Emirati Parents’ Attitudes toward the Military and National Service in the United Arab Emirates
Keywords:Emirati parents, military career, military work environment, UAE national service
Compulsory national service for male citizens presents the United Arab Emirates (UAE) Armed Forces with an opportunity to recruit future military officers. Research showed that parental attitudes towards the military, manifested through their communication with youths, are likely to influence youths’ decision on a military career. Hence this study examined the attitudes of Emirati parents on the UAE military and national service; particularly parental perceptions of the military work environment; support of a military career for their children; and concerns about national service. Surveys, individual and focus group interviews were conducted with 59 Emirati parents. It found that most participants held the positive view that the military work environment helps attainment of professional goals but were uncertain about personal goals and workplace conditions. Also, more participants were supportive of a military career for sons than daughters. It also identified the basis for parental confidence about enlistment as patriotism and development of positive character traits but main concerns were the exposure to harsh training conditions and threat to life during enlistment. Recommendations were provided for better engagement by the UAE military with Emirati parents and the community.
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Copyright (c) 2022 Hwee Ling Lim, Abdelaziz Khalid Almaeeni, Abdalla Khalid Almaeeni, Ahmed Alzaabi
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