Meryl Adelman MERYL ADELMAN

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Revista de Sociologia e Política

Print version ISSN 0104-4478

Abstract

ZAVERUCHA, Jorge. The fragility of the Brazilian Defense Ministry.Translated byMeryl Adelman. Rev. Sociol. Polit. [online]. 2006, vol.2Selected edition, pp. 0-0. ISSN 0104-4478.

The present article presents different phases that the Brazilian Defense Ministry has passed through, since its inception during Fernando Henrique Cardoso's second presidential term (1999-2002) until the current administration of Luís Inácio Lula da Silva (2003-2006), under its respective ministers of Defense. It has been seen as one of the important stages in the re-constitutionalization of the country, insofar as it establishes the submission of Armed Forces commanders to a civilian minister, and although some analysts have considered that such submission is actually achieved, we point here to the military resistance and insubordination to civil power that are the result of an authoritarian legacy. To the extent that the Ministry of Defense is unable to implement its own policies in which the military would be required to follow civilian guidance, this article concludes with considerations on the civil Defense Ministry's political and institutional fragility vis-a-vis military command. The latter has been able to retain high levels of decision making autonomy in its relationship to the Ministry and its structure.

Keywords : Defense Ministry; Armed Forces; democracy; authoritarian legacy; decision-making autonomy.

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