Not long ago the top brass at the Ministry of Defence were claiming that there would be no staff changes until the White Book – which is due to be finished at the beginning of next year – was produced. But an internal revision due to bonuses paid for increased workloads, the theft of weapons in Germany, a fight among soldiers and a new affair about boots, all of this obviously broke the Minister’s patience, who demanded Geder’s replacement. His replacement was endorsed by Slovenian President and Supreme Commander of the Slovenian Armed Forces Borut Pahor, who had already expressed concerns over the previous two changes of Chief of Staff and had objected to them. Today Pahor says that those concerns had been shown to be well-founded, given that these frequent changes at the top of the Slovenian Armed Forces had not borne the desired fruits. In his previous term, two army heads had changed in four years and less than a year has passed since the last replacement.
In his statement to the public, Pahor wrote that it should be different this time, because there are two reasons for his endorsement. The first reason is that Major General Alenka Ermenc meets the high professional criteria, she has rich leadership experience and shows determination in carrying out tasks. These are all reasons why Pahor promoted Ermenc last week. The second reason is that he expects that finally the time has come to join all political, military and social forces and to raise the readiness of the Slovenian Armed Forces by at least one notch in the following year. The appointment of Ermenc is also a clear message to the army, saying that new times have come, in which the army will have to work for a common goal and that divisions, created by politics, will be overcome. Perhaps a woman’s leadership style will help to shift the entire defence system from its current low morale.