German defence woes (latest from The Times)

I really hope we don't have to use it. Even you should understand that if it comes to the deployment of nuclear weapons that something went terribly wrong.
The gallic shrug obviously means I hit some nerves badly.
I know that your imagination is somewhat exuberant, but with all it's faults the Bundeswehr ist still an Army and not a french whorehouse.
In an Army there are orders and rules that have to be obeyed. If, and im a pretty sure that is the case, the operational rules say they have to go all dolled up they go all dolled up. Back in the good old days I wore my Bristol when the rules said it and not when i wanted to, and this thing was with it's 18kg and somewhat questionable ergonomics a pain in the arse.
14h30 hrs and still in the office ? Is your watch broken ?
 
14h30 hrs and still in the office ? Is your watch broken ?
My watchs name isn't France. So it isn't broken, isn't deep in debt and does a proper job. But I wonder why you are not on strike with a white flag?
 
My watchs name isn't France. So it isn't broken, isn't deep in debt and does a proper job. But I wonder why you are not on strike with a white flag?
Aren't you going to Ze Cherman Senior National Rep ? That's what most German officers used to say around 1430-1500....and then you saw them in civvies coming out of the Rationed Items Store as you were leaving the office around 1800....

Enough niceties for today. If you have any other queries, please see @Glad_its_all_over , he has summed up the situation very well.
 
Aren't you going to Ze Cherman Senior National Rep ? That's what most German officers used to say around 1430-1500....and then you saw them in civvies coming out of the Rationed Items Store as you were leaving the office around 1800....

Enough niceties for today. If you have any other queries, please see @Glad_its_all_over , he has summed up the situation very well.
Monsieur, j'accepte votre reddition. Les conditions seront négociées à Compiègne.
 
Europe had less qualms in 1955 when the BW was recreated.

Today, this is mostly a convenient way to do very little in the military domain. "You have wanted us to be like that so it's your fault"....how many times have I heard that sentence from German officers.

Surely, there must be a middle way between the Das Reich and today's BW of civilians in uniforms where Germany would grow a set and accept to play a role in global security matters commensurate to its economical weight.
Apart from our dispute there is a grain of truth in what those officers said to you.
Mindless pacifism is a good thing and acceptable in the eyes of many Germans. Armed forces are a necessary evil and it is good to neglect them.
In most politicians and the peoples mind we are surrounded by friends.
If you demand well-equipped and deployable armed forces, you will be considered a warmongering lunatic.
Then there are the restrictions for all three branches from the 2+4 contracts to 370000 troops and decades of underfunding.
This mindset naturally impacts the armed forces.
 
Pray tell which "extremly pro-USA stance "would that be? They have like all professional soldiers an extremly or better rabid pro working equipment stance and there we are back to US build planes. The Super Hornet/Growler combination simply does the job.
Our french friends would like to see an extremely pro-French stance, maybe with some German funding of France's pseudo Superpower ambitions like the Force de frappe. But that will not happen. Macron already made the "proposal" to let Germany "participate" in France's nuclear capabillities but what he really meant where some shiny Euros given to the French to relieve their already stretched budget.
As discussed previously on either this thread or another, the choice is to either operate one type of aircraft or two. Operating a single type offers advantages in terms of operating cost, maintenance, and training. The German air force is not flush with money, and has shortages of trained maintenance and flight personnel. Buying the F-18 as opposed going to an all-Typhoon force will exacerbate all three problems and result in less overall capability.

The one advantage the F-18 may offer is the promised future capability to be able to carry nuclear weapons. I don't believe that the version discussed is actually certified to do so yet however.

The Americans have said though that they don't want to certify the Typhoon, they want Germany to buy American planes. They've used the same tactic (with respect to NORAD) by the way to cut Typhoon and Rafale out of the competition in Canada.

For Germany, buying F-18s isn't a military decision, it's a diplomatic one. It has to do with keeping the fig leaf of a theoretical capability of Germany arming themselves with American nuclear weapons (something that is rather questionable from a non-proliferation treaty standpoint) in order to give the Americans the fig leaf of claiming it wasn't their sole decision to nuke the Russians. How long those fig leaves will last when the chilly winds of war start to blow is a good question.

Whether air dropped nuclear bombs are even a serious capability when up against an air defence system like Russia's is even a better question. Some future US president, or even the current one, could decide that of all the things that he wants to spend money on, air dropped nuclear bombs for the European theatre fall somewhat lower on his list of priorities than things which would also be useful in higher priority parts of the world, such as the Far East.

I'm not going to claim to have a deep understanding of the German psyche, but from my distant perspective the German military and diplomatic establishment seem to have trouble understanding that it isn't 1995 any more, and the world has moved on since then. Europe is no longer at the top of the list of things that the Americans spend time worrying about, and well, what have you done for them lately? Their gratitude over you buying some planes from them won't last any longer than it takes them to cash your cheque and then their attention will go back to their current obsession, which is China, a world away from Germany.

If Germany really does feel the need for a nuclear security blanket which pretends to skirt around the NNP treaty, then seriously, getting some serious financial leverage over France's weapons may be a better bet than desperately trying to turn the clock back and convincing the Americans that it's still the 1970s.
 
As discussed previously on either this thread or another, the choice is to either operate one type of aircraft or two. Operating a single type offers advantages in terms of operating cost, maintenance, and training. The German air force is not flush with money, and has shortages of trained maintenance and flight personnel. Buying the F-18 as opposed going to an all-Typhoon force will exacerbate all three problems and result in less overall capability.
The one advantage the F-18 may offer is the promised future capability to be able to carry nuclear weapons. I don't believe that the version discussed is actually certified to do so yet however.
What I know, or better what I've heard from some Luftwaffe blokes I know 2 or 3 years back is that we are definitely behind plan in transforming the Eurofighter from an Air-Air-Role to Air-Ground. As usual, due to funding problems and some bureaucratic jesting it will take hte Bundeswehr much more time to fully certify it for the complete range of weapons.
Back then, if an when I remember right only the GBU-48 was certified for our Eurofighters. My chaps comment was that it is pure insanity to fly CAS with such a big weapon in case of ground troops in an ambush. Anti-Tank capacity in form of Brimstone was planned to get bolted on the plane in the "next years". Right now we do not have a functioning SEAD-Version like the old ECR-Tornados. And surely the list will getting much longer.

As far as I understand the F/A-18 is a fully certified multirole aircraft which excels in the Air-Ground role.

The Americans have said though that they don't want to certify the Typhoon, they want Germany to buy American planes. They've used the same tactic (with respect to NORAD) by the way to cut Typhoon and Rafale out of the competition in Canada.
If the German Media is right, the Americans are willing to certify the Typhoon (we don't say this ugly word in Germany) fully for the Nuclear role. It takes about 10 years and they want every bit of data from this plane.

For Germany, buying F-18s isn't a military decision, it's a diplomatic one. It has to do with keeping the fig leaf of a theoretical capability of Germany arming themselves with American nuclear weapons (something that is rather questionable from a non-proliferation treaty standpoint) in order to give the Americans the fig leaf of claiming it wasn't their sole decision to nuke the Russians. How long those fig leaves will last when the chilly winds of war start to blow is a good question.
Whether air dropped nuclear bombs are even a serious capability when up against an air defence system like Russia's is even a better question. Some future US president, or even the current one, could decide that of all the things that he wants to spend money on, air dropped nuclear bombs for the European theatre fall somewhat lower on his list of priorities than things which would also be useful in higher priority parts of the world, such as the Far East.
It is something of both. As of now the F/A/EA-18 combination is more versatile than the Typhoon. That may change in the future, but given the erratic ways our MoD and political masters behave I wouldn't bet tuppence on that.
NATO's nuclear sharing was designed to work around the NPT. As far as I know, and that is hearsay again the B-61's are under direct American control until they ignite and make new parking lots. Just today our foreign minister, which I normally cordially despise said that there can be no German "special-way" regarding Germanys foreign and security-politics.
Thinking deterrence having this 100 weapons in Western Europe isn't the baddest idea.

I'm not going to claim to have a deep understanding of the German psyche, but from my distant perspective the German military and diplomatic establishment seem to have trouble understanding that it isn't 1995 any more, and the world has moved on since then. Europe is no longer at the top of the list of things that the Americans spend time worrying about, and well, what have you done for them lately? Their gratitude over you buying some planes from them won't last any longer than it takes them to cash your cheque and then their attention will go back to their current obsession, which is China, a world away from Germany.
I do not claim that either. It is like everywhere in the world, different social and political currents that change from time to time. It isn't 1995 anymore but it is 2020 and the Russians are back and a threat for Eastern and Western Europe. So it is more like 1985 than 1995.

If Germany really does feel the need for a nuclear security blanket which pretends to skirt around the NNP treaty, then seriously, getting some serious financial leverage over France's weapons may be a better bet than desperately trying to turn the clock back and convincing the Americans that it's still the 1970s.
In my opinion it isn't about the security blanket. It is more about sitting on the NATO nuclear table and have a say also and a close german-french partnership or an European Army won't work. There are only finite funds and luckily the will to die for French or better Macron's interests somewhere in an African shithole is not that big. Just as it is not the will to fund French waste or their desire to play Superpower.

And if buying these aircraft is a way for the Bundeswehr getting back on its feet funding wise and fulfilling my countrys alliance obligations I am all game.
 
Europe has less than fond memories of the last time Germany was a significant military power - particularly by those to the East . How much does this factor into limiting German capabilities or at least how they will be perceived by the extremely paranoid 300lb Gorrilla
If there was an understandable wish to avoid disturbing the neighbours with offensive capability, while still wanting to support and improve European defence overall, then we would have a fantastic German ground and air logistics system to support every other armed forces in Europe*. Oddly, I haven't noticed this awesome non-offensive capability.

Edit: * in other words Nato
 
Last edited:

Cold_Collation

LE
Book Reviewer
@Krautman

There is an EW version of the Typhoon mooted.

Eurofighter Typhoon | New Eurofighter electronic combat role (ECR) concept presented at the IFC

The current Hornet isn't certified for the B-61 - but the Americans have said that the Eurofighter is way behind it in the queue. It's naked arm-twisting.

In terms of whether the deed would ever be done, it's a NATO requirement to be able to deliver nuclear weapons - one that Germany is somehow obliged to fulfil.
If the Hornet purchase is winding the French up, Why not go all out and get the F35A, a certain Frenchman would go for meltdown.
 
If there was an understandable wish to avoid disturbing the neighbours with offensive capability, while still wanting to support and improve European defence overall, then we would have a fantastic German ground and air logistics system to support every other armed forces in Europe*. Oddly, I haven't noticed this awesome non-offensive capability.

Edit: * in other words Nato
That we have, lets call it fighting troops, is a concession to the bad old days of the Cold War. Back in 1955 as the Bundeswehr was formed there were not to few voices that were against armed forces.
Some decades later happened what no one thought would ever happen, the Reunion. Since then Germany, it's armed forces and even it's population is somewhat struggling in finding it's new role in Europe and the World.
 
@Krautman

There is an EW version of the Typhoon mooted.

Eurofighter Typhoon | New Eurofighter electronic combat role (ECR) concept presented at the IFC

The current Hornet isn't certified for the B-61 - but the Americans have said that the Eurofighter is way behind it in the queue. It's naked arm-twisting.

In terms of whether the deed would ever be done, it's a NATO requirement to be able to deliver nuclear weapons - one that Germany is somehow obliged to fulfil.
I knew that Airbus proposed one, but it is just in the planning stages. It is my governments and the Bundeswehrs fault. They knew that the Tornados wouldn't fly forever and neglected and cannibalized this aging aircraft in every aspect.
And now out of the blue, oops we need a replacement for these flying things.
The Super Hornet isn't certified now, but as I understand and the media published it will take about 5 years because the Americans knew every rivet and adhesive joint on this plane.

Sure it is naked arm-twisting, but sometimes you have to twist arms, and in case of the German government you have to twist very often.
It is a win-win situation, new planes for the Bundeswehr, one not so small step to the 2% commtiment and our orange haired special guest can boast how he reigned the Germans in. And last but not least, we keep the capability to create new parking lots.

Could be far worse, they could have decided to build that new European carrier, the Angela Macron.
 
If the Hornet purchase is winding the French up, Why not go all out and get the F35A, a certain Frenchman would go for meltdown.
As far as I can tell, there are four reasons against the purchase of the F-35 A. It is not yet nuclear capable. There is no dedicated SEAD variant. Of course the advertising speaks of unimagined electronic capabilities that don't require any other EW/SEAD machines but like advertising goes, you don't gain 5 inches from nothing. Then there's that wretched FCAS that the UK has fortunately escaped. And I've read somewhere that the flying hour is significantly more expensive than that of the Super Hornet.
 
The German nuclear role is a controversy which has been bubbling along for a considerable time!



Pöppelmann, Jürgen. "Fachkommentar: Die Luftwaffe unter Druck" in Wehrtechnik I/2004, page 10 **Paras 4-5**

[TRANSLATION]
The future of the nuclear role of the unit in Büchel is also completely in the stars. Jagdbombergeschwader 33 secures the position of the Federal Republic in the nuclear partnership of NATO and allows the Government a voice in strategic discussions, particularly in the Nuclear Planning Group, the Defence Planning Committee and in the North Atlantic Council. In order to maintain this role with the EUROFIGHTER, at least one aircraft must be loaned to the US for long term certification tests. This requires the agreement of the other EUROFIGHTER partners, which cannot simply be assumed. The way out would be for the Luftwaffe also to withdraw from the nuclear role - the Army has not had this role for years and the Navy was never involved. Such a withdrawal from the nuclear decision making and responsibility, however, brings about a decrease in influence in the NATO leadership; something which countries such as Belgium and the Netherlands have already experienced.

This reduction in political influence, however, is counter to the basis of German foreign policy which is attempting
to increase it's international engagement while at the same time taking on more responsibility.

Well, that clears that up, until the need to form the next coalition government in Germany.

'NATO is relieved through the clear commitment of the Federal Government for the deployment of US nuclear weapons in Germany. "I welcome the German government's clear commitment to nuclear deterrence," said Jens Stoltenberg, head of the Western Defense Alliance, WELT. He added: “NATO's nuclear agreements are as important today as they have always been. They offer the European allies a nuclear shield. "

'Stoltenberg made it clear that the common procedures, exercises and nuclear doctrine ensured the allies influence on nuclear matters that they would otherwise not have. "Nuclear participation, in which 29 allies are involved, is a multilateral agreement that ensures that the benefits, responsibilities and risks of deterrence are shared among the allies."

'The background to the statements are demands by SPD party leader Norbert Walter-Borjans and the chairman of the Social Democrats in the Bundestag, Rolf Mützenich, for the withdrawal of US nuclear weapons from Germany as a contribution to a debate on the future of nuclear deterrence. On the other hand, on Tuesday the Federal Government made a clear commitment to Germany's so-called nuclear participation under NATO. This is "an important part of a credible deterrent in the alliance," said a government spokesman.

'In parts of the SPD and German industry there is also resistance to the purchase of 45 F-18 fighter jets from the American aircraft manufacturer Boeing. They are intended to replace the Bundeswehr's aging tornado fleet and, in an emergency, to carry US nuclear bombs to their destination - a feature that other German aircraft do not have. With regard to the purchase of the new fighter jets, Stoltenberg said: “To ensure security for allies, it is necessary that as many member countries as possible take part. We need planes that support nuclear deterrence - also from Germany. ”

'NATO continues to be committed to the goal of a world free of nuclear weapons, the NATO head emphasized: “In fact, NATO has reduced its nuclear arsenal in Europe by 90 percent. But as long as nuclear weapons exist, NATO will also remain a nuclear alliance. "The aim of NATO nuclear weapons is not to provoke a conflict, but peacekeeping and a deterrent to aggression:" The world will not be safer because Russia, China and other countries are investing in new and increasing numbers of nuclear weapons, while NATO does not have any of these weapons."


Slighty ropey Google Translate of: Jens-Stoltenberg zu Atomwaffen: „Nato wird nukleare Allianz bleiben“ - WELT
 
I'm sure Germany won't be the only democratic nation with this fiscal dilemma. Sometimes, a state-directed 'command' economy makes planning a hell of a lot easier! I suspect the (currently quiet) UK SDSR will make soberting reading once the revision comes out.

'In view of the billion-dollar follow-up costs of the Corona crisis, the debate about the financial viability of planned armaments projects by the Bundeswehr is picking up speed. According to information from the Süddeutsche Zeitung, the sum of the armament projects estimated in the financial plan for the next few years amounts to 137 billion euros.

'After many years of saving, the force had made the transition to a growing army. She is currently in the process of renewing large parts of her weapon systems. The defense budget for this has been increasing for years. Defense Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer (CDU) is already warning of a return to the era of "saving money", especially in the opposition there is a demand to spend the money elsewhere. Left-wing co-parliamentary group leader Dietmar Bartsch told the SZ: The state was reaching its "financial cap or even exceeded it through the corona crisis, but astronomical amounts are available for new tanks and fighter jets". He advocates "putting the entire defense budget and every single armaments project to the test". "Our enemy is a virus, no country in the world is preparing a war against Germany," said Bartsch. Every euro is needed to deal with the crisis.

'The Green Defense politician Tobias Lindner does not go as far in his demands, but sees the need to take another look at the list of projects. "There will be pressure to consolidate all households," he predicts. "Each department will have to deliver its savings contribution."

Coalition partner SPD is skeptical about projects

'Minister Kramp-Karrenbauer must set out her priorities. From Lindner's point of view, there are projects that could not wait; the Bundeswehr urgently needed a replacement for the decrepit heavy transport helicopters or successors for the frigates. "It is not a priority for me to keep the troops growing as planned. We should rather properly equip the soldiers we have," said Lindner.

'FDP politician Marie-Agnes Strack-Zimmermann warns against using the situation for a clear cut in the Bundeswehr. "When it comes to security and defense issues, we have to be careful not to put the Corona stamp on it right now, with the result that we cannot afford it." The security situation for Germany and Europe has not improved.

'Planned investments are also viewed with skepticism by the coalition partner SPD. Group leader Rolf Mützenich, using the example of the successor to the Tornado bombers, raised the question of whether part of global armaments expenditure was not better spent on fighting the pandemic and rebuilding the economy: "Who or what is currently the real enemy?"


 
I'm sure Germany won't be the only democratic nation with this fiscal dilemma. Sometimes, a state-directed 'command' economy makes planning a hell of a lot easier! I suspect the (currently quiet) UK SDSR will make soberting reading once the revision comes out.

'In view of the billion-dollar follow-up costs of the Corona crisis, the debate about the financial viability of planned armaments projects by the Bundeswehr is picking up speed. According to information from the Süddeutsche Zeitung, the sum of the armament projects estimated in the financial plan for the next few years amounts to 137 billion euros.

'After many years of saving, the force had made the transition to a growing army. She is currently in the process of renewing large parts of her weapon systems. The defense budget for this has been increasing for years. Defense Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer (CDU) is already warning of a return to the era of "saving money", especially in the opposition there is a demand to spend the money elsewhere. Left-wing co-parliamentary group leader Dietmar Bartsch told the SZ: The state was reaching its "financial cap or even exceeded it through the corona crisis, but astronomical amounts are available for new tanks and fighter jets". He advocates "putting the entire defense budget and every single armaments project to the test". "Our enemy is a virus, no country in the world is preparing a war against Germany," said Bartsch. Every euro is needed to deal with the crisis.

'The Green Defense politician Tobias Lindner does not go as far in his demands, but sees the need to take another look at the list of projects. "There will be pressure to consolidate all households," he predicts. "Each department will have to deliver its savings contribution."

Coalition partner SPD is skeptical about projects

'Minister Kramp-Karrenbauer must set out her priorities. From Lindner's point of view, there are projects that could not wait; the Bundeswehr urgently needed a replacement for the decrepit heavy transport helicopters or successors for the frigates. "It is not a priority for me to keep the troops growing as planned. We should rather properly equip the soldiers we have," said Lindner.

'FDP politician Marie-Agnes Strack-Zimmermann warns against using the situation for a clear cut in the Bundeswehr. "When it comes to security and defense issues, we have to be careful not to put the Corona stamp on it right now, with the result that we cannot afford it." The security situation for Germany and Europe has not improved.

'Planned investments are also viewed with skepticism by the coalition partner SPD. Group leader Rolf Mützenich, using the example of the successor to the Tornado bombers, raised the question of whether part of global armaments expenditure was not better spent on fighting the pandemic and rebuilding the economy: "Who or what is currently the real enemy?"


I started to collate a number of thoughts on this and the implications for the Bundeswehr and its fairly generous support to NATO.

In a spirit of brevity and not wishing to cause anyone death by boredom, suffice to say, "Oh bugger!"
 
I started to collate a number of thoughts on this and the implications for the Bundeswehr and its fairly generous support to NATO.

In a spirit of brevity and not wishing to cause anyone death by boredom, suffice to say, "Oh bugger!"
In the context, shouldn't that be "Gott in Himmel!", (Captain Darling walt)?
 
Not financial, but an investment in human capital, both now and potentially for the future.

'The German military sends its best to serve as an American general’s chief of staff, to everyone’s benefit.

'On VE Day this year, U.S. Army Europe installed a new chief of staff: Brig. Gen. Jared Sembritzki — a German, and a Bundeswehr officer to boot. Though the transatlantic relationship may be sailing through choppy waters, the U.S. and German armies are demonstrating collaboration that’s vital for both sides.

'When he leaves U.S. Army Europe in about two years’ time, Sembritzki too is likely to keep rising through the Bundeswehr ranks. But the biggest beneficiary is the U.S.-German relationship, which has for the past several years been suffering at the political level. Indeed, pundits have taken turns to declare it moribund or even dead. At the military level – the foundation of the transatlantic alliance – the U.S.-German relationship is far from over. On the contrary, with Sebritzki’s appointment the U.S. and German ministries have just given it another boost.'


 

Latest Threads

Top