Number Four Has Issues

But it doesn’t really make much sense, does it?

Four

How can the world’s fourth largest exporter of arms (don’t worry, they’ll be back up at third place again in no time) have “issues with readiness of submarines, aircraft” for its own army? Year in and year out, I mean. One could almost think it’s intentional.

The readiness of Germany’s weapons systems stood at about 70 percent in 2018 overall, but its submarines, heavy-lift helicopters and Tornado fighter jets faced continued challenges, the German Defence Ministry told lawmakers on Monday.

Germany is the fourth largest arms exporter in the world, according to a report released by the Stockholm Peace Research Institute on Monday.

Egypt

Beautiful German weapon sale of the week.

Egypt

Because somebody has to admire them.

With the export (of a frigate) to Egypt, the Federal government maintains its controversial practice of supplying weapons to authoritarian regimes if these are considered to be regional partners of the Federal government. In addition, they will again break the promise not to deliver any more weapons to countries that are directly involved in the Yemen war (Saudi Arabia supports Egypt financially and makes this purchase possible and Egypt has participated in the Yemen conflict as a coalition partner with fighter jets).

Ägypten gehört ganz offiziell zu dieser von Saudi-Arabien geführten Koalition und hat auch mit Kampfjets an Missionen über dem Jemen teilgenommen. Indirekt dürften die Millionen für die deutschen Fregatten ohnehin aus Riad kommen. Seit Jahren hängt Ägypten finanziell am Tropf des Königsreichs. Ohne die massiven Zahlungen wären die ägyptischen Institutionen längst zusammengebrochen.

Israel

Beautiful German weapon sale of the week.

Israel

Because somebody has to admire them.

The contract will be signed in the coming weeks, German parliament member Fritz Felgentreu, responsible for defense affairs in the German Social Democratic Party, told “Globes.”

The German Ministry of Defense estimates the cost of the agreement, which includes leasing five Heron TP UAVs manufactured by IAI in cooperation with Airbus, at €1 billion over nine years.

German Of The Day: Unproblematisch

That means problem-free or uncomplicated.

Exports

And that is what Germany’s economics minister Sigmar Gabriel (SPD) has to say about the significant rise in German arms exports. It’s problem-free. And totally uncomplicated.

He is the economics minister, after all. What could be more “economical” than increased arms sales? And you also need to know that this guy took office in 2013 promising to significantly restrict arms exports. So, well, there. At least his heart is in the right place.

SPD-Chef Gabriel hatte sein Amt Ende 2013 mit dem Versprechen angetreten, die Rüstungsexporte deutlich einzuschränken. Nun räumte er ein, dass seine Halbzeitbilanz „Licht und Schatten“ aufweise.

NATO’s Eastern European Members

Beautiful German weapon sales of the week.

NATO

Because somebody has to admire them.

Military action by Russian-backed groups against Ukrainian government forces has started to nudge policymakers back towards weaponry designed to resist a land assault.

Lithuania

Beautiful German weapon sale of the week (not).

Lithuania

Because somebody has to admire them if they would only be there to admire but not in this case because countries like Lithuania that actually need weapons from countries like Germany can’t have them because that might hurt countries like Russia’s feelings and we wouldn’t want that.

Maybe the Lithuanians would be interested in some German broomsticks instead?

Die baltischen Staaten fürchten russische Aggressionen nach dem Vorbild der Krim-Invasion und des Kriegs in der Ostukraine. Litauen will seine Armee deshalb modernisieren. Hilfe aus Deutschland gibt es dabei nicht.

German Police Academy II?

Word is out that Germans will “most likely” provide military training to Kurdish groups in northern Iraq.

Kurds

That’s cool, I guess. But we can only hope that these trainers won’t be as ineffective as those who just spent ten years training Afghan police forces and failed miserably at it.

German officials have been training police in Afghanistan for a decade, but a visit to their training center in Mazar-e-Sharif creates major doubts about the effectiveness of the mission. Afghan police remain poorly prepared to tackle the mighty challenges they will face as Western forces withdraw.

Ineffective and Unsustainable: Failure Threatens Afghan Police Training Mission