China Bans Soldiers From Online Dating
Posted on July 17, 2010
As of June 15, Chinese servicemen have not been allowed to make friends of any sort on the Internet. This is in response to the government’s fear of a loss of security via that old wartime mantra about “loose lips sinking ships.”
How has this affected the commanders of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) of some 2.3 million strong? Now in addition to all of their other strategic and battle-related duties, they have become matchmakers for their lonely servicemen who so desperately seek human companionship and have no outlet to find it.
The parameters of the new ruling of the Internal Affairs Regulation are very clearly defined. No blogs, personal websites, Internet dating, online job hunts or even correspondence with virtual friends are permitted. In other words, all social networking sites are out of bounds.
“People with ulterior motives may make use of the soldiers’ personal information and pose a threat to the safety of the army… They defend the frontiers most of the year and have few opportunities to make contact with the outside world,” says Yang Jigui, commander of the Xigaze military sub-command in Tibet.
Officers are doing their best to get around the new ruling to help their men by studying how they can help their troops look for love “in all the right places” (wherever they may be).
The Chinese government does not stand alone against the world with this new policy. Soldiers in the Israeli army are prohibited from posting classified information online, which includes military photographs. Earlier this year, an Israeli solider was sentenced to 10 years in prison after he posted information on Facebook concerning an up and coming raid which was subsequently cancelled by the Israeli Defense Force (IDF).
Despite the Chinese ban, China Daily reportedly found a host of personal sites with information on single soldiers, as well as a number of articles containing information about the military that could potentially pose a security threat.
There are those who argue that if Chinese soldiers are to find mates, they might be forced to do it the old-fashioned way by following the historic examples set by Genghis Khan and his ilk.
Like the old song says, “all you need is love” but in this case, where on earth can you get it if you are a soldier in the Chinese military?
What do YOU think about this?