This article poses the question of reform of the security sector in the period of Arab democratic transition by looking at the terms of reference for reform, the intersection between security policies and the political regime, and the enabling factors for security reform within an Arab context. The fundamental question facing Arab states concerns how to couple security and freedom and security and rights and justice. That is, how can the security agencies carry out their job without impinging on fundamental individual rights and freedoms? How can the state guarantee security and defend liberties at the same time? The article takes the view that security sector reform is part of the political transition process in Arab countries. Because the security establishment was a means to strengthen the regime and endorse its authoritarianism, any democratic transition aspiring to overcome the elements of the crisis must take into account the need to review the security sector.