NATO Strategy

Oral Answers to Questions — Defence – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 21st October 1975.

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Photo of Lieut-Colonel David Mather Lieut-Colonel David Mather , Esher 12:00 am, 21st October 1975

asked the Secretary of State for Defence what steps are being taken by Her Majesty's Government in pursuit of their policy to preserve the credibility of NATO strategy.

Photo of Mr Roy Mason Mr Roy Mason , Barnsley

NATO strategy is founded on the triad of conventional, tactical nuclear and strategic nuclear forces. In all three areas the Government intend to maintain an effective British contribution to the alliance.

Photo of Lieut-Colonel David Mather Lieut-Colonel David Mather , Esher

In view of the right hon. Gentleman's recent answer to my hon. Friend the Member for Ayr (Mr. Younger) that there was no guarantee that further defence cuts would not take place, how does he intend to preserve the credibility of NATO strategy? Is he aware of the remarks by Doctor Joseph Luns in Copenhagen on 25th September when he deplored the unilateral cuts of individual NATO countries? Is the Minister aware that if he continues with his policy his triad may well become a Troika?

Photo of Mr Roy Mason Mr Roy Mason , Barnsley

I am still hopeful that I shall be able to continue to maintain the new posture of our NATO role of working within the central region, within the Eastern Atlantic, and within the security of the home base.

Photo of Mr Neil Marten Mr Neil Marten , Banbury

What steps is the Secretary of State taking to ensure the closest co-operation with our ally Norway?

Photo of Mr Roy Mason Mr Roy Mason , Barnsley

As the hon. Gentleman may be aware, we have just received the Norwegian Secretary of State for Defence who is on a Ministerial visit to this country. Talks will be taking place with him during the course of this week.