字幕列表 影片播放 列印英文字幕 German and Czech soldiers are carrying out a military exercise In Lithuania. The potential enemy: Russia. Their mission: deterrence and a show of strength on NATO's eastern flank. We will deter the enemy with all the means at our disposal. The world is growing less secure and more confusing. A renewed arms race with nuclear and conventional weapons is imminent. Existing alliances are crumbling. We need to be firm, we need to be strong to deter any potential aggressor from attacking us to preserve the peace. Germany and its neighbors could again be caught in the middle between the superpowers. Russia is laying claim to territory and for the first time since World War Two a country is taking that territory by force. This is a potential threat of the highest order. And anyone who opposes a rearmament debate is not just naive. That's incredibly dangerous. Can the German military, the Bundeswehr, meet the new challenges? I do believe that the German military is in a very dire and critical state. The number of ships that can't sail, the number of planes that can't fly. Can the western alliance system still guarantee security? What role does Germany play in NATO and in the world? When NATO sounds the alarm, the order reaches the 9th Armoured Demonstration Brigade in Munster in northwestern Germany. This time the mail is about an exercise. But the entire apparatus responds as it would in a genuine emergency. The brigade provides part of the ground troops for NATO's Very High Readiness Joint Task Force, the VJTF. It was established in 2014 in response to Russia's annexation of Crimea. I've received the alarm order, now I evaluate it. And then I decipher the letter combinations in the order to find out which alarm measures have actually been triggered. For that I consult the Bundeswehr crisis response plan, so I can see which alarm measures are behind the combinations of letters. I'll check which measures are important for the VJTF brigade and then I'll inform the chief and the brigade leadership accordingly. Rapid response units are central to NATO's new threat scenarios. In this instance an emergency situation that involves fighting off an enemy attack will be rehearsed in a maneuver in Poland. Within three days at the most, 2,300 soldiers from three countries have to be ready to move. All the strands come together here in a high security area at headquarters. It's a logistical challenge to coordinate the troops from Germany, Norway, and The Netherlands. We have to establish communication with the First German Armored Division and the German-Netherlands Corps. I want the initial results in 90 minutes. The clock is also ticking for Major Marja Alm. Nothing unususal to report in the area. Very good. The major heads a company of around 250 soldiers. The biggest challenge for us is to be ready to move within 48 hours. My soldiers have to load all the trucks, the trucks have to be organized in convoys. My heavy vehicles have to be prepared for rail transport. 48 hours is not a lot of time. Major Alm is an experienced soldier who has served on foreign missions in Mali and Kosovo. Now she has to ensure that the command in Poland will have a fully equipped workplace. Around 600 vehicles — including 70 tanks — are setting off from garrisons around Germany to head for Poland. The rapid response force is more important to NATO than ever. But today, at a time when Europe again has to worry about security, how united are the partners in the alliance? Washington, April 2019. NATO celebrated the 70th anniversary of its founding. For seven decades the North Atlantic Treaty Organization has used its deterrence capability to protect peace, freedom and prosperity on both sides of the Atlantic. A day before the ceremony, the west's leading defense and foreign policy officials gathered at a meeting. It was supposed to be a celebration of 70 years of NATO and transatlantic relations. But then, US Vice President Mike Pence took to the podium to issue a rebuke. More of our allies are now meeting their commitments. But still too many others are falling short. And as we all acknowledge, Germany is chief among them. Germany is Europe's largest and healthiest economy. It's a leading global exporter and it's benefited from US protection of Europe for generations. Germany must do more. A not-so diplomatic attack on the alliance partner that has not invested the agreed two percent of its GDP in defense. The German foreign minister had to try to explain why his wealthy country wasn't prepared to spend more on European security. I know that our budgetary process is sometimes difficult for outsiders to understand, and believe me not just for them. However, we made a firm commitment to invest more money in defense. And we intend to keep our word. We in Europe know that we cannot take our security for granted. A rather modest show of strength from the foreign minister. Heiko Maas left the meeting by the back door to avoid unwanted questions. A fitting image of Germany's appearance at the NATO summit. Germany has already promised its allies at three summits to raise military spending as agreed. The Defense Ministry would like to see a hefty rise — to 54.7 billion euros a year. But the Finance Ministry has other plans. It even wants spending to drop in the coming years — to 44.2 Billion. That corresponds to 1.23 percent of GDP— so even further below NATO's two percent target. Julianne Smith was a security advisor in the Obama administration, and is a prominent expert on German-American relations. I do think the NATO alliance has a Germany problem because now one of its largest allies is unwilling or unable to meet a commitment that essentially all allies made in 2014. This is not a situation where the Trump administration is fired up and frustrated with the German government. We're now facing a situation where Democrats and Republicans alike are quite critical of Berlin and its failure to meet that target. I understand that almost all politicians would like to spend money on something else than defense — on health, on education, on infrastructure. At the same time, we expect Germany to invest more in defense because we all promised to do so back in 2014. But Germany's governing coalition of conservatives and Social Democrats has a different take on the numbers: they say Germany has invested more than 30 billion euros in NATO since 2014, provided the second largest contingent of troops in Afghanistan, and taken part in many missions around the world. The Social Democrats in particular oppose a sudden rise in the defense budget. Foreign and defense policy expert Rolf Mützenich explains. We provide suitable personnel to NATO. We try to coordinate with our alliance partners and are guided by quality. And back when the German government accepted this two-percent target, we in Parliament said, 'Ultimately we — the lawmakers — are the ones who will decide what will be in the annual budget.' Carlo Masala, a professor at the Bundeswehr University in Munich, advises the government on security issues. He says economizing on military spending would be disastrous. It's not just grossly naive, it's negligent and risky. Here in Europe we are currently in a situation where the Russian Federation with its armament efforts has an advantage in strategic escalation that we currently can't compete with. Vladimir Putin's Russia has changed the world in terms of security policy. When the Cold War ended, it seemed unthinkable, but the world is now once again in the middle of an arms race. And Putin has been testng the limits of the NATO alliance with the conflict in eastern Ukraine, the Russian annexation of Crimea. Russia on the other hand feels provoked by NATO's eastern enlargement plans. In April 2016, over the Baltic Sea, 130 kilometers from Kaliningrad. Two Russian fighter jets carried out 20 mock attacks on a US warship. And the number of provocations is increasing. There are threats that we have to address or challenges we have to address in the North Atlantic with increased Russian submarine activity and our lack of sensors up there to understand what's going on. There's definitely a threat stemming from Russia. NATO takes that threat very seriously. Its response has been, for example, the exercise in Poland with the brigades from Germany, Norway and the Netherlands. Four days after the raising of the alarm in Munster, the VJTF rapid response troops are on their way to the Noble Jump exercise. The more than 2,300 soldiers are being trained to ensure Europe's security — under German leadership. Noble Jump is basically all about NATO's rapid response troop. The task is deterrence through a show of strength. But if, at the end of the day, that doesn't help we have to clearly show that we are in a position to defend the territory of the alliance — and if necessary to restore the territorial integrity of NATO. It's just after 4 o'clock in the morning. The 9th armored demonstration brigade positions itself. Helge Timm commands a Leopard 2 tank. It weighs 64 tons and has a 1,500 horsepower engine. We're here on a Leopard 2 battle tank. We have crew of four men. This is my driver. He steers according to my orders. The gunner is responsible for the exchange of fire. And the loader is responsible for all the weapons on the tank — including the machine guns. I'm the commander — I coordinate everything. Final preparations for the maneuver. Helge Timm and his crew take up battle position. Okay, sight gunner, swing the tower to the right. You've got woods on the right. Do you recognize. Okay, swing more to the left. Right there you can see the observation center of the platoon. The mission here is to retake a village. Even though no one wants to say it openly, the rapid response troop is supposed to deter Russia. Today the enemy only consists of dummies and decommissioned tanks. Here on our left my platoon is in position. Next to them is another platoon in position. Further ahead in the left-hand section there's also a Norwegian company in position. They are all ready and waiting for the shooting to start. Backward march! Helge Timm's tank platoon is one of NATO's elite units. It is a fully-equipped brigade — which makes it quite an exception in the Bundeswehr. By 2031 the military is supposed to have eight fully equpped brigades. But at the moment not a single one is 100 percent ready for action. Even the VJTF troops had to borrow material from all over Germany. Everyone has realized that the way the system functions at the moment, that we had to bring material from throughout the Bundeswehr to Munster or other places to fulfill our mission, that that is not an acceptable state of affairs. This is not about buildup but adequate equipment. Those eight brigades have to be fully equipped so that they can be just as ready for action as this brigade is. Fully equipping them will be costly, but Germany has made a binding commitment to NATO. The army estimates that the price for a single brigade will amount to five billion euros. But in recent years, there has been practically no investment in material and equipment. And even with a lot of money it will be hard to quickly rebuild all the structures that have been dismantled over the years. Last projectile There are systems in the Bundeswehr that are older than I am — and we still have the problem that when we are deployed in major NATO exercises, we can meet our obligations, but it comes at the expense of operations and exercises back home. We no longer invested in large stockages of replacement parts nor of ammunition. And now to fill up and modernize everthing in the existing structures will take until 2031. We will definitely need that many years to get to the point where we can meet NATO and EU demands. Sometimes even a piece of fencing can stop 60 tons of military high-tech in its tracks. Tank commaner Helge Timm is not happy with the situation! Go in there, turn the motor on, give a signal to the front and then drive backwards a bit. Time is pressing. The tank crew has to get the vehicle back into position for the NATO exercise. The scenario that is being rehearsed here is chillingly realistic: The task of lIberating a village symbolizes the fear of an invasion by enemy troops. Right here. In Poland. In Europe. After five hours the maneuver is completed for Helge Timm and his crew. The commander is 32, his comrades are under 30. The Cold War is something they only know from history books. When I joined up, the Bundeswehr was already involved in missions abroad. But now the threat is different. We see here that a completely battle-ready brigade has been formed to engage in high-intensity combat, if necessary. The idea of defending the alliance and their country is no longer entirely theoretical. Three-quarters of a century after the end of World War II that has become an imaginable scenario for German soldiers. I have been a soldier for 35 years. I saw the Wall fall, I saw Europe being reunited. I experienced Islamist terrorists occupying half the Middle East.