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German defense budget

Discussion in 'Geostrategic Issues' started by Thüringer, Jan 17, 2019.

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  1. Thüringer

    Thüringer Member

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    As a german i wonder again and again how much trump attacks and insults my country and i wonder what exactly he tries to achieve?

    1. The NATO summit in 2014 established that NATO member states must reach the 2% military defense spending by 2014. Germany now has a military defense budget of around 1.3% with a slight rise each year. So Germany actually fullfills the papers we signed.

    2. What exactly does he think when he says NATO bills? There are no NATO bills. Trumps rubbish sounds like he believes Germany has to pay something, which it has not. Infact the military defense spending would mean we build up our own military more and add to its capacity.

    And thats just another point, what does trump believe he achieves with that? USA would not profit from this in any way. If Germany adds more tanks, ships, aircrafts and weapons as well as staff to our military, the contracts usually always go to german defense corporations.
    Infact contracts are even written in a way that only german corporations can win the contract.

    Trump must be absolut foolish to believe that Germany would order american build frigates, destroyers, submarines or weapon systems.

    3. In trumps most recent rant he said Germany should spend 4% of its GDP on military. Does he know wht this means? We are an economic superpower...if we spend 4% of our GDP on defense, we would build up the 2nd largest military in the world. Our former foreign minister said, we could add 8 aircraft carriers per year to our fleet with such a budget rise.

    4. Does he realize that rising our budget needs time of planning? We have limited yard space. The yards dont produce submarines, ships ect on reserve.

    And last but not least, is Trump and his supporters aware that if we get a stronger military, we demand also more rights? Like a constant seat in the UN security council. More command posts at NATO.
     
  2. John Fedup

    John Fedup Well-Known Member

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    IMO German defence is approaching the dysfunctional level similar to Canada. Canada can hide under the US defence umbrella, Germany doesn’t have this luxury. Trump seems willing to abandon Europe, something he can’t do to Canada as it would imperil their defence. With the Brexit mess, there is the possibility the UK might cease defence cooperation with the EU. If this happens, a 3-4 % GDP on defence spending is needed depending on how much more the other EU members increase their contributions to defence.
     
  3. SteveR

    SteveR Member

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    Thanks for your perspective Thuringer, but as a 70 year old who has observed from afar the post WW2 growth of European and Asian economies largely under protection of much larger defence expenditure by the US (conventional and nuclear). During that time the US economy has ceased to be as dominant as it once was yet when matters happen in Europe (Kosovo or Crimea) it is almost always the US that is expected to provide most of the combat power even through such places are not actually of direct national interest in US. Surely it is the local powers - economic and military - that should shoulder much of the effort as they understand the nuances of the regional politics?

    Again forgive my distant perspective of Germany - it is the only power in WW2 that has admitted its culpability for nationalism that drove the atrocities . However it seems the majority in Russia will never ever demand the prosecution of those who administered the Gulag or acknowledge its collective guilt for the millions killed before, during and after WW2 in eastern Europe. In my Eastern Hemisphere neither do Japan or China. Germany has the right, having recognised its own guilt, to demand that both Russia and China also acknowledge their guilt, and until they do hold them to economic sanctions.

    I for one have no problem in Germany spending at least 3% of GDP on defence and have a seat on the UN Security Council.
     
  4. Thüringer

    Thüringer Member

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    We plan a different approach.

    We notice that USA is not a real ally anymore and becomes more and more an enemy. So of course we prepare.

    Germany is a leading weapon producer in the world. We export guns, tanks, ships, submarines, cannons, drones evrywhere. That means, if we need to, we can push up our military in a very short timespan.

    So i dont see that as a big problem.
     
  5. Thüringer

    Thüringer Member

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    Well, im a young man and not that much in WW II. Germany did bad stuff, so did USA, Russia, UK and all others as well. War is war.

    That said, i believe that NATO in many areas just servs as tool for US imperialism.

    P.s. you are from adelaide? Last september and octobre i was in australia. 3 days in adelaide. Visited Kangaroo Island, Glenelg and all that :).

    The people there were not mad with me as a german.
     
  6. swerve

    swerve Super Moderator

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    Of the 27 other EU members, 21 are in NATO, & co-operating with the UK.

    Why would an organisational change require a large increase in military spending?

    German spending is increasing. It's too low, but it's going up, not down. The latest budget allocation is the fourth real increase in a row.
     
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  7. John Fedup

    John Fedup Well-Known Member

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    It is what the UK does in the future. As per the comments in the UK thread, defence is the UK’s best bargaining chip in obtaining a decent post Brexit agreement. IMHO the EU needs the UK as a defence partner more than UK needs the EU. If, in the unlikely event, both the US and UK were to end their defence relations with the EU then Germany would need 3-4% towards defence as the other EU members can barely make 2%. The 2% goal is set for 2024 I believe and it is optimistic to think even 50% of the NATO members will reach this even if there is no recession between now and then. I know one member with a failed drama teacher as PM that won’t reach the 2% unless it is by fraud.
     
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  8. Thüringer

    Thüringer Member

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    I dont see the UK as a trustworthy defense partner for Germany. Even more so if the UK leaves the EU.

    In the past the UK was nothing more than a chain that tried to push Germany down whenever it could. If a conflict rises, i have no doubt the UK would betray us. One just has to look at all the anti-german propaganda sprewd in british media.

    Germany must be able to defend itself. When the day comes we would stand alone anyways. Thats a historic proven fact.

    As things stand, we have a constant budget surplus between 40 billion and 60 billion €. Which means we could double our military without even having an effect on national spending and without the need to rise taxes or debt.
     
  9. Feanor

    Feanor Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Really? Well this is news to me. What kind of combat power did the US provide in Crimea? Do tell... as for national interests, if these places are indeed outside US national interests, then what is the US doing in the region? Between democracy promotion, support of friendly regimes, and the push for Ukrainian-Georgian NATO membership, I think that at least a significant portion of US leadership at one time or another during the 21st century so far believes that these issues are of direct national interest to the US.

    He who shoulders the effort is also more likely to get the desired outcome. Sitting one out means not getting much of a say in how it's resolved.

    Sure. And while we're at it, let's make Poland apologize for annexing parts of Czechoslovakia together with the Germans. I'm honestly not sure what you think this kind of policy would accomplish or what makes it in any way desirable. International politics are rarely based on questions of a country's "right" to do something.
     
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  10. oldsig127

    oldsig127 Active Member

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    Perhaps you could direct some of this cornucopia towards repairing or replacing "Foch" then? It would be a lot more useful than boasting about the former and complaining about the later.

    oldsig
     
  11. Thüringer

    Thüringer Member

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    The replacement of Gorch Fock is not a money issue. She cant be repaired and they try to find a fitting replacement.
     
  12. ngatimozart

    ngatimozart Super Moderator Staff Member Verified Defense Pro

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    @Thüringer This is not a forum for political discussion and we do not tolerate politics here. So no more of posts such as this please or else the Moderators will become real angry.
     
  13. MarcH

    MarcH Member

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    Maybe an perspective from another "Thüringer". Grüße aus Erfurt.

    When you write Trump demands ... well, no. All of our allies lost patience with Germany, it is just a different communication style.

    Your first point: the 2% are a non binding target. The issue is not that we spend 1.3% as booming economy, the point is that this is not enough to fullfill our NATO obligations. Especially the Marine and Luftwaffe have serious issues, the Heer less so.

    Second point: Your focus on Trump is misguided. The 2% goal was pushed by a certain president Obama. Issues became apparent when the Bundeswehr showed up with black painted sticks instead of gun barrels for NATO excercises in the Baltics. This is not a joke. Marders didn't have gun barrels, but black painted broomsticks.
    For 43 billion Euro a year we get paper forces, combat ready forces are: 3 frigates, 4 Eurofighter, 8 Tornados and a brigade light infantry.

    Third point: no we wouldn't. Unless we hire out mercs from other countries there is neither the manpower nor the industrial capacity available to do that. Not to mention the lack of management/leadership.

    Your last point: Not the worst issue. We've seen an systematic destruction of the logistical base of our armed forces. One example: Erding once housed a repair and storage facility for all flying systems.
    They would manage spare parts. Inspect and if possible restore old parts and store them. First the repair facility was closed. That turned the storage facility into a junk yard, which was subsequently closed, too. This drastically increased the requirement for new spare parts. The industry was very pleased. They had the contracts for the new "efficient" logistics. Unfortunately they didn't care to deliver "just in time". Because there were no penalties in the contracts for late/non delivery.

    Nearly the same story for facitlities in Kiel and Eckernförde. Pretty much closed down. Now that the fecal matter hit the fan the decision was reversed. But short term we have 0 combat ready submarines. 500 million Euro to restore the Marinearsenal in Kiel. And a massive amount of know how lost forever.

    Thanks to the war in Ukraine our fantastic secretary of defense Ursula von der Leyen announced the Bundeswehr would get some of it's Leopard 2 tanks back. Well, it took just 3 years to get the contract in place and deliveries will start in 2023.
    Unfortunately tank strenght is not the biggest issue, artillery is.

    Good news is the Heer is better at getting things done than the Luftwaffe/Marine. After UvdL had her moment with announcing the tank buy back they silently managed to get 7 addtional artillery battalions sanctioned.
    Means every combat brigade will have it's own artillery btl. and every division will get it's own missile artillery. No idea were the additional equipment will come from, but rumors mention a new Boxer variant plus refurbished MLRS from Norway or US stocks. Oh, and a new air defense Boxer to get hat capability back.
    I
     
  14. Thüringer

    Thüringer Member

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    Grüß dich. Ist ne kleine Welt. ^^

    Well i dont see it that way. As your own words say. Its not a metter of budget but absolite mismanagement.

    A bigger budget would just mean to lose more money. I´ve read they decided to build 4 new frigates 12 years ago and still not a single one is operations. So i dont know how this is a budget issue.We have jets that cant fly, submarines that cant dive and ships that cant sail. Evrything is rotten to the core.
     
  15. MarcH

    MarcH Member

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    Most of the bad decisions were budget-driven.
    Half of them can fly. But that isn't enough for military aircraft. They can't fly with weapons, since there was no money to buy them or extend the shelf life of the existing ones -> funding issue
    Oh and currently pilots leave in droves. The training budget is so small some already lost their licence due to lack of flight hours.
    See closing of the Marinearsenal above -> funding issue.
    Trainig and maintenance budgets need to raise considerably to fullfill the current international obligations. In that regard Trump is more spot on than our marvellous press.

    And the issue with our colonial cruisers... Well, they aren't really navy ships. Overblown OPV's for doing the job of the coastguard. Just one more creative way of stealing from the defense budget.
    The next generation frigate will probably be Dutch and a proper combat ship.
     
  16. John Fedup

    John Fedup Well-Known Member

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    Reading your comments on the state of Germany’s military status reminds me somewhat of the situation here. Pilot training and retention are a problem for the RCAF too. Our fighter problem is well known to most as is our general procurement issue. Like Germany, boils down to political will and management and ours is about as bad as it gets with barely over 1% of GDP on defence. Where Germany has an advantage are a large defence manufacturing companies and a decently functioning economy, items which Canada lacks.
     
  17. MarcH

    MarcH Member

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    The madness continues:
    Germany officially knocks F-35 out of competition to replace Tornado

    Instead of a LO airframe already earmarked for B-61-12 integration now a legacy type to deliver a gravity bomb at the Russian doorstep.

    Instead of sharing logistics with several European NATO allies likely an aircraft type noone else operates in the region.

    At least it's relatively cheap, reliable and there is the Growler option. IF offered.