“Not in keeping with the times”: Klingbeil rejects conscription – but makes a different suggestion

SPD leader Lars Klingbeil has expressed criticism about reintroducing compulsory military service, as recently brought into play by Defense Minister Boris Pistorius (SPD).

“Not in keeping with the times”: Klingbeil rejects conscription – but makes a different suggestion

SPD leader Lars Klingbeil has expressed criticism about reintroducing compulsory military service, as recently brought into play by Defense Minister Boris Pistorius (SPD). “I welcome Boris Pistorius’ efforts to make the Bundeswehr more attractive as an employer and to recruit young talent,” Klingbeil told the Düsseldorf “Rheinische Post” on Thursday. "Personally, I don't believe in reintroducing compulsory military service because I think that compulsory service is out of keeping with the times."

“What I think is right is that every young person is confronted at some point in their life with the question of whether he or she wants to do a service for our country,” the SPD party leader continued. “It doesn’t matter whether it’s in the Bundeswehr or in the social sector. To achieve this, we have to strengthen voluntary services.”

Shortly before Christmas, Defense Minister Pistorius suggested conscription based on the “Swedish model”. All young women and men are mustered there, but only some of them end up doing basic military service. Other politicians also appeared open to reintroducing compulsory military service.

The application of compulsory military service was suspended in Germany in mid-2011. However, the legal basis for this remains.

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