Swedish Article Translated to (ENGLISH)!
The purchase of 22 Gripen aircraft is part of an upgrade as the Swiss Army leadership sees as necessary in a crumbling Europe. In a large exercise recently trained army and air force to suppress popular uprisings and to take care of the numbers of refugees from neighboring countries, writes the Swiss newspaper Der Sonntag.
Foto: MICHAEL BUHOLZER
Photo: MICHAEL BUHOLZER
October 15, 2012 at 12:47, Updated: October 15, 2012 at 14:24
Swiss Army, including the 2000 Senior officers, recently participated in a major exercise called ”Stabilo Due”. In eight cities in different parts of the mountainous country trained infantry soldiers and warplanes and special forces in a particular risk scenario: a Europe in turmoil and disintegration due to the financial crisis.
Der Sonntag writes that soldiers including practiced at taking care of large numbers of refugees from neighboring countries such as Greece, Spain, Italy, France and Portugal. Austerity policies have, notably in Greece and Spain led to more or less violent mass demonstrations, and military leadership does not exclude the possibility that governments fall into some of the most troubled countries and the emergence of internal conflicts, which causes people to flee countries.
The Swiss Ministry of Defence said while the news channel CNBC that it is not impossible that the army must be ready for use within a few years due to internal unrest.
– It is not excluded that the financial crisis could lead to protests and violence in Switzerland. The Army must be able to intervene if the police ask for help, said a spokesman for the army to CNBC.
John R Schindler, Professor at the U.S. Naval College, believe that the army of Switzerland prepares for a different type of disorder, namely violence against Muslims, or violence against Muslims.
On his blog, The XX Committe he writes: ”It is widely accepted by European security services to a new Anders Behring Breivik would attack Muslims, and not their own, so things would quickly develop in a really nasty way.”
Der Sonntag quotes on another magazine, Schweizer Soldat, where Swiss Defence Minister Ueli Maurer warns of an escalation of violence in Europe.
– It is possible that we will need the army in a few years.
TEXT AND PHOTOS: See new Gripen up for the Swiss.
The Swiss Ueli Maurer Soldier expresses its concern that so many countries cut back their military spending, at a time when there is a risk that the unstable situation in Europe may soon become even more unstable. By scrap their armies exposes other countries Switzerland for a kind of blackmail, he said. Switzerland needs to strengthen his army.
One element of this is the acquisition of 22 Gripen aircraft, writes free newspaper 20 Minuten. ”Defense Minister believes that Saab’s Gripen fighter aircraft, an army of 100 000 soldiers and a defense budget of five billion Swiss francs per year, is a necessity in order to defend our country.”
Another step in the strengthening of the army is a proposal that the army chief André Blattman will present in december: the creation of four new battalions totaling 1,600 military police officers. They should be able to defend strategic points such as airports, major industries and the international organizations in Geneva.
Defence Management’s comments are controversial in Switzerland. The country’s large army, which currently can summon 200,000 conscripts, is questionable. Next year, it held a referendum on conscription system’s future.
Josef Lang, Vice President of the Swiss Green Party and leader of Switzerland’s peace movement, told CNBC that the Defence Ministry crisis in Europe to give more credibility to the army. He believes that it is unlikely that the Swiss will experience similar uprisings scenes that we have seen in Greece and Spain. Similar views have GSOA, a group working for disarmament in Switzerland.
– The Swiss Army looking desperately for their existence, because they are constantly looking for new information, said a spokesman for GSOA to CNBC, and continues:
– There are a few small groups who like to smash windows. But it only happens a few times a year, and such events are not worse than the police can handle themselves.