Germany’s role in the Middle East has been complicated—usually taking one loud step back and one quiet step forward. A liberal government refused to go to war in Iraq and a conservative government abstained from the operation to topple Qaddafi in Libya. Yet there has been broad support for other multilateral operations: sending ships to fight pirates in the Gulf of Aden, sending troops as part of a UN-mandated buffer zone in southern Lebanon, and maintaining the third-largest contingent of troops in Afghanistan. While Chancellor Merkel has yet to weigh in on direct intervention in Syria, the most recent move to assist Turkey would be yet another bold step forward as Germany reasserts itself not only as a NATO ally, but also as an independent power. Over the past few decades, Germany has been busy shedding its post-war inhibitions regarding the use of military force. It has consistently sent troops to support UN peace building operations around the world and after the country’s recent decision to move away from a “citizen’s army” to an all-volunteer force, the Bundeswehr will have an even greater capability to project force abroad. It has also recently become the third-largest supplier of arms in the world by volume—overtaking both the United Kingdom and France and Chancellor Merkel has sought to expand arms sales to both Israel and Arab countries and Israel in recent years.