Democratic control of the armed forces: Lessons from East Asia
How and why do countries democratize? Why does the military intervene in politics? The development of a country from an authoritarian regime to a system of democratic governance is a process which has fascinated scholars and politicians alike. In the following article, Fidel V.Ramos, former president of the Philippines (1992–1998) and president of the Ramos Peace and Development Foundation, Inc., provides his own perspective on the role of the military in shaping and protecting a society, delving into his own experiences as a former army general and defense secretary. He also examines the rationale behind, and current status of, East Asian countries in the process of transformation from a military regime to a democratically governed society.