News of the F-35 crisis in Germany. Last Minute GERMANY, Berlin, Russia headlines and events
BERLIN. Germany underwent a historic transformation of its military strategy during the Russo-Ukrainian War.
Prime Minister Olaf Scholz announced last March, weeks after the war broke out, that he would meet his country’s target of spending 2 percent of NATO’s GDP on defense. One of the goals that had a big impact was to increase the defense budget by 100 billion euros.
Transport helicopters, air defense systems, battle tanks and, as the most prestigious project, a total of 35 new F-35 aircraft were added to the list of additional budget created with the aim of almost completely updating the army weapons.
It was announced that only 42 of the 109 Eurofighters in the hands of the German Air Force were ready for use, and only 38 of the 89 Tornado fighters were operational.
Olaf Scholz announced last week that he wants the contract to buy the F-35s, known as the world’s most advanced fighter jets, to be completed by the end of this year. However, stealth fighters manufactured by the American company Lockheed Martin caused a big crisis even before they were bought.
According to the news, based on statements from circles close to the Federal Department of Defense and defense experts, agreements to maintain and upgrade the F-35, which are intended to replace the German-French Tornado co-production aircraft, have not been concluded. done, and the improvements to be made at the Büchel airbase, where they will be deployed, will be postponed until 2026, when deliveries begin.
It also became known that obtaining the necessary permits for flights worth 9.9 billion euros in Germany could take a long time, and all this will cause additional financial burdens, as well as problems in the delivery schedule.
Minister of Defense sacked
After this news, which was described in the German press as a “big scandal”, criticism of Federal Defense Minister Christine Lambrecht intensified.
While the reactions to Minister Lambrecht were not only from the opposition parties, but also from the ruling parties, Johan Wadephul, deputy chairman of the CDU/CSU main opposition group in the Bundestag, said: “It is not only about this incident, but also generally. “The biggest responsibility for the current bad situation of the German army lies with Federal Defense Minister Christine Lambrecht,” he said.
Eva Högl, the SPD’s spokesman for defense policy in the government, said: “That’s not the case. We must hurry. The German army is losing its defensive power,” he warned.
The German newspaper Bild reported that Prime Minister Scholz plans to remove Lamprecht from his post. According to the allegations, Eva Höhl is seen as a replacement for Lamprecht.
Lamprecht became the object of criticism
Christine Lamprecht is one of the most criticized figures in the coalition government, which has completed its first year in office. Earlier it became known that the minister flew in a government helicopter to visit a military base in northern Germany, taking with him his 21-year-old son, who was on vacation on the island of Sylt in the North Sea.
Last July, Lambrecht’s announcement that Berlin would not be able to supply Kyiv with more weapons at a time when Russia continued its brutal attacks on Ukraine caused surprise and a reaction from the Ukrainian authorities.
It has even been argued that due to Lambrecht’s poor leadership, the soldiers and officers of the German army did not have suitable clothing in the days when the cold began.
Finally, it became known that Lambrecht’s request for more money to provide urgently needed ammunition for the army was rejected by Finance Minister Christian Lindner of the Liberal Free Democratic Party (FDP).
Lindner’s sarcastic response to the Secretary of Defense has been taught to ask why he hasn’t spoken about the shortcomings of the military for almost a year. Prime Minister Scholz’s statement, trying to defend Lambrecht, “I assure you he is doing everything he can to succeed and he will succeed,” was reminiscent of the last declarations of support given to coaches before he was kicked off the football team. he coached after the bad results he got.
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