As per the advice, due the recommendations, and under the guidance of Dr. Sorin Dobircianu, Ph. D. | Sr. Government & NATO international specialist, Regional Manager Eastern Europe-Defence Unlimited (http://defenceunlimited.com/defence-unlimited-team/dr-sorin-dobircianu/), INCISIVE NATIONAL extends
An exclusive vision of His Excellency Thomas-Durell Young according to a description, due the huge problem: national level command in the Eastern Europe if NATO countries’ C2 does not work accordingly.
Can NATO’s “new” allies and key partners exercise national-level command in crisis and war?
Thomas-Durell Young, Cert., Ph.D., is a Senior Lecturer, Department of National Security Affairs / Institute for Defense Governance, Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, California USA (for over 20 years) – Senior Lecturer in European civil-military relations within the Education and Professional Practice (EPP) Division of the Institute for Security Governance (ISG). He has a background spanning 20 years of designing, delivering, and assessing institutional capacity-building (ICB) projects in central and eastern Europe. Dr Young is also an academic associate for the comparative defense planning curriculum offered by the Department of National Security Affairs, US Naval Postgraduate School (NPS). The author of many publications in professional and academic publications his latest book is entitled Anatomy of Post-Communist European Defense Institutions: The Mirage of Military Modernity (London: Bloomsbury Academic, 2017).
Prior to joining ISG in 2000, Dr. Young was a research professor at the Strategic Studies Institute, US Army War College where he supported the Army’s policy and planning branch in issues related to European political-military affairs, NATO issues, and defense planning.
Dr. Young received his PhD and Certificat des Etudes supérieurs in International Economics and Policy from the Institut univérsitaire de Hautes Etudes internationales, Université de Genève (Geneva, Switzerland), is a 1990 graduate of the US Army War College (Carlisle Barracks, PA, and holds an MA with Great Distinction from the School of Advanced International Studies, the Johns Hopkins University (Bologna / Washington, DC). His foreign languages are French, Italian, and German.
- Academic Associate for resident graduate-level comparative defense planning curriculum, Department of National Security Affairs
- Adviser on the reform of central and eastern European legacy bureaucracies to the Office of the Secretary of Defense, Defense Security Cooperation Agency, and European Command
- Consultant to senior defense (civilian and military) officials throughout central and eastern Europe
- As manager for central and eastern Europe, for over 20 years he developed and executed defense planning and management assistance and educational projects in every country’s defense organization in central and eastern Europe
- Visiting Professor, Polish Naval Academy, Gdynia, Poland-European security
- Advised U.S. Navy Staff (N-501) on reforming the staff’s planning, programming, budgeting and execution system, that resulted in a fundamental change in planning methods and the staff’s organization
- At the request of the Office of the Secretary of Defense, he developed a methodology to assess the state of development of defense institutions in central and eastern Europe, oversaw the management of 10 studies and developed recommended reform courses of action
- Research Professor in Strategic and European Studies, Strategic Studies Institute, U.S. Army War College, Carlisle, PA
- Responsible for supporting the Army Staff’s policy and plans directorate by producing analyses of European politico-military issues, as well as recommending improvements to joint planning, execution, and management systems
- Published findings widely in academic and professional publications | Joint Staff’s Joint Strategy Planning System |
- Inaugural Eisenhower Fellow at the Royal Netherlands Military Academy, Breda, the Netherlands
- Country Risk Consultant, Business Environment Risk Information, S.A., Washington, DC
- Country Risk Consultant, Frost and Sullivan, Inc., Syracuse, NY
- Research Assistant, Program for Strategic and International Security Studies, Geneva, Switzerland
- Staff Assistant, 34th Congressional District, California (Long Beach, CA and Washington, DC)
This article posits that most postcommunist members of NATO and key partners continue the practice of using communist concepts of command at the national level of governance. These concepts include the hyper-centralization of decision making, collective decision making, and of most concern, unclear chains of command and alignment of authority with responsibility. Combined, these concepts have the potential for inhibiting the timely and clear command of a nation’s armedforces, let alone their effective assimilation into the alliance’s integrated command structure. Such an eventuality has clearly negative implications for the alliance generally, but these weaknesses also could have the unexpected consequence of compromising “new” allies’ national sovereignty in crisis and war.
Since the end of the Cold War, one critical area of democratic governance that has yet to take hold throughout countries in Central and Eastern Europe relates to the viability of national-level chains of command. In another forum, the current writer has addressed specifically the issue of why the slow adoption of democratic defense governance concepts throughout the region has impeded the development of “commanders” as understood in the West, which is best appreciated through examining these defense institutions’ basic organizational sociological principles.1 This essay examines the other side of the issue by positing the question: how well is national-level command likely to be exercised by these governments? This capability must be judged as problematic for two reasons. First, following the wave of democratization after the end of the Cold War, newly elected officials were concerned that these fragile democracies would be unwise to entrust the command of their armed forces to elected governments. This resulted in most designating heads of state (president) as “commanders in chief,” as opposed to the heads of government (prime ministers), let alone ministers of defense. The key assumption on which this practice was based was that heads of state would act as a counterbalance to everyday partisan political intrigues.2 Second, clear chains of command and the key instruments which animate any command structure, command authorities, remain to be developed and validated through simulations and exercises. Legacy command concepts that are based on hyper-centralization of decision making remain tacitly, if unwittingly, accepted throughout the region. Despite reforms by some governments in recent years to address this imbalance between responsibilities and accountability in governance (e.g., Georgia being a recent notable example),3 existing national-level command arrangements throughout the region should be assessed as problematic on four levels. First, by assigning this critical national responsibility to presidents, heads of elected governments are either excluded from national chains of command, or their authorities are ambiguous and/or simply not defined. This is clearly antithetical to democratic defense governance concepts, as it is elected governments via their ministers of defense that are responsible, and indeed held accountable to citizens, for spending public funds to create defense outcomes. Yet in most of these countries they are not clearly part of the chain of command, as established in constitution or law. Moreover, as democracies, it is their parliaments which are charged with responsibility for providing institutional oversight of armed forces. Yet, where presidents are designated commanders in chief, they nevertheless have very little institutional and constructive means (outside of a team of advisers) to carry out this mandate. In this regard, their appointment as commander in chief also undermines the democratic idea of civilian control of the military as presidents in extreme cases take upon themselves the military mantle, i.e., wearing a uniform. In Ukraine, President Petro Poroshenko has even taken military decisions during the current crisis. Thus, there is no longer a duality of thinking or questioning of military logic at any part of the decision-making process as presidents try to act and think militarily. Political responsibility and accountability are compromised further when presidents approve the appointment of senior field-grade and general officers, including the chief of defense (CHOD), often with no more than political or social understanding of their capabilities and therefore are often chosen for the wrong reasons. This problem is especially acute in small structures and countries where such actions can result in the creation of a moral debt and the personalization of loyalty through the provision of employment. This has the perverse effect of not the militarization of the civilian side, but rather the politicization of the military. Second, designating presidents as commanders in chief whilst not defining clearly which authorities that office possess (and by extension, what is the role of the head of government and the minister of defense) opens these governments to potential conflicts in periods where the president and the government are from opposing parties, i.e.,cohabitation. Without attention paid to the details of precisely which elected official commands what, and under which circumstances, suggests that these arrangements are unlikely to function effectively in periods of escalation (i.e., peace, tension, crisis), as well as in war. Furthermore, one can find examples of how command is to be exercised via ad hoc (but generally untested) chains of command, e.g., Bulgaria (vide infra). Such a command arrangement fundamentally breaks the time-testedWestern principle of the essentiality of the unity and continuity of command. As applied at the national level, this holds that there is only one standing and constantly trained and tested national chain of command that does not change during periods of peace, tension, crisis, and war: only the authorities of designated officials are modified by senior political leadership in accordance with law and policy. Third, in the particular context of Central and Eastern Europe, “command” as an instrument of governance based on Western concepts is only vaguely defined, but at its heart is that it implies absolute control. This lack of differentiation of authorities is particularly troubling, as even in countries that designate the heads of government as “commanders” of the armed forces, these otherwise clear national chains of command do not have legally defined, used, and exercised “command authorities.” Such instruments are essential to ensuring that commanders possess sufficient authorities to command effectively their forces. Fourth and finally, what is disturbing is that these problematic national chains of command and underdeveloped command arrangements have yet to evince concern amongst most of these young democracies in the region. There is an obvious lack of self-awareness and understanding that the exercise of national command remains based on legacy concepts that, when used in a context of democratic governance, will result in confusion in crisis, and therefore, national interests will suffer. Moreover, in new NATO allies where the operational level of command is either nonexistent or exists in name only, it is difficult to envisage a positive outcome should NATO forces of operational size arrive in an Article 5 conflict since it is unclear where such forces would “plug in” into national command structures. In either circumstance, it is likely a member’s sovereign continuity could be challenged or thoroughly undermined, notwithstanding the best intensions of allies. The purpose of this essay is to examine the challenges associated with the continued use of legacy concepts of command that is likely to lead to confusion over national decision making in those governments that possess underdeveloped chains of command. Clarity of institutional responsibilities is further compromised in these countries where legacy concepts continue to be used, especially those that overcentralize decision making. What should be of concern to all NATO allies is that those governments which possess these command arrangements could result in failures in command that have implications for all members. Thus, poor performance or failure of national-level command in any country in the alliance could have serious negative consequences for the ability of the collective to respond effectively in case of an Article 5 (collective defense) scenario. Moreover, this condition holds within the context of a Partnership for Peace member, where such failures would obviate against the ability of nations to respond effectively to entreatments for assistance in crisis.What is even perhaps most troubling is the lack of immediacy shared by governments with these conflicting and/or underdeveloped command arrangements, given that its record of success in the region is nonexistent, e.g., Georgia in 2008, and Ukraine from 2014 until today. In this analysis, the current writer takes care to differentiate between those governments that continue the practice of legacy thinking as expressed in highly centralized decision making by the head of state, as opposed to those that have broken free of this atavistic concept. In exposing to a wide audience the continued reliance by most new NATO members on what are, in truth of fact, communist-legacy concepts of command, the essay demonstrates the widespread nature of this problem. Furthermore, in making this case, the essay posits that absent consistent political pressure from “old” NATO members, these problematic command structures and practices will continue to pose a danger both to these nations, as well as to the alliance as a whole. Communist national-level command/centralization National command is defined in the West as constituting discrete, constitutionally derived and legally defined authorities (e.g., [re]assigning missions and/or tasks, establishing training objectives and standards, etc.) which are mutually exclusive, and created with the view to their hierarchical and integrated execution.4 Such differentiation under communism was nonexistent. As defined and practiced in communist countries, command was equated to the exercise of absolute power. In the Soviet Union and its Warsaw Pact satellites, the national command system of armed forces was highly centralized and command resided in general staffs where all decisions, of any consequence, were made. Nothing too mundane and routine could escape decision making at the national level, to include even operational planning.5 In this system, there was symbiosis of “civilian” and the “military” in the form of a politicized officer corps which resulted in general staffs given wide berth in the areas of “military doctrine” (i.e., defense policy), strategy, and force development.6 What is incongruent to the Western observer, however, is the lack of an in-being functional command and control structure. Rather, Soviet military doctrine held that the peacetime structure was more an administrative one, whereas in wartime, already designated and practiced battle-staffs would be established to exercise command and oversee coordination.7 The armed forces of Warsaw Pact countries fell under the direct command of the Soviet General Staff, as exercised through various theater and army-level headquarters, organized throughout Central and Eastern Europe. The exception to this state of affairs being Romania after the introduction of its Total Defense doctrine which, after studying the lessons of the Warsaw Pact’s invasion of Czechoslovakia, created the Defense Council of Socialist Republic of Romania that included all key military and political leadership under the commander in chief. This body was seen as being capable of reacting quickly in the event of imminent attack. Moreover, this command arrangement did not allow national command to be transferred to an outside (i.e., Warsaw Pact) authority.8 Parenthetically, according to new post– Cold War research, the Soviets instituted in 1980 what was called the Statute system, which envisaged that prior to the outbreak of conflict, Soviet commanders would seize control of the armed forces of its satellites due to their perceived political untrustworthiness.9 Not surprisingly, at independence, none of these armed forces had any concept of what constituted national command of their armed forces in the context of democratic governance. As such, key legacy command concepts still can be found in most of these countries. Conversely, communist Yugoslavia was an exception to this practice. Its defense institution practiced a hybrid form of Yugoslav centralization and decentralization, which melded both communist and Western traditions and concepts. As in the case of Romania, following the Warsaw pact’s invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1968, a territorial defense concept was adopted. In each republic, territorial defense commands and subordinated forces were established. Although the League of Communists, via the state presidency, authorized the minister of defense to command the Yugoslav Peoples’ Army (JNA) and, ultimately, territorial defense forces,10 the 1969 General Peoples’ Defense Act defined the JNA and republic-based Territorial Defense Forces as coequals, thereby ending the practice of placing the latter under the command of the former. Yet, on the insistence of JNA leadership, the 1974 Defense Act was passed which clarified the command relationships of territorial defense forces, which had the effect of reinforcing unity by their subordination to the JNA’s chain of command. This act limited the delegation of command to republic officials,11 but only in the extreme case of foreign aggression.12 Uniquely for a communist armed force, elements of “command” were defined, for example, in 1983 following the adoption of the policy of Jedinstvo (unity) to include planning, preparation, realization, execution, and control. “Principles” of command were also defined, yet to a Westerner they appear to be more akin to principles of war (unity, consistency, flexibility, efficiency, and security).13 Finally, as the officer corps were universally members of the League of Communists, the JNA had a unique command dynamic where the traditional military chain-of-command relationship was balanced by a shared political affiliation, and vice versa, by the shared commonality of party militarization. Postcommunist national-level command practices It is not unusual to see that some twenty-five-plus years after the fall of communism, many defense acts that outline command arrangements are still based on communist concepts, with a preference for the establishment of command structures only in crisis and based on mobilization. These laws exhibit a weak conceptual understanding of the Western approach to command that stresses unity of command, one command structure in peace, tension, crisis, and war, and clearly defined command authorities assigned to commanders, as delegated by elected governments to fulfill policy objectives. Examples of command authorities can be found in U.S. and NATO doctrine (e.g., COCOM, OPCOM, OPCON, TACON, etc.)14 Not only are these legacy arrangements problematic in wartime (a cursory review of Ukraine’s inability to exercise command effectively against Russian separatists since 2014 should make this case rather conclusively),15 but they have led to unending domestic political conflicts within those governments where presidents are designated as commanders in chief. Typically, one can characterize these national-level command arrangements as underdeveloped, as they invest undefined “command” in the president, whilst in some countries laws enable him/her to bypass the prime minister and (even) the minister of defense and issue orders directly to the CHOD. In post-Soviet republics it is a prevailing norm that the president is commander in chief of the armed forces, and there is a differentiated command structure in peace and war. As to the former point (the Baltic States excepted), the president either appoints; or must approve, senior officer promotions and appointments, to include in some cases the CHOD. For instance, in Ukraine the Verkhovna Rada (parliament) approves key ministers (i.e., prime minister, minister of defense, and foreign minister) upon the recommendation by the president.16 Yet, the minister of defense has very little visibility over the management of the ministry of defense. Indeed, the Verkhovna Rada’s laws have little real influence over how defense money is actually spent by the ministry of defense. Moreover, the president, with or without the agreement of the minister of defense, appoints senior officers, to include the CHOD.17 As a result, the prime minister and the minister of defense lack the authority to command the armed forces. Government policy is inhibited from being exercised, since the president can manipulate how the budget is distributed and spent. Further strengthening the hand of the president is that the cabinet of ministers and presidential administration are not accountable to parliament, but rather only to the president. As seen in fighting with separatists in Eastern Ukraine, the president gives orders directly to the CHOD, thereby bypassing the prime minister and minister of defense. Effective oversight of the defense institution by the Verkhovna Rada is further impeded by the lack of experts supporting members who sit on its Standing Commission on Security and Defense.18 Given both the powerful status of presidencies in these countries, and correspondingly weak ministers of defense (not to mention prime ministers, Azerbaijan being an example where ministers are accountable only to the president);19 it should not be surprising that exercising effective command of the armed forces, as defined by Western concepts, is incomprehensible. In Moldova, the prime minister is not even a member of the Supreme Commandment, which includes the president, minister of defense, CHOD, and the commanders of the border guards and carabineer troops.20 Until recently, one could include Armenia with these other two countries suffering from an unbalanced political structure that would likely impede the execution of national command. Previously, with the exception of declaring war, the national assembly had no constitutional role in defense, nor did the prime minister, whilst the minister of defense played a dominant role in defense decision making.21 Amendments to the constitution in 2015 have set in motion a transition to change from a presidential to a parliamentary system whereby the president’s powers will be greatly curtailed.22 Equally encouraging, a defense policy document was released in 2011 (a rare event) that argued the need for a unitary national command structure that would be viable in both peace and wartime, as well as in other nondefense national emergencies.23 Georgia also provides a unique case of a country that has made efforts to adopt some Western command concepts, but has yet to establish clear authorities. Since its war with Russia in 2008,24 Georgian officials have examined how to improve the government’s ability to respond to crises and conduct war. In recent years, at the national level, political focus has been directed to review the provisions of the 1995 constitution, which established a strong presidential system with that office having responsibilities in foreign affairs and defense. This included the president designated as the commander in chief and supported in this role by a national security council. Since 2012, a number of changes in legislation have shifted power from the president to the government, to include formulating defense policy without presidential approval.25 Recent legislative initiatives make it clear that there is a growing political consensus in the country to change the constitution to one that is more parliamentary, as opposed to presidential.26 For instance, in 2015, the government established a state-security and crisis-management council which has responsibilities in crisis management and which will operate at the expense of the president’s national security council. Significantly, this council’s members are almost exclusively governmental ministers.27 Although these initiatives bode well for improving Georgia’s ability to respond more effectively to crisis, it is still unknown whether critical reforms to creating national-specific command authorities are envisaged, thereby making it clear which senior political officials possess authorities to direct commanders in crisis and war. In former Soviet space, and aside from Georgia and Armenia, the major exceptions to the aforementioned observations are the Baltic States which, over time, have created greater coherence in the exercise of national command. For instance, after independence in 1991, the drafters of the Estonian constitution opted to reinstate the pre-1940 practice of designating the president as commander in chief who appoints the wartime commander. Left out of this legal calculus was the fact that the elected government had no explicitly stated role in the command of the Estonian Defense Force. To their credit, Estonian politicians and officials came to realize that this was unworkable in crisis and in 2008 revised existing legislation (Defense Forces Organization Act),28 whereby there is now no ambiguity that the armed forces fall under the authority of the minister of defense, ending a period of unbalanced civil-military relations.29 That said, Estonia adheres to a troubling practice of possessing two distinct national command systems, one for crisis management under the ministry of internal affairs and a wartime system under the ministry of defense, thereby hindering unity of command during escalation.30 Similarly, in Latvia, the 1922 constitution was reinstituted following independence, which establishes the president as commander in chief, who appoints a wartime commander when circumstances so dictate; yet perplexingly, said commander in chief ’s authorities remain undefined.31 The 1993 Law on Defense Forces wisely placed the commander of the armed forces under the authority of the supreme council and the minister of defense. Presciently, Latvian officials recognized early on the need for there to be only one command structure in peace, tension, crisis, and war. In order to ensure that there is continuity of parliamentary control of the armed forces, a politically appointed parliamentary secretary was created in 2000. This law also defines the authorities of the commander of the national armed forces and subordinates him to the minister of defense. Subsequent struggles have continued in the political realm to diminish the power of the president in favor of the prime minister in the area of defense.32 Lithuanian practice mimics other legacy concepts but with a twist: whereas the president is designated as commander in chief, and appoints the commander of the armed forces, this decision must be approved by the parliament. The administration of the armed forces is left to the government, but its precise role in directing the commander is not stated. Yet, the 1996 Law on the Basics of National Security subordinates the commander of the armed forces to the minister of national defense in peacetime. The commander is also a full member of the state defense council, which perforce includes him in foreign and domestic policy matters. At least there is no ambiguity in law that the government would conceivably appoint another individual to this post in wartime.33 Yet, although the commander is under the president and the minister of national defense, the role of the prime minister is left undefined. As the president and the minister of national defense are designated with the unique American nomenclature “national command authority,”34 one can detect the ill-informed hand of U.S.-inspired advice, which has been improperly applied because the prime minister (as head of government) has been left out of this national chain of command.35 Post–Warsaw Pact republics have universally struggled to develop effective national command arrangements and authorities that are in keeping with those found in long-standing NATO nations. What is remarkable is not that the other communist legacy typologies largely share the same systematic weakness in this critically important aspect of civil control of the armed forces, but rather that years of NATO membership has yet to exert meaningful influence across these countries, pressing them to reform what are clearly problematic at best command arrangements. As for background, notwithstanding the privileged position in society of the armed forces under the communist party, there was no question that they were firmly under the control of the party’s leadership. A positive result of this legacy tradition is the fact that the armed forces of the Warsaw Pact (the Polish military’s response to the Solidarity movement in 1981 being a notable exception) were conditioned not to interfere in national affairs, a norm not practiced by their respective ministries of internal affairs.36 This is an important distinction to make, given that drafting new democratic constitutions explicitly ensured that the control of the armed forces was placed under the authority of the head of state and in some cases even included provisions that the president confirms promotions and appointments of general officers (to include the CHOD); or, even more disconcerting, the appointment of a wartime commander in the case of war (who may not even be the serving CHOD). In the case of Hungary, this norm went to the extreme case of embracing the unusual solution of placing the ministry of defense under the prime minister; whilst the general staff and armed forces came under the authority of the president to ensure that the control of the armed forces did not fall under the elected government (thereby creating an illusion that they would not be politicized).37 However, Hungary presents a partially functional case in which, at least in terms of its national command, there is a high degree of clarity as to hierarchy of authority. The 1989 Hungarian constitution assigned the control of the armed forces to be shared by both the minister of defense, as well as the president. This arrangement proved unworkable during the “taxi boycott” in October 1990, when the minister of defense ordered the armed forces to break up the strike, but was countermanded by the president acting in his role as commander in chief. In 1991, the constitutional court decided a case brought by the minister of defense which ruled against the president, declaring that he only had the authority to direct the armed forces, whereas the government had the authority to provide leadership, except in times of crisis.38 But, whilst this clarified the authority of the government in peacetime, the constitution lays out criteria for the creation of special legal orders that cite different levels of crisis (state of national crisis, state of emergency, state of preventative defense, state of unexpected attack, and state of danger). The national assembly is vested with the power to declare war, but in the event it is unable to meet, a troika of the speaker of the national assembly, the president of the constitutional court, and the prime minister can determine that the assembly is not able to fulfill this responsibility; in the case of “emergency” (and the national assembly cannot meet/act), the president can decide on employing the armed forces. In crisis situations, it is envisaged that a national defense council will be established and chaired by the president. It is to be comprised of the speaker of the national assembly, the leaders of parliamentary groups, the prime minister, ministers, and the CHOD acting in a consultative capacity.39 In effect, this council takes over the role of the government and in effect uses a legacy concept of creating a forum for collective decision making (collegium), but without the “benefit” of single-political-party cohesion, as was the case in the communist era.40 Whilst it might have the benefit of encouraging consensus making and coordination, precisely how a body with such politically heterogeneous membership could be expected to act quickly in crisis must be assessed as problematic. Also missing in the constitution and law are defined command authorities and how they are to be delegated and to whom. Poland likely reached the apotheosis of confusion in national command in its 1991 defense law by making the president commander in chief, whilst stating that the minister of national defense “commands the armed forces of the Republic of Poland. Whether or not senior officers, for example, were subordinate to the President or the defence minister in a chain-of-command was unclear and open to interpretation.” This patently unworkable arrangement required a change in the constitution to clarify these critically important distinctions.41 Poland presents an example, in fact, of how such clarification in the command of the armed forces is unlikely to constitute a simple, or a single, act of legislation and/or constitutional redrafting. In the 1997 constitution, a compromise was agreed whereby the president remained supreme commander in chief of the armed forces, but in peacetime he would discharge his duties through the minister of national defense. In the case of war, it was envisaged that the highest commander of the armed forces would be nominated by the prime minister. Yet, at the same time, parliamentarians left powerful authorities with the president, e.g., the authority to nominate the CHOD and general officers. The peacetime oversight of the armed forces fell under the authority of the council of ministers, but the critical issue of what precisely was the role of the president in wartime remained undefined.42 As late as 2013, a key policy document lamented the weak state of command at the national level and cited that the minister of national defense possessed ambiguous authorities to control the armed forces, particularly related to accountability, implementation, and decision making. The National Security Bureau recognized that existing national-level command arrangements were insufficient and greater clarification was needed, to include providing the minister of national defense with more specific and expanded command authorities.43 In consequence, the government transformed its Operational Command into a Joint Operations Command (JOC) and invested its commander with command authorities previously exercised by service commands and the general staff.44 However, the result of this reorganization has proven to be suboptimal, as it created conflict between the commander of the JOC and the CHOD (“first soldier”) by not establishing precisely who commands the armed forces in wartime.45 These contradictory policies have recently been addressed whereby the authorities of the CHOD have been reinforced, the JOC is to be closed, and the latter’s authorities are to be transferred to service headquarters. Encouragingly, a process of determining command authorities appropriate at the national level will be addressed through a series of exercises and staff training.46 Another example of the inability of a new NATO member to reject and replace legacy command concepts is provided by Bulgaria. The 2009 revision to the Bulgarian Defense Act (which remains unchanged in this area) continues the practice of reinforcing the role of the president as commander in chief, approving the appointment of general officers,47 as well as reinforcing the odd practice of, in emergency or wartime, possessing the authority to establish a “strategic command” through merging the ministry of defense and general staff.48 Precisely how such an arrangement could ever possibly function is not known, given that it has never been subjected to any rigorous assessments, simulations, or exercises to validate either the structure or its operating procedures. Actually declaring martial law, or an emergency situation, could prove to be problematic. Although this authority resides with parliament, acting on a proposal of the president, or the council of ministers, the possibility that the president and council of ministers might disagree over whether the actual situation would require the declaration of martial law, or an emergency situation, is not addressed in law.49 The drafters of the 2009 Defense Act and subsequent governments have yet to address a singular legal deficiency that creates (or perhaps simply perpetuates) a Byzantine legal labyrinth that holds that the office of the CHOD suffers from the dual subordination to the defense minister, as well as to the president, when the latter is exercising his/her authority as supreme commander.50 Topaloff sums up the weakness in the legislation well: The  Act, however, did little to resolve the existing conflict between the President and the Government with regard to who has the authority to declare martial law and a state of emergency, or how differences would be settled in case of conflict between them.51 Finally, as is all too often the case in other countries in the region, key issues of command authorities remain to be defined.
Romania has long shared a number of problematic practices and assumptions that would likely impede the exercise of national-level command in crisis and war. Like other countries in the region, the president is designated as commander in chief, but lacks the power to dismiss the prime minister and at least in terms of defense, parliament is responsible for defense policy (i.e., it approves the national defense strategy). Yet the president chairs the supreme council of national defense, which offers that office considerable influence in defense, e.g., declaration of the state of emergency and mobilization. And like the Bulgarian case, in war, until recently it envisaged the establishment of a “grand headquarters” to command the armed forces.53 This was clearly an unsatisfactory arrangement and efforts were made to create adequate standing commands at the operational level. There existed the 2nd joint operational-level command in Buzau, but it suffered from insufficient personnel and authorities. In 2014, its responsibilities ˘ were moved to Bucharest to a new JOC (Comandamentul Fortelor Intrunite [CFI]), which reached full operational capability in 2017. In peacetime, the CFI plans, coordinates, and controls operations of the armed forces in the country and in external theaters of operations. In crisis, declaration of siege status, declaration of mobilization, or state of war, the CFI will plan and command operations.54 What this development indicates is that the armed forces are likely still in the embryonic stages of understanding the operational level of war in its full joint nature. Second, the CFI’s collocation in the general staff suggests that the latter could assume responsibility for “commanding” the armed forces in crisis and war, thereby blurring its strategic and operational responsibilities (e.g., conducting normal peacetime business, advising the president and government on national-level security and defense issues). The proposal, therefore, to move the CFI to a location outside of Bucharest (distancing itself from the Centrul Na¸tional Militar de Comanda [NUCLEU])) ˘ is sound and should be executed as soon as possible. In Slovakia, the president is designated as the commander in chief of the armed forces, but enjoys no peacetime functions or authorities, although that office does approve the appointment of the CHOD on the recommendation by the minister of defense. However, in wartime, the president chairs the state defense council and the CHOD reports directly to him. Bodies such as the state defense council are common in the region and function as a focal point for decision making related to issues of national defense.55 What is troubling is that whilst these bodies are likely effective in coordinating peacetime business, their functionality in crisis and war is less convincing, especially as they do not control the defense budget. As one can see that in other countries in the region, there remains a strong political and social proclivity to use such bodies to “collectivize” decision making, i.e., in the form of creating formal, or even informal, collegia. Moreover, it is even more problematic that such a body could possibly be effective in coordinating policy in crisis, let alone war, if the heads of state and government were from different political parties (i.e., cohabitation). In sum, twenty-five years after independence, national-level command in former Warsaw Pact countries are only slowly retiring legacy command concepts, assumptions, and logic. What is disturbing is that there appears to be little concern that these critical governance concepts are not fit for purpose. For instance, Zipfel, writing in 2001, asserts that the Czech command system of the president as commander in chief is functional because all the president’s decisions must be countersigned by the prime minister and minister of defense.56 But, this is unlikely to be validated until there is an actual national-level crisis and this countersigning system is put to the stress of political decision making, and when time is normally not in great abundance. Moreover, how can legacy command concepts be countenanced as supportive of democratic norms and principles when, as in the case of Bulgaria, two former chiefs of defense (General Miho Mihov and General Nikola Kolev), who clashed publicly with ministers of defense during their respective terms in office, were later appointed as defense advisers to the president’s cabinet and, in the case of the latter, as chief of cabinet?57 Former Yugoslav republics, like other young postcommunist democracies, mostly adopted the principle of assigning command of the armed forces not to the head of government, but rather to the head of state. Conversely, Slovenia very early on wisely defined the president as commander in chief, but did not invest that office with any legal responsibilities over the armed forces.58 Presciently, as the prime minister has no explicit powers of national defense, by default the minister of defense is the key decision maker, at least in peacetime, thereby critically aligning responsibility with authority.59 That said, there is evidence of overcentralization of control within the ministry of defense and there is no indication of clearly defined command authorities.60 Croatia provides a representative and highly documented example of other post–Yugoslav republics struggling with adopting democratic command concepts. Following the end of the Tudjman era and the election of Social Democratic Party, an effort was made to reduce the powers of the president in defense matters, and particularly as related to that office’s influence over personnel decision making.61 Croatia had the unique practice in which the General Staff reported to the president, thereby removing the minister, the ministry of defense, and indeed the parliament from providing direct oversight of the armed forces.62 Croatia’s 1991 Law on Defense made an effort to clarify this imbalance by stipulating that the president exercises command authority through the minister of defense.63 Precisely how well this process works is questionable, particularly if there is cohabitation, let alone in a period of crisis with potentially rapid escalation. Indeed, Vesel rightfully argues that, notwithstanding even the constitutional reforms of 2000 which addressed this situation, the president retained too many authorities over operational issues that should be within the purview of the minister of defense.64 It is only speculation, but one might conclude that some of the contentious operational authorities retained by the president could well include that the president, as supreme commander, has opaque command authorities over the CHOD in wartime.65 Any such arrangement violates the long-standing Western principle that there must be consistency and continuity in the chain of command throughout all the stages of escalation. Thus, Edmunds’s assessment is far from optimistic: “While this division of responsibilities is not inherently unworkable or undemocratic, it is unwieldy and unclear as to where exact institutional responsibilities lie.”66 As he argues in another of his works, it simply makes no practical sense to designate the president as commander in chief, but then deny him or her any authority over how the armed forces are financed or developed.67 Many aspects of Croatia’s imperfect command arrangement are replicated amongst other former Yugoslav republics, e.g., in the respective constitutions and laws on defense in Macedonia, Serbia, and Montenegro. In the case of Macedonia, in the original wording of the Law of Defense, the minister of defense was acknowledged as part of the national command structure; however, a 2002 ruling by the constitutional court clarified matters in the spirit of ensuring unity of command, thereby limiting the chain of command from the president (supreme commander) to the CHOD. A further complication is that the CHOD is accountable both to the president and the minister of defense,68 as well as charged with approving documents used by the army.69 It could be expected that this arrange could lead to complications when the president and the government are led by two different parties: cohabitation.70 In Serbia, in response to the overall centralization of authority under the Milosevic regime, the president is the constitutional head of the armed forces, but does not possess any authority over operational issues. The authority to issue orders rests with the CHOD, but only after being authorized by the president. What relationship the CHOD has with the minister of defense in such circumstances is not stated.71 Moreover, within the context of command authorities at the political level, the precise definition of authorities amongst the president, prime minister, and minister of defense apparently remain sufficiently unclear as to enable a degree of subjective control of the armed forces which, it has been argued, undermines professional autonomy.72 Due to its tragic history and torturous creation as a reconstituted republic, Bosnia and Herzegovina possesses a national command structure that was designed largely by the international community to ensure decision making by consensus of the two entities. Article 12 of the defense law outlines the operational and administrative chains of command assigning command and control of the armed forces to the presidency.73 More specifically, “by the Constitution of BiH, all members of the BiH presidency, by virtue of their official duty, perform the function of the civilian commander.” Yet, The Defence Law of BiH sets out that the Standing Committee on Military Matters is an advisory body of the Presidency of BiH, and is not within the chain of command. This committee considers and gives advice to the Presidency of BiH on the Security and Defence Policies of BiH.74 But, like other legacy defense institutions, the constitution and laws that address command are imprecise and can only lead to confusion in time of crisis. For instance, the Defence White Paper of Bosnia and Herzegovina identifies that operational command and control can be two distinct command authorities, as opposed to one, but as these terms are not defined at all, it is not known precisely which authorities are contained in either term.75 Conclusion It would be a brave observer who claims that most countries in Central and Eastern Europe have been able to rid themselves of legacy command concepts. Instead, they have been “grafted” to the new democratic paradigm, resulting in unclear chains of command, while allowing continued overcentralized of decision making. The poor performance of the Georgian and Ukrainian defense institutions in commanding forces effectively in their respective wars with Russia provide representative examples of how poorly these legacy command concepts function in democracies. A combination of ad hoc command structures and as unclear, dual chains of command, complicated by the lack of clearly defined command authorities based on constitution and law; suggests, if not guarantees, that in crisis, let alone war, officials will struggle to exercise effective command over their defense and paramilitary forces. It must be assessed as problematic whether any of these governments could exercise effective command and control of their armed forces in a full-blown invasion, let alone against a sophisticated enemy that exploits legal, procedural, and organizational “seams” that are riddled throughout these governance structures. Added to this pessimistic analysis is the fact that, given the continued practice of requiring high-level approval for even mundane tasks and activities, these structures and procedures will be highly burdened by massive increases in communications from essentially all elements of defense and paramilitary forces requesting approval and guidance. Whilst not wishing to be deterministic, absent reform, one can expect to see a replication elsewhere in the region of the paralyzed state of the Ukrainian government when it failed to react quickly, let alone effectively, to Russia’s invasion of Crimea in February 2014. In practical terms, the continued inability of these governments to come to terms with defining clear chains of command and assigning command authorities to senior elected officials should be a reason for concern within these governments, as well as for their NATO allies. The current state of nonexisting or ambiguous authorities, unclearly assigned amongst senior political officials, all but guarantees institutional disorder and discord in national defense, as the responsibilities and functions of the heads of government, and very often ministers of defense, are still not explicitly established either in the constitution or enabling laws in most of these countries. This situation has potentially negative consequences for not only members of the alliance who have inherited these legacy practices, but for the alliance itself as well. As to the former, not only do these legacy command concepts compromise the ability of governments to respond quickly and effectively in periods of escalation and war, but by avoiding fully adopting Western command concepts (and retiring their legacy counterparts), they leave their countries at risk of not being able to respond in a timely fashion to threats to their interests, and indeed their own national security. Moreover, within the context of their membership in NATO, the continued use of legacy command concepts leaves them exposed to allowing their sovereignty to be compromised in the case of collective defense. An inability on their part to “plug” effectively and quickly into the integrated command structure could well result in front-line members’ governments being overwhelmed with possibly uncoordinated allied support, as well as challenging continuity in their national sovereignty. In the end, the key challenge to reforming these command structures and introducing command authorities is political. Albeit written in the context of semi-presidentialism as found in the Caucasus region, Elgie and Moestrup’s advice that the governance of these countries would be improved by adopting constitutions with a relatively weak presidency76 surely is applicable to all countries in the region still struggling to adopt fully Western command concepts. It is precisely because this challenge is inherently political that these problematic national-level command arrangements remain mostly unreformed. Yet, the political nature of this important weakness in the effective governance of these postcommunist countries should not dissuade old NATO nations from exerting open, constructive, and persistent pressure on officials to take the reform of their national command structures both seriously and with a sense of urgency. The inability to respond quickly and effectively within a proper legal context appropriate to the nature of a crisis (i.e., either as a law enforcement response, or response to an act of war) arguably invites unwanted attention and mischief.
Notes 1. Thomas-Durell Young, “Legacy Concepts: A Sociology of Command in Central and Eastern Europe,” Parameters 47, no. 1, (Summer 2017): 31–42. 2. Whilst not all countries in the region do not have semi-presidential structures, many do, notwithstanding differing interpretations of this concept. For interesting background concerning the inherent challenges presented by this form of governance, see Thomas Sedelius and Olga Mashtaler, “Two Decades of Semi-Presidentialism: Issues of Intra-Executive Conflict in Central and Eastern Europe, 1991–2011,” East European Politics 29, no. 2 (2013): 109–134. 3. For excellent background, see Atlantic Council of Georgia, Georgia’s Security Sector Review Project, Final Report, T’bilisi, 2014. Note that this report is dated, as further reforms are being considered that would further shift power from the president to the prime minister. Davit Zedelashvili, “2017 Constitutional Reform in Georgia: Another Misguided Quest or Genuine Opportunity?’ Constitutionnet, T’bilisi, January 31, 2017, http://www. constitutionnet.org/news/2017-constitutional-reform-georgia-another-misguided-quest-or-genuine-opportunity. 4. For an excellent treatment of the Western concept of command, see Richard E. Simpkin, Race to the Swift: Thoughts on Twenty-First Century Warfare (London: Brassey’s, 1985), 227–240. 5. See John Erickson, “The Soviet Military System: Doctrine, Technology and ‘Style,”’ in Soviet Military Power and Performance, edited by John Erickson and E. J. Feuchtwanger (Hamden, CT: Archon Book, 1979), 37. 6. Timothy Edmunds, Andrew Cottey, and Anthony Forster, eds., “Introduction,” in Civil-Military Relations in PostCommunist Europe: Reviewing the Transition (London: Rutledge, 2006), 3. 7. Erickson, “The Soviet Military System,” 37. 8. Alex Alexiev, “The Romanian Army,” in Communist Armies in Politics, edited by. Jonathan R. Adelman (Boulder, CO: Westview Press, 1982), 156–157. 9. Warsaw Pact Wartime Statutes: Instruments of Soviet Control (Washington, D.. Central Intelligence Agency, Center for the Study of Intelligence and Historical Collections Division, 2011). 10. James Gow, Legitimacy and the Military: The Yugoslav Crisis (New York: St. Martin’s Press, 1992), 64–72. 11. See Adam Roberts, Nations in Arms: The Theory and Practice of Territorial Defense (New York: Praeger, 1976), 155 and 179, for an explanation of the provisions of the 1974 Constitution as regards national command structures and authorities, which interestingly did not specify or define either’s subordination to the other, by clearly placing them both under the commander in chief. 12. Robert W. Dean, “The Yugoslav Army,” in Communist Armies in Politics, 88. 13. Centar za Strategijska Istraživanja GŠ JNA, Savezni Sekretiajat za Narodnu Odbranu, Strategija Oružane Borbe (Beograd: Vojna Štramparija, 1983), 138–153. I am indebted to Svetožar Brakovic for sharing his JNA manuals and ´ discussing them at length with me. 14. For definitions and critique of command authorities, see my essay, “The Revolution in Military Affairs and Coalition Operations: Problem Areas and Solutions,” Security and Defense Analysis 19, no. 2 (June 2003): 111–130. 15. Deborah Sanders, “‘ The War We Want, the War that We Get’: Ukraine’s Military Reform and the Conflict in the East,” Journal of Slavic Military Studies 30, no. 1 (2017): 38–40. 16. Constitution of Ukraine, adopted at the Fifth Session of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine on June 28, 1996, last amended, No. 1401-VIII, dated June 2, 2016, Article 85/12. 17. David J. Betz, Civil-Military Relations in Russia and Eastern Europe (New York: Routledge Curzon, 2004), 99. 18. James Sherr, “Ukraine: Reform in the Context of Flawed Democracy and Geopolitical Anxiety,” in Civil-Military Relations in Post-Communist Europe, 159–160. 19. Tamara Pataraia and Tata Makhatadze, “Defence Institution Building in Azerbaijan,” in Defense Institution Building: Country Profiles and Needs Assessments for Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, and Moldova; Background Materials, edited 20 T.-D. YOUNG by Philipp H. Fluri and Viorel Cibotaru (Geneva: Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces, 2008), 33. 20. Viorel Cibotaru, “Defence Reform in Moldova,” in Defense Institution Building: Country Profiles and Needs Assessments for Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, and Moldova, 86. 21. Aghasi Yenokyan, “Country Study: Armenia,” in Defense Institution Building: Country Profiles and Needs Assessments for Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, and Moldova, 10, 17. 22. Malkhaz Nakashidze, “Government Formation and Cabinet Types in New Democracies: Armenia and Georgia in Comparative European Perspective,” International Comparative Jurisprudence 2 (2016): 27. 23. Armenia, Strategic Defense Review, 2011–2015, Public Release (Yerevan: Ministry of Defense, 2011), 12. 24. See Ronald D. Asmus, A Little War that Shook the World: Georgia, Russia, and the Future of the West (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2010). 25. Atlantic Council of Georgia, Georgia’s Security Sector Review Project, 17–23. 26. Zedelashvili, “2017 Constitutional Reform in Georgia.” 27. Law of Georgia, “On National Security Policy Planning and Coordination,” T’bilisi, March 4, 2015, Articles 20–26, https://matsne.gov.ge/en/document/view/2764463. 28. Sintija Oškalne, “Supreme Command and Control of the Armed Forces: The Roles of Presidents, Parliaments, Governments, Ministries of Defence and Chiefs of Defence,” in Apprenticeship, Partnership, Membership: Twenty Years of Defence Development in the Baltic States, edited by Tony Lawrence and Tomas Jermalavicius (Tallinn: International ˇ Centre for Defence Studies, 2013), 124–135. 29. Leonid A. Karabeshkin, “The Ongoing Transformation of the Estonian Defence Forces,” in Democratic Civil-Military Relations: Soldiering in 21st Century Europe, edited by Sabine Mannitz (London: Routledge, 2012), 130–3. 30. Martin Hurt, ‘Lessons Identified in Crimea: Does Estonia’s National Defence Model Meet our Needs?’ Policy Paper, Tallinn: International Centre for Defence Studies, April 2014, 6. 31. Constitution of the Republic of Latvia, Articles 42, 43, and 44. 32. Oškalne, “Supreme Command and Control of the Armed Forces,” 136–151. 33. Vaidotas Urbelis, “‘Lithuania’s Strategic Culture,” Lithuanian Annual Strategic Review 2006 (Vilnius: Strategic Research Center, 2007), 201. 34. U.S. Code Title 10, § 162, Combatant Commands: Assigned Forces; Chain of Command. 35. Ibid., 160. 36. Reka Szemerkenyi, “Central European Civil-Military Reforms at Risk,” Adelphi Paper No. 306 (London: The International Institute for Strategic Studies, 1996), 8. 37. Paul Dunay, “Civil-Military Relations in Hungary: No Big Deal,” in Democratic Control of the Military in Postcommunist Europe: Guarding the Guards, edited by Andrew Cottey, Timothy Edmunds, and Anthony Forster (London: Palgrave, 2002), 70. 38. Betz, Civil-Military Relations in Russia and Eastern Europe, 77–8. 39. Hungary, The Fundamental Law of Hungary (April 25, 2011), Articles 47–54, http://www.kormany. hu/download/e/02/00000/The%20New%20Fundamental%20Law%20of%20Hungary.pdf. 40. I address this little-understood subject in my essay “Sociology of Command in Central and Eastern Europe.” 41. See Paul Latawski, ”Democratic Control of Armed Forces in Postcommunist Poland: The Interplay of History, Political Society, and Institutional Reform,” in Democratic Control of the Military in Postcommunist Europe, 30–6, for detailed discussion of how changes to the constitution to clarify these passages were debated. 42. Agnieszka Gogolewska, “Problems Confronting Civilian Democratic Control in Poland,” in Civil-Military Relations in Europe: Learning from Crisis and Institutional Change, edited by Hans Born, Marina Caparini, Karl W. Haltiner, and Jürgen Kuhlmann (New York: Routledge, 2006), 99–100. 43. Poland, White Book on National Security of the Republic of Poland (Warsaw: National Security Bureau, 2013), 47–8, 204, 245. 44. Andrew A. Michta, “Polish Hard Power: Investing in the Military as Europe Cuts Back,” in A Hard Look at Hard Power: Assessing the Defense Capabilities of Key U.S. Allies and Security Partners, edited by Gary J. Schmitt (Carlisle Barracks, PA: U.S. Army War College Press, July 2015), 154. 45. For a description of Poland’s dualistic governance structure, see Marcin Terlikowski, “‘Poland,” in Strategic Cultures in Europe: Security and Defence Policies across the Continent, Schriftenreihe des Zentrums für Militärgeschichte und Sozialwissenschaften der Bundeswehr 13, edited by Heiko Biehl, Bastian Giegerich, and Alexandra Jonas (Wiesbaden: Springer VS, 2013), 276–7. 46. Poland, The Concept of Defence of the Republic of Poland (Warsaw: Ministry of National Defence, May 2017), 52–3. 47. Mary Borissova, “Politicians, Experts and Democracy. Civil–Military Relations in Central and Eastern Europe: The Case of Bulgaria,” European Security 15, no. 2 (2006): 196–7. See Zoltan Barany, The Future of NATO Expansion: Four Case Studies (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2002), 196–7. 48. Republic of Bulgaria, Defence and Armed Forces Act, Promulgated SG No. 5/12.05.2009, effective 12.05.2009, Articles 20.3 and 114. 49. Ibid., specifically, see Articles 16.2, 20, 109, and 122. 50. Ibid., Article 83.3 and 83.4. 51. Liubomir K. Topaloff, “Bulgaria,” in Strategic Cultures in Europe, 50. COMPARATIVE STRATEGY 21 52. Defence and Armed Forces Act, Article 55. 53. See Marian Zulean, ‘The Normative Aspects of Building Democratic CMR in Post-Communist Romania: Romanian Case’, PRIF – Research Paper No. I/13–2007 (Frankfurt: Peace Research Institute Frankfurt, 2007), 6–7, 9. 54. Radu Dobri¸toiu, ‘General-maior Lucian Foca comandant al Comandamentului For¸telor Întrunite’, Radio România Actualitâ¸ti, 12 May 2017. http://www.romania-actualitati.ro/general_maior_lucian_foca_comandant_al_ comandamentului_fortelor_intrunite-102568 55. Barany, The Future of NATO Expansion, 70–1, 73. 56. Tomas Zipfel, “The Politics and Finance of Civil-Military Reform in the Czech Republic,” in Army and State in Postcommunist Europe, edited by David Betz and John Löwenhardt (London: Frank Cass, 2001), 102. 57. Borissova, ‘Politicians, Experts and Democracy’, 197, 202–4. 58. See Barany, The Future of NATO Expansion, 110. 59. Anton Alex Bebler, ‘Civil-Military Relations in Slovenia’, in Civil-Military Relations in the Soviet and Yugoslav Successor States, eds. Constantine P. Danopoulos and Daniel Zirker (Boulder, CO, Westview Press, 1996), 201. 60. Branimir Furlan, ‘Civilian Control and Military Effectiveness: Slovenia’, Armed Forces and Society 39, no. 3 (2012): 434–449. 61. Timothy Edmunds, Security Sector Reform in Transforming Societies: Croatia, Serbia, and Montenegro (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2007), 55–6. 62. Alex J. Bellamy and Timothy Edmunds, ”Civil-Military Relations in Croatia: Politicisation and Politics of Reform,” in Civil-Military Relations in Post-Communist Europe, 77. 63. Timothy Edmunds, “Defence Reform in Croatia and Serbia-Montenegro,” Adelphi Paper No. 360 (London: The International Institute for Strategic Studies, 2003), 17. 64. Scott Vesel, ‘Croatia: Analysis of the Stability Pact Self-Assessment Studies’, in Defence and Security Sector Governance and Reform in South East Europe, eds. Eden Cole, Timothy Donais, and Philipp H. Fluri (Baden-Baden: Nomos, 2004), 56–7. 65. ‘The main problem of the executive is opaque jurisdiction between the Office of the President and the Government, i.e., the Prime Minister’. Mladen Stanici ˇ c, ‘The Evolution of Civil-Military Relations in South East Europe: The Case ´ of Croatia’, in The Evolution of Civil-Military Relations in South East Europe: Continuing Democratic Reform and Adapting to the Needs of Fighting Terrorism, eds. by Philipp H. Fluri, et al. (Heidelberg: Physica-Verlag, 2005), 119. See also Republic of Croatia, ‘Annual Exchange on Defense Planning 2007’, according to Vienna Document of 1999; § 15.2.1, 14. 66. Edmunds, “Defence Reform in Croatia and Serbia-Montenegro,” 16. 67. Edmunds, Security Sector Reform in Transforming Societies, 59. 68. Andreja Bogdanovski, ‘Macedonia’, in Almanac on Security Sector Oversight in the Western Balkans: 2012, eds. Franziska Klopfer and Douglas Cantwell with Miroslav Hadžic and Sonja Stojanovi ´ c (Belgrade/Geneva: Belgrade ´ Center for Security Policy and Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces, 2012), 133; 135–6. 69. For a rather comprehensive list of ‘documents’ which must be approved by the President see, Macedonia, White Paper on Defence (Skopje: Ministry of Defense, December 2012), 24–5. 70. Bellamy and Edmunds, “Civil-Military Relations in Croatia,” 77. 71. Serbia, Law on the Serbian Armed Forces, 116/2007, 30 October 2007, cf., Articles 17, 18, and 19. 72. Filip Ejdus, “State Building and Image of the Democratic Soldier in Serbia,” in Democratic Civil-Military Relations, 227–8. 73. See H. Vetschera and M. Damian, “Security Sector Reform in Bosnia and Herzegovina: The Role of the International Community,” International Peacekeeping 13, no. 1 (2006): 34. 74. Defence White Paper of Bosnia and Herzegovina (Sarajevo, Ministry of Defense, June 2005), 5, 8. 75. Ibid., 28. 76. Robert Elgie and Sophia Moestrup, eds., Semi-Presidentialism in the Caucasus and Central Asia (London: Palgrave, 2016), 207–226.
The views expressed in this article are those solely of the author and do not reflect the policy or views of the Naval Postgraduate School, Department of the Navy, or the Department of Defense.