Fox and Osborne miss the point…..

People might reasonably have expected the two Coalition parties to have displayed some public friction however, the spectacle of whole departments battling it out across the airwaves is something else altogether. Liam Fox and George Osborne have been quite publically crossing swords over Trident’s inclusion (or indeed, exclusion) from the Ministry of Defences spending commitments. Fox’s eventual decision to push ahead with Trident even if it means swinging cuts elsewhere is, frankly, bordering on the barmy. I have written plenty about the virtual uselessness of Trident when it comes to current defence situations and the notion that it should take priority over conventional forces is genuinely naive.

This week has even exposed the weakness of conventional forces against the terrorist threats with the ‘War Log Leaks’ exposing the utter futility of the Afghanistan campaign; not to mention its unacceptable cost in the lives both of combatants and civilians. Labour should start making the coherent case for immediate withdrawal. On a wider level, we have to realise that nuclear weapons are simply a nonsense. Indeed, they have no meaning beyond that of a costly and potentially dangerous status symbol.Britain, long since deprived of her Empire, keeps them purely to preserve its self-image as a great global power.

No single political party has yet to deal with post Cold War realities when it comes to defence; nor have they absorbed the lessons of the ‘War on Terror’. This is a little worrying considering nearly a decade has passed since 9/11 and more than that since the end of Soviet Communism. In reality, it is top-of-the-range intelligence services and a genuine spirit of multilateral co-operation that best serve our defensive needs; preserving conventional forces is a necessity to be sure and providing them with adequate equipment is again something that should be done. However, their expansion, along with the retention of baubles like Trident is totally pointless and counter-productive. Now, if only somebody was prepared to air that view in public rather constricting the argument to pure economics and affordability then that would be a discussion really worth having.


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About darrellgoodliffe


2 responses to “Fox and Osborne miss the point…..”

  1. mommsen says :

    A status symbol: purely kept by Britain to preserve its self-image as a great global power?

    Maybe so.

    Nevertheless I’d support any policy which might help to keep Britain’s image as a great power if I was a British citizen.

    Let’s remember this: Small powers are always being kicked around by the larger ones. This is even true within today’s European Union. (Ask the Greek to find out more about this…)

    It’s alwways better to make others believe in your own power than to be considered being a weak country.


  2. darrellgoodliffe says :


    Not at the point where perserving that image becomes counter to common sense. Would you support somebody buying a flashy car that they couldnt drive in order to look good? I think not.

    Like I said, I can see your point but there comes a point where you have to actually punch your weight else in chasing the preception of strrength you lose it.


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