The German military is facing a greater shortage of weapons and equipment than prior to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine a year ago, according to the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Armed Forces Eva Högl.
In her annual report released on Tuesday, Eva Högl, who acts as an advocate defending the rights of the troops, denounced the government for being slow not only when it came to spending the EUR 100 bn special fund set up last year in bringing the forces back up to scratch, but also with replenishing the military’s stocks after the rush to send arms to Kyiv.
Högl also urged officials to speed up the modernisation of barracks that she described as being in a disgraceful state all over the country, criticizing a lack of working toilets, clean showers and Wifi. She put the investment needs for updating the infrastructure at EUR 50 bn in total.
“The Bundeswehr has too little of everything, and it has even less since (Russia’s invasion on) February 24, 2022,” Högl told reporters in Berlin. She demanded orders to be placed more swiftly, and stressed how the moment a howitzer is handed over to Ukraine, the process of ordering a replacement needs to be launched right away.
Högl highlighted the problems with lack of equipment, even basic personal items like helmets, which is obstructing the training and readiness of the army. “The Bundeswehr lacks everything, from personal items, such as personal equipment, small devices, night-vision equipment, radios, to larger devices. Our soldiers have to deal with shortages daily. This is hindering education and training,” she said.
The Commissioner commended the position of Defense Minister Boris Pistorius, in admitting that the country’s army is incapable of defending anyone were a war to happen, since it is understaffed and is sorely lacking in infrastructure.