tv Doc Film Deutsche Welle April 14, 2019 10:15am-11:00am CEST
that's after the army pledged it would hand over power within to me is. you watching the news live from berlin or don't forget you can always get the latest news and information around the clock on our website at c w dot com the for now on behalf of the whole team thank you so much for joining us. first day in school. or first to conan listen i'm sure is grand the moment arrives. joining your ring and turning on her journey back to freedom. in our interactive documentary tour of an orang utan returns home d.w. don't come to tanks.
the bone despair is in a crisis understaffed overworked and ill equipped the soldiers are frustrated. with the dog from soldiers sometimes feel like the cinderella of the nation we did you know. who the bundeswehr has been shaken by repeated scandals officers abuse their power and right wing activities among the soldiers are not reported the. defense minister or so last sunday lyon is under pressure. both with world market one to look for search of the stores are all german army lost its sense of direction. good job good morning squad. eyes front at ease.
hardly any other publicly funded institution costs germany so much but has as many problems as the bone despair. the government needs to ask itself what kind of armed forces it wants. hons pay to bottles is the parliamentary commissioner for the armed forces in a report to parliament he sharply criticized the budget cuts and poor management of the past years and described troops as stretched to their limits the. conditions for soldiers have become difficult there are too many shortages they don't have enough comrades if you've been in personnel get they have to do the work of three people. there's not enough equipment essential training programs can't be provided and currently we're in the midst of a reorientation process in terms of the purpose of the bundeswehr this. if they want to.
what is the purpose of the bundestag national defense or combat missions abroad. german troops have been taking part in international missions for more than twenty five years now for the past six years in mali in western africa it's currently one of the bundeswehr as most dangerous deployments although the german soldiers in mali have no combat role. nothing. there are calls for the bull despair to take on more and more responsibilities around the globe. germany currently has soldiers on fifteen foreign missions from afghanistan to the baltic to mali. and. since the end of conscription in germany the need for young recruits has. along with many new tasks and overseas missions make the soldiers' jobs more dangerous but soldiers don't make much money despite their growing duty bottom says they could earn more in the private sector.
if the economy continues to expand financial incentives to join the boom as fair won't suffice if anything can attract young people it has to be that it's a good thing to be a soldier for eight or twelve years with a good chance of getting another interesting job afterwards. that's what we have to work on. the bundeswehr has an image problem but instead of launching advertising and recruitment campaigns that would broadly appeal it promises adventure and extreme experiences. must get ready to discover your strengths. to get ready to go to your limit. to get ready for real responsibility. do what really counts is for.
the annual republican conference in berlin attracts thousands of young people interested in digital media in twenty eighteen the bun despair made an attempt to connect. major marcel borne out took part in a number of foreign missions first in kosovo then in afghanistan now he's tasked with recruiting a new generation of soldiers he and his team hope to meet the kind of people here that they would like to hire but the republican refused to give the blue despair its own stand at the convention one at is used to this attitude. you will notice my justification was straightforward no uniforms at the republican and since the republican claims to want to pop the filter bubbles we say ok rainbow colors also include green which is why we should be here even if uniforms are not allowed in and we want to join in the discussion so we'll do it outside the hall.
at. the in despair wants to address and recruit highly motivated and well educated men and women. an awkward topic for the republican organizers. goodness we can buy tickets here and take part in the discussion but they want to be sponsored they want to exhibit themselves they want to do recruiting and we say that's not what the republicans for the bundeswehr can do that elsewhere. but not here i'm not going to throw in. a few peace activists started a spontaneous counter action. ok that's damage to property and that's a criminal offense. maybe so but this is a public space and this discourse clearly has a lot of money behind it look we can have a discussion no problem but i'd ask you not to damage the poster was it was. a republican there was little interest in an exchange of views with soldiers that is a growing problem for the. media because this gets attendance you could say that
the bun despair is gradually becoming separated from society that has to do with the end of conscription and the fact that troop numbers have been going down for years we have vanished from public view by closing down garrisons and we're involved in missions abroad that take place without most of society being aware of them or interested in them so we have this tendency and it's dangerous because we should be in the midst of society we need backing and inclusion in society we want to be part of it. voice. the distance between soldiers and the rest of society can be seen most clearly in the treatment of veterans of foreign missions. this barracks in potsdam houses the mission leadership command.
here a silent commemoration is taking place for german soldiers killed in action. a soldier's mission can end in death that's part of the job. soldiers and families have gathered at the field of honor. alex p. was badly injured on duty in afghanistan he says he's here to honor his fallen comrades . this is. the sea come over it's important that the comrades aren't forgotten just a person is only really dead when they're forgotten. they made the ultimate sacrifice their lives or their health for the mission that they were given. before. the soldier is a special profession and those who carry it out would like to have the complete support of their employers the government and the people. but many say that's
precisely what they don't have. it's not a new problem in one nine hundred fifty five trade unionists youth groups and pacifists protested against the rearmament of postwar west germany and against the founding of the bundeswehr. not in the far after the experiences of war violence and the holocaust what other response could there be but no to the military. of course because i come back now. but despite the protests west german chancellor conrad out in our managed to push the reintroduction of conscription through parliament. i think that i can claim that i am myself and as much an opponent of war as anyone here in this house. but ladies and gentlemen we have to see the world realistically.
in our lead the young federal republic of germany into nato and us into the western champ in the cold war. that came at a price many generals and other officers in the early buddhist there had been world war two officers in the valley. this is the opening of the german armed forces first base and under nothing after a speedy renovation was a historic moment previously has been occupied by french soldiers stand soledad. soldiers the german people expect you to carry out your duty and with all your strength. for the supreme goal of ensuring peace together with our allies. peace was to be ensured through a military anchored in society yet there were fears of an army that would once again develop into a kind of state within the state. in response
a group of officers led by. both from biologists and developed the concept of citizens in uniform. the citizen in uniform concept developed from a particular need in germany to disassociate itself from the past it was a concept of discourse aimed at the domestic debate in germany and schools so they needed these labels that were designed to reconcile civic society with the bundeswehr. it was a very german idea. the principle of civic education is the transfer of the values and norms of germany's constitution to the military. for a soldier in case of doubt the protection of human dignity is to take precedence over obeying orders. and what is the state of civic education in the blunders they are today.
here in bavaria soldiers are gathering for an annual catholic military pilgrimage although we are registered journalists are apparently not welcome. at the barracks commander says you can't then you can't. although the bishop responsible gave us permission to attend the buddhist there continues to stonewall. after talks with the barracks commander the interview with the military chaplain can go ahead. on the morning father patrick how are things what are we doing today. together with around nine hundred to a thousand soldiers we're going to walk eight kilometers on a pilgrimage to the church. that. father patrick has served in mali and afghanistan as a chaplain he has an insight into the mood in the armed forces. the states of how is morale among the troops at the moment here. in terms of ethics the fact is that every soldier who goes on a mission has been trained in armed combat and at some point every soldier has to
decide for themselves how far and. i prepared to go is this my duty is this my job because everyone who goes on a mission knows they could die there. on the around fourteen thousand german soldiers are deployed on a rotating basis in foreign missions or are in training for one. death and injury play a role. in how sensitive our soldiers. seasons there are as sensitive as anyone else and yes they're being prepared for the situation but the question is what that means for each individual and how each individual deals with it and he would go to. the soldiers had come on the pilgrimage to commemorate their fallen comrades. given a diverse group this is overseas missions are a topic of heated debate among the german public some people can't see why the blunders bash should have to get involved explaining that is the job of the government but it doesn't always seem to succeed.
the chaplain says many soldiers are unhappy about what they see as disinterest about their work from politicians and the general public. is the government loses his soldiers are not necessarily trainers spiders their duty is to carry out certain tasks the paramedic is there as a medical orderly you have to differentiate when where and what they're doing and so it's going to this suddenly were interrupted by the staff sergeant from the press department he doesn't want the interview to get too political but it's a military decision that the soldiers go there and that has nothing to do with father patrick. father patrick do you agree with that. did occur in a way yes you want to political statement and it's not my position to say when where and how the brain despair goes on its missions. that's not what i'm asking rather the question is how can we anchor soldiers in society. father patrick
is either unable or unwilling to answer that question again press sergeant yeager interrupts the interview. you did with him that if you again i would like to ask you to restrict the questions you ask you're welcome to ask about his contact to soldiers on foreign missions what problems they have what kind of support or counseling the soldiers need and if you can ask that. i think. is that is it a political question when i ask what does this guiding principle of the citizen in uniform mean to a soldier. is that too political simply to believe that is a political question that has nothing to do with religion or faith oh ok it is never going to happen not if not if it seems that a frank discussion is not wanted to the commissioner for the armed forces hans-peter bottles would disagree he calls for soldiers to be able to voice their
opinions unhindered. then you have to determine whether soldiers in uniform can take part in discussions on security policy for example active generals or whether the right way as in recent years is to only let retired soldiers be heard in public . this concept of civic education should also encompass the freedom to take part in political discussions about the soldiers' own profession their own organization as long as they remain loyal and appropriate. yes. yes. yes i don't. want everything but the civic education concept seems to be too abstract for many soldiers. especially younger ones. that. soldiers aren't fighting for the constitution maybe later as staff officers as a mature individuals but not at the age of twenty that's just
a big allusion they fight for their comrades for their missions for some idea of their country yes as patriots but it's an illusion to think that they go to afghanistan for the constitution of guns the. pathway to the church the pilgrims take a short break the commanding brigadier general you're exactly has a clear notion of civic education. what is the general tell soldiers what does civic education mean fox all means trust openness respect taking everyone seriously that doesn't mean everyone can do what they want we need orders and obedience but everyone has to know what they stand for our fatherland undoubtedly which they defend bravely as we've sworn to do in some cases on the bible and i expect that of them civic education means living that respect trust openness and being informed i can only take soldiers into a dangerous situation if they know why and the reasons behind it. so the concept of
a citizen in uniform presupposes that soldiers in active service have an understanding of what they're fighting for. but that seems to be lacking how do politicians who decide on the mission see it. the former training commander of the german army major general volatile spindler knows why german soldiers are sent to fight and possibly die in afghanistan and mali but he says some politicians don't. think of it i asked one of our elected representatives how did you vote in the last parliamentary vote and he said fine of course with the extension or for this mission and i said now go back to your constituency and explain to voters why we're on this mission abroad. back then it was mainly about afghanistan and he said i don't know. i can't explain it so i said you're telling me that your vote could possibly send soldiers to their deaths and you don't know why we are you serious i was even. is that.
many soldiers feel that back home in germany the population has no idea what they go through on their missions they're frustrated by the lack of appreciation. here active and former soldiers who served on international missions are gathering in front of the german parliament in berlin. they have come to publicly commemorate their comrades who died in action and draw attention to the problems suffered by veterans of the missions. many are severely traumatized but they say they have not been given adequate financial compensation. since one thousand nine hundred ninety two more than three hundred eighty thousand men and women in the buddhist fair have served on international missions. one hundred eight were killed in action it's estimated that sixty thousand of the soldiers returned home psychologically traumatized. for.
the first sergeant alex p. has been in the police fair since two thousand and three. he was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder after being wounded in afghanistan in a good friday attack. you know to the box and all from a computer people grow up with computer games or hollywood films where an explosion takes place and the guy gets up and brushes himself off and makes some color remark . and so people think that's reality and he it isn't people don't know what it's like to be scared to death to be scared for your comrades they don't know what it's like to be targeted by a missile that nearly happened to us on that good friday an anti-tank missile flew past my vehicle and just missed stride. in our windshield and that would have taken five people out of action in other words killed us. alex p. complains that soldiers get virtually no appreciation in germany he sees it as the
politicians job to ensure that they're properly acknowledged many soldiers feel they lack government support even though they go on missions on behalf of that government and if necessary soldiers have to be prepared to kill people. that requires a certain mentality. and come when we go into combat it's necessary for soldiers to have a kind of clear fighting mentality they have to know exactly what they are doing what they are facing and also with the ability to possibly take harsh action against the enemy in an extreme case. major marcel is convinced that alongside proper gear a soldier needs to have the mental ability to survive combat. that's not easy to acquire. and soldiers must always be aware of their responsibility.
to the bun despair wants to have citizens who even as soldiers can think independently and maintain a certain standard if you don't have that standard how can you live in a democracy you would just be taking orders people don't just obey orders of course we have orders and obedience but they have limits and those limits are not there because others tell you there's a limit but yourself have to be able to recognize it even as an ordinary soldier. but what happens when the standard is a false one and a soldier does not accept the constitution. i would like. this area. christiane vice ganda was a soldier in the buddha's fair and also a neo nazi. today he has reformed and wants to have his nazi tattoos removed.
by spirit to believe that the army's military structures the strict hierarchy sporters and obedience and of course weapons training are especially attractive to right wing extremists even though not many neo nazis have been found in the troops . you normally only find what you're looking for and if they're just looking for supposedly open racists or anti semites and so forth and the old school nazis you could say. then they probably won't find many but if and this is the problem in our society they go looking for the neo nazis who like calling themselves the new right because it sounds a little bit nicer than they would find many more. here know fuck boy castle vice get for headed
a right wing youth group when he was seventeen back then most of his friends were keen to serve in the boy in despair vice ganda was fascinated by the military. does loiter in italy it's no surprise that the bone just very attracts the kind of people who would rather have god with us on their belt buckles like a van marked dead and not the constitution is with us so. you know what people who are to become soldiers are more likely to relate to the typical ideas that are widespread in the right wing same question and you know the course and. he did his basic training in two thousand and ten and go top. bolland i did your fellow so. soldiers know that you were a nazi. they realized relatively quickly what kind of political views i had and i'd say i'm a nationalist i'm a nationalistic socialist which at that time was a kind of cosmetic label suggesting not a national socialist i'm not
a racist but an ethno pluralist we hear that nowadays in the debate about the f.d.a. and the like they all say they're not racists or nazis and i used those tricks to use tricks that he ocean called. vice governor says there were two other neo nazis in his unit in go to. his direct superiors the officers and staff sergeant took no action despite his clearly right wing remarks. alternately he was exposed when a soldier in his barrack room reported him to the battalion commander. after that he was transferred and put in detention still he was allowed to take part in daily weapons training. a superior even expressed understanding for the young neo nazi. on the counter and said to me ok what happened to you and go to
a might have to do with the arrogance of the battalion commander or he comes from a famous prussian military family and this is kind of a witch on this is that was the word he used he told me to keep quiet and being conspicuous and let it be all right one. high scale but was allowed to complete his basic training. he was sworn in and only then was he discharged from nazi sympathies on orders from the defense ministry. he wanted his niece is of course we don't want right wing extremists in the bundeswehr we want them to be reported we want all those networks to disappear but let's be honest no one in the book this area would openly admit it. but there are situations where you think really we ought to call. in military counter-intelligence but we don't because it's a comrade. germany's military counter intelligence service. is supposed to identify and assess extremism in the air but it never received
a report about christiane vice. president christoph was unwilling to talk to us about extremism a spokesperson sent us a written statement. counter extremism authorities investigate genuinely notifications come in above all through reports from service units communications from other security agencies and from individuals it may be opens an investigation even when the initial suspicion is marginal. this scandal concerning first lieutenant franco a suspected right wing extremist sheds doubt on that the case became known in the spring of two thousand and seventeen the defense minister was under pressure. whether nazi terror cells in the boldest there. visiting the garrison where the lieutenant had been stationed the minister also had to address the issue of nazi era military memorabilia in soldiers' rooms. and more and more
bizarre details of the franco ah case were emerging. he had studied at university during his time in the air back then and internal critique of his master's thesis said it was. not a work suitable for an academic qualification but a radical nationalist and racist call to arms. but in january twenty fourth teen the responsible military lawyer played down the case and swept it under the carpet. the investigations have produced no indications that the soldier has sympathies incompatible with his duty as a soldier. was cleared in the eyes of the. he was even appointed to be a regular soldier as there was nothing negative in his personnel record. the control mechanism. had failed. the bull despair insists that extreme right soldiers are isolated cases whose numbers are on the decline. but does military counter intelligence really spot all the right wing extremists.
following the franco ah case the m a d received four hundred suspected cases of right wing extremism one hundred more than in previous years the board is fair attributed that to an increase in awareness but how many suspects could ultimately confirm it. following the suspension of general conscription the number of suspected cases of right wing extremists handled by him ag has fallen significantly the number of recognized right wing extremists fell even more sharply disproportionately to the reduction in size of the personnel to an average of only four persons per year before the end of conscription the figure was around forty per year. those are the cases that m.a.d. has ascertained beyond a doubt. after investigating the federal public prosecutor's office was convinced that franco planned to kill high ranking politicians out of racist and nationalistic sentiments. it intends to charge him with terrorism. the
trial is still pending. him a d. is itself under pressure over the past few years the agency has faced huge personnel cuts that results in mistakes florrie on crosby friends opera can was a staff sergeant for electronic warfare. do you like being a soldier for young yes i like being a soldier i joined out of conviction and it was actually supposed to be my career and my life's goal. and. he signed up for fifteen years attended training courses and thanks to his mother tongue french ended up in the german french brigade. until the day two m.a.d. officers showed up on the coast guard they said do you have any idea why we're here and i said yes i just got my commission as sergeant for electronic warfare i speak three languages i have
a security check maybe you're here to recruit me. and the two looked confused and one of them says suddenly no we're from the department of extremism and terrorism and we'd like to ask you a few questions. the interrogation with the to him a dea agents lasted five hours the next day florian's direct superior told him about the secret service allegations. and she said i can tell you this we were informed that your vehicle was seen outside a meeting of islamists and. that you were seen wearing muslim clothing in and around a mosque and that your mobile phone data was examined and showed connections to islamist circles in north africa i was absolutely flabbergasted i said captain please believe me that's not true.
florian cosby and islamist his comrades believed the m.a.d. allegations suddenly no one wanted to have anything to do with him florian suffered a breakdown was given medication and put on sick leave for months it took him a day in cologne three months to realize that it was a case of mistaken identity and then the secret service took another five months to inform florian crosby of the error. started crying i looked at him and said are they from the secret service or are they amateurs. the mental stress was too great the mistake by him a day did not even lead to florian's rehabilitation but to the handover of his discharge papers. a nice new account of that document made me feel sick as i thought is who are these people who destroyed my career on the
one hand it's of and then were so full of respect and dignity as to write on this paper that i was discharged as unfit for service even though that was brought about by the bond is fair you would have. despite our written requests for a statement he made he would not comment on the case. florian cross b. continues to fight for his rehabilitation so far without much hope of success. today many young well educated people avoid the boldest fare in the past most people had to do military service. many trainers say the quality of recruits has declined would reinstating conscription be a solution. the parliamentary commissioner for the armed forces is skeptical.
even if there's conscription is no longer an option because all the structures for it have been dismantled. the units the training opportunities the barracks and the equipment that could be used for training. and defense minister fund and is opposed to conscription she gives us this written statement. rather than a return to the old compulsory service i would wish for more investment and social recognition for the men and women in uniform who are risking their lives for our freedom. many soldiers say that social recognition is lacking there's too little public discussion about the bond is fair and its goals and tasks. every time hans-peter bottle's visits the troops he is reminded of the changes the bonus fair has gone through in recent years today he is with lieutenant colonel anastasia beef on. the commander of the
battalion in stock how is one of the first transgender members in the bowl despair . today's visit is for a swearing in ceremony. you got. the point is there is desperately seeking qualified personnel which is why it has grown more open to parts of society that would have had little chance in the past. in the past it was a completely male domain and there was a different approach to issues of sexual orientation now we have a bone despair which more or less reflects immigration in germany not yet in the higher ranks there it's growing more slowly so it's not a one to one mirror of society you can't dissect the bund is fair and say this reflects german society but it's already pretty close to.
the despair as a mirror of society that's what a nonprofit organization called dortch a soul dot org german soldier would like to see its chairwoman now the man who lives in hanover. she recently received her officers commission in the german navy . the daughter of moroccan immigrants has served in the buddhist fair for fourteen years now. she refuses to tolerate discrimination in society and especially in the . clag if the theme don't cost the rest you could remarks remarks about women and my background and about my religion. if unfortunately there are some comrades like that but there are also others if you have to report those remarks and write a complaint and then you'll get a response. but you can't just swallow it and say that's the way it is. or if you
do that you are accepting racism within the armed forces. just like outside the armed forces will be the type of stuff. more than nine million germans have immigrant roots. and in the fullness very. of all despair study shows that the proportion of soldiers with an immigrant background is actually higher than in the population at large around fifteen point five percent. but people of color and muslims like m o t are still under represented. this isn't called multi-colored we are a big diverse strong true. we need to advance a bit to measure up to the international competition. but the image of right wing extremist soldiers cannot be what defines us because i think. this kind of
diversity defines us for a few fish cat. but despite costly advertising campaigns the armed forces failed to meet they were proving that goal every year. we could. kreutz repeat after me i swear to basically serve the federal republic of germany. toilets with d.n.a. . from many a career as a soldier is no longer an attractive prospect. godhead as a result the blunders bear faces an immense challenge it needs to recruit new personnel while caring for those who served on missions risking their lives for germany three. to this day the good friday battle of april two thousand and
ten is considered the epitome of a combat mission it marks the moment when german politicians woke up and called the mission in afghanistan a war. alex p. keeps his medals and souvenirs of a war that continues to haunt him in his display case. because this is the one from the federal republic of germany for service. and this is the one for combat duty. for fighting the fish. what does it mean to you to see this these cars that i didn't just dream. since his time in afghanistan in two thousand and ten the former military police man has suffered from severe post-traumatic stress disorder in his despair he self harmed. now he shows us the day to day reality of the mission.
given to happen every day every day the blown up dingoes came out and by the end we had more blown up during those than ones that were fit to drive or. many things flashed through their minds when alex and his fellow soldiers came under fire most of all the fear of capture. of all of us so as a twenty five year old sergeant i considered committing suicide i said to myself ok i'll hold out here as long as i can and if i can't anymore and it looks like i'll be captured then i'll kill myself he said and that wasn't just what i was thinking but other comrades too. along with their fear of not surviving the war there was the fear of the future. soldiers like alex went to war for germany. but once they returned to their country many of them feel lost.
critics say that's not right the bundesliga faces new responsibilities on the domestic front and in alliances. in twenty fourteen russia annexed crimea and since u.s. president trump has been in office many europeans doubt that they can depend on the united states. they expect germany to step up to the plate and designs for splitting it on the one hand we promised nato three combat divisions and we train them up but we are very hesitant to deploy them that in itself is not bad in principle but it's a discrepancy that comes at the cost of the soldiers. maybe we need to be more honest and say will scrap combat troops and provide medical and logistic services instead. then we wouldn't have these problems. but our special forces have an international reputation as world champions in the training field and we're scared in many cases politicians are scared stiff of deploying them because someone might
sprain their foot that leads to huge frustration among the professional soldiers who feel they could contribute and help and go to mali and then maybe just disband the combat divisions. but that's not planned on the contrary the role of the bundesbank is set to become even more important more soldiers will be needed better equipment and better training. the direction in which the board is fair will be heading the missions it will be sent on and above all why our political decisions. and they have the lives of politicians to be more honest. anyone who wants more men and women to join the ranks of the bundeswehr and risk their lives will have to explain it to them the decision makers will have to convince the country that they have a viable concept for the future of germany's armed forces.
that will require more dialogue between soldiers and civilians and between the politicians and the voters. like o.t. robotics. deep learning reality wait a second we want the whole picture our facts instead of vague ideas shifts to live us. from a demented reality to cryptocurrency to your topics for live in an ever changing digital world let's start going to devise a shim. shift in fifteen. w. . what keeps us unsafe what makes us see and
how do we stand how. my name is dr house and the i talk to a medical expert. watch them at work. and then discuss what you can do to improve your health. state use and let's all try to state. the change in thirty minutes w. . if you ever have to cover up a murder best way is to make an accident raring to. never read a book like this. which most german streets. this
is c w news live in sudan's latest military chief towels to people power thousands again to take to the streets to press that the mob to civilian rule the country's second new leader in just two days lifts the cut and pledges the army will hand over power with. but is this enough for the people also coming out.