Merkel: “There are good reasons for US soldiers being in Germany”

Donald Trump threatens to withdraw part of the US soldiers stationed in Germany. Chancellor Merkel has now emphasized the importance of US military bases for Germany.

Chancellor Angela Merkel emphasized the quality of American military locations in the debate over a potential relocation of US soldiers from Germany to Poland. “I think that the German stations are good places for the American soldiers,” she said after a meeting with the Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda. There was a lot of investment. “There are good reasons for the station locations in Germany and at the same time we know that we have to make an effort to make the Bundeswehr even fitter,” she added in view of the US criticism of German defense spending.

The background of the debate is a tweet of the US ambassador to Poland, Georgette Mosbacher. She had pointed out that unlike Germany, Poland spends two percent of its economic performance on defense. “We would welcome if American troops came to Poland in Germany,” she wrote, referring to US demands that the NATO countries would have to fulfill their self-commitments.

Merkel stressed again that Germany is steadily increasing its defense spending. Thus, there had been an increase of twelve percent from 2018 to 2019. In the coming year, there will be a significant increase again. On Tuesday she said that it would probably reach 1.41 percent of GDP. Lithuanian President Nauseda said that Poland and his country have had very painful experiences with Russia. “That’s why we take a closer look at these dangers than other countries.” At the same time, he thanked Germany for military assistance in the context of the NATO protests in the Baltics.