all other thais ??? Unless you want to teach him thats its okay to buy your way out of his duty to his country, now thats a great life lesson.

I agree all the way...........If the draft is allowed again in the US are you going to buy your way out

To Mr. Retired USN, I have a whole lot of respect for you given that you are apparently a military man. But the arguments that are being made, I must respectfully disagree. It is a different situation for being drafted into the Thai army as opposed as the U.S. military.

My allegiances lie with the United States, more so than Thailand. I love Thailand, and am patriotic to Thailand, but not enough to join their army. I--as well as any other male above the age of 16--registered for the U.S. selective service. If called upon I would go. But the reason I would go is because the United States is a democracy, and if there is a war, it is because the people of the USA elected the leaders, and the leaders decided that there was justification to go to war. For democracy and for the freedoms that the United States gives me, I would go. Thailand, on the other hand, is not a real democracy. The prime minister obtains his power by buying votes from poorer districts in Thailand, then uses his position to sell off Thailand's assets at a great personal gain for himself. I do not want to fight for that.

The United States went to war in Afghanistan, because they sheltered Osama Bin Ladin who attacked my country in Sept. 2001. For that I would gladly go to war for. I did not agree with the war in Iraq because it was made to protect the U.S.'s oil supply. But having said that, the U.S. is legitimately trying to restore democracy in that country. And the fact that it is legitimately a fight for democracy, is something noble, for which I would feel comfortable in fighting for.

Thailand on the other had is fighting with Cambodia over who possess a temple that is really small, and not a very important cause for which I would feel I should give my life. I would hate to die for such a stupid cause.

Another thing, the way the U.S. military works is alot different than the Thai system. Soldiers are well paid in the U.S., and are professional soldiers. Soldiers in the Thai army, are basically menial labor for the more superior officers. I stayed at the home of a Thai general last year, and could see it first hand. The conscripts are there to act as waiters at the General's parties, to paint their homes, to wash their cars. And, the system of discipline in Thailand is not as safe as in the United States. In Thailand, lower level soldiers are often times abused, and physically punished, which does not happen in the U.S. military.

So you can't equate a desire not to join the Thai army as the refusal to 'man up'.

And I would also point out that many of the U.S. leaders have also 'bought' the safety of their sons. George W. Bush had family connections to place him in the Air National Guard, while others were being sent to the front lines in Vietnam. Al. Gore (whose father was a senator) was a writer for "Stars and Stripes". If these people could have their family help them out from facing danger, why can't the OP help his son?

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Our son, who is 19 and dual national (US/Thai) is attending college in the USA and here for the summer. We're looking to get him a exemption from service. In other words payoff someone at the draft board. But what is the procedure and estimate of the cost? Has anyone done this recently and what were your experiences? We live in Bangkok (Kannayao).

The idea that all kids from prominent and/or rich families get out of military service in Thailand isn't true. You certainly hear of examples through the media, but you hear of them because of who they are and because its unusual - not because everyone is at it.

My son is attending Uni in the USA as well - and when he comes back he wants to do his military service. With his overseas uni education he'll almost certainly get into the military acadamy. That means officer training, something to be proud of and a whole bunch of employment oppurtunities that he would otherwise be overlooked for in the future by employers.

Your son could be in that position as well. Military service is not all negative. Its certainly a tough few years - espicially if youre rank and file, but like most things in life, its what one makes of the oppurtunity.

That all aside, why doesn't he want to do military service?

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A deferment is possible. Don't let the negative comments upset you.

If you are an overseas student under the supervision of the Office of Civil Service Commission (Kor Por), the office will apply for your deferment on your behalf.

If you are an overseas student on private funding, you, your parents, or guardians will be responsible for applying for deferment at the military registrar of the district of your residence.

Required documents presented for deferment must fully explain the following:

Applicant’s intended field of study

Name and place of institution

Number of years expected to complete the degree

School transcript (translated into Thai when necessary with name and title of translator)

Number of years requested for deferment

A copy of your military reserve letter (Sor Dor 9) and a copy of the selective service letter (draft letter requiring you to enter military service - Sor Dor 35)

A copy of your house registration

Certification letter from the Embassy, Consulate General, or Office of Student Affairs confirming that the applicant is indeed studying for a certain degree at a particular institution.

To apply for a certification letter from the Consulate General or Embassy, please provide the following required documents:

A copy of passport pages with applicant's personal information and photograph (first 5 pages of the old passport or first 3 pages on the new smaller passport) with endorsements and amendment page if applicable

A copy of the applicant's house registration

A Letter from the university confirming enrollment of applicant, and stating field of study and number of years expected to complete the degree

Translation of the letter from the university

Fully completed petition form (Legelization application form)

Processing fee, pay by cash if apply in person, or by Money Order or Certified Cheque payable to "The Royal Thai Consulate General" if apply by mail/courier.

If the applicant wishes the consulate to return the document by mail, please include a pre-paid express post envelop along with your application

Hope this helps.

Paying for a dispensation is not limited to the wealthy. I know one guy that had his family pay 40,000 baht to avoid the call up. Hardly a wealthy family.

My friend was drafted and did his service. He lost 2 years of earnings potential as did his family lose the monetary support. For the poor it is a real hardship to serve. It also screwed up his university. Because he didn't know the dispensation rules he lost out. Another aquaintance had to draw the ball, but lucked out. In his case, military service would have done him some good.

If the people condemning your position understood that many conscripts are limbless because of the IED & mine situation in the deep south, they wouldn't be so harsh. My personal opinion is that the availability of manpower allows there to be a reliance on men vs the appropriate reinforced vehicles and protective gear. People forget that in the west, a soldier is an investment and thousands of dollars/euros/pounds go into the training of that soldier, so it's a major loss when one is wounded or killed. It's a horrible situation in the deep south and one that is not fully reported.

Edited by geriatrickid

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My son is attending Uni in the USA as well - and when he comes back he wants to do his military service. With his overseas uni education he'll almost certainly get into the military acadamy. That means officer training, something to be proud of and a whole bunch of employment oppurtunities that he would otherwise be overlooked for in the future by employers.

I could be wrong about this, but I thought that I read on another discussion on this topic (involving Dual U.S. and Israeli Citizenship--and Israeli has mandatory military enrollment), that it was OK to join as an enlisted soldier. However, joining as an officer of another nations army may be construed as treason to the United States. You should check out the rules on this before he joins.

I just found this: http://travel.state.gov/law/citizenship/citizenship_778.html

Which states:

Section 349 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1481), as amended, states that U.S. citizens are subject to loss of citizenship if they perform certain specified acts voluntarily and with the intention to relinquish U.S. citizenship. Briefly stated, these acts include:

  1. obtaining naturalization in a foreign state (Sec. 349 (a) (1) INA);
  2. taking an oath, affirmation or other formal declaration to a foreign state or its political subdivisions (Sec. 349 (a) (2) INA);
  3. entering or serving in the armed forces of a foreign state engaged in hostilities against the U.S. or serving as a commissioned or non-commissioned officer in the armed forces of a foreign state (Sec. 349 (a) (3) INA);

Edited by submaniac

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