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Einsatzmedaille Gefecht
Combat Action Medal of the Bundeswehr
BW Einsatz GEFECHT.jpg
Awarded by the Federal Republic of Germany
Type Military Medal
Eligibility Soldiers of the German Federal Defence Force
Awarded for Active participation in ground or surface combat or suffering from terrorist or military violence with exposure to a high personal endangerment
Status Currently awarded
Description Special class of the German Armed Forces Deployment Medal
Established November 2010
First awarded November 25, 2010
Next (higher) Gold Cross of Honour for Outstanding Deeds
Next (lower) German Armed Forces Deployment Medal
BW Einsatz GEFECHT Bandschnalle.svg

The Combat Action Medal of the Bundeswehr (German language: Einsatzmedaille Gefecht) is a military decoration awarded by the German Bundeswehr. The medal is awarded for active participation in combat actions or for the suffering from terrorist attacks. It is awarded only once and, if the recipient was killed in action, posthumously.

History[edit | edit source]

The medal was initiated by then minister of defense Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg and introduced by the President of Germany, Christian Wulff in 2010. The initiation of the medal took place against the backdrop of more and more German soldiers being involved in combat situations while participating in missions abroad, especially in Afghanistan. Within the German Armed Forces it was often criticized, that achievements and services rendered in combat were only appreciated by awarding the German Armed Forces Deployment Medal. However, the criteria for this award is primarily time spent in the theatre, so there is no distinction whether a soldier was deployed as a staff member doing paperwork in the camp or if he was deployed as part of combat troops, actively participating in battles. Political leaders opposed the introduction of an award solely for those who were wounded or killed in action, but instead introduced the Combat Action Medal as an appreciation for the extreme risks involved in the active participation in combat action and the suffering from terrorist attacks.

The award[edit | edit source]

The Combat Action Medal is a special class of the German Armed Forces Service Medal. It features a golden square with the inscription Gefecht (Combat/ Battle).

See also[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

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