BERLIN — Germany will buy American-made F-35 fighter jets in a bid to upgrade its military and ensure its ability to meet its NATO commitments after the invasion of Ukraine by Russia.
“It was important that the solution be found quickly, which is why we decided, after careful consideration of all options on the table, to initiate the acquisition of F-35 aircraft for the nuclear sharing task”, said German Defense Minister Christine Lambrecht. noted Monday in Berlin.
The minister, who did not specify how many jets Germany would buy, added that the Future Combat Air System (FCAS) he developed with France and Spain would also be continued.
“We are ensuring a strong German role in the future FCAS system, because…we still intend to gradually replace the Eurofighter with the next-generation fighter FCAS from 2040 and to realize the program trinational FCAS as an example of European cohesion,” she says.
According to earlier reports in the German media about the F-35s, there were fears in Berlin that the American jets would be at odds with the FCAS and therefore irritate Paris, where French President Emmanuel Macron has for years advocated the so-called European strategic autonomy.
But Lambrecht said he reassured his French counterpart Florence Parly as early as last week, adding that “it is very important for us that we continue our cooperation in this area”.
Speaking alongside Lambrecht, German Air Force Inspector General Ingo Gerhartz said that in view of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s war on Ukraine, there was no no choice but to buy F-35s, which he called “the most modern combat aircraft in the world”. world.”
Gerhartz added that the availability of the F-35 in the market was an important aspect as Germany rushes to modernize its armed forces after years of neglect and has not met the NATO defense spending target. 2% of GDP.