The Modernising Defence Programme was due to be published before MPs left Westminster for their summer recess so it was something of an anti-climax when an initial Parliamentary Statement appeared just a few days before that deadline. It has not been received with any enthusiasm by the military community as shown in this article:
I think it is safe to say that we are extremely “underwhelmed” by what we have heard so far, and I hope that the Defence Select Committee will express their lack of enthusiasm too.
The content of the final document is, of course, going to be vital to the defence of our nation, but the attitude to defence displayed is also crucial for our future safety. That “defence of the realm is the first duty of government” has been accepted for centuries. If this government’s attitude indicates that this is no longer the case we shall be entering a dangerous time at the moment when the world is becoming a more unstable environment.
There is no point in speculating what might, or might not, be in the final version, but we have to be ready to respond vigorously to anything which suggests that our security is going to be diminished.