According to a new survey, 91 percent of South Korean men in their 20s say that they would fight if war broke out with North Korea.
Gallup Korea polled 537 South Korean men to find out if they would fight should the need arise. Overall, 88 percent of South Korean men said that they would. Aside from young men in their 20s, the next age group most willing to fight was men in their 50s, 88 percent of whom would fight North Korea. The age group most unwilling to fight was men in their 30s, at 75 percent.
Men in their 30s showed the most reluctance, according to Gallup, because they would rather stay home and take care of their small children.
Fifty-five percent of women polled said that they would serve their nation in a support role if war broke out with North Korea again.
All told, 69 percent of respondents told Gallup that they would fight if war broke out.
Under current South Korean law, all male citizens over the age of 18 are subject to compulsory military service.
North and South Korea began fighting on June 25, 1950, after communists took over control of the North.
Under President Dwight Eisenhower, the United States, and 20 other United Nations members, fought the North Koreans with the democratic South until July 27, 1953, when a truce was reached between the two sides. However, a comprehensive peace agreement was never reached, and North and South have technically been in a state of war ever since the initial shots were fired.
Only 39 percent of those polled said that they believe war is probable today, while 54 percent told Gallup that they believe there is little or no possibility that tensions would reach those heights.
Earlier this month, North Korea test fired three anti-ship missiles, an act that worried many South Korean military leaders. They also tested similar missiles in February and May.
“Our military is… maintaining all military readiness posture for any provocation,” a South Korean Defense Ministry official said.