Grant Shapps, the UK’s new Defence Secretary, in his first major speech, has issued a stark warning about the nation’s defence posture, drawing parallels with the 1930s and cautioning against a repeat of history.

In his address at Lancaster House, Shapps reflected on the post-Cold War era marked by optimism and the notion of a peace dividend, suggesting that this period of apparent tranquillity might be coming to an end.

He highlighted the re-emergence of autocratic states and the ongoing conflicts that suggest a shift from a post-war to a pre-war world.

Shapps accentuated the escalating global uncertainty, “If our armed forces are not strong enough to deter future aggression from Moscow or Beijing, it will not be a small war to contend with but a major one.”

Reflecting on the changing global dynamics, Shapps said, “We find ourselves at the dawn of this new era – the Berlin Wall a distant memory – and we’ve come full circle, moving from a post-war to pre-war world.”

Here’s the full speech.

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George has a degree in Cyber Security from Glasgow Caledonian University and has a keen interest in naval and cyber security matters and has appeared on national radio and television to discuss current events. George is on Twitter at @geoallison
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Bob
Bob
2 months ago

Has someone finally woken up?

Jim
Jim
2 months ago
Reply to  Bob

No, grant shapps is just a buffoon, the guy happily sends men to war the same day he brags about making cuts to the navy.

Now he saying we might go to war while continuing to gut the forces and cut the budget with nothing more than a vague promise to look at going up to 2.5% of gdp one day.

Unfortunately he is too thick to even know who Neville Chamberlin was.

How this man gets a job any where much less the defence secretary is beyond me.

grizzler
grizzler
2 months ago
Reply to  Jim

Who was Neville Chamberlin – what does he mean to you.

Jonathan
Jonathan
2 months ago
Reply to  grizzler

Well, he was the man who did prepare the Uk for war on one side, and on the other was desperate for peace and because of this was out played on the political warfare front because he could not get into the head of his enemies need for war, without chamberlain it’s very likely the British empire would not have been able to fight the war…but because of chamberlain it also lost the opportunity to fight the war at the most advantageous time..if he and France had been willing to engage in kinetic conflict in 1938 or before it’s very… Read more »

grizzler
grizzler
2 months ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Sorry Johnathan that was aimed at Jim due to his implication that he was an appeaser- when he wasn’t. – but thanks for the reply. Chamberlein did more prior to 1939 than he was previously given credit for – due to Chrchills rewitting of History (this is not to dengrate Churchills acheivements BTW merely a statement of fact given his predisposition for self promotion). Dont forget Chamberlein was also suffering from Cancer which must have had a great personal & mental impact. Regards the French reluctance to get involved and face up to the facts militarily read “To Lose a… Read more »

Jim
Jim
2 months ago
Reply to  grizzler

Chamberlin was chancellor before he was PM and that where they were still focused on balancing the books. If the UK had started rearmament in 1935 there probably would not have been a Munich in 1938.

Enobob
Enobob
2 months ago
Reply to  Jim

The UK DID start rearmament in 1935!

klonkie
klonkie
2 months ago
Reply to  Enobob

Absolutley correct Enobob.

Ernest
Ernest
2 months ago
Reply to  grizzler

He was not an “appeaser”?

Well he really I though was an appeaser supporting Hitler in the annexation of Chechoslovakia . Admitted he did get cheers for that.

Then there was Peace with Honour and Peace in our Time.

The Munich agreement in 1938 just delayed the inevitable.

He may have been well intentioned but was a pushover.

I think Sunik or Starmer need to look to 1934 when Britain had to re-arm.

2024 should be the year we learned from 2024 and re-arm massively.

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
2 months ago
Reply to  Ernest

Chamberlain advocated rearmament in 1935 as Chancellor, especially the expansion and modernisation of the RAF [Most Chancellors like to spend little money on Defence]. As PM from May 1937 he put his full weight behind rearmament. As Britain was not yet militarily strong in 1937 and 1938 and early ’39 he had little option but to follow an appeasement line, but of course he declared war on Germany in Sep 1939, and ‘twisted the French arm’ to follow suit. If not for him we would not have had Spitfires and Hurricanes in quantity to fight and win the Battle of… Read more »

Ernest
Ernest
2 months ago
Reply to  Graham Moore

A lot of that may have been true but, he should not have supported Hitler over Chechoslovakia . Than was appeasement. He declared ‘Peace in our time’ – That was appeasement. He (Britain had a choice, keep out of it, Hitler at this stage was not after invading the UK. He would have been better doing nothing. When UK declared war we did not have enough fighters at the start of the battle of Britain. Hitler would rather have had Britain fighting with Germany than fighting each other. My main point is Chamberlain appeased Hitler rather that standing aloof – We… Read more »

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
2 months ago
Reply to  Ernest

The Munich Agreement allowed Hitler to take the Sudetenland part of Czechoslovakia (where 3m German speakers resided) in return for him making no further territorial gains in Europe. It was an attempt to avert wider war in Europe.
You are right that it did not work.
We may not have had all the fighters the RAF wanted at the start of the Battle of Britain, but we would not have had any modern fighters without rearmament from 1935.

Expat
Expat
2 months ago
Reply to  Graham Moore

And of course paying for that rearmament was enable by MacDonald in the early 30s, who cut cost to balance the books and get the economy moving again. He was of course expelled from the Labour party as a result.

John Clark
John Clark
2 months ago
Reply to  Jonathan

I think the pertinent point here is that WW1 was only 20 years prior to the winds of war really blowing into an impending and unavoidable shit storm in 1938. By 1938 when Austra was annexed and the German industrial complex was moved into full throttle war production, European war was utterly unavoidable, it was simply a question of when, but it would have started between 39 and 41. You have to understand the psyche of the times and put that into the context. War must have been utterly unthinkable for the millions of widows, fatherless children and veterans of… Read more »

Jonathan
Jonathan
2 months ago
Reply to  John Clark

Agree on all counts, good summary…once we had giants running our nation, now we have the jackels.

Last edited 2 months ago by Jonathan
Ex-Marine
Ex-Marine
2 months ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Had France even massed on Germany’s border in 1938, Hitler’s Generals would have carried out a coup.

AlexS
AlexS
2 months ago
Reply to  Ex-Marine

Precisely, even by 1939 before invasion of Poland they could have been convinced to make a coup.

John Clark
John Clark
2 months ago
Reply to  Ex-Marine

I doubt they would, the issue was, Germany had started war production to end mass unemployment, Hitler was writing cheques he couldn’t fulfil, so the road to war was set in stone… It was a ticking time bomb that was going off anyway. The UK’s position is an interesting one, it didn’t necessarily have to lead to war with Germany, it might have lead to a grudging understanding and agreement to coexist, that would in term lead to a totally different reality today. The potential what if’s, make for a facinating discussion in itself. Thank god Churchill stood firm and… Read more »

Last edited 2 months ago by John Clark
Graham Moore
Graham Moore
2 months ago
Reply to  John Clark

Hitler initially wanted peaceful coexistence with the UK – we would keep our Empire and he would be allowed to acquire his. Chamberlain did not agree and declared war.

John Clark
John Clark
2 months ago
Reply to  Graham Moore

I wonder how long that coexistence would have lasted Graham, Hitler would have become unstuck in Russia anyway, even if he took Moscow.

The Russians would simply have re-grouped East of the Urals and turned into a slowly advancing meat grinder that would have slowly worn the Germans down, it might have taken 10 years, but the likely result would be Europe occupied by the Soviets.

klonkie
klonkie
2 months ago
Reply to  John Clark

An interesting proposition John. A couple of unknowns though:

Could Russia service without Western aid (initially)?
Might both the UK and USA have supplied armaments to Germany- to drive local industry and their economies?

Food for thought and contemplation.

John Clark
John Clark
2 months ago
Reply to  klonkie

Lots of variables and what if’s mate, it’s quite possible that the Soviets might have been seen as the common enemy, especially if the Germans could have successfully hidden the holocaust from sight.

The Americans would have likely become involved in the Pacific war anyway, as would the UK, as Singapore, Burma, Hong Kong and the Philippines came under attack.

With the UK able to put considerably more effort into a Far East War, the Japanese might have found the fight tougher much earlier.

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
2 months ago
Reply to  John Clark

Good point. The Hitler aspiration was unrealistic, as we had committed to aid Poland in a March 1939 Pact. Hitler appealed to the UK for a truce on 19th July 1940 (despite German bombs raining down on England) – and the Hess flight of 10th May 1941 also sought peace with Britain in return for acceptance of the forthcoming German invasion of the USSR. If the UK had entered into a truce however – Hitler could have easily taken Moscow had he had not been forced to delay the start of Op BARBAROSSA, due to British action in Greece and… Read more »

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
2 months ago
Reply to  Ex-Marine

…and the French had better equipment, especially tanks, than the Germans in 1939/40.

DaveyB
DaveyB
2 months ago
Reply to  Graham Moore

Yes and no. The French tanks had better armour and perhaps some had better guns. But they had no radios and some only had a single person turret. So they had to both command and fight the tank. Even though Germany was using Pz 1s and 2 in the main, backed up with a few Pz3s and 4s, along with some pinched Czech tanks. Which at this point in the war had pretty poor armour and so-so guns, however, they all had radios. The BEF were better in some respects, as most of our tanks had radios. However, they were… Read more »

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
2 months ago
Reply to  DaveyB

Thanks Davey for adding in much-needed detail. It does seem incredible now that we sent 13 of our best trained, best equipped divisions (10 manouevre, 3 labour) to help the French and a sizable expeditionary air force.

DaveyB
DaveyB
2 months ago
Reply to  Graham Moore

If you do some reading on Monty. He got into a lot of trouble, as he firmly believed in the use of combined arms manoeuvre warfare as promoted by Fuller and Liddell Hart. Which was dead against the way of the then Army establishment (1920’s). He openly advocated that static forces would be easily outmanoeuvred and cut off by highly mobile forces using armoured vehicles. At this point he didn’t see much use for tactical airpower. As the aircraft used by the RAF army cooperation squadrons were pretty rubbish in the 1930’s. I think what was telling, was that Monty’s… Read more »

Math
Math
2 months ago
Reply to  Ex-Marine

This, you could not be more wrong. Troups were at the border, but the corps de bataille was limited. And remember One fact: the Reich was 80 million citizens, while France was 40 million. Just keep that in mind, once and for all. Had US joined a défense alliance with UK and France, Hitler would not had moved.
If in 1939 we appeared as agressor, USA may never have joined the war alltogether. Easy to ask alway the same country to restore order in Europe.

Math
Math
2 months ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Just remember one thing: in 1939: 40 million French 80 million Germans. A defensive approach was far from stupid at that time. Especially given Staline doubtfull intentions. Now, 450 million europeans facing 140 million Russians and 1.4 Bn Chineese. India and US intentions unknown, Africa unstable and rapidly growing, middle east uneasy to access by sea. This is the problem to solve. Arms race now is the only solution, I agree with your minister. And clock is ticking not fully in our favor. Best thing we can do is to increase steel production, dig hydrogene for engines, produce or secure… Read more »

Jonathan
Jonathan
2 months ago
Reply to  Math

Hi Math But the reality was the German army was well overmatched by the French army if it had been willing to fight, unfortunately the French third republic was simply rotten and ready to fall…most of the armour used by Germany in 39 was either utter crap ( panzer1 ) or Czech…If the French and British had gone on the offensive Hitler would have fallen..you have to remember that he was not well liked by the army and was secure because of his victories in Czechoslovakia and Poland..if the western allies had pushed hard early his race would have been… Read more »

Math
Math
2 months ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Maybe. Maybe not. The french doctrine for attach was not too good due to unbelievable casualties in WW1. Attack is never an easy choice. You loose 3 to 5 times more men than defenders entrenched. Moral: when you fight in a foreign land to conquer, people have less confidence in the fight. Consequences: what if we beat them and hold the border with communistes in an unfriendly land? How foolish the situation may have been. We lost. I whish we did not. In WW1, who sustained the German attack? At first 90% of French. USA came in after they got… Read more »

klonkie
klonkie
2 months ago
Reply to  Jonathan

An excellent appraisal Jonathan.

Expat
Expat
2 months ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Chamberlin was PM in 1937, UK started its preparation for war before that in the 1935 creating shadow factories. The National Government of the 30s which was first lead by MacDonald(labour), who sort to get the economy back on track by reducing benefits and public sector pay, tee’d up the economy nicely by balancing the books, he was expelled from the Labour party, because he did the right thing for the country rather than blindly following an ideology. Baldwin then took over (conservative) before Chamberlin in 1937 who just continued the work started by his predecessors.

Andy reeves
Andy reeves
2 months ago
Reply to  grizzler

Nothing now, it’s too late l

Bringer of facts
Bringer of facts
2 months ago
Reply to  grizzler

I don’t know about Chamberlin, but it certainly looks like history is repeating itself.

In the 1930s: Hitler Germany invaded neigbouring countries, their, economy was already on a war footing, they were more than prepared for a long fight.

Today Putin: attacks neighboring countries his economy has gone onto a war footing with a boost to 37.3% of all their economic budget.

Meirion X
Meirion X
2 months ago

A war budget dependent on oil and gas sales. Cut it off, and the russian economy will grind
to a halt! The German economy of the time was an diverse industrial economy, unlike ruZZia is today.

Last edited 2 months ago by Meirion X
Jon
Jon
2 months ago
Reply to  Meirion X

You can’t cut it off if purchases are made by China, India and a host of unaligned nations.

Meirion X
Meirion X
2 months ago
Reply to  Jon

ruZZia two main oil terminal
ports, are St.Petersburg and Novorssiysk on Black Sea Coast. I think something is going to accidentally happen there, one day! Still only a small proportion is piped to China, and relies on Western engineering, subject to sanctions. Also the purchasing could be disrupted by making the electronic money disappear!

Last edited 2 months ago by Meirion X
Math
Math
2 months ago
Reply to  Meirion X

Wow, how did you know…

Andy reeves
Andy reeves
2 months ago
Reply to  Jim

I. Some ways we already are cyber attacks are a warlike act, but not an act of war. Big difference, but. Either can lead to the. Other.in peace prepare for war. We’re not prepared for the pub

Jonathan
Jonathan
2 months ago
Reply to  Andy reeves

China is actually at war with the west…not a kinetic war, but a warfare china totally believes in and that is political warfare..it believes you fight this war before the troops come out and then when the troops do come out you fight it even harder..you only have to read the works on war of the great leader ( Mao) to understand Chinese views of warfare and conflict..and they are not the wests. But they studied us and how we defeated the Soviet Union, they think they understand us and our strengths and weaknesses…at present they are attacking our weaknesses… Read more »

Math
Math
2 months ago
Reply to  Jonathan

China is preparing for war. We are barely moving. This does not look good. We are late.

Jonathan
Jonathan
2 months ago
Reply to  Math

Indeed the U.S. department of defence suggests that china is probably spending 10 to 11 times that amount they declare on its military..so the declared budget is 290billion ten times that is 2900 billion or around 17% of its GDP…its commissioning many hundreds of thousands of tons of warships every year ( infact each year it commissions an decent sized European navy worth of warships)…its nuclear arsenal is going through the roof…its even told its population publicly to be ready for war by 2027….its hardened its economy changed its supply lines away from the west..moved its markets from the west..all… Read more »

Marked
Marked
2 months ago
Reply to  Jim

Many of the key weapons that saved us, spitfire, Hurricane, radar ground control etc were a product of chamberlain’s government. It was recognised we faced a threat and we were re-arming. Chamberlain gets a lot of stick, perhaps unfairly, it could be said his “appeasement” bought us time to re-arm, we weren’t ready to stand up to Germany any sooner than we did.

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
2 months ago
Reply to  Marked

Chamberlain pursued a twin-track approach – rearmament and appeasement until we were rearmed. As a strategy, it worked brilliantly.
Not all was perfect in subsequent early prosecution of the War, but that is a subsequent chapter of our island story. Whilst we won the Battle of Britain thanks to many factors including successful rearmament, it was optimistic to assume that the BEF even with modern equipment could bolster the French enough to dissuade Hitler from atatcking the Low Countries and France.

FormerUSAF
FormerUSAF
2 months ago
Reply to  Jim

Forsooth, harken thine attention to the following partial quotation from one of Hamlet ‘s soliloquies (Act 5, Scene 5): “To-morrow and to-morrow, and to-morrow, Creeps in this petty pace from day to day To the last syllable of recorded time… a poor player that frets and struts his hour upon the stage and then is heard no more, It is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.” Hmmm…any thoughts re recurring conduct? 🤔😉 Highly confident any HMG will dramatically increase defence spending, after hostilities commence. Possibly by the time Mad Vlad or Xi take… Read more »

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
2 months ago
Reply to  FormerUSAF

I think you are right about when HMG will seriously uplift defence spending (an extra £10bn is needed to boost spending to 2.5% of GDP, and that won’t be enough to prepare us for General War – Russia is spending c.40% of GDP on Defence).

The phrase better late than never definitely does not apply.

[Hitler had his eye on Windsor Castle as his UK base.]

Jonathan
Jonathan
2 months ago
Reply to  Graham Moore

There are assessments that china is spending something like 17% of GDP on military spending ( from the US department of defence so reliable)…china declares around 290billion of defence spending or 1.7% but the DOD think it could be 10 to 11 times that…so 2900billion dollars a year ( which is 6 times the US Budget …which would make sense..you cannot build a navy, nuclear force, offensive missile forces, airforce and army at that rate china has done on 290billion a year…( it’s build the equivalent of an entire major European navy every year for a good few years now).

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
2 months ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Wow. Now, you really are starting to get me worried. They are not just building vanity projects.

Jonathan
Jonathan
2 months ago
Reply to  Graham Moore

It’s way beyond vanity projects..I totted up what the PLAN had commissioned over a 3 year period..end of 2019 to 2023 and it was well over 700,000 tons of warships.. that is almost twice the total tonnage of the entire RN put in the water in around 3 years..when you think in 2014 the total tonnage of the PLAN was 700,000 tons, between 2014 and 2018 it put another 700,000 tones in the water. So 700,000 tones in 2014. By 2022 ( 8 years later)that was 2,400,000 tones..by the end of 2023 it had probably added about another 200,000 tones..so… Read more »

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
2 months ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Incredible. This biggest naval battle in history – I assume it would be their invasion of Taiwan and related domination of the SCS?
AUKUS perhaps to become a strong alliance of naval forces rather than just a technology transfer/submarine sales organisation…and resurrect SEATO?

Jonathan
Jonathan
2 months ago
Reply to  Graham Moore

Less incredible and more sadly looking like an inevitability..the invasion of Taiwan..with the initial action between the Taiwanese forces, US forces based in the western pacific ( a pair of carrier battle groups and and an amphibious force) will be horrible..the U.S. would then need to react in with its wider pacific forces..en mass ( or risk defeat in detail)..it’s not likely either side will give and when you have many hundreds of thousands of personnel fighting with modern weapons when neither side will give and neither side will have significant advantage..it’s going to be horrible….the true tragedy will be… Read more »

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
2 months ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Thanks mate. NATO will not get involved unless China attacks the US homeland, or, possibly if China attacks a US military asset in the NATO area.

However I am guessing most countries in the world would rather consider a Chinese invasion of Taiwan to be an internal Chinese matter, particularly as Taiwan is not even officially recognised as an independent country (no longer in the UNO.

Jonathan
Jonathan
2 months ago
Reply to  Graham Moore

A final interesting point, which I forgot to mention is that china for the last decade has built all is Ro-Ro ferries with a duel civilian military requirement ( in law all chinese companies have to ensure they and their resources can be mobilised)…it’s estimated that china has around 1.1 million tonnes of Ro-RO duel military/civilian sea lift on top of its huge amphibious capability and probably a total of around 2.5million tons of sea lift if it used everything ….which is somewhat scary if your Tawian…a lot of these duel civilian/military sea lift are not small either..china has a… Read more »

Last edited 2 months ago by Jonathan
FormerUSAF
FormerUSAF
2 months ago
Reply to  Graham Moore

Yes, however understand Windsor Castle currently requires a £1+B renovation? Imagine Mad Vlad and/or Xi will shop for bargain properties. 😉

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
2 months ago
Reply to  FormerUSAF

Very good! [I doubt though that Windsor Castle needs a £1bn+ renovation – got a good upgrade after the 1992 fire].

DH
DH
2 months ago
Reply to  FormerUSAF

A nice piece of the Bard input!who would have thought,verily.👍

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
2 months ago
Reply to  Jim

..and he continues to allow the army to lose 10,000 established posts and to reduce to 148 tanks.
He certainly is a buffoon. If he means what he says he should be championing rearmament on the scale of the mid-late 1930s.

Jonathan
Jonathan
2 months ago
Reply to  Graham Moore

Agree…it was Interesting in the interview this morning with Laura kunsburge..she said so if we are heading to a major war why have you still not even hit your 2.5% target on defence..when will you ? and what are you doing to protect the country if we are heading for a major war…he had no answer and said they will reach 2.5% when the economic situation allows…the man did not even mention china as a likely enemy…the problem when you have a man like this tell the story we are heading for a major war…no one will believe him especially… Read more »

Andrew D
Andrew D
2 months ago
Reply to  Bob

If there have still no extra money in the pot 😕 💰

Andy reeves
Andy reeves
2 months ago
Reply to  Andrew D

If it wasn’t for the crewing NEEDS I’d be saying get half a dozen of the freedom class ships from the Americans. Now they’ve been fitted with the gearing fix. They’re operating well with the 4th and 5th fleets £100 million pounds is the cheapest for a modern frigate each one would be cheaper than that. A class of five T32 will be at least £100 million each .6 of those types would be each would be less than that then we can cross deck what we can from a T23 DS30, maybe a towed array and thebceptor or swap… Read more »

Last edited 2 months ago by Andy reeves
Meirion X
Meirion X
2 months ago
Reply to  Andy reeves

I would say £100 million for a T32, is vary much on the low side! T31 are now running in at £280 million each, that’s without GFE, ie the extras.

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
2 months ago
Reply to  Meirion X

I agree with you. It was always said that T31 would be a cheap £250m ship.

MattW
MattW
2 months ago
Reply to  Andy reeves

I don’t think even Shapps will fall for that one TBH.

They have slightly more than half the range of a River class patrol boat, a crew of 70, and are costed at £50-60m a year to run – each.

I think that running cost is approx. double that of our frigates, but I’m open to correction on that.

MattW
MattW
2 months ago
Reply to  Andy reeves

I don’t think even Shapps will fall for that one TBH.

They have slightly more than half the range of a River class patrol boat, a crew of 70, and are costed at £50-60m a year to run – each.

I think that running cost is approx. double that of our frigates, but I’m open to correction on that.

AlexS
AlexS
2 months ago
Reply to  Andy reeves

What you talking about? 100 millions for what? Freedom class successful? with its short range ? noisy waterjets? only RAM missiles?

Hereward
Hereward
2 months ago
Reply to  Andy reeves

Having a few different types of frigate/destroyer is surely a logistical nightmare for today’s tiny RN. The Army has already moved swiftly to reduce the number of different types of wheeled vehicle (a pretty simple piece of kit in comparison) to as few types as possible.

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
2 months ago
Reply to  Hereward

A little too much is made of the benefit of reducing vehicle types – in REME we were very used to working on a large range of equipment – and the Q system stocked a wide range of spares. Most units have many different types of wheeled vehicle from motorcycles to MAN SV trucks.
During Op Herrick and Telic, there were numerous UOR vehicles procured but soon after, as is SOP, it was decided what would be taken into core and what would be disposed of. Thinning out those vehicles was always going to happen.

Hereward
Hereward
2 months ago
Reply to  Graham Moore

Thanks for the reply from “someone who knows”. I used a bad example perhaps but I think my point of having as few frigate/destroyers types as possible is pretty sound given the Suze of the RN right now. I don’t dispute we need more ships but we also need bods to crew them, and we don’t.

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
2 months ago
Reply to  Hereward

I agree. It is somewhat puzzling to the non-matelot that the Navy needs 7,000 people to crew every single one of their vessels yet cannot find that from their 29,000 strength.
[I realise you cannot move a Writer (clerk) from a shore establishment to be a chef on a frigate etc but there is a point to be made I think]

Frank62
Frank62
2 months ago
Reply to  Hereward

Agreed. No need for clapped out LCS which the USN have decided was a poor choice, replacing them with proper frigates, the Constelation class. No, we need more T31s with better equipment & more T26, even T26 with ABM Asters to boost fleet air/missile defence. Keep the base T31 & T26 & build on it. Comparisons with Chamberlain/1935 give us too much credit. It’s more like 1935+ & we’ve a tiny peacetime navy. In 1935 we still had one of, if not the, most powerful navy on the planet. Today we have a navy understrength even for peacetime, due to… Read more »

Bob
Bob
2 months ago
Reply to  Andrew D

That’s true.
In my defence, the comment was meant to be sarcastic, but we all know how intentions do or do not come across in text.

MattW
MattW
2 months ago
Reply to  Andrew D

There seems to be sufficient money in the pot to promise aroudn £50bn a year of tax cuts between Nov 23 and Nov 24.

grizzler
grizzler
2 months ago
Reply to  Bob

If you take it in context with the recent Swedish statements you could believe so.
If you wanted further confirmation I’d wait until you hear it from Finland , Poland first .then Id be slightly more concenred..and if France and Germany say it …I’ll be building my bunker in the garden.

Ultimately however it surely shows a shift in the political midset – they just have to back up those concenrs with money …

After all dont forget the governments first priority is the defence of the country and its residents.

Will they walk the walk…

Bob
Bob
2 months ago
Reply to  grizzler

I agree with most of the direct replies to my post – See my reply to Andrew D above.

Frank62
Frank62
2 months ago
Reply to  grizzler

HMG’s priorities are first their own careers, wealth & egos, then the wealth of their kind & backers, then their spun legacy….

The public come not very far from last, as we’ve seen. Decent services etc too good for us. That’s only for the few who can afford to pay dearly.

If their first priority was our defence we’d have a decent defence, unlike today.

Grizzler
Grizzler
2 months ago
Reply to  Frank62

Sorry I was being a little sarcastic when I wrote then…it didn’t come across in the post..so just to clarify I agree they are not taking that seriously.

Frank62
Frank62
2 months ago
Reply to  Grizzler

Sorry Grizzler, no problem. When HMG use the lowest form of soundbite, usually backed up by no reality/at odds with the truth, the lowest form of whit is often the best response. I’m so traumatised by recent decades of madness at the top, I trigger easily.

Last edited 2 months ago by Frank62
River Rha
River Rha
2 months ago
Reply to  Frank62

Would it not seem possible that HMG is rather hoping that the Boomers of Post Second World War parenting will come to their rescue ~ Allegedly the children of the Boomers and their Progeny might not be so willing as their forebears to take up Arms in Military Services in Defence of All that children of the Boomers and their Progeny would seem to Value for their Enjoyment Of, Such As Foreign Travel ~ As Long As It would seem Anywhere, Except to Theatres of War taking place in this Increasingly Fractured World. And an Increasingly Fractured World where Other… Read more »

Frank62
Frank62
2 months ago
Reply to  River Rha

Boomers RR? That generation is in it’s 50/60s, nowhere near recruitment age. I think most generations are capable of rising to a challange so long a it is just, reasonable, necessary & those unwilling/unsuitable are excepted. What we need is decent pay & conditions plus far better after service care. The forces need to be a serious career, rather than a shoe string last line of defence, so run down it seems like a forlorn hope. As a society we’ve let the money men sell everything off to the highest/lowest bidder regardless of much sense. Our ruling classes are our… Read more »

Andy reeves
Andy reeves
2 months ago
Reply to  Bob

John notts alar clock has been found

Grizzler
Grizzler
2 months ago
Reply to  Andy reeves

Did he forget to wind it up …

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
2 months ago
Reply to  Bob

I did say this yesterday in a post and smell the coffee!

Dave Wolfy
Dave Wolfy
2 months ago

No problem for us, our troops have a can-do attitude.
We will be alright.

No doubt this comment will be removed.

Last edited 2 months ago by Dave Wolfy
grizzler
grizzler
2 months ago
Reply to  Dave Wolfy

Not sure if this comment is irony – but if not it is extremely naive – not a true reflection of the situation on the ground and ultimately doesn’t help rectify the situation in any way .
In fact it just re-enforces the governments doctrine ~ & their decisions to cut.

Dave Wolfy
Dave Wolfy
2 months ago
Reply to  grizzler

Grant Schapps said this publicly last week.

Grizzler
Grizzler
2 months ago
Reply to  Dave Wolfy

Ah sorry yes I missed your sarcasm…apologies.

Jonathan
Jonathan
2 months ago
Reply to  Dave Wolfy

The man is such a prat.

Simon
Simon
2 months ago

Peace dividend. In 2010 defence spending was 2.5% of GDP, now we are around 2%.( figures from World bank ) Does Shapps bother to check anything before making a speech?

Andrew
Andrew
2 months ago
Reply to  Simon

Plus funding for the nuclear deterrent was transferred from treasury to the defence budget as well…

PaulW
PaulW
2 months ago
Reply to  Andrew

And MOD pensions. Don’t forget that small bucket of cash got transferred as well.

Mr Bell
Mr Bell
2 months ago
Reply to  PaulW

There was a good analysis done on this issue- so when combined adding nuclear deterrent, armed forces pensions and then impact of inflation on our much lauded 2% NATO compliant defence budget, the actual operational budget is more like 1.45% and falling, due to inflationary pressures. So far far off where we should and need to be. Cameron and Osbourne need to be arrested and put in the tower of London for thinking himself so clever in his creative accountancy that led to this situation. oh wait Cameron has just be made a Lord….guess there isn’t any realisation of the… Read more »

Andrew D
Andrew D
2 months ago
Reply to  Mr Bell

Good point 👍

Frank62
Frank62
2 months ago
Reply to  Mr Bell

Cameron & Osbourne, plus every PM since- “Make it so!”

Jon
Jon
2 months ago
Reply to  Frank62

The only one who increased the Defence budget is the only one who even skirted prison.

Grizzler
Grizzler
2 months ago
Reply to  Mr Bell

And yet Camerons back in government…and really ironically as the foreign secretary…you just couldn’t make this shit up could you.

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
2 months ago
Reply to  Mr Bell

Osbourne as Chancellor wanted a mere 50,000 army.

klonkie
klonkie
2 months ago
Reply to  Mr Bell

God help us Mr Bell

Andy reeves
Andy reeves
2 months ago
Reply to  PaulW

People earn their pensions and should never have them plundered. It’s a despicable notion.

ChrisLondon
ChrisLondon
2 months ago
Reply to  Andy reeves

I think he is referring to counting that as part of the defence spend when it was not before. Like the nukes, a stealth cut.

Simon
Simon
2 months ago
Reply to  Andrew

yep, I just find it odd that these statements are made, while the budget is in effect being cut

Levi Goldsteinberg
Levi Goldsteinberg
2 months ago
Reply to  Simon

Around 2% and GDP hasn’t grown nearly as quickly as inflation mind. In real times it is a gargantuan cut

Andy reeves
Andy reeves
2 months ago

It’s the 2010SDSR coming back to haunt us again

Andy reeves
Andy reeves
2 months ago
Reply to  Simon

Apparently not

Caspian237
Caspian237
2 months ago

We can only hope that this is his opening salvo in an attempt to win a larger slice of the GDP pie for defence spending. Words are meaningless without any actions.

Last edited 2 months ago by Caspian237
Jon
Jon
2 months ago
Reply to  Caspian237

It’s more likely a call to other NATO nations to reach 2% than to get our PM to cough up more this coming year. Only 7 do. Perhaps, and I find this hard to write, perhaps it’s also defensive to avoid even deeper cuts in the run up to a tax giveaway budget.

Aaron L
Aaron L
2 months ago
Reply to  Caspian237

You’d hope that was the case although I doubt there will be more money from this government, maybe the next but we’ll see.

I think this is a bad attempt at trying to get ahead of the string of pretty bad news stories coming out around the armed forces, the state of the Royal Navy etc. Doesn’t look good in an election year.

Levi Goldsteinberg
Levi Goldsteinberg
2 months ago

Yes, that is correct and has been blindingly obvious for three years now. Never mind the fact you were negligent in the first place even allowing yourself to believe that peace would last even in the good times.

And to think they’re STILL thinking about making cuts and have no interest in patching the holes in our Armed Forces. Maddening.

These politicians should be locked up for what they’ve done

Mr Bell
Mr Bell
2 months ago

Agree- I think the issue should be put into a national constitution, if a politician cuts armed forces and those cuts contribute to military defeat and combat losses as a direct result they should go to jail, whether the politician is still serving in parliament or gone onto being a non executive director or advisor for some of the firms they signed dodgy contracts over too whilst in power. I think such an act of parliament and constitutional pledge is the only way to make the political class realise they ARE responsible and WILL be held responsible, by the people… Read more »

Andy reeves
Andy reeves
2 months ago

Treason and criminal negligence.again and again the same mistakes being repeated over and over.

English Brigadier
English Brigadier
2 months ago

this period of apparent tranquillity might be coming to an end.”

Good. It might be what this country and the Western world needs to wake up.

I also see people talking about Neville Chamberlain. And no doubt they think that he was an appeaser. Well, Britain was in no position to go to war in 1938 and he bought the country a bit more time to get ready.

Knight7572
Knight7572
2 months ago

There are people are not medically fit for military service and there is a reason conscription was got rid of, Money

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
2 months ago

We want the best. Not people pulled off the street who don’t want to be there.

Geoff Roach
Geoff Roach
2 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

👍🙂

Knight7572
Knight7572
2 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

These people who demand national service do not think things through

Last edited 2 months ago by Knight7572
Frank62
Frank62
2 months ago
Reply to  Knight7572

Indeed, it isn’t national service we need but decent in house recruitment, better pay, terms & conditions & the investment needed to rebuild our tottering forces before it’s far too late.

HMG have reduced the forces from a great career to a sinking ship many of our best experienced & expensively trained people feel it’s not worth staying in. If this government was in charge at the time leading up to the Titanic disaster they’d be cutting the number of already inadequate lifeboats.

Grizzler
Grizzler
2 months ago
Reply to  Frank62

Absolutely spot on.

Ex-Marine
Ex-Marine
2 months ago
Reply to  Grizzler

Nah, come on @Frank62. Our recruitment is that good we’ve given Capita another £1.6bn contract to continue their non-performance.

GR
GR
2 months ago
Reply to  Ex-Marine

Private Eye has long referred to them as “Crapita” because they screw up every public sector contract handed to them. I can only assume brown envelopes are involved in why they keep getting them.

Mr Bell
Mr Bell
2 months ago

This guy is an utter moron. So Grant Shapps- just one question of many many questions I would like to ask you and your chums in the ruling corrupt dodgy Tory party. What are you going to do about this issue to prepare the UK for the war you yourself acknowledge is coming? The UK is definitely blindly advancing into a war against a resurgent Russia and China without the firepower and resilience we had in the cold war. Defence as a share of GDP needs to go up drastically, urgently and immediately and some massive orders for hardware, ships,… Read more »

David lloyd
David lloyd
2 months ago
Reply to  Mr Bell

Now, when I post similar observations, I get moderated – repeatedly. Which is why I’ve given up posting here.

Enobob
Enobob
2 months ago
Reply to  Mr Bell

None of that will happen while this lot are in power! They have zero interest in the Public or national good and hate spending public money as much as they hate public services.

Andrew D
Andrew D
2 months ago

For years Russia has been aggressive well before the Ukraine war ,did UK governments take any notice NO .China flexing there muscles ,now trouble in the middle East ,red sea shipping getting Attacked ,Pakistan and the Iranian forces having tit for tat.It’s getting crazy and on the news this morning Israel have attacked syria it’s looking though to me Israel not taking any notice of the USA and doing has there are fit.Think HMG need to put us on a war footing now no more messing about .Will be interesting to see how Labour will do if election goes there… Read more »

Frank62
Frank62
2 months ago
Reply to  Andrew D

HMG doesn’t take notice, no of course: they took donations from Russians & Chinese.

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
2 months ago

He’s visited the crew onboard HMS Diamond since this speech.

Frank
Frank
2 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

HMS Diamond is one of Twelve T45’s originally Envisaged until this number was slashed to Six…. and of those six we can now call on maybe Three….. You got to love the “Peace Dividend”…… Oh well, we might get somewhere in the next twenty years I guess….. Anyone know any decent Steel Plants ?

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
2 months ago
Reply to  Frank

Of course, 8,10, or 12 T45’s would be very useful now. But I guess its easy to criticise the decision makes back in the 2000’s when Russia wasn’t a threat, China isn’t the power it is today and the focus was on fighting terrorists in the desert. Hindsight is a wonderful thing.

Iain
Iain
2 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

Si vis pacem, para bellum. The moment the politicians forget that…well we all know what follows.

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
2 months ago
Reply to  Iain

Politicians need to think much further ahead when it comes to defence spending and planning. Having said that, we have many capabilities that are beyond our enemies. Russia and China know it cannot match the west with conventional capabilities.

Frank62
Frank62
2 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

All the clues have been staring them in the face for at least the last decade. It’s willfull dereliction of duty to have kept cutting regardless. All the Far east nations have been building forces carefully & steadily while we shed far too much.

Jon
Jon
2 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

Russia wasn’t a threat when it occupied Transnistria (in the 90s), invaded Georgia, poisoned Litvinyenko with nuclear isotopes on UK soil? Perhaps not, but perhaps a weather eye out to see the way the wind was blowing was something we could have expected.

Tim
Tim
2 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

We’re facing threats today and they’re still making cuts. The T45 cut from 12 to 6 was money. The cost was much higher because of all the gold plating. It’s going to be a good platform when the PIPs are all done, and it will be better once 48 CAAMs are added, but there was too much development and not enough just do this.

The T42 was nearly similar, but at least on that occassion we got 14 T42s and not 6 T82s.

Gavin Gordon
Gavin Gordon
2 months ago
Reply to  Frank

Steel Magnolia?

River Rha
River Rha
2 months ago
Reply to  Frank

If I’m not mistaken, to the Best of My Aged Years Memory of the 1980s (am a Boomer myself from University educated parents who Voluntarily Served during the Second World War), It would seem that British Steel Allegedly kept the furnaces working at Ravenscraig in the midst of Angry Trades Unionism and Picketing of the Main Gates to Ravenscraig Site so that Coal Supplied via Hunterston could be keeping the furnaces working for the Purposes of Providing Steel for Building the Trident Nuclear Deterrent At Sea 🌊 Due-to Grades of Steel in Production, SO It Would Seem that I Have… Read more »

Mr Bell
Mr Bell
2 months ago

Well I’ve gone onto the gov website and read the full speech. It is full of rhetoric but lacking any detail on how the UK is going to deter our enemies, out fight them and have the industrial-military base needed to support our allies and win a conflict.
Until I see any firm orders and an uplift in armed forces personnel numbers, improved pay and a big increase in the defence budget then Shapps speech is just that, a speech, made by a politician sprouting lots of blustered hot air.

Andrew D
Andrew D
2 months ago
Reply to  Mr Bell

For sure 👍

Jon
Jon
2 months ago
Reply to  Mr Bell

It’s not just the speech. The answers to journalists’ questions afterward is also enlighting for what it doesn’t say. The Guardian has a video of it all you cam search for.

The best news from that was a flat denial that the LPDs are to be scrapped! I was waiting for a row-back the next day: it’s a decision for the RN, etc, but all seems good.

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
2 months ago
Reply to  Jon

The last I heard the man said that a ‘final decision had not been made’ on mothballing one or both LPDs. Has this changed?

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
2 months ago

Well he’s said it.

The Swedes have said it.

The Poles have more or less said it.

So where is the money for all the people and recruitment to right this wrong? I won’t hold my breath….

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
2 months ago

The Germans have said it too.

Grizzler
Grizzler
2 months ago
Reply to  Graham Moore

Yes unfortunately over the last couple of days I have seen the above statements from those countries.

Along with my earlier statements I have now bought a spade, and 3 tons of concrete.

I start digging my bunker 07:00 tomorrow morning.

John
John
2 months ago

Shapps is an idiot. However, if Orange Man becomes Potus? UK will have to spend more on defence, because we will not be able to depend on the US baling us out IF Putin pushes hid luck with the Baltic states. Lets be honest, Poland, Sweden, Finland and even Germany have seen the writing on the wall.

Frank
Frank
2 months ago

And We on here, have been saying and thinking this for how long now ?…..🤔🤔🤔……. 🙄

Geoff Roach
Geoff Roach
2 months ago

Whilst I am no fan of Shapps it’s worth noting that these cuts have been going on for twenty years. Ben Wallace has been praised but what did he actually do? Boris was the only one who wanted to increase the budget and in his campaign so did Hunt. We are waiting.🙄

Julian
Julian
2 months ago
Reply to  Geoff Roach

Boris was the only one who wanted to increase the budget and in his campaign so did Hunt.”

Not that I was ever a fan but in fairness didn’t Truss also have an increase in defence spending to 3% of GDP as one of her promises when she was campaigning for (and ultimately winning) PM?

Geoff Roach
Geoff Roach
2 months ago
Reply to  Julian

You’re right . She did. She actually did talk some sense but got shafted I think.

Grizzler
Grizzler
2 months ago
Reply to  Geoff Roach

E tu Sunak

Frank62
Frank62
2 months ago
Reply to  Geoff Roach

Boris was the only one who wanted to increase the budget?

Yet the reality was further cuts.

Geoff Roach
Geoff Roach
2 months ago
Reply to  Frank62

After he was out of office.

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
2 months ago
Reply to  Geoff Roach

Wallace got the defence budget uplifted twice.

Bringer of facts
Bringer of facts
2 months ago

All talk and no action.

If we are going to meet the challenge of fighting a major attritional war against other industrialised countries we need to:

  • Sort out the recruitment crisis in the armed forces
  • reinvest and rebuild defence manufacturing and support industries.
  • Buy more tracked AFVs (Tanks and AFVs)
  • Speed up new warship and Ashm procurement.
  • Acquire some long-range Air defences for cities and important military sites

Not an exhaustive list by any means, but I do not see any new plans to prioritise any of the above.

Tim
Tim
2 months ago

I would argue that as part of NATO we don’t need to up our spending against the joke that is the Russian army. Then I think of the China bubble bursting and the economic war China will start to isolate itself from the west! Forcing the world to choose a side. Causing the economic collapse of half of NATO because countries like Germany think economically intertwining their economies gives them control over crazy dictators! Trump 2nd term! Worst of all what use is NATO if Putin sees the end of Russia coming and decides he wants to be the most… Read more »

Bringer of facts
Bringer of facts
2 months ago
Reply to  Tim

Ok: Two points As much as Russia is taking a battering in Ukraine (Good job Ukr !!), they are big country and can draw on a lot of resources. It is worrying that they are now massively increasing the GDP going into replacing losses and recruiting. Secondly this may well be a multi-front war as Iran (and its proxies) seem to be kicking off. There are also the uncertainty that China and North Korea may join in or take advantage of any situation when NATO forces are full occupied. IMHO. NATO/ western countries really need to seriously ramp up their… Read more »

farouk
farouk
2 months ago

BOF wrote: “”Ok: Two points As much as Russia is taking a battering in Ukraine (Good job Ukr !!), they are big country and can draw on a lot of resources.”” You make a valid point regards the size of Russia and the wealth it has locked up underground (oil , minerals etc) But for Moscow to succeed it requires manpower and technology and most of all funding. 1)    Manpower: Since the war inside Ukraine kicked off 23 months ago, Russia has suffered huge losses in manpower, now whilst most stats will talk about actual deaths, the fact remains they will have… Read more »

Wasp snorter
Wasp snorter
2 months ago
Reply to  farouk

Good response, i would add a small footnote that not only have people left Russia in droves, the population itself isn’t that big, it’s not the Soviet Union anymore (obv) and has a dwindling population of around 143 million. That’s less than just the UK and Germany added together. A large country means nothing if no one lives there. Russia are a spent force just trying to partly invade Ukraine and that’s an immediate neighbour. Putin has little to throw into the meat grinder army of his, it’s not WW2.

Tim
Tim
2 months ago
Reply to  farouk

Plus any figures coming out of Russia for the last 20 years come straight from Putin.

I doubt the population figures.

The media don’t take into account the cost of working with oil and gas in permafrost in the artic circle. Then pumping the stuff across one of the most inhospitable places on earth. Paying a premium for a dark fleet using inefficient old, small warn out tankers having to tranship cargos multiple times.

Russia stock market is just stock without the market.

A Currency that is literally worth less than the paper it’s printed on.

Tim
Tim
2 months ago

Attrition. The trouble is China industrial capacity makes the USA in ww2 look tiny! I saw somewhere that China builds 30,000,000 tons of ships per year vs the USA 100,000 tons. China has the infrastructure all ready in place to out produce Europe and the USa without breaking a sweat. India is a pragmatic country and will side with China. Energy from the middle east will be diverted to China instead of going to Europe. I don’t believe the Arabs would support democracy over a China that would support their rights to govern their people how ever they want. Europe… Read more »

Enobob
Enobob
2 months ago
Reply to  Tim

“India is a pragmatic country and will side with China.”

What!? That totally ignores history and the current strained relations between China and India. India is much more West facing than Chinese facing, is a democracy and cherishes individual freedoms. It is in no way China supporting or China leaning.

China depends upon selling to the West, and without that market they are finished financially.

Tim
Tim
2 months ago
Reply to  Enobob

India is a democracy in the same way Russia is a democracy. India leaned toward the Soviets during the cold war. Did you notice where the Indians get there weapons? Then go look at where Pakistan used to get its weapons! The Indians dont look back fondly at colonial rule. India does not cherish individual freedoms. Try being a Muslim or a woman in India. Ask your self who supports Russia. I said India is a pragmatic country. Given a new cold war they will side with China. China needs the west and the west needs China. That doesn’t stop… Read more »

DaveyB
DaveyB
2 months ago

It is a very worrying thought that North Korea and China may be in cahoots. As that will tie up a massive proportion of the US Armed Forces. If they decide to kick off against both South Korea and Taiwan at the same time. Japan will likely get a pasting, to make sure they can’t interfere. Australia are too far away to offer immediate assistance.

By doing so it will take away the main materiel support for Ukraine, as the US will have to focus on the providing support to both South Korea and Taiwan.

Just hope I am wrong!

Last edited 2 months ago by DaveyB
Frank62
Frank62
2 months ago
Reply to  Tim

One major change needed is to restore so much manufacturing so we’re not so over reliant on Chinese imports. We’ve been literally funding the Chinese war machine. Massive strategic blunder that was led by the greed of the rich to get the cheapest manufactoring base they could find.

Tim
Tim
2 months ago
Reply to  Frank62

The Chinese laugh at our greed.

Just looking at our aviation industry fighting over China!

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
2 months ago
Reply to  Tim

The Ukrainians probably don’t think the Russian army is a joke – they have lost 21% of their country and suffered huge numbers of military and civilian casualties plus had their infrastructure, including civilian housing, comprehensively trashed. They are fighting an existential war.

Frank62
Frank62
2 months ago

No kidding Sherlock.

So where’s your war preparation plan? How will we pay for it?

How about chasing up all the unpaid tax & the loot in tax havens? Or you could just make more cuts across the board & destroy the society you’re supposed to be serving. Plus put more on the debt burdan.

How about owning the blind folly of reducing our forces so far that Putin & Xi feel so confident & uninhibited to be treatening their neighbours & Putin anyone who opposes him with nuclear annihilation.

Last edited 2 months ago by Frank62
Rob N
Rob N
2 months ago

Well if he thinks this then he and his Government can put more money into defence…. He can upgrade more tanks to Challenger 3 and not scrap so many.He can increases the numbers of soldiers, sailors and airmen and pay them more so more join the forces. He can replace the scrapped Typhoon batch 1 with 24 natch 4s. He could buy more F35 to give us more frontline squadrons. He could buy a decent long range SAM network to protect key areas of the UK. He could put more money into getting new ships built faster and upgraded quicker… Read more »

Meirion X
Meirion X
2 months ago
Reply to  Rob N

“He can replace the scrapped Typhoon batch 1 with 24 natch 4s.”

The RAF can not crew with pilots, all the existing number of Typhoons. Even with war time reserve called up, they will struggle!

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
2 months ago
Reply to  Meirion X

Every problem can be solved, just not easily, quickly or cheaply.
First the RAF needs to deal with road blocks in its pilot trg programme.

Hereward
Hereward
2 months ago
Reply to  Rob N

For every person recruited, 3 are leaving UK armed forces. Think on that. You would have to up the pay and conditions hugely.To pay for this and the kit you list what are willing to give up? Or the nation cut back on?

Frank62
Frank62
2 months ago

I kinda think this is more in line with Nero playing the violin/harp while rome burns rather than signs of a change in HMG defence posture.

Adrian
Adrian
2 months ago

There is a phrase for this, put your money where your mouth is

Lord Baddlesmere
Lord Baddlesmere
2 months ago

Just the time to remove logistics support ships from the Navy and have India and China stop producing steel ……

Posse Comitatus
Posse Comitatus
2 months ago

And yet…. just off the top of my head and from recent memory…… Sentinel gone, Hercules gone, E3 gone, Wedgetail reduced to 3, T1 Typhoon to be scrapped, army medium helicopter in a procurement black hole, LPD’S mothballed, survey vessels decommissioned. And he says that defence spending will rise to 2.5% of GDP ” …as soon as possible..”

Which means what exactly?? At the outbreak of hostilities??

klonkie
klonkie
2 months ago

where are the media who should be asking theses very questions?

Hereward
Hereward
2 months ago

Even madder, we still have to buy the Wedgetail kit….just saved money on not buying the airframes.

Marked
Marked
2 months ago

Then start acting like we face that risk you stupid twat!

Phil C
Phil C
2 months ago

And still they scrimp and save.

Ex-Marine
Ex-Marine
2 months ago

Shapps accentuated the escalating global uncertainty, “If our armed forces are not strong enough to deter future aggression from Moscow or Beijing, it will not be a small war to contend with but a major one.” In response to this groundbreaking news Shapps then did nothing while his department retired Royal Navy frigates, told the elite Royal Marines they needed to justify their place, dallied on ordering the full compliment of F35s and thought 95 Challenger III tanks were sufficient. Meanwhile, those of us with a modicum of sense know every politician isn’t up to the job on account they won’t… Read more »

Hereward
Hereward
2 months ago
Reply to  Ex-Marine

If people vote for what they always get, they’ll get what what always got.

Hereward
Hereward
2 months ago

As interesting as the discussion is re Chamberlain it is pretty irrelevant now. What is a lot more relevant is even if defence spending increased, so what? Who is going to man (or woman) whatever is bought? There are swathes of the population who have no interest or loyalty to Britain and consequently even more who don’t want to fight for them or the nation-state that permits that kind of uninterest. Who could blame?

Robo
Robo
2 months ago

Shouldn’t we be building more fighter planes and ships and tanks ,if that’s true

Rob
Rob
2 months ago

It doesn’t really matter anymore because this new generation despises everything their country stands for. Polling and voting data (much from BREXIT) shows more than 50% of Britons see themselves as European citizens first, not British and many just view themselves as “global citizens” without national allegiance. I hope I’m wrong but I think the sun will set on the British Empire AND home country pretty soon, could be in the next 20-30 years if the fates are kind, or it could be sooner the way things are heating up.

Last edited 2 months ago by Rob
Stokey
Stokey
2 months ago

While researching my grandfather’s war it became apparent that we were in a far far better starting position for war in the 1930’s when we started a massive rearmament programme. The Royal Navy was the largest in the world as was the merchant marine. The RAF has RAuxAF flying squadrons. Our production base was larger, equipment took far shorter to and produce and training times for pilots etc were far shorter.The Army introduced the supplementary reserve in addition to the territorial army, The supplementary reserve recruited reservists into full time service until completion of their full training then they could… Read more »

Peter S
Peter S
2 months ago

It’s rather an odd speech – dire warnings about coming conflict and……… nothing. If he really believes what he is saying, then he has to indicate what is being done to prepare. But although much is made of recent uplifts in defence spending, nothing new to enhance our defence capabilities is announced.
Realistically, with the glacial pace of designing and building new equipment, any new commitment would take years to deliver. But something could perhaps be done to speed up existing programmes to ensure matters don’t get any worse.