Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 1:32 pm on 22nd July 2008.

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Photo of Lord Bramall Lord Bramall Crossbench 1:32 pm, 22nd July 2008

My Lords, I, too, thank the Leader of the House for repeating the Statement made by the Prime Minister in another place, in which he gratifyingly and deservedly praised our forces. However, although he anticipated that there would be some reductions in future, he was careful to give no definite dates for their withdrawal, implying as he said in a recent press interview that they must stay until the job is done. How that is exactly quantified, even with the detailed list of tasks contained in the Statement, is not at all clear. After all, it was only a short time ago—about six months—that he was completely confident that our forces had indeed achieved over the four years all that it was possible for them to achieve in that part of the country and that they had achieved a great deal both in peace enforcement and latterly in what he described as the overwatch of training.