Free «The Military Coups of Fiji» Essay

The Military Coups of Fiji

This paper is a review of the article The Military Coups of Fiji: Reactive and Transformative Tendencies by Steven Ratuva. According to Ratuva, Fiji is a multicultural country that has witnessed several military coups since 1987. There are particular reasons given for the continued coups in Fiji. These include the need for protecting the country from domination by all Fijian political leaders. He notes that, the country with a population of 850, 000 people has a moderate number of military, ranging between 3000 and 5000. Most of these military personnel are from the indigenous Fijians (58%). The rest are Indo-Fijians (37%). Today, the coups obtain its mandates from the assumption of powers and the various legislations. In addition, Ratuva notes that Fiji’s involvement in international peace keeping right from the First World War has positioned its military to participate in the internal governance of the country’s welfare.

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Military coups in Fiji compare with many Third World countries where the military assume the role of custodian of good governance political and watchdog. For example, Pakistan under Musharraf experienced military coups as  means to transformation and getting rid of Islamic extremists. The trend in military coups in Fiji has also been witnessed in most Third World countries. In Thailand, the military are actively involved in politics as custodians of good governance, where the government can be removed from power if it does not perform to the interests of the public.

The duality coups contributed to national transformation through institutionalization of policies that the military assumed to be in the best interest of the country. Ratuva notes that these interests included “Fijilization” of the social economy of the country, re-democratization of the country, formation of a constitution that recognizes coups, and continuation of socio-economic transformation through affirmative action. The 1987 reactive coups aimed at inhibiting the political take over by the Indo-Fijian leaders.

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