American GI's have always paid taxes. There's usually a deal or two where you get into a tax-free status....like when you enter a combat zone, but otherwise, you are just like everyone else.
Well....Germany is a bit different. The German pay-scale, especially for junior enlisted folks, wasn't exactly that great. So there was this one great enticement....no German taxes. Usually after a year or two in the German military.....a guy came back into the civilian world, and woke up to this harsh reality of taxes.
In the last day or two, this little rumor has leaked out of the state tax office in Germany, that they are thinking in the next year of changing some rules. One of the expected changes is to finally tax German GI's. Naturally, a number of political figures and high-ranking military folks came out suddenly against this idea.
The driving force of this change? Well....the draft is gone. It's supposed to be a professional force now, and they've upped the pay-scale a fair bit. So the tax guys think it's time to be fair and tax even German soldiers.
My humble guess is that this will be fought off and prevented from happening in 2013.....but somewhere down the line in the next ten years....it'll finally occur. Maybe wages within the Germany military will reach a point by then, that this won't matter much.