In a recent interview with German media, Carsten Breuer, the highest-ranking soldier of the German military and an ally of NATO, expressed concerns about the possibility of Russia invading Germany and starting a “defensive” war. Breuer’s remarks come almost two years after Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February 2022.
The ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine has been marked by intense fighting and territorial disputes. Russian troops have recently launched a significant offensive on Avdiivka, a town in Ukraine’s eastern Donetsk region, which Moscow claims as its territory. While Ukraine has managed to regain some territory, it has been unable to sever Russia’s land bridge to Crimea, which was annexed by Russian President Vladimir Putin in 2014.
Germany has been a staunch supporter of Ukraine throughout the war. In October, the German defense ministry announced a new support package for Ukraine worth approximately $1.1 billion, including weapons, vehicles, and air defense systems.
Breuer, also known as the Inspector General of the Bundeswehr, expressed concerns about Russia’s rearmament efforts. He acknowledged the possibility that Germany might have to engage in a defensive war in the future and emphasized the importance of being prepared to defend the country.
However, Breuer admitted that the German military has national and alliance defense deficiencies. Years of focusing on international crisis management have left the Bundeswehr insufficiently equipped for potential threats. The decision-making structures within the military also pose challenges regarding rapid and targeted responses.
Germany’s Ministry of Defense and NATO were contacted for comments, as was the Russian government. Notably, Russian propagandist Vladimir Solovyov made threats on his show, suggesting that Germany would eventually fall under the Russian flag. The U.S. State Department has labeled Solovyov as a spreader of Kremlin disinformation.
NATO, which consists of 31 members, including 29 European countries, the United States, and Canada, has been unable to consider Russia for membership due to its hostile policies and actions. The alliance fully supports Ukraine’s right to self-defense and condemns Russia’s aggressive actions against Ukraine.
Throughout the conflict, Putin has claimed that the eastward expansion of NATO was the reason behind Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
As tensions continue to rise, Germany remains committed to its alliance with Ukraine and NATO. The country acknowledges the need to address deficiencies in its defense capabilities to ensure its ability to defend itself and its allies. The situation serves as a reminder of the ongoing challenges posed by Russia’s aggressive actions and the importance of a strong and united defense alliance.