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Saturday, 18 February 2017



German Armed forces

The Bundeswehr (German: [ˈbʊndəsˌveːɐ̯], (Federal Defence) is the unified armed forces of Germany and their civil administration and procurement authorities. The States of Germany are not allowed to maintain armed forces of their own, since the German Constitution states that matters of defense fall into the sole responsibility of the federal government.

The Bundeswehr is divided into a military part (armed forces or Streitkräfte) and a civil part with the armed forces administration (Wehrverwaltung). The military part of the federal defense force consists of the Heer (Army), Marine (Navy), Luftwaffe (Air Force), Streitkräftebasis (Joint Support Service), Zentraler Sanitätsdienst (Joint Medical Service), and the Kommando Cyber- und Informationsraum (Cyber and Information Space Command) branches.

As of 9 February 2017, the Bundeswehr has a strength of 177,956 active soldiers, placing it among the 30 largest military forces in the world and making it the second largest in the European Union behind France in terms of personnel. In addition the Bundeswehr has approximately 31,700 reserve personnel (2015). With German military expenditures at €37 billion,the Bundeswehr is among the top ten best-funded forces in the world, even if in terms of share of German GDP, military expenditures remain average at 1.2% and below the NATO recommendation of 2%.

The Bundeswehr are in the process of integrating smaller NATO members Brigades into divisions of the German army.

2 of 3 Royal Netherlands Army Brigades are now under German Command. In 2014 the 11th Airmobile Brigade, was integrated into the German Division of fast forces (DSK). Also the Dutch 43rd Mechanized Brigade, will be integrated into the 1st Panzer Division (Bundeswehr) of the German army. With the integration starting at the beginning of 2016, and the unit becoming operational at the end of 2019. The Dutch-German military cooperation are seen as an example for setting up a European defense union.

Also the Czech Republic´s 4th Rapid Deployment Brigade, and Romania’s 81st Mechanized Brigade, will be integrated into Germany’s 10 Armoured Division and Rapid Response Forces Division.

Lets have a quick look at it's Strength


The German Army (GermanDeutsches Heer) is the land component of the armed forces of Germany. The present-day German Army was founded in 1955 as part of the newly formed West German Bundeswehr together with the Marine (German Navy) and the Luftwaffe (German Air Force). As of 9 February 2017, the German Army has a strength of 60,101 soldiers


Total Manpower:  80, 857, 400  
Available Manpower:   37,000, 000
Fit For Service:  29, 540, 000
Reaching Military age:   791, 100
Active front line personnel:   180, 000
Active Reserve personnel:   145, 000


Tanks:  408 
Armored Fighting Vehicles: 5, 869  
Self Propelled Guns:   154
Towed Artillery:  0

Multiple Launch Rocket System:   50   


Total Aircraft:   676
Fighters/Interceptors: 170  
Fixed Wing Attack Aircraft:   170   
Transport Aircraft:   345
Trainer Aircraft:   51
Helicopters:   360
Attack Helicopters:  44


Total Naval Strength:   81
Aircraft Carrier:   0
Frigates:   10
Destroyers:  0 
Corvettes:   5
Submarines:   5   
Coastal Defense Crafts:   4    
Mine Warfare:   15


The German Army (GermanDeutsches Heer) is the land component of the armed forces of Germany. The present-day German Army was founded in 1955 as part of the newly formed West German Bundeswehr together with the Marine (German Navy) and the Luftwaffe (German Air Force). As of 9 February 2017, the German Army has a strength of 60,101 soldiers

All corps have now been disbanded or transferred to a multinational level such as Multinational Corps North East. IV Corps was reorganized and on 31 March 2002 became an overseas deployment command, the Einsatzführungskommando der Bundeswehr, like the British Permanent Joint Headquarters. An army reorganisation in recent years has seen the disbandment of the 13th Mechanized Infantry Division headquarters, a merge of the Airmobile Operations Division and Special Operations Division headquarters, the disbandment of the 1st Airmobile Brigade, and reshuffling of units between divisions. No heavy brigades were disbanded, but the two remaining heavy divisions command three rather than two brigades.
As of 9 February 2017 there were a total of 60,303 soldiers on active service in the German Army. However, the quite unique German military branch of the Joint Support Service consists to a significant degree of Heeresuniformträger (army uniform wearing personnel). This is also contributed to by the Joint Medical Service, which does have other solely-military-medical branch counterparts (such as in South Africa).
In accordance with EU working hour regulations, the regular work-week is 41 hours, although numerous exceptions exist for e.g. deployments in oversea missions, training exercises, emergencies, and similar military needs.

The German Army is commanded by the Inspector of the Army (Inspekteur des Heeres) based at the Army Command (Kommando Heer) in Strausberg near Berlin. The training centers are supervised by the Army Training Command in Leipzig.
The combat units of the army include two armored divisions with three brigades each, one rapid forces division and the Franco-German Brigade, which is under direct supervision of the Army Command. Unlike other European armies such as neighbouring France, regiments are not a common form of organization and are thus rare in the German army. Battalions are directly subordinate to brigades or to divisions as divisional troops. Unlike most other NATO members German infantry battalions field 1,000 men, i.e. twice what a US Army battalions fields.

Air Force

The German Air Force is the aerial warfare branch of the Bundeswehr, the armed forces of Germany. With a strength of 28,312 personnel.  It is the fourth largest air force within the European Union, after the air forces of the United Kingdom, France and Italy. Although its budget has been significantly reduced since the end of the Cold War in 1989–1990, the Luftwaffe is still among the best-equipped air forces of the world.
The German Air Force (as part of the Bundeswehr) was founded in 1956 during the era of the Cold War as the aerial warfare branch of the armed forces of then West Germany. After the reunification of West and East Germany in 1990, it integrated parts of the air force of the former German Democratic Republic, which itself had been founded in 1956 as part of the National People's Army. There is no organizational continuity between the current Luftwaffe of the Bundeswehr and the former Luftwaffe of the Wehrmacht combined forces founded in 1935, which was completely disbanded in 1945/46 after World War II. The term Luftwaffe that is used for both the historic and the current German air force is the German-language generic designation of any air force.
The commander of the German Air Force is Lieutenant General Karl Müllner. In 2015 the Air Force uses eleven air bases, two of which host no flying units. Furthermore, the Air Force has a presence at three civil airports. In 2012, the Air Force had an authorized strength of 28,475 active soldiers and 4,914 reservists.


The German Navy is the navy of Germany and part of the unified Bundeswehr ("Federal Defense"), the German Armed Forces. The German Navy was originally known as the Bundesmarine ("Federal Navy") from 1956 until 1995 when Deutsche Marine ("German Navy") became the official name with respect to the 1990 incorporation of the East German Volksmarine ("People's Navy"). It is deeply integrated into the NATO alliance. Its primary mission is protection of Germany's territorial waters and maritime infrastructure as well as sea lines of communication. Apart from this, the German Navy participates in peacekeeping operations, and renders humanitarian assistance and disaster relief.

German warships permanently participate in all four NATO Maritime Groups. The German Navy is also engaged in operations against international terrorism such as Operation Enduring Freedom and NATO Operation Active Endeavour.
Presently the largest operation the German Navy is participating in is UNIFIL off the coast of Lebanon. The German contribution to this operation is two frigates, four fast attack craft, and two auxiliary vessels. The naval component of UNIFIL has been under German command.The navy is operating a number of development and testing installations as part of an inter-service and international network. Among these is the Centre of Excellence for Operations in Confined and Shallow Waters (COE CSW), an affiliated centre of Allied Command Transformation. The COE CSW was established in April 2007 and officially accredited by NATO on 26 May 2009. It is co-located with the staff of the German Flotilla 1 in Kiel whose Commander is double-hatted as Director, COE CSW.


Ships and submarines

In total, there are about 65 commissioned ships in the German Navy, including; 10 frigates, 5 corvettes, 3 minesweepers, 10 minehunters, 6 submarines, 11 replenishment ships and 20 miscellaneous auxiliary vessels. The displacement of the navy is 220,000 tonnes. In addition, the German Navy and the Royal Danish Navy are in cooperation in the "Ark Project". This agreement made the Ark Project responsible for the strategic sealift of German armed forces where the full-time charter of three roll-on-roll-off cargo and troop ships are ready for deployments. In addition, these ships are also kept available for the use of the other European NATO countries.
The three vessels have a combined displacement of 60,000 tonnes Including these ships, the total ships' displacement available to the Deutsche Marine is 280,000 tonnes.
A total of five Joint Support Ships, two JSS800 and three JSS400, were planned during the 1995–2010 period but the programme appears now to have been abandoned, not having been mentioned in two recent defence reviews. The larger ships would have been tasked for strategic troop transport and amphibious operations, and were to displace 27,000 to 30,000 tons for 800 soldiers. The German Navy will use the Joint Support Ship HNLMS Karel Doorman (A833) of the Royal Netherlands Navy as part of the integration of the German Navy Marines (Seebatallion) in the Royal Netherlands Marine Corps as of 2016.

Special Forces

The German special forces include the Special Operations Command (Kommando Spezialkräfte, KSK) of the German Army and the Naval Special Forces Command (Kommando Spezialkräfte Marine, KSM) of the German Navy. Both are regular units and fully integrated in the branches of the German Armed Forces. During operations, special forces are led by the special operations division of the Bundeswehr Joint Operations Command (Einsatzführungskommando der Bundeswehr) in Potsdam, which belongs to the Joint Support Service (Streitkräftebasis).
Beside KSK and KSM, there is a numerous of specialized units which are able to support special forces operations.

Special Forces

Army Special Forces

Most German special forces are part of the Kommando Spezialkräfte (KSK) which was founded in 1996. The KSK is a brigade level unit and stationed in Calw. It is under the command of the Rapid Response Forces Division (Division Schnelle Kräfte) and made up of around 1.100 soldiers. Most of them serve in the support forces department.

Naval Special Forces

The Kommando Spezialkräfte Marine (KSM) was founded in 2014 and built around the Commando Frogmen Company (Kampfschwimmerkompanie), the oldest German special forces unit. The KSM is based in Eckernförde and is part of the 1st Flotilla (Einsatzflottille 1) in Kiel.

Special Forces Aviation

The KSK is currently supported by the German Army Aviation Corps and - since reorientation of the Bundeswehr in 2010 - by the helicopter force of the German Air Force. From 2015, the KSK gets its own aviation component made up of 15 EC645 T2 utility helicopters. They will be part of the Helicopter Wing 64 at the Holzdorf Air Base.
The KSM is supported by the Naval Air Wing 5 in Nordholz which operates the Westland Lynx and Westland Sea King.

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