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Germany’s Bundeswehr not battleworthy beyond several hours’ fight — retired German officer

Should Germany or any other NATO country be attacked, the Bundeswehr's equipment would not last long, Ralf Thiele believes

BERLIN, December 26. /TASS/. The current material and technical condition of Germany’s armed forces, the Bundeswehr, has deteriorated sharply over the past two years, Colonel (Ret.) Ralf Thiele, a retired Bundeswehr officer told the Focus Online publication.

"At the beginning of the attack (the start of Russia’s special military operation in Ukraine - TASS), the Bundeswehr was already understaffed. Now it is even worse," he contends.

According to the expert, the German armed forces can only blame themselves for this deplorable state of affairs, as they long delayed needed upgrades.

Should Germany or any other NATO country be attacked, the Bundeswehr's equipment would not last long, Thiele believes.

"Before it would have endured three days. Now it’s a matter of hours," Thiele remarked without elaborating.

At the end of February 2022, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz announced the creation of a special 100 bln euro fund specifically for upgrading the Bundeswehr. The earmarked funds were to be used for investment and armament projects, in particular, the purchase of new equipment, ammunition and machinery. According to German experts, however, no significant improvement in the material and technical base of the country's armed forces has been achieved yet. In late March, German Defense Minister Boris Pistorius sacked Gabriele Korb, the head of the Federal Office for Defense Technology and Procurement. She had come under criticism for overly long timeframes and overly complex procedures for weapons and equipment procurement.

The total amount of German support for Ukraine - including humanitarian, financial and military assistance - has exceeded 25 bln euros since February 2022. In November, it was reported that the German government intended to increase support for Kiev from 4 bln euros to 8 bln euros in 2024. However, the authorities have not yet agreed on the budget for next year due to fiscal problems.