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Military cuts unavoidable, says Guttenberg

DDP/The Local · 28 May 2010, 09:39

Published: 28 May 2010 09:39 GMT+02:00

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Staff numbers in the military “will have to be questioned,” Guttenberg told broadcaster ARD, adding that it was a “hard” and “bitter” fact to face, but nevertheless “unavoidable.”

Guttenberg foreshadowed closures of military locations as well as reductions in personnel, equipment and procurement projects. However, he did not indicate the scale of any cuts.

“I consider it important and necessary that we address this sufficiently quickly,” he said.

In a speech Wednesday at the Bundeswehr’s top military academy in Hamburg, Guttenberg raised the possibility of spending cuts. The opposition Green party quickly responded with a call to examine reducing the overall size of the military.

Facing massive budget deficits in the next few years, Chancellor Angela Merkel warned earlier this month that bringing Germany’s budget in line would entail painful spending cuts.

Story continues below…

The deputy head of Merkel's conservative parliamentary group, Michael Meister, suggested that Germany must cut costs by €15 billion in 2011 – and €45 billion through 2014.

DDP/The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

15:41 May 28, 2010 by Major B
Oh yeah. Gotta cut down the size of that million man Bundeswehr.
16:49 May 28, 2010 by Hebbellover
Germany has no external enemies....hmmm, well I guess we shall see won't we. Boy, the world is getting more interesting all the time!
18:29 May 28, 2010 by wenddiver
What a lousy idea. The leadership should be working on how to use the military as a bastion of Democracy in Central Europe. The map makes it obvious, if Germany is not Safe and Democratic, nobody in Europe will be. That is how the Budeswehr should be considered.
18:38 May 28, 2010 by Henckel
@ wnddiver: That's right -- Peace through strength. That's what Vegetius said (ca. A>D> 385) when he weote, "Let he who wants peace prepare for war." Unfortunately, Germans from Bismarck to Hitler misconstrued it as meaning "In times of peace prepare for wars." But properly considered military strength should deter enemies, while weakness would encourage them.
19:08 May 28, 2010 by Der Grenadier aus Aachen
You're being a bit unfair to Bismarck in that regard; Bismarck was a skilled diplomat, and he never wanted war. It was actually when Europe stopped mimicking his "many-ties" theory, that it got into real trouble with itself.

But as for the article; what an utterly idiotic notion, but not like it really matters in the end.

We no longer have the political will to act as central europe's protector, regardless of the fact that many of our neighbors want to see us in that role to ward off the influence to the east and south-east.

It's pathetic that we're unwilling to accept that responsibility as a nation.

¦quot;Wir Deutschen fürchten Gott, sonst aber Nichts in der Welt; und diese Gottesfurcht ist es schon, die uns den Frieden lieben und pflegen lässt.¦quot; - Generalmajor (d. Landwehr) von Bismarck.

We should try to remember a few things from our history now and then. A lot of them served us well.
19:30 May 28, 2010 by scoobydube
Germany, as a whole after the end of WWII, did not want to do anything with war again, and it shows now. As in the USA, the first thing considered to be cut are the USD($) for the military budget. As all the world can SEE NOW, while North Korea goes on a 'killing' spree in INTERNATIONAL waters sinking a South Korean Naval ship, the United States stands there, HUFFING & PUFFING, while it can do nothing because of its current military situation in Afganistan & Iraq. We are way OVEREXTENDED in both theaters of operation, and can't do anything meaningful to assist the South Koreans. I hope that Germany sees the folly of cutting its military budget TOO deeply.
21:50 May 28, 2010 by Logic Guy
Well, the truth is, no rational person wants war. However, as we all know, there will always be misguided individuals in this world. For this reason, a very string military is absolutely essential. With the appropriate people in place, it's certainly possible to achieve the necessary protection, without going financially broke.

An efficient system will produce brilliance, once it's fully implimented. An efficient and conservative structure should be the foundation of every nation.
07:46 May 29, 2010 by maxbrando
Boy, this must terribly demoralizing to the officers and men. If the country does ot care about its own defense, why should the soldiers? What fools most Germans are.

But if you fools think the USA is going to bail your lazy German asses out a third time - it ain't gonna happen.
11:47 May 29, 2010 by Alofat
Would you please so kind and remind us about the first two times, somehow they slipped my mind.
10:29 May 30, 2010 by dbert4
" If the country does ot care about its own defense, why should the soldiers? "

What "pending" invasion force does the German Army need to repel?
19:30 May 30, 2010 by derExDeutsche
The Invading force is already IN Germany.

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