Baerbock rejects conscription even in times of war
Aforeign minister Annalena Bärbock He clearly rejects conscription in Germany, also with a view to the Russian war of aggression in Ukraine. She does not believe that it makes sense for security – also with a view to the highly specialized times – to commit people to the Bundeswehr or alternative service who may not want it at all, said the Greens politician at a question and answer session on Friday citizens in Munich. “Especially not when we are in a situation where an incredible number of people – younger, but also older – say: We want to volunteer.”
The Foreign Minister pointed out that in Germany, for example, there are all the federal volunteer programs and that the financial resources are not yet sufficient to enable anyone who wants to volunteer to do so.
Baerbock considers the tank ring exchange to fail
Baerbock ended her multi-day trip to Germany in Munich on Friday. With the “listening tour”, the Foreign Minister wanted to find out which issues Germans are concerned with in terms of their security. The background is that the Federal Foreign Office is responsible for preparing the first comprehensive national security strategy for the Federal Government.
With view on Ukraine Baerbock did not rule out a failure of the armored ring exchange agreed with Poland. “If this path wasn’t right, then we have to reflect on that and see how we can get active elsewhere,” said Baerbock to “Bild”. In wartime situations, you don’t always know what the perfect way is.
In the ring exchange procedure, eastern allies of Ukraine are to provide easy-to-operate Soviet-design tanks. In return, Germany promised the NATO partners modern equipment as a replacement. Poland’s President Andrzej Duda has repeatedly accused Berlin of not keeping promises.
Baerbock now said to “Bild” that the ring exchange had been initiated “because it seemed to us to be the best and fastest means at the time”. Now the federal government must deal with the question of why such an exchange “obviously does not happen and whether we then have to provide other support”.
The minister rejected the Polish government’s allegations of breach of word and deception in connection with the tank ring exchange: “In a situation like this, no one deceives their European neighbors.” be able to replace every single tank overnight with a snap of your fingers.”
Germany could not deliver new tanks about which the armed forces don’t have it myself, said the Greens politician. Others, on the other hand, could be delivered immediately.
Federal Defense Minister Christine Lambrecht (SPD) had defended the tank ring exchange against criticism on Thursday. It is very important to the federal government to fill in the gaps; but that cannot happen overnight. In addition to Poland, the federal government has also agreed ring exchange deals with the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Slovenia and Greece.