Destroying the Bundeswehr's integrity from top

Germany has an ongoing debate since 2001-09-11; the existing laws do not allow to shoot down a passenger plane under terrorist control even if it's approaching a nuclear power plant or city. A law passed the parliament to change that, but was declared to be ineffective by our constitutional court.

This is obviously not a satisfactory situation.
I personally believe that the passengers themselves would likely be the best defense against such a terror act as they remember what happened in the USA, but our politicians don't want to rely on that.

This is the reason why our secretary of defense Mr. Jung emphasizes that in such a case he would give the order to shoot down the plane anyway.

This is where the problem begins.
I don't care much about what lawyers and the like think about it while the media focuses on Mr. Jung's questionable approach to legal/illegal - I see a very different problem.

The experience of the Wehrmacht (which followed a felonious dictator and committed war crimes based on strict obedience to corresponding orders) inspired a new rule set for the Bundeswehr: It is illegal to execute an illegal order. A soldier who is ordered to do something illegal is obliged to report this and to not execute the order.

An order to shoot down a passenger plane would be obviously illegal due to the constitutional court's judgment.

So all officers in the chain of command between secretary of defense and pilot would be obliged to not proceed, but to report the illegal order (the first officer would be obliged to report the order to the chancellor, I guess). If they would relay the order they'd have to face serious disciplinary punishment (in theory, at least) and the prosecution for instigating mass murder.
The pilots would be obliged to deny the execution of the order and report it as well.
If the pilots would shoot down the plane, they would (in theory) face
- disciplinary punishment in the Bundeswehr, including most likely a discharge
- prosecution for mass homicide
- a loss of their pilot's license for dangerous influence on air traffic safety

Our secretary of defense may play the strong man and attract some cameras, but in fact he's no more empowered to give the order to shoot down a captured passenger plane than you and me.
The possibility that he doesn't know the Bundeswehr's rules enough to realize this is shocking - the more likely scenario that he has been told about the implications but ignores the legal problems and implications for the officers despite the historical reason for the rules is even more shocking.

Our secretary of defense Mr. Jung is eroding the integrity of the Bundeswehr.


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