16 ibid p 137 138 17 ibid p138 18 ibid 8 city and key

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16 Ibid., p. 137-138. 17 Ibid., p.138. 18 Ibid. 8
city and key government centres around the country from insurgents and rebels. This is not the situation in Algeria, where military expenditures accounted for 3.3% of GDP in 2010 19 , a figure which has since risen to a massive 6.55% by 2015, making Algeria, in terms of its percentage of GDP, the 5 th highest worldwide in military spending. 20 It has signed numerous arms agreements with nations the world over, especially the former USSR and now the Russian Federation, and also maintains a domestic arms industry intent on keeping the Algerian military well-equipped. Furthermore, the army also controls the nation’s police force, which is a huge coercive measure against potential protesters, who know that they will be shown no quarter. During the 1990s, and even today, the military has had to expend considerable effort in quelling various Islamist insurgencies, and thus necessitating continuous resupply in arms, equipment and the like. Perhaps more importantly, the military sided with the government during the Arab Spring, which further deterred any attempt at a serious popular uprising. Now we turn to Libya, where the situation could not be more different. As mentioned before, many neo-patrimonial regimes in the developing world deliberately weaken their armed forces to remain immune from potential coups, while keeping them strong enough to counter any insurgent threat against the capital and other key centres of control. Colonel Qadhafi, himself an ex-army officer who was part of the cabal that overthrew King Idris, was only too aware of the threat the army posed, and thus took measures to ensure that it could never challenge his rule. Libya nonetheless spent considerably on its armed forces, and the quality of arms available to it was never in doubt. What Qadhafi instead did was destroy the cohesion and professionality of the armed forces, because it was the only real societal force that could extend beyond tribal loyalties. 21 The traditional bonds that usually develop between soldiers were never fostered by 19 Ibid., p. 137. 20 CIA Factbook, “Algeria” 21 Gaub, “The Libyan Armed Forces between Coup-proofing and Repression,": p.226; 230 9
the military leadership, which was itself routinely shuffled up in order to prevent any unity from arising. All promotions and appointments to high grades were subject to Qadhafi’s approval and was based on tribal affiliation and not ability or merit, severely affecting the professionalism of the military leadership. 22 These decisions would eventually come to haunt Qadhafi when the first stirrings of revolution began in 2011. Still psychologically reeling from the nine fruitless years of intervention in Chad, many soldiers of the fragile Libyan army deserted at the outset of rebellion, but mostly electing not to join the rebel forces. Rather, the decision to join the rebel forces was more affected by tribal affiliation and geographic location, with soldiers stationed in Cyrenaica or originating from there more likely to join in the fight against the Qadhafi regime.

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