Defense Committee (German Bundestag)

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Defense Committee meeting in Bonn on April 13, 1988

The Defense Committee of the German Bundestag ( VgA ) is a mandatory committee provided for in Article 45a of the Basic Law (there: Committee for Defense ). The competence of the Bundestag committee corresponds to the business area of the Federal Minister of Defense . The task of the committee is to prepare resolutions of the German Bundestag, to issue recommendations and, by means of its right of self- involvement, to guarantee accompanying and co-steering parliamentary control of defense policy and the armed forces . The special importance of the committee can be seen in the fact that, as a mandatory committee, it does not require any formal appointment by the Bundestag and cannot be dissolved. This can be explained by the interest in comprehensive parliamentary control and constant monitoring of the armed forces. Parliamentary control over defense matters is also enhanced by the fact that the committee also has the rights of a committee of inquiry . Of the committees of the German Bundestag, only the Defense Committee has this right to set itself up as a committee of inquiry. At the request of a quarter of the members of the committee, he must make a matter the subject of an investigation. This means that even a minority in the committee is able to bring important matters to the fore for an investigation. So far, the Defense Committee has been constituted 15 times as a committee of inquiry in the German Bundestag . In 2013, the Defense Committee, as a committee of inquiry ( 17th electoral term ) , dealt with the controversial armaments project " EURO-Hawk ". In 2015, the Left demanded the same role for the G36 affair, instead of an investigative committee of the Bundestag serving only as a show trial.

Members in the 19th legislative period

Entrance to the Defense Committee in the Paul-Löbe-Haus

36 members of the committee

CDU / CSU parliamentary group

SPD parliamentary group

AfD parliamentary group

FDP parliamentary group

Left Party

Alliance 90 / The Greens parliamentary group


Legislative period Chair fraction Deputy fraction Members comment
1. (1949-1953) Franz Josef Strauss CDU / CSU Fritz Erler SPD 21st from July 19, 1952:
Committee for the consultation of the EDC contract and the
related agreements. From January 21, 1953: Committee for questionsof European security

2. (1953–1957) Richard Jaeger CDU / CSU Fritz Erler SPD 29 Committee on
European Security Issues from 10 January 1956: Committee on Defense

3. (1957-1961) Richard Jaeger CDU / CSU Hans Merten SPD 29
4. (1961-1965) Richard Jaeger CDU / CSU Hans Merten from November 15, 1963: Karl Wienand

SPD 27
5. (1965-1969) Friedrich Zimmermann CDU / CSU Karl Wienand from April 13, 1967: Karl Wilhelm Berkhan

SPD 31
6. (1969–1972) Friedrich Zimmermann CDU / CSU Hermann Schmidt SPD 29 or 25
7. (1972-1976) Hermann Schmidt from April 9, 1975: Werner Buchstaller

SPD Manfred Woerner CDU / CSU 27
8. (1976-1980) Manfred Woerner CDU / CSU Werner Buchstaller SPD 27
9. (1980-1983) Werner Marx from October 27, 1982: Alfred Biehle

CDU / CSU Erwin Horn SPD 27
10. (1983-1987) Alfred Biehle CDU / CSU Walter Kolbow from June 19, 1985: Friedrich Gerstl

SPD 27
11. (1987-1990) Alfred Biehle from May 16, 1990: Uwe Ronneburger

Walter Kolbow SPD 29
12. (1990-1994) Fritz Wittmann CDU / CSU Heinz-Alfred Steiner SPD 37
13. (1994-1998) Klaus Rose
from January 29, 1997:
Kurt J. Rossmanith
CDU / CSU Dieter Heistermann SPD 39
14. (1998-2002) Helmut Wieczorek SPD Thomas Kossendey CDU / CSU 38
15th (2002-2005) Reinhold Robbe
from April 14, 2005:
Ulrike Merten
SPD Thomas Kossendey CDU 30th
16. (2005-2009) Ulrike Merten SPD Karl A. Lamers CDU 30th
17th (2009-2013) Susanne Kastner SPD Karl A. Lamers CDU 34 from 2009:
Committee of inquiry to investigate the air attack on two tank trucks near Kunduz in Afghanistan in the night of September 3rd to 4th, 2009 from 2013: Committee of inquiry to investigate the Euro Hawk development project

18th (2013-2017) Hans-Peter Bartels
from May 20, 2015:
Wolfgang Hellmich
SPD Karl A. Lamers CDU 32
19. (since 2018) Wolfgang Hellmich SPD Karl A. Lamers CDU 36

See also


Web links

Commons : Defense Committee of the German Bundestag  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence