OP-ED

Military Restructuring? Good to go

National Yemen

Defense minster and military commanders at the Presidential Place

Dec 19th, 2012, will be remembered as a day when military decrees were the most important decrees issued by President Hadi since his election on February 18, 2012.

Hadi’s military decrees have so far met with no objections from any of the country’s military leaders. Less shocking was the warm reception they prompted from Yemen’s citizens. By announcing the new structure of the armed forces, Hadi has accomplished the hardest part of the transitional process’ second phase.

Hadi, we hope, has earned the military’s loyalty, which would certainly go a long way towards successfully – and peacefully – steering the country through the first stages of a long-term plan to restructure Yemen’s armed forces. Guiding this passage should be the idea ‘military for the nation, not the man’.

Revolutionaries have demanded that the military restructuring take place before the holding of the National Dialogue Conference. Since Hadi has come to power, Hadi has been compelled to balance his efforts against difficult realities. That said, there is reason to believe that with these military decrees, he has provided oft-disappointed revolutionaries with cause for hope.

If Yemen can continue on its current path, it’s not unreasonable to imagine that it will be regarded as a positive exception as far as countries involved in the Arab Spring have been concerned – and perhaps even as a model for the UN to apply to other nations.