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Thursday, March 17, 2005


Military facing 'capability gaps'
The UK's armed forces could be facing "gaps in capability" because defence equipment is being withdrawn before new technology is ready, MPs warn.
Equipment is being phased out over the next two to three years but new, more capable, kit will not be operational until after 2010, they said.

They sounded far more huffy in the radio report I heard this morning, all about not spending enough on the proper capabilities for the vast ranbge of missions and all that But the MPs are missing the point, of why more should be spent on the armed forces's capabilities, right? Well, my cuties, perhaps I can recommend some reading to you, namely
Delivering Security in a Changing World. Defence White Paper
In it you will find the following statement (p.7):

But we will not need to generate large-scale capabilities across the same spectrum, given that in the most demanding operations we will be operating alongside the US and other allies, where capabilities such as air defence and naval escorts are less likely to be at a premium.

What this means is, that there is no capability gap. As the UK is in the views of this Government not required to be able to carry out proper wars without US or EU support there is no problem.
There are political points to this the MPs have ignored. Underlying this behaviour is the belief -or rather wishful thinking- that come an emergency our allies will be there and ready to fill in our gaps. What if they don’t want to? (see my short comment at the report’s publication).
This will then create a situation where we will be, by a technical fait accompli, forced into the Blairite vision of an “interdependent” world and his Euro-American bridge thingy. It could of course mean that the UK has to choose between the US and the EU, or international engagement and isolation. Either way the political arguments about this are being ignored here right now.
If you disagree with this course of events, now might be the time to say so, because in a couple of years time military technology will have made the choice for us.

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