I am a Republic of Korea (ROK) Army Military Intelligence Staff Sergeant (linguistic) currently in support of the ROK joint special operations unit that inspired the recently concluded South Korean TV show "Descendants of the Sun".

  • If you have no idea what that show is, be glad and skip ahead. I'm not a famous public figure nor an accomplished Solider but I'm mainly doing this AMA to basically crush fatuous fantasies of foolish girls who can't discern the reality and a TV show. It's becoming quite problematic in my part of town and annoying me to no end.

*Also, if you have an interest on special operations and/or intelligence community in South Korea, you're welcome to ask away.

Proof: http://s31.postimg.org/tk8nlcmuz/IMG_0381_1.jpg This proof is identifiable since my unit is the only one in the world that wears this pattern of camouflage. No, it's not desert MARPAT.

Comments: 50 • Responses: 21  • Date: 

liqourschlitz10 karma

You are either lying or you are the worst intel soldier i have ever seen. Your commander right now has shed their human form and transformed into a ball of anger. My question is what was your punishment for this breach of opsec?

Kr-SF3 karma

None. Since I'm not breaching any security parameters in any way. Revealing the fact that I'm MI while staying anonymous is not a breach of OPSEC.

I can't believe this is the top thread at the moment...

mokoyo8 karma

Thanks for doing this. I watched Descendants of the Sun. :) There were some well choreographed scenes and parts of the acting were enjoyable. Like you, I thought the Delta operator scene, among others was complete crap-- and almost spat out the water I was drinking. Coincidentally, I am Asian and female.


    1. How do volunteer medical services work in conjunction with the armed forces?
    1. What is the greatest potential conflict facing the Korean peninsula?

EDIT: Formatting

Kr-SF1 karma

  1. I'm sorry I can't really answer your first question as I don't know a whole lot about this field. I heard that civilian medical sector helped out/cooperated with SF units that had combat deployments to Afghanistan just a few years ago. Although I would imagine it's nothing like the Korean "drama".

  2. I would say small regional provocations committed by NK spiralling out of control to a war. "Loyalty competition" is getting to be a serious business up in there, which means NK military commanders are making reckless decisions to achieve small-scale victories in skirmishes to impress KJU. We've had quite a few armed confrontation and field engagements lately and there's no saying that they will not, some day, get out of hand.

nice_and_friendly4 karma

what does the ROK army feed their soldiers?

similar_observation3 karma

a combined mix of a random ration, instant noodles, pickled onions, kimchi, cut hot dogs, spam, and a can of beans.

Kr-SF2 karma

Close enough. Wish we had professional nutritionists like the US military.

Coogah331 karma

Our MREs/TOTMs suck. You guys probably have equivalent or better food.

Kr-SF2 karma

Wrong. I tried out U.S. MREs throughout my service years and they were way better in my opinion. I wasn't able to shit right, though.

TonyAbbott13 karma

안녕하세요, is South Korea always scared of North Korea or dont you guys always think about. And what is the process when it comes to North Korean solider coming to South Korea?

Kr-SF3 karma

At some point people seemed to just stop caring about NK because all they are capable of making is empty threats :) If there's one Korea that should be afraid of another, it should be the North and its regime. I'll stop at that.

TonyAbbott11 karma

Thanks for replying

Kr-SF1 karma

Welcome, mate.

ColonMockery2 karma

How effective is the North's counter surveillance of the Republic?

Kr-SF5 karma

As far as I'm concerned, they do not have necessary means to effectively counter the ROK-US combined ISR assets.

Why_Yes_Im_Evil2 karma

Could you elaborate on what the selection process for ROK SOF is like?

Kr-SF3 karma

ROK Army Special Forces "Black Berets" does not have as nearly a rigorous training pipeline as its US counterpart. They typically receive 300 students per class and usually 230-250 make it through the 3-month training. But they get intense "home" training once they get to Teams, though.

But the ROK Navy Special Warfare Flotilla(UDT/SEAL) has near identical BUD/S, including the infamous Hell Week, as the US Navy SEALs. Although UDT/SEALs don't have SQT.. I heard attrition rate for the Korean SEAL training is up to 40%.


Ever get a KATUSA tour?

Kr-SF3 karma

No. KATUSA is an enlistment option. I worked pretty hard to become a linguistic specialist before enlisting and I am here now so no regrets there.


I see. Your English is excellent. Ever been to Humphrey's or Casey, work with 2nd ID?

Kr-SF3 karma

Thank you, sir. Unfortunately, no. I've been to CFC HQ, though. I would love to work with good ol' 2ID but I worked rather closely with MI BDEs and will continue to do so once I finish up my tour here in the UAE and go back to Korea.

TornadoDick2 karma

in what way is the girls delusional?

Kr-SF5 karma

I watched a two-minute clip from the show.

The clip involved a mission planning phase between the U.S. Delta operators and the fictitious ROK SF "Alpha Team" before they go in on an op to busk some NKs. Then they have a conflict of opinions. Delta team leader taunts the Koreans by saying silly things like 'Why don't you train with your mama, pussies?" And the two team leaders suddenly have a brawl and try to stab each others' asses to death. And while they're at it, the newest guy from Alpha Team asks his Team Sergeant to step in but apparently this "kill or get killed" situation is an accepted practice in the special operations community because you have to know if your counterpart is trustworthy to have your 6. The handsome Korean team leader wins the hand-to-hand combat, by the way.

I was cringing so hard by that time and, for me, that was fucking it.

So if you believe it, you're delusional. And most girls seem to... FML

dank420memes13372 karma

Are there any nasty border-conflicts with North Korea?

EndlessEnds1 karma

So ... this AMA is to get the ladies off your back? That's what you're saying?

Kr-SF1 karma

I would only be able to get'em off my back if I disclosed my name and appearances.

Mehottie1 karma

How accurate was the drama based on your experiences? For example in the drama the characters got very involved in the lives of people they were protecting. Or just anything about the drama you thought was inaccurately portrayed?

Kr-SF2 karma

I mentioned in a thread that I only watched a two-minute clip from the show and that was it.

With regards to the example you cited, no. The Republic of Korea Ministry of National Defense has not committed the armed forces to combat deployments since the Vietnam War, although one Army Staff Sergeant Yoon Jang-ho was killed from a suicide bomb attack in Afghanistan in 2007. Also, there was Operation Dawn of Gulf of Aden in which our SEALs kicked some Somali pirates' arses. But then again, there hasn't been combat deployments per se since the end of the Vietnam War in the '70s.

So, no. If you see characters in the show go guns blazing, that would be way off base from the reality.

[deleted]1 karma


Kr-SF3 karma

Are you Korean?

Ahhh.. this is a question that can be answered in a very lengthy manner but I'll just keep it short. It is common practice, and in fact, required for "junior enlisted" and NCOs that they fulfil a certain period of "barracks life" or "in-base life". SF Sergeants used to have to stay 2 years on base without weekend leaves except for their regular annual leaves but now it's shortened to 3 months. And yes, every regular soldier gets some housing compensation. By regular, I mean Staff Sergeant and above. Not junior enlisted doing their mandatory service years.

To answer your next question, I think he is just a saint who is able to keep his cool. He would be in a more serious pickle if he fought back. Because the media and consequently, the chain of command do that to you. "Soldier assaults civilians". Absolutely ridiculous. I, too, have been instructed before to suck it up even if I get punched in the face by a civvie for no reason.

The camouflage in the proof photo I provided is only worn by the members of "Akh Unit" in the UAE. 아크부대 in Korean. You can google it.

[deleted]1 karma


Kr-SF3 karma

I spent my secondary school years in Singapore. 5 years. No, I'm not stationed in Songpa. I was stationed in Gangnam, but my unit relocated to suburban area after I deployed here so I'll be out of Seoul once I PCS back to Korea.

bluestreakxp1 karma

What is the korean game reality show (like running man, sorta) where you have to use wits and deceit to get gems as the currency? and is that a popular show?

Kr-SF3 karma

I don't watch Korean reality TV shows.

Kr-SF3 karma

Because they're all bad. Really bad.

Sorryaboutthat1time1 karma

Why does your army need a linguistics officer? You have one enemy and they speak the same language.

Kr-SF6 karma

I'm not an officer.

But to answer your question, any armed forces has working relations with other countries' militaries. In case of South Korea, we maintain a very robust alliance with the U.S. and close cooperation with other democratic allies. So linguistic assets are high in demand.

TaintStubble2 karma

North Koreans, Russians, Chinese, Japanese.

Kr-SF1 karma

Those, too.

loremusipsumus-1 karma

How is real life different from the official US Army Video Game (Americas Army : Proving Grounds)?

Kr-SF3 karma

I do not serve in the US Army, nor have I played that video game.