We throw ourselves to anyone in the neck: German municipalities defy U.S. troop withdrawal

US President Donald trump's announcement of a drastic reduction of the military presence in Germany is probably in no place so other-worldly as in weilerbach.

We throw ourselves to anyone in the neck: German municipalities defy U.S. troop withdrawal

US President Donald trump's announcement of a drastic reduction of the military presence in Germany is probably in no place so other-worldly as in weilerbach. In the municipality in Rhineland-Palatinate, the largest U.S. military hospital is currently being built outside of the United States.

For the mega-project, the U.S. Congress provided about $ 990 million, the Federal government is involved with 151 million euros. In the midst of the discussion, to punish Germany with a troop withdrawal for lack of defence spending, to convey the powerful construction equipment in the Western Palatinate, a completely different picture. ./HDR Gmbh/dpa A Computer representation of the planned U.S. military hospital in weilerbach (Rheinland-Pfalz)

In Rhineland-Palatinate are to be 18.500 U.S. soldiers stationed

"the aircraft carrier of the Americans in Germany": a brought This reputation for areas such as weilerbach, Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany. Or Büchel: Here is about 20 US nuclear bombs are to be stored. Or Ramstein: Since 2011, the Air Base, with about 8000 US soldiers and fighter jets and grenades the Headquarters of the controversial drone operations in the USA.

Overall, in Rhineland-Palatinate, the country's interior Ministry estimated that around 18 500 U.S. soldiers are stationed. Add to that the 12,000 U.S. civilian employees, and 25,000 family members. In addition, 7200, and German civilian employees of the U.S. armed forces are employed. It makes sense to destroy them often over the decades grown structures?

no, said the retired three-star General Ben Hodges, most recently, the German press Agency. The 62-Year-old should know: Hodges was from 2014 to 2017, the commander of U.S. land forces in Europe.

"Political Signal" and not a "strategic decision"

The United States weakened themselves, if they reduced capacity in Germany, he said. "Obviously, this is not the result of a strategic analysis, but one hundred percent a political calculation, intended, probably, to some American voters."

Everything was in part merely the election campaign before the U.S. presidential election on may 3. November? "It is quite clear that it is a political Signal, and not a strategic decision," said David Sirakov, Director of the Atlantic Academy in Kaiserslautern. Similarly, Trump had taken action against South Korea and Japan. "There, too, the U.S. has used the presence to move the host countries a larger financial contribution."

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"We expect equal treatment“

In Ramstein-Miesenbach mayor Ralf Hechler followed the discussion with a mixture of tension and Serenity. The U.S. army is not alone in the military community of Kaiserslautern, a force in the economy of a year to 2.3 billion euros. Of course, a part of the deduction would be painful, says the CDU politician. "But we are nobody to the neck. We are good partners and expect equal treatment."

years ago, the municipality has created a commercial area as another economic leg to stand on. "We do not fall in the case of a deduction to the Ground" said Hechler. In some communities, reign, given the announcement of Trump, Despite and grief in others it's a lack of understanding and a shake of the head, said the mayor.

the American media had called Spangdahlem as a base, by the soldiers withdrawn could be. Near the village in the Eifel region, an F-16 fighter jet is stationed-season with more than 20 aircraft.

", Would be for the Region as a whole is bad": a Lot of jobs depend on the U.S. garrison

Around 4000 US soldiers belong to the Base with members of almost 11,000 people there. The aerodrome is an employer for more than 800 German. Companies put jobs of millions of euros per year. In March it became known that the U.S. air force has stopped the transfer of units from the British Mildenhall in Rhineland-Palatinate for the time being - was that a hint?

the Association of mayor in Baumholder, Bernd Alsfasser, takes the reports seriously. "That would be for the whole Region here is bad," he said recently. Many jobs were on the U.S. garrison, many companies take their orders from there, there's a lot of friendships. A new American school complex is in the planning stage, and there are currently negotiations for a water supply by the municipality. Boris Roessler/dpa A US military machine launches from the air force base in Ramstein

the Greatest site of the U.S. army in the upper Palatinate

called for The Rhineland-Palatinate Minister President Malu Dreyer (SPD) for the case of a withdrawal of support from the Federal government. This have made them to German Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU) clearly stated Dreyer. Also, the Rhineland-Palatinate interior Minister Roger Lewentz (SPD) said the SWR: "If you think of what was addressed in the brown coal areas of state aid by the Federal government, something we need then."

The Europe-wide largest site of the U.S. army is in upper Palatinate: In grafenwoehr and the nearby municipality of Vilseck according to US-a total of about 10,000 members of the army stationed. A withdrawal of troops would grafenwoehr mean for the Region in Bavaria is a tremendous loss, such as Edgar Knobloch (CSU), stressed the mayor of the 6500 inhabitants of the city. The recurring discussion of a possible partial withdrawal of US troops from Germany, he finds "annoying", as he said recently to the German press Agency.

"Germany should invest of their own accord in defense"

The American soldiers is rooted in society in the Region. The site was technically up-to-date and also a huge economic factor and important employer for Local people. Sirakov believes it is naive to believe that the points of dispute between Germany and the USA would disappear after the presidency of Trump. Also Hodges has warned Germany against exaggerated hopes for a possible change in the White house.

"Germany should invest of their own accord in defense - not because the other says it should do," said the longtime commander of US forces in Europe. He hopes that Washington and Berlin to come back to a friendly relationship, possibly under a new US Administration. Cem Özdemir: "people like the Uniform belongs to stripped – and-now" FOCUS Online/Wochit Cem Özdemir: "people like the Uniform belongs undressed and instantly"

sca/dpa
Updated Date: 28 June 2020, 06:26

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