This illustrates the way our fearless lads conduct modern warfare - the text accompanying the almighty dollar states that suppliers of information about terrists will be REWARDED - in the currency of the universal occupier and his satraps... a long way from WMD's. G. Brown Mansion House June 2006, "strong in defence in fighting terrorism, upholding Nato, supporting our Armed Forces at home and abroad" (c) AFP
Listening to the "debate" on Any Questions/Answers on BBC Radio4 about the "independent" Trident deterrant and it's refurbishment / renewal it was astonishing how ignorant our elected representatives are about the subject.
Whether it is a deterrant is highly arguable (1), but most people appear to believe, totally incorrectly that it is independent. The end of Britain's military nuclear power was in 1958 when the much publicised "H" bomb tests on Christmas islands were a failure and the UK subsequently agreed to become a serial customer for US weapons - over which we have zero control. An agreement in which we supply the boats, the crews and athe money for a submarine platform for some of the US worldwide store of WMD's ... the like of which Saddam Hussein realised he could never dream.
This laid out here @ Investigatin New Imperialism 10/03/04 MD lies persist for over 50 years / More Lies about Weapons of Mass Destruction, by Edward Teague
More Lies about Weapons of Mass Destruction
Subsequent to the end of World War II, the US Atomic Energy Act (McMahon Act) of 1946 precluded release of atomic information from the US to the UK, or anyone else. Attlee secretly determined to forge ahead with a UK unilateral atomic bomb and missile programme, a bomb which Foreign Secretary Ernest Bevan famously remarked "would have a bloody Union Jack on top of it".
The 1957 Pacific bomb tests, after ten years work, used what were essentially 'A' bombs, (albeit of high power) and were effectively, a PR stunt, rushed to beat an impending Test Ban Treaty which was due to come into force at the end of September 1958 and meant all the tests scheduled to take place up until the end of October were brought forward and completed early.
The Christmas Island tests confirmed to the observing and observant US, the UK's inability to produce a true thermonuclear fusion weapon, that could be missile delivered. Generously they offered to amend the McMahon Act, if the UK would scrap their nuclear weapons program. Naturally they would be happy to provide us (i.e. sell) the technology instead.
In September 1958 the UK became the US's biggest customer for military weapons and further developed our continuing "special relationship".
Earlier this year, the fiction that we controlled these weapons was lightly revealed when Parliament was still recovering from Christmas and on January 15th 2006 the Government quietly published
UK'S STRATEGIC NUCLEAR DETERRENT - Memorandum submitted by the Ministry of Defence
There are three very interesting Appendices from which some snippets deserve a wider audience ...
The Government is yet to take a decision on whether or not to replace Trident. Since the end of the Cold War we have reduced the total explosive power of our nuclear forces by over 70%. We have also reduced the readiness of our nuclear forces: only a single Trident (of four constructed) submarine is now on deterrent patrol, carrying 48 warheads which are de-targetted and are at several days "notice to fire".The Trident D5 missile came into service with the Royal Navy in 1994, with a planned life of some 25 years. The US Navy has recently announced plans for a life extension programme for the D5 missile, which will ensure it can remain in-service with the US Navy into the 2040s. The UK Government has yet to decide whether or not to participate in this programme. (Ho.Ho.Ho.)
In 1993, Atomic Weapons Establishment AWE, (formerly Atomic Weapons Research Establishment) moved from its position as a Government establishment to one which was still Government-owned but operated by a private contractor. Nuclear licensing was introduced in 1997: site licenses and discharge authorities for Aldermaston and Burghfield were granted by the Nuclear Installations Inspectorate and the Environment Agency. This brought the AWE sites under the same regulatory controls as the civil nuclear industry. On 1 April 2000 - co-incidentally, fifty years to the day after its foundation - and following a competition, the Ministry of Defence placed a contract with a new company, AWE Management Limited (a consortium comprising Lockheed Martin, Serco and BNFL) to manage and operate the two sites at Aldermaston and Burghfield. The contract was initially awarded for an initial period of 10 years with an option to extend to 25 years with access to private finance. This option was taken up in 2003. The average age of the workforce at AWE has been increasing, as the generation recruited to meet the initial requirements of the Chevaline and Trident programmes near the end of their careers. There is therefore a requirement to recruit new members of staff to ensure that the core skills within AWE are sustained.(vide Nuclear Power industry recruitment problems Lord P) Much of the basic infrastructure at AWE (such as the heating and electrical systems and a considerable percentage of the office accommodation) dates back to the 1950s and is increasingly expensive and inefficient to operate. A great deal of the additional investment will therefore focus on refurbishment work in this area. This additional investment at AWE is required to sustain the existing warhead stockpile in-service irrespective of decisions on any successor warhead. The investment will sustain core skills and facilities that could also be used in future to develop a successor but no decisions have yet been made either in principle or practice on this issue.
This document although published on January 18th 2006 was dated November 2005.
Discussion at the Labour Party annual Jamboree was totally crushed. Gordon Brown in his Mansion House speech in the City of London in June has made clear he supports a massive extension of the Trident program.... "strong in defence in fighting terrorism, upholding Nato, supporting our Armed Forces at home and abroad, and retaining our independent nuclear deterrent.".
Our Dear Leader has made clear, his position is unflinching. There is no way the Conservatives will vote against whatever the Government proposes.
There will of course be a few anti-nuclear die-hards / blow hards.
Effectively the "debate" is over.
(1) The belief in it's capcity to deter is so ingrained in military thinking that there is no question whatever that this subject will be subject to and serious examination. - Masada complex.