New poll in Germany

There's an interesting poll (by forsa, commissioned by the journal Stern) about defence issues in Germany:

"Sollte Deutschland seine Verteidigungsausgaben in den kommenden Jahren erhöhen?"
(Should Germany increase its defence spending in the next years?)

yes 42%
no 55%

Only supporters of the far right AfD and the liberal (pro-employer and usually pro-tax decreases) party FDP are in favour of increased defence spending.

"Sollte sich Deutschland militärisch noch stärker am Kampf gegen die Terrormiliz "Islamischer Staat" beteiligen?"
(Should Germany participate even stronger in the fight against the terror militia "Islamic State" militarily?)

yes 38%
no 56%

"Sind Sie dafür, dass die EU-Staaten eine europäische Verteidigungsunion aufbauen und ihre Streitkräfte zusammenschließen?"
(Are you in favour that the EU states create a European defence union and join their armed services?)

yes 50%
no 43%

I disagree with the majority on latter one, but that's for reasons of above-average knowledge on the subject. I suppose the vast majority of responders merely thought about the issue on the political level, where we learned that cooperation is a hugely successful approach most of the time. Sometimes it's not the best choice, though (same problem as with the common currency).

- - - - -

I have seen an international poll about the willingness of men to fight for their country, with Germany ranking really low. I don't care about such polls because I think the reason for such a result is the feeling that we're not threatened. All the irrational aspects of readiness to fight only come into play once you feel that you or your community are under threat. Without this, only factors like grandstanding, versions of masculinity cult or a high esteem of the armed services will lead to a high rating in such a poll.
Regardless of what certain nutjobs all over the world claim, Germany is not in any real trouble, particularly not by external threats (including immigration).

Foreign "threats" are little more than bogeymen that scare the simple-minded ones, with a fig leaf of basis in reality. The polls above show that Germans aren't easily scared by bogeymen, unlike many other countries and the German far right.



  1. Three years ago, I might have agreed with you on the matter of german challenges. Now with the so called refugee crisis, not considering immigration at least a serious challenge is quite the minority opinion, to put it mildly. Though it is a domestic issue first and a diplomatic one second, not a threat in the classic sense of the word.

    1. This is about me being influenced by history. West Germany alone integrated millions of refugees in 1945-1960, especially in 1945, and paid them large compensations for what they lost at home. All this while West Germany's cities were rubble (in 1945), the industry was in ruins and much of the remnants getting dismantled. THAT was a major migration crisis challenge.

      The immigration wave of 2015 only adds small bulges into the fiscal spending and demographics.
      2015's net immigration was merely twice the net immigration of before, and it's not a sustained phenomenon.
      The burden of caring for the refugees was annoying and the whole thing could have been avoided or stopped earlier with some determined deterring policies, but as of now the migrant crisis of 2015 is pretty much solved, and not an ongoing challenge that requires new high big decisions.