Military restructuring ideas vary
Article 17 of the Gulf Initiative, signed Nov. 23 in Riyadh, stipulates that the Military Committee maintain security and stability in Yemen during the transitional period and pave the way for the reunification of military troops under a unified national leadership.
Colonel Abdulqader Al-Du’ais, head of the Systems and Information Department at the Military Academy, said military restructuring is essential, and it is necessary for military troops be revitalized.
Mohsein Khasroof, a military sociology researcher, said military restructuring will be useless unless it follows conditions such as a clear military strategy that serves its goals and clear laws specifying the duties of all military units.
No need for restructuring
Colonel Shaif Tamish, commander of the Al-Azrqeen military checkpoint in Sana’a, said there is no need for military restructuring. He said paying attention to the problems of retired soldiers and reshuffling jobs are more important.
Tamish said caring for soldiers and paying fair salaries are important to encourage them to defend their country and to protect its institutions.
Brigadier-General Ali Mohammed Al-Qaderi said military troops don’t impose themselves on society before or after unification, but the regime used them wrongly to protect itself in spite of the availability of laws and a constitution specifying the duties of military troops.
Al-Qaderi said reforming the political regime is the most important thing, with reforming the other state devices second.
Leaders of the military must be changed because they violate laws and do as they please, Dr. Hassan Qasim Shu’ail said.
Opinions on the restructure
“If we wanted to restructure the military, we have to take into consideration the 70,000 southerner soldiers sacked from their jobs,” Captain Saeed Ba Yafe’i, former minister of transportation, said.
Al-Yafe’i said priorities must be considered before restructuring occurs. He said marine troops must receive priority and more attention because of Yemen’s 2,500 meters of sea border. Moreover, Yemeni fisheries are threatened and Yemeni boats are attacked by pirates arriving at ports becaause the Coast Guard can’t fight them without necessary weapons.
Aaish Awas, a security expert, said military restructuring must undergo several phases; however, he wonders where it will start.
“The restructuring must start by unifying the military leadership,” Awas said.
Since there are seven security devices in Yemen, including the Central Security Forces and the Ministry of Defense, it is difficult to coordinate between them, he said. The problem is the devices compete and fight with each other.
Dr. Mohammed AlSabary said all Yemenis are interested in the restructuring because it aims to achieve security and stability.
“There must be guarantees that the new president, the vice president and the prime minister, will leave their military positions, so that they won’t control the military,” he said.