Monday, October 29, 2007

Another Q for Huhne........when is a Nuclear Deterrent not a Nuclear Deterrent?

Answer.............when it's tiny.........

Thanks to Nick at Lib Dems for Chris for attempting to answer my questions but he didn't deal with why Chris didn't speak up in Shadow Cabinet? I can understand, though clearly not agree, with him not being prepared to make it a resigning issue, but that doesn't explain his silence in Shadow Cabinet.

It also appears to me, though I am willing to be corrected, a little disingenuous to bang on about others sitting on the fence whilst Nick says "Also, for the record, Chris is not a doctrinaire unilateralist; he thinks Trident is a poor purchase for Britain on cost and benefit and that it will squeeze the resources available to conventional forces. A smaller independent deterrent could be in the frame."

So..........let's get this right shall we, he's going to scrap Trident and build a new nuclear weapon! He doesn't have any moral objection to Trident he just thinks it is poor value for money. As far as I understand this would be totally in breach of the current Non Proliferation Treaty and International Law. He also wants to wait until after 2010 to make a decision (my problem with our current policy) so please will someone explain to me of little brain.......what is different about what he is saying from current policy?


Hywel said...

A point I made in the same place. I am a multilateralist and to me that means having a militarily usable weapons system. If you drop below a certain level of missiles/warheads then the major purpose of a nuclear deterrent (ie being able to visit wholesale and total destruction on your opponents) becomes less possible and the possibility of a good missile defence system stopping all missiles reaching their targets becomes more credible.

My main objection to the current policy is that missile numbers are based on a number which looks good in the press rather than fits any military objective.

Edis said...

I think it would be very helpful if those of us (especially in this party) who want to get some effective action on Trident (so-called) read and absorb the arguments in the Oxford Research Group paper 'Replacing Trident: who will make the decisons and how?"

The intro summary concludes:

"The paper concludes by arguing that the British government should take the opportunity afforded by forthcoming nuclear weapons decisions to conduct a full review of Britain's strategic security policy. This should examine the difficult subjects of the nature of the UK's relationship with the US and what role, if any, nuclear weapons have in securing Britain's foreign and defence policy goals. Finally the paper argues that advocacy organisations must also place the post-Vanguard debate in this wider context. It suggests that ideological ant-nuclear arguments will have little or no impact in Whitehall and that the most productive and pragmatic approach may be to argue forcefully for a much reduced and cheaper post-Vanguard nuclear capability to reflect the vastly diminished role of nuclear weapons in Britain's defence posture since the end of the Cold War."

It looks to me as if Chris may actually have taken this approach (or something like it) on board and if so it is one of the biggest steps forwards in the continuing debate for some time.