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German Supply Lines Flow With Beer in Afghanistan

German Supply Lines Flow With Beer in Afghanistan

Saturday, November 15, 2008; Page A14
BERLIN, Nov. 14 -- Germany has been reluctant to send its soldiers to Afghanistan. Not so its beer.

Last year, the German armed forces shipped more than 260,000 gallons of home-brewed suds to its troops serving in northern Afghanistan, as well as more than 18,000 gallons of wine. On a per-soldier basis, that was the equivalent of a ration of 26 ounces of beer a day, all year long.

The revelation, made Wednesday in a report to Parliament, caused a stir in the German press, already deeply skeptical of the country's commitment to the war in Afghanistan. About 3,500 troops are based there, but surveys show that a majority of the population is strongly opposed to the mission.

"Boozers in the Bundeswehr?" asked a headline in the Stuttgarter Nachrichten, using the German term for the federal armed forces. "High Proof Assignment," chortled Die Welt, a national paper.

"Back home there will be a new debate," commented the Ostsee Zeitung. "The question, 'Are we at war in Afghanistan?' will be replaced by, 'Do I get too much alcohol as a soldier?' "
More on the link
Glad to see the German blats can produce shite as well as our own.

German mate of mine tells me that his first real posting was near Munich. Day 1 dire warnings about the horrors of consumption of alcohol on duty.

So, lunchtime and, unbidden, beer appears on the table. When he questions this, incredulous looks from all.

"But that is not alcohol! It is BEER!"
Further to Blogg's story, I once did a few weeks' attachment with a Bundeswehr armoured unit on Lüneburger Heide, and was surprised to see free beer available at all meals, including breakfast (which began at 0500 hrs IIRC). They argued that it's a foodstuff, and in no way detrimental if taken with more conventional food (and, obviously, in small quantities). Not everybody drank it, and those that did seemed unaffected, even at PT or on the ranges. The regiment's 2IC, from a military family going back to Frederick the Great, assured me that the tradition was centuries old, and had been continued during both World Wars. I really can't see what the fuss is about.
I did a few weeks in Goslar With the Grenschuts and they used to pick up a slab of cans before we went onborder patrol, this was a helocopter unit

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