A local radio host's comments about the Singapore Armed Forces reducing outdoor training for its soldiers because of the haze has gone viral online, drawing both support and anger from two opposing camps.
987 FM producer and DJ Rosalyn Lee posted on her Facebook page on Tuesday that she felt that the SAF should train its men in all weather conditions instead of cutting down on physical and outdoor training as PSI levels soared to "unhealthy" in Singapore's worst haze in 16 years.
"Shouldn't the SAF, of all people, train in all-weather conditions and be at least haze-ready? I'd imagine the haze to be a similar condition to that of war where s**t gets blown up in flames right?" wrote the outspoken Lee, 33, in a post that garnered over 170 likes.
Lee also posted in response to comments that "our defence force needs to toughen up", adding that she felt that she had trained harder in 4-hour ballet classes than some National Servicemen.
Keeping things tongue-in-cheek, she peppered her responses with smileys and posted that she welcomed all opinions and encouraged healthy debate about the issue.
However, her post was picked up and re-posted on popular online forum Eat-Drink-Man-Woman's Facebook page, where it was mostly slammed by netizens in over 500 comments and shared another 187 times.
In its scathing description of her, EDMW described Lee as a "failed blogger cum little-known DJ", and many of the comments made attacks on her personal appearance.
Facebook user Iqbal Mohamed said that Lee, "as a woman" who has not served National Service, "should not talk about how easy it (NS) is."
"Sure, NSFs nowadays don't go through the strenuous training like our parents. But... what if I say child birth is nothing? Never experience don't anyhow say (sic)."
Another comment from Lew Jia Qing pointed out that "If NSFs get respiratory problems due to training in hazy conditions and as a result die from it, how many men will be left to fight the war?"
Lee also had her share of supporters, who criticized the personal attacks.
"If we were to prepare for war, everyone has to continue fighting, male or female. Stop being demeaning and insulting her opinions. You people can't even handle a comment without bringing someone down? That says a lot about you," posted Facebook user Khatijah Begum.
In response to the fierce debate her comments sparked online, Lee posted a response today on her Facebook that she was "overwhelmed and heartened" by the support shown online for Singapore's Armed Forces and National Service.
"Regardless of how we each express our views, I believe the common goal that binds us is the obvious fact that we all care about our country and that we will stop at nothing to keep it safe - and that is something I choose to take away from these humbling exchanges," she posted.
When contacted, Lee told Yahoo! Singapore that the above statement was the final response she would be giving on the issue.