UKNDA News Release on Army Cuts
ARMY CUTS 'PUT BRITAIN ON COURSE FOR DISARMAMENT AND NEUTRALITY'
Shrinking the British Army by 'salami-slicing' regiments and making thousands of British soldiers redundant will inevitably be seen by our enemies as a sign that the UK is 'opting out' as a major military power. "These cuts put us on a course towards disarmament and neutrality", said the UK National Defence Association (UKNDA).
Reacting to Defence Secretary Philip Hammond's latest announcement, UKNDA director Andy Smith said: "These are dangerous cuts as they can only be interpreted as an admission by the Government that we are can no longer play an influential role on the world stage. As British interests are world-wide, and we still aspire to be 'a force for good in the world', making 20,000 soldiers redundant and leaving us with little more than a 'home defence force' is the height of folly. This is a decision that Ministers will live to regret."
The UKNDA spokesman said that the Government's intention to plug some gaps in our military capability by expanding the Territorial Army was 'hopelessly unrealistic'. "The TA relies on the goodwill of employers to release key staff for TA training and duties. This will stretch that goodwill to breaking point. I don't doubt the commitment of Reservist soldiers - they have already proved themselves in Iraq and Afghanistan - but defending the UK's strategic interests cannot really be a part-time job. We need more full-time regular soldiers, as well as more reservists."
He added: "It appears that the Territorial Army is just being used as a fig-leaf to cover the Government's embarrassment at the inherent weaknesses of its Defence policy."
The UKNDA, which was formed in 2007 to oppose the then Labour Government's 'chronic under-funding' of the Armed Forces, believes that the present Coalition Government's Strategic Defence & Security Review 2010 (SDSR) was a Treasury-driven review which failed to take sufficient account of the requirements of Britain's already over-stretched Armed Forces.
For further information please contact Andy Smith on 07737 271676, email email@example.com, or UKNDA Chief Executive Officer, Cdr John Muxworthy RN, on 07721 624980, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Or visit the UKNDA website, www.uknda.org