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Canadian sailor who served in Korean War wins compensation for ‘forced circumcision’

Halifax Tar

Army.ca Fixture
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Canadian sailor who served in Korean War wins compensation for ‘forced circumcision’​

A sailor who served during the Korean War has won full compensation for a “forced circumcision” performed by military doctors.

Then 18, the sailor isn’t identified in the decision from the Veterans Review and Appeal Board. But his ship was likely HMCS Huron as the Tribal-class destroyer was in-theatre from late summer 1954 until the spring of 1955, the same period the sailor served in Korea.

“He had a pimple on his penis and sought treatment. As a teenager, he had a lot of problems with pimples. The ship’s doctor sent him for a circumcision,” said the appeal board decision.

"He tried to get out of it and asked to not go, but he had no other choice but to go. That’s what really annoyed him about it.”

.....and members don't want to get a jab in their arm....

Cue the outrage in 3, 2, 1...
The panel heard the circumcision eventually led to a loss of sensation in the man’s penis.

"He was an 18-year-old at the time and thought it was working great,” said the appeal board decision.

“He had no pain or swelling with his penis.”

I remember (fondly) when I was 18 and thought it was "working great", however I usually associated "swelling" with the greatness. For me that age was during the sexual revolution when many of us happily participated in widespread promiscuity. However, while I'm sure that serving members (pun intended) during the early 1950s did not practice celibacy (voluntarily or otherwise) I'm left wondering what level of activity led the young seaman to his penile performance assessment. Or could it be that his frequency (solitary or in combination) may have contributed to the injury requiring surgical intervention. While some may suggest that such activity constitutes a self-inflicted wound and therefore not service related, one should not overlook the "insurance principle" that applies to claims for injuries/illnesses/death arising while in special duty areas - if it arises or is diagnosed (i.e., first reported) while serving in a special duty area (such as in the operational area off Korea), then it is a pensionable condition even if not due to military service.

Now, those years between 18 and 81 . . . even for the best of us* there's going to be an "eventual" loss of sensation; there's a multi-billion pharmaceutical industry based on the premise.

* not that I've reached that point.