Injured Special Service center instructor may be paralyzed
Special Service Command Center ( ) instructor Lt. Col. Kuo Keng- hung ( ) , who sustained a firearm injury during a live ammunition training session on March 30, has reportedly been left paralyzed, amid criticism surrounding a viral video of National Security Bureau ( NSB, ) trainees commencing a criss-cross shooting regimen with no protection gear on.
The viral video shows two rows of trainees, just two meters away from each other, commencing a moving criss-cross shooting regimen while firing live ammunition. Yet, none of the trainees were wearing protective gear.
During the training session, a trainee failed to heed the instructor’s orders to cease fire, resulting in Kuo sustaining a gunshot to the neck near the fourth and fifth cervical vertebra. Reports said doctors fear that Kuo will be paralyzed for life.
Viewers and legislators have blasted the NSB’s high-ranking officials for playing with their subordinates’ lives by coming up with an “exciting” performance session for inspection officials.
DPP Legislator Kuan Bi- ling pointed out that Special Service duty is a high-risk job, and the NSB should regulate service members to wear necessary protective gear while on duty. She further stated that the lack of protective gear as shown in the viral video is also an obvious breach of regu- lations and demanded that the center’s commander should take responsibility and resign.
Vital Training for Trainees: NSB
The NSB responded yesterday by saying that the criss- cross shooting regimen is a vital training for Special Service trainees, and claimed it was not a special training session said to be held for a Control Yuan ( ) inspection, which is scheduled for May 5.
The bureau said that the Special Service members uphold “using their bodies as shields” as the highest standard in protecting the president and vice president.
The shooting training has been in use since former President Chen Shui-bian’s ( ) term, authorities said. In response to criticism regarding why the NSB did not use rubber bullets, the NSB said trainees require intense drill sessions as they are in charge of the president and vice president’s safety. Officials explained that the U.S. also has similar training programs. “Otherwise, service members will lack the necessary physical and mental capacity in emergency situations that could mean life or death for the president and vice president,” said bureau officials. Control Yuan officials reported that the training session and the inspection are “two different issues,” further stating that they were only aware of the inspection date. Officials said they are also unclear of the inspection details, and the NSB had yet to provide information regarding the inspection.