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My Lords, does the Minister agree that part of the NATO eastern flank includes maritime and the eastern Mediterranean? Will he say whether we are contributing our Royal Navy to NATO in that area, and if not whether we would have the capacity to do so if we were so asked?
My Lords, Russia is growing in intent and capability. We are not only not matching either but we are shrinking in both. We do not have enough numbers in the RN and the RAF to man properly the equipment we have today. Brexit will surely demand that we be prepared to operate more autonomously. Surely the Government must realise that SDSR 2015 is not fit for purpose.
My Lords, I am afraid that I do not find the Minister’s Answer to the Question asked by the noble Lord, Lord West, particularly convincing. Does the Minister agree that paying off “Ocean” makes no strategic sense and that, despite what he said, it has been done because defence is badly underfunded and, in the Royal Navy’s case, badly underresourced in people as well?...
Entered the House of Lords on 30 June 2003
Positions held at time of appointment: Chief of the Defence Staff. (from Number 10 press release)
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