German producer of Leopard 2 tanks loses luster as Ukrainian reality sinks in

FILE - Two Leopard 2 tanks are seen in action at the Field Marshal Rommel Barracks in Augustdorf, Germany, Wednesday, Feb. 1, 2023. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner, File)
By Dénes Albert
2 Min Read

The German defense group Rheinmetall has partially lost its status as a manufacturer of “wonder weapons” due to the conflict in Ukraine but also due to international competition, according to Deutsche Wirtschafts Nachrichten.

The West claimed that the delivery of the company’s Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine was a turning point, but in reality, these expectations have not been fulfilled. On the battlefield, the armored vehicles have not proven themselves in any manner. In fact, video footage of abandoned or destroyed Leopard 2 tanks continues to proliferate on social media, and claims that the tank will prove a decisive weapon against the Russians have mostly subsided.

Moreover, Rheinmetall had to face another problem in the form of serious competition from South Korean manufacturers. According to the German paper, the South Korean companies beat the Germans not only because of the quality of their equipment, but also because they produce it quickly and in large quantities.

The German company has also recently had difficulties with supply chains, which has led to delays, including in the delivery of tanks to Ukraine. As a result, Rheinmetall is seen as less dependable as a weapons supplier.

Earlier, the Western press had reported that European arms factories were facing a shortage of gunpowder and explosives to ramp up production of ammunition designed by NATO. Germany is also known to have underinvested in its arms industry for years. Recently, the left-wing government stated it would fail to spend 2 percent of GDP on its military despite earlier promises to do so.

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