Murphy's Law: Why Germans Won't Fight


December25, 2006: Germany, under great pressure from its NATO allies to allow its troops to join the fight against the Taliban, has made a gesture. So far, Germany has resisted calls to allow its combat troops in Afghanistan to actually engage in combat. However, mindful off all the ill-will this policy is creating with its allies, Germany has offered to send five Tornado warplanes to Afghanistan. These aircraft would only be used for reconnaissance (no dropping bombs, smart or otherwise), and would be available for taking pictures all over Afghanistan. This is another empty offer, as most reconnaissance these days is carried out with UAVs, which can stay over a target area for hours at a time. However, there will be some work for the Tornados dated reconnaissance capabilities. So it's not a complete waste, although some German politicians are trying block even this effort. 

The air force detachment will contain about 250 troops. Germany already has 3,000 troops in Afghanistan, and will withdraw some so that these new air force troops do not push the number over 3,000.

German troops have seen combat in Afghanistan. A detachment of German commandos arrived in Afghanistan during December, 2001. Shortly thereafter, the German commandos held a little ceremony to celebrate the first combat action by German soldiers in 56 years. When word of that got back to Germany, there was a bit of tiff, as Germany has been tried to get away from warfare since 1945. The struggle continues in Afghanistan. All this is believed to emanate from guilt over the great slaughter Germany inflicted on Europe during World War II. Less mentioned is the fact that Germany lost the last two wars it fought in, big time. So there might be more, unspoken,  reasons for  being gun shy, than the obvious ones.


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