Just stop this BS, okay?
Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel said it was "quite unrealistic" to believe Germany would spend 2% of its economic output on the military.
Other spending such as development aid, he said, should be taken into account.
Nobody is claiming that non-defense spending items are not important for defending a nation against threats.
But where does this excuse for failing to spend on defense end?
Is K-12 education spending really a substitute for defense spending because you need educated soldiers to have an effective military?
Is pre-natal care a defense spending item for similar reasons?
Surely nice highways are needed to move a hypothetical German tank brigade around, right?
And really, in this context I don't care how many poor Kenyan children have access to clean water from some German development project, because those healthy kids aren't going to stop Russian armor from closing on the Oder River line.
Germany can spend whatever the Hell it wants on development aid. But they need to get over their psychological issues and prepare to defend themselves against a resurgent Russia:
I keep reading that the Germans hate their militaristic past so much that they don't want to fight.
Let's try applying the clue bat to Germany's collective skull on this issue.
Conquering and setting up death camps under the shield of a powerful military? That's bad. By all means, don't do that.
Having a military capable of fighting death cult enemies or stopping the Russians from moving west? Well, that's a good thing. Try doing that.
God almighty, I don't ask the Germans to join us in fighting in the Middle East. I couldn't have cared less that they sent troops to Afghanistan where they could practice their video game skills in the barracks while American and other allied troops fought.
All I ask is that the bloody Germans be prepared to defend NATO Europe. Is that really too much to ask of the wealthiest country in Europe?
For 75 years the Germans rampaged around the continent. But now that they are our allies they can't bring up the nerve to defend themselves and the free West?
UPDATE: An argument that Germany is becoming serious about defense seems to require a very long term definition of "becoming."