Stumbled factual statements, a visit to the nail salon the day after Russia attacked Ukraine, carnival-colored high heels, pumps when visiting troops: for a long time it looked like petty malice with a dash of misogyny, which Defense Minister Christine Lambrecht (SPD) found out. But now there are allegations against her of such harshness and abundance that it seems questionable whether she can survive them politically. The current “Spiegel” spreads a whole panorama of lack of competence, lack of information and, worse still, disinterest, arrogance and little commitment on the part of the minister. The good evidence is striking, which suggests that the heads of the Bundeswehr and the ministry were only too willing to provide information about this. So there must have been a fair amount of frustration that alone should have paralyzed the work of the Ministry of Defense – in the middle of a war in Europe and before an unprecedented expansion of the Bundeswehr budget.

However, the minister seems little interested in her work: According to the “Spiegel”, her staff canceled the crash course for the technically unskilled after she took office because she showed little interest in what is known in the ministry as “pressure refueling”: everything about Ministry structure, the main problem areas of the Bundeswehr and defense policy and talks with the top people in uniform in a few days.

Lambrecht also did not attend the traditional Christmas visit to servicewomen and men deployed abroad – which her house had already prepared as planned – and instead preferred to say goodbye to the skiing holidays in Ischgl until the New Year. Lambrecht apparently left NATO colleagues at first for a long time Call waiting or postponed appointments several times, also because of a hairdresser’s appointment. The British colleague Ben Wallace is said to have even formally complained about it. The 56-year-old, who was Justice and Family Minister in the last cabinet of Angela Merkel, allegedly does not speak English.

Can the minister be held, even by the notoriously stubborn chancellor, who prefers not to react to pressure from surveys or press reports? That could be difficult, suspects a defense expert from the traffic light factions, who doesn’t want to be quoted:

The minister had already lacked quite a bit of political flair. Even the fact that apparently from their closest environment details of their private appointments are pierced speaks its own language. The fact that Lambrecht is not into the subject and, despite her well-known closeness to the Chancellor, often “knows less than we in the Bundestag” about what is being planned there in terms of defense policy, this has meanwhile been noticed by more than one member of the Defense Committee. So Scholz’ solidarity address for his confidante could be the beginning of her political end. Lambrecht would not only be a burden as head of a key ministry, Scholz himself could also get into trouble with her. After all, Lambrecht’s appointment revealed a number of inconsistencies.

In fact, the outgoing double minister for justice and family made it clear last year that she was no longer interested in politics at such a high level. She wanted to end life out of a suitcase and would no longer stand for a Bundestag mandate, she explained. Nevertheless, after the election, she acted as Federal Minister of the Interior. Eventually she was appointed to the Bendler block. If she has to go, she would be the second departure in the young Scholz cabinet. Just three weeks ago, her successor in the Family Ministry, the Green Anne Spiegel, also stumbled over an imbalance between private matters and the demands placed on a minister.