JheWest German Federal Aimedihr most effective European national contingent in NATO Bundeswehr components are defensively oriented andart of the NATO military command structure. Despite continuingof equipment modernization programs during: the next five years, military leaders will be hard pressed to maintain currentf readiness,f)
In terms of both size and capability, the West Gentianilwaik ol NATO's delt-nse. while Ihr Air Force and Naw play lesser but still substantial roles in terms of combat potential. All three components are in the midst of rtipHernizalinn nnrfframs: nevertheless, deficiencies in certain mission areas will remain. Beyond individual component weaknesses, however, the Bundeswehr is vulnerable in three majordefense, electronic wart are and sustamabihlvwhich could impinge on the effectiveness of the overall force,w)
By the, manpower shortages, brought on by low birth rates, and fiscal limitations will have forced policymakers in Bonn to chooseiminished national security posture or significantly greater personal and financial sacrifices on thr pari of the West Uerrjian population. Solutions to these problems will be sought externally, through multilateral arms control agreements and increased reliance on Allies, and internally, through adiustments to conscription laws and to theorce structure and operational concepts,f)
For moreecade there hasradual erosion of the West German political consensus on security issues and an increased "questioning ol the credibility IS security guarantees-
erosion ot consensus on security policy may complicate Bonn's relations with NATO Allies andess favorable political climate for Implementing national force plans,k)
The economic and demographic constraints under whichndrsweT^Tu^Trhbt placed byUf the litivOs will allow very little latitude lor additional delense conunilrnrnts. such as might be entailedOriginal document.