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Secretary of Defense: Reports of Lambrecht’s impending resignation

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Christine Lambrecht has long been controversial as a minister, most recently her New Year’s Eve video made negative headlines. Now there are increasing indications that she could resign.

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Defense Minister Christine Lambrecht has been under criticism for months – according to media reports there are now indications of an imminent change at the head of the department.

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The “Bild” newspaper, the “Süddeutsche Zeitung” and ntv reported on Friday evening that the SPD politician wanted to resign. At the request of the German Press Agency, however, there was no confirmation from the Ministry of Defense. A spokesman said in the evening that these were rumors that would not be commented on.

However, the dpa received indications from several sources that Lambrecht could decide on the office in the coming week. In the event of a resignation, a central post in the traffic light cabinet of Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD), not least against the background of the Ukraine war, would have to be filled.

Union calls for Lambrecht’s resignation

Spokesmen for the federal government and SPD did not want to comment on the reports. There has always been great criticism of Lambrecht’s administration, and the opposition Union has repeatedly demanded her resignation. Union faction Vice Johann Wadephul now called for clarity to be created quickly.

Critics had accused Lambrecht (57) of the slow start to procurement for the Bundeswehr or a lack of expertise, but also her public appearances. A photo of her son traveling in a Bundeswehr helicopter made negative headlines. Most recently, a New Year’s message spread on Instagram, in which she spoke about the Ukraine war accompanied by New Year’s Eve fireworks, caused irritation.

The Ministry of Defense has also come into focus as a result of the Russian war of aggression against Ukraine. In response, the federal government had launched a 100 billion euro program to better equip the Bundeswehr – the modernization of the armed forces is a mammoth task. The Ministry of Defense also plays an important role in supporting Ukraine.

Scholz defends Lambrecht

In mid-December, Chancellor Scholz defended his defense minister. “The Bundeswehr has a first-class defense minister,” Scholz told the Süddeutsche Zeitung at the time. “I can only wonder about some of the criticism.” It is now a question of strengthening the Bundeswehr in the long term and reliably equipping it with weapons and ammunition.

Union faction Vice Wadephul told the editorial network Germany (RND) that a resignation was overdue. “The chancellor held on to it for too long and now has to eliminate the uncertainty quickly. The soldiers in particular can expect that.” Fast hot, this weekend. “The Bundestag is meeting next week, and talks are taking place in Ramstein about further military aid for Ukraine. Germany cannot stand up with a defense minister on call,” emphasized the CDU politician.

Kubicki: Option of a major cabinet reshuffle

Deputy FDP party leader Wolfgang Kubicki raised the option of a major cabinet reshuffle. A possible replacement of the defense ministry is the responsibility of the social democratic coalition partner, he told the newspapers of the Funke media group. “This time it would be good if this immensely important ministry was led by someone with the necessary background knowledge.” He could not assess whether Chancellor Scholz was considering a major cabinet reshuffle. “However, he must also have taken note of the fact that many a social-democratic department does not present the very best image in public perception.”

According to a survey, the majority of Germans support Lambrecht’s resignation. This emerges from the ZDF “political barometer” published on Friday. According to this, 60 percent of those surveyed were in favor of the minister resigning; 25 percent opposed it.

Lambrecht took over the Ministry of Defense with the start of the traffic light government in December 2021. Previously, she had been Federal Minister of Justice in the last cabinet of Angela Merkel (CDU), after the resignation of Franziska Giffey she had also headed the Ministry of Family Affairs.

Source: Stern

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