Top military chiefs go cold on nuclear deterrent via the Independent


Mr Harvey said he hoped that the nuclear review would spark a wider political debate about whether Britain needed to keep a cold war style nuclear deterrence for the sake of international prestige or whether there were cheaper alternatives available.

“I think we might struggle to persuade the British public to get off the nuclear ladder altogether,” he said.

“But we might persuade them to keep our nuclear capability but put it away and not have it as part of your everyday activity.”

And he dismissed that argument of that the wider economic benefits of replacing Trident made it a worthwhile programme.

“The idea that you should produce weapons of mass destruction in order to keep 1,500 jobs going in the Barrow shipyard is simply ludicrous,” he said.

“Frankly you could give them all a couple of million quid and send them to the Bahamas for the rest of their lives – and you would have saved an awful lot of money.”

Former commanders have been openly questioning the wisdom of Trident replacement. General Lord Ramsbotham stated: “What is the point in spending a vast proportion of our defence budget on it when that portion could be better spent on better equipping our conventional armed forces and giving them the precision guided weapons that they need.”

A serving senior officer added: “The imperative is to ensure we have adequate conventional defences and this should not be sacrificed for the sake of replacing Trident.”

Read more at Top military chiefs go cold on nuclear deterrent via the Independent

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