There are many threats that South Korean soldiers have to deal with in today’s day and age. With a nuclear armed North Korea, they are constantly on the front line of danger.
Now it seems there is something else that they may have to worry about, and that is their own military commanders. More particularly, according to a report, they want to shut down the access of soldiers to cryptocurrency trading sites.
This was outlined in a notification that was sent by the ministry of defence. This was also about the time that the regulators started closing down the online access to these sites. The notification read
According to internal rules, we will gradually shut down internet access to websites on encrypted currency starting Monday
Rules for Gambling and Porn
These rules that were instituted by the military appear to be the same as those that restrict the actions of soldiers when it comes to questionable online material. The guidance falls under the same rules that prohibit porn and gambling websites.
While it seems slightly ludicrous to bucket crypto with porn and gambling, this is indeed a familiar trend that is emanating from South Korea. There have been a number of rumours of a Bitcoin exchange ban.
According to an official, the move is intended to boost the morale of the troops as the ill effects from the currencies volatility may be too much for them to bear. The source went on to say:
We are going to announce specific countermeasures for cryptocurrency transactions made in military units… The ministry is in internal talks to confirm whether it is against military regulations
This of course begs the question of what will happen to those soldiers that invest in cryptocurrencies despite the ban. Are they likely to face consequences from their leaders for the act of buying a digital currency?
There is also evidence that these potential moves is a lot more than FUD. Since Monday, it has been reported that access to the cryptocurrency exchanges from the bases has been restricted.
The official noted that soldiers should avoid visiting these sites to “avoid disappointment from our decision to block access to relevant sites”.
Free “Financial Education”
The South Korean military also want to make sure that their soldiers have free access to courses on financial education. One has to wonder how biased such courses are likely to be towards cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin?
While no one can dispute the need for sensible financial regulations in ICOs for example, restricting the use their citizens from purchasing a digital asset encroaches on their freedoms.
While South Korea prides itself on the freedoms that its people can relish, these actions which restrict use and promote one narrative look an awful lot like those of their northern neighbours.
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