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Continuous At-Sea Deterrent

Part of Parental Rights (Rapists) and Family Courts – in the House of Commons at 3:37 pm on 10th April 2019.

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Photo of Stewart McDonald Stewart McDonald Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Defence) 3:37 pm, 10th April 2019

I will give way to the right hon. Gentleman in time.

In opposing the renewal programme this afternoon, we intend to give voice to the millions outside this Chamber who do not back the iron-clad consensus that exists between the Conservative and Labour parties on wasting billions of pounds on nuclear weapons.

On the fact that there is no military case, I want to turn to the recent modernising defence programme, which represents a missed opportunity to do things a bit differently. I had hopes that the much vaunted reforming zeal of the Secretary of State when he first came to office would actually be shown to be true, but those hopes were sadly misplaced on my part. Indeed, the MDP programme, which represented an opportunity to do things differently, has, rather perversely, actually contributed to the miasma of despair and chaos that hangs over the Department over which he now presides. The armed forces remain as small as they were when Napoleon was on his horse. The Government are woefully off target—the target that was set in their own manifesto for the size of the armed forces. Furthermore, the promises that were made to the people of Scotland in 2014 on the size of the armed forces are going one way, and it is not north. Staggeringly, this Government continue to employ Capita—