BERLIN ($1=0.94 Euros) — The situation with some combat ground weapon systems of the Bundeswehr continues to deteriorate. BulgarianMilitary.com reported a few days ago that during an exercise, the new and modernized Puma armored personnel carriers of the German army suffered a total failure. After eight days of shooting and the German Pumas stopped working. There are even reports of avid APCs.
- Germany’s planning error keeps Ukrainian PzH 2000s unusable
- During exercise: Readiness of German IFVs drops to zero in 8 days
- German tank maker KMW has no orders, accused Rheinmetall too
It is scary to think what will happen to the Pumas in real combat. And just as this problem is gradually beginning to subside among the international community, a leak in a secret report by the German Ministry of Defense is about to arouse outrage again. We are talking about the infamous Panzerhaubitze 200 [PzH 2000] self-propelled howitzers of the German army.
The Bundeswehr [German Army] has 105 howitzers of this model in its inventory. The report indicated that 73 of those 105 were usable. However, the report also indicates that the combat readiness of guns is 50% of those 73. That is. the German army has 36 serviceable PzH 2000 self-propelled howitzers.
The information was officially published in The Times. The British publication quoted its sources in Germany as saying that 18 self-propelled howitzers have already entered the repair shops. However, the information does not say whether these 18 howitzers are from the defective ones, or whether they are 18 howitzers from the 36 serviceable PzH 2000 in question. If it is the latter, then the situation in the German artillery combat capability seriously reaches the bottom.
BulgarianMilitary.com recalls that PzH 2000 has been fighting in Ukraine for a long time on the side of the Ukrainian Armed Forces. Berlin delivered them to Kyiv in response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine, which began on February 24 and has been going on for nearly ten months now.
With all this information, the picture of the problems with the PzH 2000 is starting to clear. Did Berlin supply defective howitzers to Kyiv, considering that Kyiv has long reported problems with them on the battlefield. Most likely. The German media have been writing for a long time about the problems with the howitzers delivered to Ukraine, and now it turns out that even those in the Bundeswehr are problematic.
In Ukraine, for example, it was found that the fire control system had failed. The fault comes from the self-propelled howitzer’s loading mechanism, which is under enormous stress. 300 rounds of ammunition are fired by the Ukrainians per day with the German PzH 2000 howitzers. This is also a problem because apparently, the Germans did not design a gun to be so intensively loaded.
However, this leads to another problem. Spiegel reported weeks ago that there was an error in scheduling the delivery of spare parts for the Ukrainian howitzers. It turns out that Germany was forced to “cannibalize” a PzH 2000 unit to supply spare parts to the Ukrainian armed forces.
German experts are already sending alarming reports to Berlin. The lack of spare parts for the PzH 2000 has already paralyzed the so-called repair center that Germany wants to set up in Slovakia by mid-December to repair the weapons delivered there.
The war in Ukraine revealed something unexpected, but perhaps hidden for many years – a significant part of German equipment is in poor condition. Leopard-2 tanks that were supposed to be delivered to Poland under the circular exchange program are missing. Berlin promised at least 50 such tanks, but in the end, it turned out that there were none, and offered to replace them with Leopard-1.
In fact, the public should not be surprised because Berlin has not lied so far. Repeatedly since the start of the war, despite public and Washington pressure, Berlin has said it cannot supply Ukraine with the weapons it needs. Berlin has repeatedly reported that stocks are low in Germany. Apparently, now is simply the moment to shed light on the reasons for the inability of the German government to support the Ukrainian soldiers to a greater extent. However, it remains a shame for an economically stable Western European country to neglect its armaments.
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