A report by a BBC Defence Correspondent recently suggested that defence may be moving down the list of government priorities. This would be alarming if true. Defence and Security have always been the first responsibilities of government, and must remain so.
Perhaps it is this prospect that has led to a spate of speeches by service experts warning against further damaging cuts to the defence budget and, therefore, capability. It was particularly refreshing to hear General Sir Nick Carter feel able to warn that we are falling behind potential enemies in capability.
Dare we hope that the voices of reason and expertise are beginning to prevail over the “bean counters”?
UKNDA is in favour of allowing serving personnel to speak out on defence matters in a way that has not been acceptable in the past. For the safety of our nation it must make sense for those with the expertise to be allowed to express their views. After all, they are the people tasked with fulfilling that all important “first responsibility of government”.