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US Army announces base closures in Baden-Württemberg

The Local · 23 Jun 2010, 17:04

Published: 23 Jun 2010 17:04 GMT+02:00

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“Due to the extensive scope and long-range nature of these actions, planning and execution will be ongoing for several years,” a statement said.

The unit inactivations, relocations and returns to the US will mainly affect facilities in the southwestern state of Baden-Württemberg.

The three-part “drawdown” within the communities will ultimately mean a reduction of 7,378 people, among them 1,446 Soldiers, 1,505 US government civilians and 4,427 family members. There will also be a decrease of 1,045 local positions for Germans.

Meanwhile another 1,119 military, 147 US civilians and almost 1,900 family members will be relocated within the country, the statement said.

The US Army will have already reduced the soldier population in the Mannheim area by 50 percent as part of their first phase of consolidation this summer. By mid-2012, all soldiers will have left the area.

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Medical, school, housing and recreational facilities will remain open according to individual base needs as staff begin to depart, the statement added.

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Your comments about this article

21:38 June 23, 2010 by bernie1927
Why does it have to take 5 years to get them out? They are totally unnecessary and cost far too much to keep over there. All of them, incl. their dozens of staff officers ought to get out of Germany
23:18 June 23, 2010 by TRUTHBETOLD
bernie, bernie, bernie.....come on now. Do you mean that all the money being spent in the community by all of those unnecessary troops/families/civilian employees will have no effect? Get real. The economic devastation will continue far beyond "5 years to get...out". I pray that everyone is able to withstand the trouble coming down the road. Heidelberg should be OK since it is supported by it's tourism, but for those that own rental housing in the area are in for a shock. Who knows, maybe everything "American" will also leave (Pizza Hut, McDonalds, Subway, etc.). Get a life.
23:42 June 23, 2010 by pepsionice
The way this works....because I watched this at Bitburg.....is this vast plan of drawdown. One of the biggest time-consuming efforts.... requiring two years minimum.....is dealing with German workers from the post or base. The Union is involved and the "settlement" has to be worked out. The US usually wants to help the guys hire up at another installation....but the workers rarely accept that scenario and then you get into these hour-by-hour discussions.

Then you come to the part where units are told a scheduling system where a quarter of their folks are released and then another quarter....and then finally the last third are left there to clean buildings, turn in equipment and ensure no loss of equipment. This turns into a major mess for forty guys to clean up whats left.

Then you come to the support staff....the medical folks......the transportation folks....and you are building down to the last 100 folks on base.

The idea of just packing everyone up on a Friday and leaving.....just doesn't work. Folks need to ask how their own company would function if the boss said to pack up and leave today....what kind of mess remains for someone to clean up?
23:42 June 23, 2010 by Living_in_Germany
That is an older picture of Campbell Barracks, the Army moved away from BDUs a few years ago, plus they have Ponds guards on the gates.

Oh I hope the military stays in Germany as long as possible. Heidelberg is wonderful, the food is great, crime is non-existent and the money is TAX FREE. I'll be ridding this gravy train until it falls off the tracks and grinds to a HALT!

PS: Allan smokes poles.
01:04 June 24, 2010 by Yahu777
Excellent! It could go a little faster, but it really is time to end the 65 year old occupation of Germany.
08:26 June 24, 2010 by danceswithgoats
Yahu777 - you are right. The 65 year occupation of Germany that has turned Germans from a nation of meat eaters to a nation of grass eaters. Mission accomplished! Of course, all those landlords that are charging exorbitant rent are going to take it in the shorts.
14:22 June 24, 2010 by eichbaumman
What a great place. I lived there for 20+ years. From the cement antenna tower on Konigstuhl, to the Antennas at the shopping center, along with all the other comms I installed. I know Heidelberg like the back of my hand. Dr. Flotters on the Haupt Str (if it is still there), to the Castle where my good friend got married, to the open air stadium in the hills behind Handschuheim, to the Rod and Gun club in Oftersheim (where I won 19 Rifles and Shotguns in Skeet shoots) to the wonderful apartment I lived in on Blumentalstr. Great place. 1975-1997. End of an era
15:18 June 25, 2010 by Beachrider
I am glad that the USA will no longer spend its tax dollars in an area where Military presence is no longer necessary. Bring them home and spend their money in the USA.

As to military occupation, that was probably part of what happened in the 40s and 50s, but the last 60 years was more about joint military coordination. Germany WAS going to be the battleground for WW 3, back in the 60s and 70s. Since the 'fall of the wall' in the late 80s, the reason for this ongoing expense has been more and more questionable.

I doubt that all Americans will leave German soil at any time in the next 50 years (there are Germans in the USA, too), but this old-style basing was to handle an issue that is now Germany's issue and to be paid for by German taxpayers. So I am OK with closing these kinds of operations.
18:43 June 25, 2010 by Gretl
I believe the intent of the occupation was until all the WWII generation had died out. However, I end up wondering if the animosity towards Turks will have history repeating itself.
19:44 June 25, 2010 by GermanyBert
The US military will not be entirely leaving Germany any time in the near future. The Grafenwoehr/Wilseck Training areas and Ramstein Air Base will be open for many many decades to come.

Grett, you are completely wrong in regards to staying until the WWII generation had died out.

Bernie1927....you are full of crap.
10:21 June 26, 2010 by TravelOnward
Time marches forward...requirements change...Germany and the US have been and will continue to be partners and allies in this ever changing world. It is a good thing to reduce the American presence in Germany...reduce, not eliminate. Total withdrawal or elimination of US forces would not be good for Germany or the USA...or for that matter world security. We share a common goal with Germany for a secure Europe and a secure world. Our presence in Germany helps us both to reach that goal and maintain that goal. When we were in the midst of the "Cold War" a large presence was necessary...we are no longer fighting a cold war and a large presence in no longer necessary. Consolidation and reduction makes sense...and yes, some of the local communities will feel the economic impact...but that is one of the results of progress and change. One comment if you will allow...we are "invited" guest of the German Government. The US stopped being an occupation force once Germany joined NATO on 06 May 1955. My only regret about our long period of cooperation and friendship is that it has led to the exportation of many of our cultural icons such as McDonnalds, KFC, television shows with no moral or ethical basis, etc. Surly we can do better than these as representatives of our American culture. One only has to step outside their homes here in Germany to experience a rich and vibrant culture.
11:52 June 30, 2010 by snorge

When your taxes go up because American soldiers aren't contributing to your economy anymore, remember this comment your wrote as you eat your daily portion of spaghetti -which will be all u can afford!!!

And while you are at it, go get a life, we helped build your country back from nothing after you all destroyed it with your idealism you ungrateful twit!
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