South Korea is considering allowing its male pop superstars to defer mandatory military service in light of the unprecedented international fame of boy band Bangtan Sonyeondan (BTS), the military revealed on Tuesday.
The resurgence of the conversation around the two-year mandated military service — which all men between the ages of 18 and 28 must complete — follows the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), through its state media arms, attacking BTS after its lead rapper RM praised the sacrifices of South Korean and American forces in the Korean War. Beijing, citing unnamed “netizens” in the Party-controlled social media sphere, claimed that applauding the South Korean side of the Korean War explicitly insulted China, which fought on North Korea’s side.
The Korean War is still technically active, though an armistice agreement between North Korea, China, and America resulted in the end of active hostilities in 1953.
Exemptions for mandatory military service exist in