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Report: German Military is ‘Aging and Shrinking’

Abone Ol 

A German parliament report has warned the military is “aging and shrinking” due to a multitude of problems left unresolved.

Parliament commissioner for the armed forces, Eva Hoegl, wrote that the Bundeswehr still lacks essential capabilities to address modern threats despite a significant boost in the defense budget.

“Unfortunately, I have to say that the Bundeswehr still has too little of everything,” she told reporters. “There is a lack of ammunition, spare parts, radio equipment.”

She also lamented the shortage of personnel, tanks, ships, and aircraft to ensure armed forces readiness.

Last year, Högl also complained about the slow pace of military modernization in the country, saying the Bundeswehr has “too little of everything,” and even less since Russia invaded Ukraine in February 2022.

Equipment Shortfall

Högl, tasked with scrutinizing the military, has long called for the immediate replacement of all weapons and equipment sent to Ukraine.

Berlin has committed more than 17 billion euros ($18.5 billion) in military aid to Kyiv, overtaking the UK as the second largest donor after the US.

The commissioner said despite the lack of equipment, she is seeing major progress with lawmakers approving defense contracts worth 48 billion euros ($52 billion).

She said such an improvement “must be continued at high pressure and accelerated.”

Recruitment Woes

The report noted that the German military faces an “enormous personnel problem,” with some units having many vacancies.

The strength of the Bundeswehr at the end of 2023 was 181,514, more than 1,500 fewer than the previous year.

There are also over 20,000 vacant posts that the armed forces are struggling to fill due to fewer applicants and a high dropout rate in training.

“On the issue of personnel shortage, I have no good news. The Bundeswehr is aging and shrinking,” Hoegl said.

Abone Ol 

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