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Mission tactics are a powerful tool for executing missions effectively and flexibly. With this principle, which is often assigned to the Bundeswehr as a unique selling point, the military leadership specifies the task objective for the subordinate area and provides the resources (personnel, time, material). The implementer is responsible for selecting the means and achieving the goal.

If, for example, a combat troop commander goes on a mission or an exercise, he has to inquire about logistics at the armed forces base, for IT matters at cyber and information space and for medical support at the Bundeswehr Medical Service. If industrial repairs are necessary on site, the BAAINBw also comes into play with contracts. Organic support from the next higher command levels is no longer possible.

It's similar with procurement: once users have identified a capability gap, the requisition goes into the fairly anonymous planning process. The organizational area that needs it is only subordinately involved in the development of the functional ability requirement. The General Inspector is responsible for selecting the proposed solution. The BAAINBw is responsible for the realization of the project up to contractual regulations. Future users will only have a voice once the integrated verification process has been carried out. The material responsibility during the entire use phase lies with the BAAINBw.

Shared responsibility also continues in industry, especially in land and sea systems. When placing an order, the “fair” distribution of added value in the country and among different companies is often more important than the professional selection of the best provider. In some project-related consortia, companies that are competitors outside the project are forced to work together.

The new Defense Minister Boris Pistorius has said he wants to strengthen the Bundeswehr. A good approach to this is to reduce the fragmented responsibility in all sub-areas and to reinstall consistent responsibility in the organizational areas. It starts with the small combat community, which takes part in the training with "their" combat vehicle day after day and can then go into action combat-ready. It continues with the integrated support forces at all levels up to material responsibility, which should be assigned to the inspector.

This approach also includes consistent responsibility in the procurement of the material. The process must be managed at all times by an authorized representative of the inspector who carries the need. In this way, priorities can be set correctly and necessary compromises can be found as needed.

The key to strengthening the Bundeswehr lies in the implementation of mission tactics at all levels and across all areas. This strengthens the responsibility of the individual, which increases the motivation and operational readiness of the systems made up of personnel and material with a view to the cold start capability and the endurance required by the Bundeswehr.

Gerhard Heiming