Why are German political leaders increasingly hostile to SCAF?

While the Bundestag has just authorized the financing of phase 1A of the cooperation program between Germany, France and Spain, for design the SCAF program demonstrator aiming to replace the Eurofighter Typhoon and Rafale of the 3 countries by 2040, many voices are raised across the Rhine to criticize the program as well as the eagerness shown by the German and French authorities to obtain this parliamentary approval. It appears, and this more and more clearly, that the SCAF program, and with it the whole of Franco-German military industrial cooperation, now concentrates many hostilities, both in the political class and among the German military. .

So, Rechnungshof, the German equivalent of the court of accounts, issued a harshest report on the program, criticizing both the lightness with which the German government obtained the authorization to finance the program by the Bundestag without having presented a project and a perfectly fixed and negotiated contract, but also the additional funding requested by industrialists across the Rhine for develop systems which would be lacking in the current SCAF program and which the Luftwaffe would need, such as taking satellite communication into account for example. Indeed, the German Ministry of Defense asked, together with the € 3,3 billion needed to pay for participation in the development of the SCAF demonstrator between 2022 and 2027, € 450 million to finance the equipment necessary for its own industry, and especially 750 m € to develop technologies that would be developed by other partners, or insufficiently developed by German industry. According to the Rechnungshof, this is an extremely risky method that can lead to serious budgetary slippages and reckless risk-taking.

The on-board aircraft or nuclear strike capabilities imposed by France within the framework of the SCAF are of no interest to Germany, and generates a feeling of significant rejection of the program by the political class across the Rhine.

According to an article published by "Der Spiegel", the SCAF program is in the process of uniting a large part of the German political class against it, as well as against "the attitude of France", which would endeavor to use 'a form of political blackmail against a European backdrop of La Défense to get Berlin to finance an apparatus that it alone would need. To the point now of creating a feeling of global rejection shared by many political leaders in the country, with the certainty that Germany is, in this case, properly ripped off by France. In fact, as revealed by Der Spiegel, apart from those close to Chancellor Merkel, the German political class is now mostly hostile to the project, from the Greens to the Socialists including the nationalists of the Afd, all believing that it reproduces the same errors as the A400M and NH90 programs, and that they will turn into "billions of holes" to meet the exclusive requirements of France.


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