Leadership: Germans Struggle Over Combat Rules

Archives

February1, 2007: The German government is still battling leftist politicians opposed to sending six Tornado reconnaissance aircraft to Afghanistan. Meanwhile, German air force commanders have ordered the crews of the six Tornados, designated to go, to learn how to drop smart bombs. The recon aircraft are equipped with video cameras that can transfer, in real time, video to ground stations or other aircraft. But the recon aircraft can also carry smart bombs, and take out targets themselves. Since many targets in Afghanistan are time sensitive (Taliban pickup trucks halted along a road, or Taliban in a safe house or camp, which they might leave at any moment), it makes sense for the recon aircraft to be armed. But the German government is trying to get parliamentary approval by promising that the recon aircraft will be unarmed. This is not very popular in the German military. Other NATO allies (U.S., Britain and Canada) with troops fighting in Afghanistan, are putting a lot of pressure on Germany to allow the 3,000 German troops there get involved in the fighting. This is becoming an issue back in Germany, where the leftist politicians are trying to build enough support in parliament to keep German troops out of combat. The German troops are getting tired of being taunted by the other troops with stuff like, "we fight so you can drink beer in safety." The only German troops that are allowed to fight in Afghanistan are the KSK commandos, and they have been doing it since 2002. Very quietly. No reporters allowed. Despite that, two commandos are being investigated for kicking a prisoner in Afghanistan.

 


Article Archive

Leadership: Current 2019 2018 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 2007 2006 2005 2004 2003 2002 2001 2000 1999 


X

ad
0
20

Help Keep Us Soaring

We need your help! Our subscription base has slowly been dwindling. We need your help in reversing that trend. We would like to add 20 new subscribers this month.

Each month we count on your subscriptions or contributions. You can support us in the following ways:

  1. Make sure you spread the word about us. Two ways to do that are to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.
  2. Subscribe to our daily newsletter. We’ll send the news to your email box, and you don’t have to come to the site unless you want to read columns or see photos.
  3. You can contribute to the health of StrategyPage. A contribution is not a donation that you can deduct at tax time, but a form of crowdfunding. We store none of your information when you contribute..
Subscribe   Contribute   Close