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Picture: Janine Schmitz/

Innere Führung and Military Ethos Under Discussion

Between aspiration and reality – Where does Innere Führung stand? Can the familiar model of the “citizen in uniform” still maintain its claim to validity, or is it in need of readjustment or even re-evaluation and change? That was the opening question in a panel discussion hosted by the German Commission for Justice and Peace and zebis on October 19, 2021, at the Katholische Akademie in Berlin.

In this latest edition of “Ethics and Armed Forces”, we aim to delve deeper into the debate. For it has become apparent, following the withdrawal from Afghanistan, that there is a considerable need for discussion not only within the Bundeswehr but also among the wider public about the role of our armed forces and their leadership principles.

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Tribal cultures and Innere Führung – a contradiction?

Sönke Neitzel

Even in the Bundeswehr, we must not underestimate the bonding force of military subcultures

"Citizens in uniform" or "German warriors" – Innere Führung put to the test?

Reinhold Janke

Neither warrior ethos nor comfort zone: Innere Führung shouldn’t let itself be disparaged

Military virtues for today

Peter Olsthoorn

Military ethics requires a deeper understanding of virtues 

"God, how I hate the 20th century" – On chivalry as a myth and as an ethical virtue

Bernhard Koch

“Justice in violence” instead of “justice through violence”: Chivalry challenges common conceptions of war ethics

Manhood rites – Violent rituals, sexual assault and right-wing extremism in the German armed forces

Rolf Pohl

Degrading and sexualized masculinity rituals in the military follow an unfortunate inner logic  

Special: New Challenges for the Military and Conflict Management

Civil Courage in the Military – Not a Contradiction in Terms!

Eva Högl

Bravery also means to withstand group pressure and hostility, if necessary

Make Innere Führung attractive again! – A Personal Essay

Matthias Schwarzbauer

The “military” content of Innere Führung is all too often ignored

Reliable, Righteous and Committed to the Service of Luxembourg and its Allies

Steve Thull
Erny Gillen

Helping to shape and anchor values: Opportunities and challenges of a participatory approach

"We must also reach the soul"

Heinrich Dickerhoff

Ethics education has to make values and responsibility tangible