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250 Der Keiler's

By 1st Lt. Luis Snchez
First published in
SFOR Informer#126, November 14, 2001

"Der Keiler" (the wild boar) is the SFOR German Contingent newspaper. Written by soldiers for soldiers, it aims to inform German troops about how they work and live in BiH. The first edition was published in January 1997; now the weekly newspaper has reached issue 250. Reaching this mark is an enthusiastic team that works hard in the media business.

Rajlovac - After four and a half years in the media spectrum, the "wild boar" is strongly consolidated among the SFOR German Contingent. It became the most read newspaper among the German Forces on Monday, not only in the Theatre but also in Germany, too.
The papers offices are inside the Public Information Centre (PIZ) Branch. "The goal is not only to inform the soldiers about the task and the effort of the contingent, but also to inform the families at home," explained Lt. Col Wolfgang Ludwig, PIZ commander and journalist.
The issue
Edited every Monday with a print run of 2,600 copies, the 12-page newspaper reflects the soldiers life, what soldiers do and how they live. It takes its name in honour of a German de-mining tank that cleared the area in which the PIZ was posted prior to the first edition.
It includes different sections like Radio Andernach & cinema programming, German sport results, weather, Military Police tips, soldier in the spotlight, chaplain's message, background from Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH), parties in Rajlovac Camp, and the highly appreciated section - greetings from home.
It reaches every corner where there is a German soldier: Rajlovac, Filipovici, Mostar, Camp Butmir, and all German organisations in BiH. Also in Germany, where it is distributed throughout the Headquarters and can be read in the Army's Intranet, moreover it reaches soldiers' relatives.
The staff
A four-man multi-role photojournalist team on a six-month tour turns "Der Keiler" into reality. Lt. Col. Andreas Steffan, the editor and layout expert commented: "We write about everything, political, human interest, we print information from soldiers to soldiers." He's also a civilian journalist. "There is no difference. The procedure is the same, only the uniform (changes)," he said.
Staff Sgt. Thore Schwnke, a Leopard 1A-5 tank commander, is also in charge of processing the films. "I really enjoy this job. Now, I've written about 20 articles and I take pictures not only for the paper but also for the whole contingent. Soldiers are happy when their picture appears in the paper," he said.
WO1 Jrgen Diesch and WO1 Wolfgang Minich, are also photojournalists and they complete the team. All of them deal with a challenging task: to inform and entertain with political correctness.
On Nov. 5, they published issue no. 250, which is special, as it has colour pictures, a standard very difficult to reach for a military newspaper. From SFOR INFORMER we encourage them to continue as always with their high standards, professionalism and sense of humour.

Related link:
Nations of SFOR: Germany