Ukraine has been asking the western and European countries for weapons, arms, and ammunition to support its fight against the Russian invasion. Amidst the ongoing tussle, NATO along with the EU has been sending several arms and weapons supplies to Ukraine with many countries joining the bandwagon to send the required armaments to the Ukrainian military.
Germany is one European country that has proclaimed out loud its support to Ukraine. Berlin has been sending weapons directly as well as through the NATO and EU joint supplies.
But, recently, the Ukrainian military discovered that a large proportion of Strela missiles that Germany supplied to them are no longer usable. Also, many of those weapons are Soviet-era missiles that were declared obsolete in 2014 and have become corroded in storage since then.
Germany shows support for Ukraine by sending garbage supplies
Berlin announced this week that it has delivered around 2,700 Strela missiles to Ukrainian forces. But it has now emerged that 700 of the missiles are badly damaged to an extent that they are no longer operational.
The Defence analysts residing in berlin were reportedly surprised by the government announcement about sending the missiles to Ukraine because the Strela missiles were declared obsolete and placed in storage in 2014. They are at least 35 years old and had been declared unsafe for use. All of the 700 missiles were reportedly affected by tiny cracks which led to corrosion and meant that they cannot be used anymore. Germany is expected to deliver the remaining 2,000 missiles even though they are no longer considered safe to use.
A recent classified German military document reads, “Owing to the obsolescence of the rocket motor, the Strela missile is no longer safe to handle, so it can no longer be fired”.
Also, the wooden boxes in which the missiles are stored were reportedly so moldy that when inspected in November, troops had to wear protective equipment.
What does this reflect?
This illustrates how depleted German weapons stocks have become following years of military under-funding. Germany is in dire need to replenish its ammunition stocks, and for that, the country will require €20bn (£16.6bn), according to Germany’s defence ministry.
This also raises doubts about Germany’s intentions in helping out Ukraine. It seems that Germany is just fulfilling a formality by sending scrap weapons to Ukraine. It may also be possible that Germany doesn’t have anything useful for Ukraine, therefore they are sending these non-functional missiles to just keep their word.
Well, whatever is the reason behind this German blunder, it is for sure that Germany is not even in the position of defending itself in case of an attack, let alone helping or supporting Ukraine. By sending a pile of garbage as weapons to Ukraine, Germany hasn’t just invited global humiliation, but it has also exposed the reality of its hollow and weak military strength.