Federal Defense Minister Boris Pistorius (SPD) has expressed internal anger at the slowdown in his budget wishes for the coming year. “I don’t have to do that here,” he said, according to several participants, on Tuesday at a coalition breakfast with budget and defense politicians in his ministry.

The “Süddeutsche Zeitung” learned this from several participants. At the same time, Pistorius made it clear that this should not be understood as a threat to resign, emphasized one participant. The trigger was a dispute over a newspaper article by him in which he demanded that the costs of defense and civil protection be excluded from the debt brake, since the debt brake does not have constitutional priority over the task of setting up armed forces for defense. The security of the country should be ranked higher constitutionally.

Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) – without directly naming Pistorius or other ministers – made a clear statement warning that spending wishes should be moderated. Pistorius is calling for an increase in the defense budget by at least 6.5 billion euros for 2025. It is currently around 52 billion euros.

However, the SPD politician would prefer to exclude the overall costs from the debt brake in order to be able to reliably spend at least two percent of Germany’s economic output on armaments and defense every year in view of the threats from Russia and the consequences of the war in Ukraine. However, Scholz has assured FDP leader and Finance Minister Christian Lindner of support in his austerity efforts so that the debt brake can be adhered to, and he has not yet supported Pistorius’ demand for an exception to the debt brake.

On the sidelines of a parliamentary evening organized by the reservists’ association, leading Bundeswehr representatives emphasized that the Chancellor and the SPD were “just letting Pistorius perform quite well.” The seriousness of the situation is not recognized. Situation reports on the actions of Russian President Vladimir Putin showed that “one should be afraid and anxious”.