Authority and command

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Authority refers to the formal authority to issue orders as the highest military superior. Command authority refers to the material competence for military-technical troop command and training .

The introduction of the terms “holder of command and command ( IBuK )” in the Basic Law of the Federal Republic of Germany to a political person has historical reasons; According to the historical Weimar constitution, politicians did not yet have the authority to lead troops.


The Basic Law for the Federal Republic of Germany describes the authority to lead the Bundeswehr as “authority to command and command” .


In times of peace, according to Article 65a, Paragraph 1 of the Basic Law, the Federal Minister of Defense has the power of command. The internal designation therefore means owner of the command and command authority (IBuK).

In the event of a defense , the command and control authority (IBuK) lies with the German Chancellor ( Art. 115b GG), see regulation of Article 115b GG .


In the Reichswehr at the time of the Weimar Republic , a distinction was made between command and command . It was assumed that a politician did not have the competence to lead troops. The leadership skills were shared. The Reich President, as Commander-in-Chief , was in command . The chiefs of the army command and the naval command had the command as supreme commanders . In practice this meant that the Reich President could issue orders, but had to leave the command of the troops to the officers (see also Article 47 of the Weimar Constitution ).

In the Wehrmacht at the time of National Socialist Germany , the separation between command and command was increasingly weakened at the latest with the beginning of the Russian campaign . Adolf Hitler interfered more and more in the troop leadership and by taking over the post of Commander-in-Chief of the Army , he finally abolished the division between command and command.


In Austria , the Federal President is formally the Commander-in-Chief of the Federal Army ; the competent minister exercises the authority. De facto, the defense minister exercises command and command authority ( Art. 80 B-VG ).


Web links

Wiktionary: authority  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations

Individual evidence

  1. Command and command authority on
  2. a b Authority and command. RK Marine Kiel, accessed on January 2, 2020 .