Orders of the Day — UN Security Council Resolution 1441

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 9:21 pm on 25th November 2002.

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Photo of Bernard Jenkin Bernard Jenkin Shadow Secretary of State for Defence 9:21 pm, 25th November 2002

I am just finishing; the right hon. Gentleman will have plenty of opportunity.

At the same time, the Prime Minister is saying that we must be prepared to pay what he rather chillingly calls the Xblood price" of military action against Saddam. As the firemen start their strikes, we finally have it confirmed—the armed forces have been running on empty. There is nothing left in reserve.

The Government have taken on far more military commitments than they are prepared to fund. Overstretch has become a byword for the Government's defence policy. Our armed forces remain a benchmark of excellence; they are the finest in the world. The Government have let them down.