Tuesday, 7 July 2009
British Military........No More????
I blogged yesterday about defence spending.
Mainly about how inept it is and how the current system fails the troops.
Today I notice this story.
I do notice 2 things here.
1. no reduction in spending........but lets hope it becomes more effective.
2. There is to be full strategic review post the general election.
OK I am going out on a limb here.
Should and I really hope not...Labour are returned post the GE you will see a new staregy.
You will see in the defence review a thing called the European Rapid Reaction Force (ERRF).
The plans for an ERRF, originating in the meeting between Tony Blair and President Chirac at St Malo in 1998, and were agreed in detail in Helsinki in 1999 (the "Helsinki Goals").
Is it the start of a European army?
Yes, say the Eurosceptics. No, say the people actually doing it. Tory critics seem especially worried about the notion that troops in the force will be obliged to wear a common EU badge on their uniforms. Supporters of the ERRF point out that it is not a standing army, and that national governments will retain the power to decide if their forces will take part in any particular operation.
What will the ERRF actually do?
It will have three main roles. One is to give assistance to civilians threatened by a crisis outside the EU. Another is to respond to UN calls for peacekeeping forces. The third is to intervene to separate warring factions. In all three scenarios the EU would deploy its forces only if Nato decides not to get involved.
But isn't this precisely Nato's job?
Critics are worried that the creation of the ERRF will undermine Nato, discourage American involvement in European peacekeeping operations and that endanger Britain's special relationship with Washington. Supporters of the new force say exactly the same. That, they say, is why it's a good thing.
However what becomes of the ineffective UN Blue Helmets if this proposal goes forward???
I see the British Military again being watered down.
I also notice the military capabilities of the European member contries is vastly different so potentially Britain is then paying to prop up the military machine of other countries! So they get all our technology as part of the ERRF and our defence industry collapses as we no longer sell our technology abroad. Its basically given away.
Labour abdicating responsibility for its military and associated defence industry. Britain further having its sovereignty reduced and us being sold out to Europe even further.
I HOPE I AM VERY VERY WRONG.