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Military: Ministry of Defense wants to strengthen Bundeswehr reserve

Military: Ministry of Defense wants to strengthen Bundeswehr reserve

Who else could fight if it came down to it? Military planners calculate that there are about 800,000 former soldiers of the age limit. But without conscription, the number is constantly shrinking.

The Ministry of Defense is planning for a significantly increased Bundeswehr reserve. As in the Cold War, this should be trained and equipped so that it can reinforce or replace the active troops in combat, said Lieutenant General Alexander Hoppe, Deputy Inspector General and Commissioner for Reservist Affairs, to the German Press Agency in Berlin.

The aim of the military planners is to have up to 60,000 men and women as reservists in a so-called basic order in the future, who are planned and qualified for a fixed task in this status. Hoppe said: “I am convinced that we have to adapt the reserve completely to the current security policy challenges so that it can properly support the Bundeswehr in carrying out its task of national and alliance defense.”

The ministry is also examining how large the number of people is who could be called up and suitable for service in the event of a defense (“unordered reservist activity”). This refers to citizens who have served in the Bundeswehr but have not been ordered. This group is large, but it has been shrinking since conscription was suspended in 2011.

“It melts every year”

“There are different figures. We assume that there are around 800,000 who can still be called up under military law. In principle, that is everyone who has served in the Bundeswehr at some point and has left and is within the age limit, i.e. also the last generation of conscripts,” said Hoppe. And: “But if you consider the age problem, you also know that the number is decreasing every year. It is shrinking every year. That means we have to counteract this and find and recruit additional personnel for the reserve.”

However, for NATO’s revised defense plans, the Bundeswehr, which has shrunk to 181,500 soldiers last year despite a so-called personnel offensive, will have to grow significantly. NATO’s plans will mean an increase in the personnel target from the current 203,000 soldiers to “a trend well over 272,000” men and women in the armed forces, reported “Spiegel”. The reserve can only be one building block. Defense Minister Boris Pistorius (SPD) will explain his proposal for a model of conscription on Wednesday.

Source: Stern

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