Does Trident announcement mark a new Lib Dem broken promise?

Posted by Louise Edge — 18 May 2011 at 4:32pm - Comments

A while back I got a letter from the Lib Dems telling me "Trident will not be renewed this parliament - not on a Liberal Democrat watch”.

This ran though my mind today as I watched Defence Secretary Liam Fox stand up in parliament to pronounce ‘thunderbirds are go’ on the next phase of building a replacement for Trident.

MoD have a Trident-sized hole in their budget

Posted by Louise Edge — 21 January 2011 at 11:49am - Comments

Yesterday's headline in the FT shouted "MoD faces fresh crisis over funding". It turns out that the Ministry of Defence have checked over last October's defence review and found out that they actually need an extra £1 billion a year over the next four years to deliver it.

Ahoy! A nuclear scandal ahead?

Posted by Louise Edge — 14 January 2011 at 6:09pm - Comments
All rights reserved. Credit: John Cobb / Greenpeace

Remember the defence review? The one that left us marvelling at the Alice in Wonderland world we inhabit - where we build two giant aircraft carriers we don’t actually want because building them is actually cheaper than cancelling them? The one that said we can’t actually afford to buy any planes to put on those carriers?

Trident: now the Treasury and MoD squabble over who foots the bill

Posted by jossc — 19 July 2010 at 3:52pm - Comments

HMS Vanguard, Britain's first Trident submarine

No one has been more insistent that Britain must commit to replacing Trident than new defence secretary Liam Fox. Despite the lack of credible targets and the exorbitant cost, Dr Fox has fought doggedly for a new generation of nuclear weapons to protect Britain from "nuclear blackmail" by other states - apparently North Korea (possibly four missiles at most) and Iran (none at all) give him palpitations and sleepless nights.

But now, in a deliciously ironic twist, Dr Fox is being asked to put his department's money where his mouth is. Traditionally the Treasury pays for the capital investment in nuclear weapons, but such is the pressure to cut-back on government spending across the board that the Chancellor is now keen that the MoD should foot the bill instead.

AWE Aldermaston now in US hands

Posted by jossc — 19 December 2008 at 4:32pm - Comments

A Trident D5 crashes on take off

Trident - costs and 'independence' are both spinning out of control

The management of the Atomic Weapons Establishment at Aldermaston, the 'bomb factory' which makes and maintains the UK's nuclear warheads, is now controlled by private US companies following the sale of the government's 33 per cent holding yesterday.

The news, a further nail in the coffin of the flimsy pretence that Britain has an independent nuclear deterent, only came to light in a three line press statement released by BNFL, the state-owned group which officially 'owned' the government's stake.

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