Comparative Systems: Germany and United States

Topics: Artillery, M1 Abrams, United States Army Pages: 6 (2160 words) Published: May 8, 2010
Germany and the United States undoubtedly have two of the most powerful and most technologically advanced militaries in the world. This is mostly due to the status of the two nations being allies in the coalition fighting the Global War on Terror. German and the United States both have soldiers deployed and fighting side by side in Afghanistan, routing out the final remains of the Taliban, Al-Qaeda, and those against coalition forces. With the cooperation between these nations, one would not think that Germany and the United States were rivals during two world wars. At the current time and into the foreseeable future, these countries will not go to war with each other. But with the precedence of world wars, if these countries were to go to war tomorrow with the current forces, spending, and tactics, who would emerge the victor? To determine a victor, the aspects of defense policy and spending, along with the equipment and tactics of both Armies will be examined.

In coming to a conclusion, part three of Murray and Viotti’s Comparative Framework, Defense Policy Making, will be the basis of the paper. This framework is expanded to incorporate defense spending, which correlates with the status of each military. These components are of upmost importance in regards to the national security of each country. Even more so with both countries deployed in support of the Global War on Terror. In order to support their endeavors and at the same time protect their borders, both countries need large armies which will require big defense spending.

The Defense Budget spending of a nation determines how much money goes into their respective militaries. Generally speaking, the more money put into a military, the better equipped and better trained it will be. In 2010, Germany will spend $42 billion dollars on its military, or 1.3 percent of its annual GDP. Part of this spending goes to the German Army, consisting of 103,650 soldiers. The United States, however, spends the most on its military than any other nation in the world. In 2010, the United States will spend $665 billion dollars on its military, or 4.652 percent of its annual GDP, with an Army of 552,400 soldiers. The United States spends nearly 16 times as much on its military than Germany, with a force 5 times the size. Germany is able to spend $171,926 dollars per soldier compared to the United States, with $475, 023 dollars. This $300,000 dollar difference per soldier allows the United States to purchase better equipment with higher technology, thus creating a more dominate force.

At current time, Germany is downsizing its military, as well as its defense spending. “at present at in the foreseeable future, there is no conventional threat to German territory.” It is also possible that by 2015, Russian and Saudi Arabian defense spending will surpass that of Germany. Germany is now focusing on transforming its army from that of a larger maneuver force, to a much small, quick reaction force. There are six essential capability categories the country wants to focus on: Command and Control, Intelligence collection and reconnaissance, mobility, effective engagement, support and sustainability, and survivability and protection. The United States, however, while in an asymmetric fight in Afghanistan and Iraq still holds on to its tradition style of warfare with maneuver units and support fires, “Such principles suggest that the US will be increasing its reliance on a more mobile and expeditionary force concept that features high levels of strategic and tactical mobility, together with ground forces supported by precision indirect fire and air-delivered weapons.” According to Jane’s, there is a slight shift in budget distributions due to this new defense plan, which will likely benefit the army in numbers, training, and equipment. The American organization of Brigade Combat Teams allows military planners great flexibility. These forces can handle...
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