Friday, 30 December 2011

Establishment orthodoxy on the Trident Nuclear System.

There's some good research from Norton Taylor on the failure to offer opposition to the renewal of Trident,
Disclosures in hitherto secret papers released at the National Archives under the 30-year rule are extraordinarily pertinent now. Despite Nott's claim about the prevailing view in Thatcher's government 30 years ago, the government built a four-boat Trident submarine fleet, designed and assembled new warheads, and leased the missiles from the US.

Today, we do not know how many ministers are questioning the plan to replace the existing Trident system. We may have to wait for 30 more years to find out. It is known that senior members of the armed forces have serious doubts about the wisdom of investing tens of billions in a new nuclear weapons system that is widely regarded as irrelevant to the immediate interests and pressing needs of Britain's armed forces.

Even Tony Blair, in his autobiography, A Journey, described Trident's purpose as "non-existent in terms of military use", remarking: "Its expense is huge."

Earlier this year, the MoD quietly acknowledged that the cost of a new fleet of Trident nuclear missile submarines – excluding the the missiles and warheads that would go on them – would amount to £25bn by the time they were built.

Britain, meanwhile, is also collaborating with the US on plans to replace nuclear warhead components....
Insanity. Britain seeks to replace Trident still even though it is about defence from a threat that has not existed for two decades-the Soviet Union-and is simply about maintaining "credibility" as a member of the nuclear club at a huge expense at a time of recession and cuts to public services.

And this is the government lecturing Iran about its nuclear programme.

The reasons Trident is being renewed are to maintain Britain as a "Global Player", to remain attached to the USA , military-industrial interests, the decline of Parliament and of independent politicians to challenge these interests. The absence of dissent is one of the more sinister features of public life.

Even CND is now led by Kate Hudson, a former member of the Communist party of Great Britain and supporter of the Soviet Union, who exists as a spokesman for trite anti-American propaganda as opposed to the principled opposition once offered by Bertrand Russell, Michael Foot and AJP Taylor.

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