Graduation Year


Date of Submission


Document Type

Open Access Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts

Reader 1

Hans Rindisbacher

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© 2016 Hunter L. Ashburn


This study examines the new German 2016 White Paper on German Security Policy and the Future of the Bundeswehr. Updated for the first time in over a decade, the document reflects Germany’s reorientation of its security policy in order to become a global player. This study analyzes the White Paper to determine its contextual meaning, domestic as well as international support, and obstacles in the way of its implementation. Although the German Government is concerned about waning US influence and increased Russian activity, the German people are reluctant to let go of their nation’s foreign political restraint in light of a lingering feeling of historical responsibility going back their Fascist past and to WWII. The international and European reaction to the White Paper is largely positive and hails Germany as a defender of Western Liberalism. Russia is less enthusiastic and has embraced information warfare as a means of displaying its displeasure. The study finds that resolving these issues will prove critical for the practical success of failure in implanting the designs of the White Paper.