originally posted by: rockpaperhammock
and to top it off the majority of their soldiers are conscripts...
Germany has wound down conscription since 1999 and in fact indefinetly suspended all conscription in 2011. The Bundeswehr is an all-volunteer
originally posted by: NoRulesAllowed
The Bundeswehr, for the LONGEST...basically since the end of WW2 and all throughout the cold war and even today is really merely a "prestige thing".
At least for me.
You have to realize the unique location of Germany in the midst of Europe bordered by many countries and of course by the (former) Eastern block.
We Germans KNEW for decades that *every* conflict between East and West would result in a total destruction of Germany. he first thing which would've
happened would be the invasion and likely nuking of Germany. Knowing this, I always regarded the Bundeswehr as sort of a joke and merely a status
thing and not something which would be of value should there be a real conflict.
Sorry, but that is patent nonsense.
The Bundeswehr was THE strongest continental force in Europe into the mid-90s. The amount of frontline hardware numbered in the tens of thousands. 900
starfighters, over 2000 Leopard 2 alone. Through conscription and a thorough reservist system, it had a huge capable manpower to draw on in war. Add
to that the Border Police, which was a paramilitary force for many years.
Also, large-scale nukeing was rather improbable in case of invasion. Not much point in invading a nuclear wasteland. Tactical nukes are a different
matter. That being said, Germany itself held american nukes and maintained the delivery systems (even including ballistic missiles).
Yes, the eventual destruction was accepted as a likely event (I was born and raised in the Fulda gap). But the Bundeswehr was perfectly capable as a
first line of defense. Eventually, its biggest downfalls were a lack of political clout (which was by design) and the abolishing of german military
tradition in favor of angloamerican organisation and leadership (which is not optimal for the conditions in an eventual german invasion).
Also....Germany is extremely anti-military and I highly doubt that (as you think) "Germany wants be be known more than as only a regional
power"..at least not in terms of military.
Even smaller engagement like deployment of some to Afghanistan etc. is met with heavy criticism in the media, amongst politicians and people...and all
know...it's really little more than a prestige/status thing. ...
However, Germany wants to be known as a premier trade nation and economic power. In fact, with exceptionally weak interior market, Germanys welfare,
which we so arrogantly flaunt around, is dependent on foreign trade and thus very vulnerable. It follows that stable foreign markets are of paramout
And thats why Germany has to have a hand in world wide power games.
A related point is Germanys huge income from military sales. However, a lack of domestic demand of said hardware WILL impact this business. Lastly,
the military is a world-wide accepted source of government subsidies for research and development, and we´re letting that go as well.
Anyway, the current problems the Bundeswehr has two root causes. One is exactly the kind of thinking you, respected member, demonstrate. The public
and political support - and of course, the finances - have waned since the reunification. Now, they want the B-Wehr to be tis curious high-tech
organization with all-encompassing abilities in home defense, espionage, civil protection, humanitarian aid AND limited force projection, but on a
shoestring budget. It cant be done.
The OTHER huge problem is the bureaucratic nature of the military. Far too much is spent on administration, only a fraction of the troops are actually
combat personnel. It has become a self-serving system
edit on 10/10/2014 by Lonestar24 because: (no reason given)