Telegraph, August 28, 2016
The German army has said it wants tougher security checks on recruits after admitting that more than 60 Islamists are suspected of infiltrating its ranks.
In a draft amendment seen by German newspaper Welt am Sonntag, senior Bundeswehr officials said all applicants should be screened by the intelligence services for jihadist links before they begin basic training.
And they disclosed that 64 Islamists are already feared to have embedded themselves within the armed forces, along with 268 right-wing extremists and six left-wing extremists.
Terrorists are attracted to the army because they can use the training to plot future terror attacks in Germany, the document added.
“The German army trains all of its members in the handling and usage of weapons of war,” it said, “[terrorists] could use those skills acquired in the army to carry out well-prepared acts of violence at home or abroad.”
The proposals would lead to a major overhaul of the country’s recruiting policy as under the current system soldiers are only checked for Islamist ties once they have enlisted.
They would also require an extra 90 military officials to be hired in order to carry out a further 20,000 checks per year.
The reforms, which would cost an estimated 8.2 million euros (£6.9m) per year, are expected to be approved by German commanders next week, Welt am Sonntag reported….