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First-time foray: German military’s unprecedented leap into Asia-Pacific alliance

For the first time, the German military will be part of a large-scale exercise in the Asia-Pacific region.

From Saturday, July 22, they will join Exercise Talisman Sabre 2023, which is primarily designed to boost US-Australian military collaboration.

The inclusion of Japan in recent years highlights an increasingly cohesive military alliance.

German paratroopers and marines will also participate under Australian and US command.

German military unit. (Photo Internet reproduction)
German military unit. (Photo Internet reproduction)

This marks the involvement of all three traditional German forces – Army, Navy, Air Force – in maneuvers within the Asia-Pacific region since the departure of the frigate Bayern for this region in 2021.

The biennial Talisman Sabre is a large-scale exercise that aims to train the joint operation of different forces from various countries.

It covers maritime operations, amphibious landings, land operations, and air combat, among others.

This year, 13 countries will participate, with core forces being those of the United States and Canada, Australia and New Zealand, and Great Britain.

The exercise will start Saturday (July 22) and run until August 4.

Numerous locations across the Australian continent will be used, offering realistic opportunities for depicting how a large multinational force should operate over a wide area.

More than 200 Bundeswehr soldiers, mainly from the Army and Navy, will participate, with about 30,000 military personnel in total expected to join the exercise.

The Bundeswehr has also been expanding its activities in the Asia-Pacific, with another naval deployment to the Pacific planned for next year, among other activities.

An expansion of German-Australian arms cooperation accompanies these activities.

For instance, Rheinmetall, a Düsseldorf-based arms manufacturer, will provide the Bundeswehr with Australian-manufactured Boxer wheeled tanks, marking the continuation of a long-term contract between Rheinmetall and Canberra.

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