Can An NSF Disobey A Direct Order?

An NSF was sentenced to 10 days of short-detention order (a brief stint in jail instead of a full term jail sentence) after accidentally killing another NSF while driving a military jeep under orders.

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He did not possess the relevant driving license to operate the vehicle, but was ordered to drive anyway.

As a female, it’s not possible for me to understand the full extent of what NSFs go through in the army, and for me to attempt to do so would be insulting to the young men who have to go through two years of service. Even so, I’m sure many of us – male or female – have heard of how it’s of the utmost importance to show respect to those in authority in the army.

Given all the horror stories that we were of punishments for the slightest insubordination, it’s no wonder that the NSF compelled and carried out the order, knowing full well that he’s not qualified to.

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The master sergeant that gave the order for him to drive the jeep has already been charged, and is awaiting sentencing.

Comments from netizens have been largely cynical, with many questioning the real possibility of disobeying a direct order. After all, the people who gave these orders are supposed to know better, and if they say it’s okay… it should be, right?

There are more than just one victim in this whole debacle, besides those that were hurt and the deceased. The ‘offending’ NSF, who was 20-years old when the incident happened, is another victim that has to bear the full weight of what happened. He was exactly the same age as I am now, and I cannot imagine the scars and trauma he has to bear from this incident, knowing that he took someone’s life, albeit unwittingly and accidentally.

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The only silver lining that came from this incident, if you can call it that, is that MINDEF is sure to be more vigilant and unforgiving towards anyone who issues illegal orders.

 

 

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About the author

Audrey Kang

Audrey Kang is a born and bred Singaporean girl about to embark on a two year solo life abroad to study Politics and International Relations at the University of Melbourne. She’s maniacal about reading and writing and will write almost everything from sports to travel to current affairs, and will even read the back of a milk carton if she’s bored enough.

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