World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


New German defense policy guidelines issued

New defense policy guidelines issued

Defense Minister Peter Struck presented the new defense policy guidelines to the cabinet and officially issued them on May 21. In an ensuing press conference he indicated that a revision of German defense policy principles had become necessary in light of the fact that the security situation has changed in Europe and elsewhere in the world.

"Traditional national defense considerations can no longer determine the priority structures and capabilities of the armed forces," Struck said. At the present time and for the foreseeable future there is no reason to assume a threat of attack against Germany by conventional forces. As such, there is going to be a reprioritization of armed forces missions. "International conflict prevention and crisis management, including the fight against international terrorism, are going to be moved to the top of the list," Struck noted. These will be the missions that determine the new structures of the armed forces. There are to be deployments only in cooperation with allies and partners in the framework of the United Nations, NATO, and the European Union.

Given the nature of these missions and the current tight budget situation the German armed forces will concentrate on preserving and improving their core military capabilities. The focus is not going to be on the capability of individual branches of the military but on that of the armed forces as a whole. The core functions in question are:

command and control,

intelligence gathering and reconnaissance,


combat effectiveness,

support and sustainability,

survivability, and


Keeping the draft

The chief of staff will be formulating a new strategy for the armed forces and in this context will have to take into account the question of mandatory military service, the length of the minimum required period of military service, and indeed whether or not to abandon the idea of mandatory military service, Struck explained. By the end of this year the chief of staff is to present a needs assessment for the armed forces on the basis of the new guidelines. Military and civilian personnel strength requirements will also have to be assessed. By next spring the armed forces are to have the necessary figures together in a planning report based on the new guidelines.

Struck underscored the need to keep the draft system in place, saying that mandatory military service, adjusted to current requirements, will continue to be indispensable for the readiness, capability, and cost-effectiveness of the armed forces. "Through the general military service requirement we ensure the integration of the armed forces in society," Struck said, adding that a decision would be taken on the draft by the end of this year.

© Scoop Media

World Headlines


Preliminary Results: MH17 Investigation Report

The Joint Investigation Team (JIT) is convinced of having obtained irrefutable evidence to establish that on 17 July 2014, flight MH-17 was shot down by a BUK missile from the 9M38-series. According to the JIT there is also evidence identifying the launch location that involves an agricultural field near Pervomaiskyi which, at the time, was controlled by pro-Russian fighters. More>>


At The UN: Paris Climate Agreement Moves Closer To Entry Into Force

The Paris Agreement on climate change moved closer toward entering into force in 2016 as 31 more countries joined the agreement today at a special event hosted by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. More>>



Gordon Campbell: On The End Game In Spain (And Other World News)

The coverage of international news seems almost entirely dependent on a random selection of whatever some overseas news agency happens to be carrying overnight... Here are a few interesting international stories that have largely flown beneath the radar this past week. More>>

Amnesty/Human Rights Watch: Appalling Abuse, Neglect Of Refugees On Nauru

Refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru, most of whom have been held there for three years, routinely face neglect by health workers and other service providers who have been hired by the Australian government, as well as frequent unpunished assaults by local Nauruans. More>>


Other Australian Detention

Gordon Campbell: On The Censorship Havoc In South Africa’s State Broadcaster

Demands have included an order to staff that there should be no further negative news about the country’s President Jacob Zuma, and SABC camera operators responsible for choosing camera angles that have allegedly made the President ‘look shorter’ were to be retrained... More>>


Gordon Campbell: On A Bad Week For Malcolm Turnbull, And The Queen

Malcolm Turnbull’s immediate goal – mere survival – is still within his grasp... In every other respect though, this election has been a total disaster for the Liberals. More>>


Get More From Scoop

Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news