Political boffin, keen fisherman looking forward to retirement.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Global Warming & Trident – The Great Contradiction


This week’s news agenda has been dominated by two issues. The London parties have been in a frenzy to try and claim the green agenda as their own with the Tories and Labour making some grand announcements. The other big story is Trident.

The Times today runs a very interesting cartoon depicting the great contradiction in the position of the Tories and Labour in particular. On the one hand they are trying to save the planet with greener policies. Yet when it comes to weapons that can destroy the world at a touch of a button, both Cameron and Blair/Brown have no problem in making the case. Even the Lib Dems, in typical fence sitting style, won’t rule out renewing Trident.

The proponents of nuclear weapons need to answer one thing. On what basis would these weapons be used? If for instance a terrorist cell planted a dirty bomb in London, who would the Government retaliate against? The very nature of a terrorist cell is that it is not nation state aligned – the 7 07 bombers for instance were UK citizens – so what would be the retaliation of the UK Government? To nuke the city the terrorists came from, even if it was a UK city? The whole thing is totally insane. If they decided to attack a city in the Middle East the terrorist would have achieved their objective, polarising opinion in the region in favour of the ideology of the terrorists. The fact of the matter is that the nuclear deterrent can not work against terrorism – which the Government admits is the major security threat to these islands.

Proponents of nuclear weapons claim it is an insurance policy, however it can only ‘work’ on a nation state v nation state basis. Many of us would argue that the fact that there wasn’t a nuclear catastrophe during the cold war was down to pure luck rather than design, Gorbachev and Regan subscribe to that and they know what they are talking about.

Say for instance Iran developed a nuclear weapon, they would then still have to find a way of delivering the device via an intercontinental missile to the UK. They are nowhere near being able to develop delivery devices of that kind. The UK Government should know, we are dependent upon the US technology to deliver any nuclear weapons if we decided to use them.

The whole debate is about the vanity of Blair and the cowardice of Brown. Blair wants to secure his legacy and Brown who wants this issue out of the way before his watch. How pathetic the Labour party has become.

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