Saudi Arabia continued its streak of abrupt reforms on 26 February when several top military figures, including Chief of Staff ‘Abd al-Rahman bin Salih al-Bunyan, were sacked following a series of royal decrees. Although King Salman signed off on the changes, Crown Prince and Defense Minister Muhammad bin Salman was the man behind the orders.

Since being appointed defense minister in 2015, Muhammad bin Salman has prompted the kingdom to adopt a more proactive role in the region,...