More than 300,000 Thai males, who turned 21 in the past 12 months are subject to conscription screening which runs until tomorrow, April 12. The military, however, has room for 101,307 conscripts this year. The screening is being held in Bangkok’s 50 districts as well as 928 districts in the provinces. PATIPAT JANTHONG
The focus is always on the tense lotteries held to fill the manpower needs of the military services, but this year volunteers have greatly reduced the number of conscripts needed.
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Volunteers swell ranks of draftees
More than half of the draftees in this year's annual military conscription, which is nearly complete, are voluntary applicants wishing to join military service, according to government spokesman Sansern Kaewkamnerd.
A total of 355,938 young men were called to report as part of this year's military conscription from April 1 until tomorrow.
Of this number, 101,307 will be drafted to join the military service – 75,324 to serve in the army, 16,000 in the navy, 8,099 in the air force, 735 in the Office of the Permanent Secretary of Defence and 1,149 in the Royal Thai Armed Forces Command.
They are partly selected through drawing lots while the rest apply to join the military service on their own volition.
Maj Gen Sansern said the number of voluntary applicants usually exceeds those who are selected through drawing lots.
At some military conscription units across the country, the number of voluntary applicants has even exceed the number of draftees required.
Maj Gen Sansern said whenever personnel are wanted for pre-cadet school, schools for medics and nurses and the course for non-commissioned officers, people usually turn up in large numbers to apply.
The media should present a more balanced picture rather than focusing on news about people, particularly big names like actors and singers, who are frustrated at being drafted through drawing lots, he said.
Apart from undergoing training for physical and mental strength, all draftees are entitled to pay amounting to about 10,000 baht per month plus other welfare benefits including medical care in military hospitals and special points for examinations to join non-commissioned officer schools, he said.
Learn from listening
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annual : happening every year - ทุกๆปีด, ประจำปี
applicant : someone who applies for something, such as a job or a loan of money - ผู้สมัคร,ผู้แจ้งความจำนง,ผู้ขอ
apply : to make a formal request for a job of position - สมัครงาน
armed forces : a country's army, navy and air force - กองทัพทุกเหล่าทัพ
balanced (adj): keeping or showing a balance so that different things or different parts of something exist in equal or correct amounts - ที่สมดุล
benefits (nound): advantages you get from a situation; helpful or good effects, or things intended to help - ผลประโยชน์, ข้อได้เปรียบ, ผลดี
cadet : a young person who is training to be a police officer or military officer - นักเรียนนายร้อย, นักเรียนทหาร
command : the organization, staff and resources that a military or police commander controls -
conscription : the practice of ordering people by law to serve in the armed forces - การเกณฑ์ทหาร
Defence Ministry (noun): the ministry that oversees a country’s armed forces - กระทรวงกลาโหม
draft : (of conscription) to order people by law to serve in the armed forces - เกณฑ์ทหาร
drawing lots (noun): using a method of choosing somebody to do something in which each person takes a piece of paper, etc. from a container and the one whose paper has a special mark is chosen - การจับฉลาก
entitled : having the right to have or do something - มีสิทธิโดยชอบ
exceed (verb): to be more than; to go beyond - เกินกว่า, เกิน, มากกว่า
frustrated : feeling annoyed and impatient because you are prevented from achieving something - ผิดหวัง,ท้อแท้ใจมาก, หงุดหงิดใจ
media : radio, television, newspaper, the Internet, considered as a group - สื่อ
medic : a person who is trained to give medical treatment, especially somebody in the armed forces - แพทย์, หมอ
mental : connected with or happening in the mind; involving the process of thinking - เกี่ยวกับจิตใจ
non-commissioned officers : NCOs, officers such as sergeants and corporals who are not commissioned officers starting from Lieutenant and above -
nurse : someone who is trained to look after ill or injured people, usually in a hospital - พยาบาล
particularly : especially, or more than usual - โดยเฉพาะ
permanent secretary : a government official, not a political appointee, in charge of a ministry - ปลัดกระทรวง
personnel : the people who are employed in a company, organization or one of the armed forces - บุคลากร, เจ้าหน้าที่, พนักงาน
physical : connected with a person's body - เกี่ยวกับร่างกาย
ranks (noun): all the people within a group, organization etc; a large group of people with something in common -
select : to choose - คัดเลือก
spokesman : a person who speaks on behalf of a group or an organization - โฆษก
swell : to become or cause to become larger than normal - บวม, ทำให้บวม, ทำให้พอง
turn up : to come somewhere - มาถึง
undergo : to experience a process of change - เผชิญกับ, ประสบ
unit : a group of people who work or live together, especially for a particular purpose - หน่วย,กอง,กลุ่ม
volition (noun): the power to choose something freely or to make your own decisions - การตัดสินใจด้วยตัวเอง
voluntary : done because you choose to do it rather than because you have to - ด้วยความสมัครใจ
volunteer : someone who joins a military force without being forced to do so - อาสาสมัคร
welfare : help given, especially by the state or an organization, to people who need it; good care and living conditions - สวัสดิการ