10 March 2010

Tarnished Brass

Much as I would like to join in the stoning of Gordon Brown because British troops went into battle in Iraq and Afghanistan shamefully ill-equipped, the blame lies squarely with the senior military commanders and the historically corrupt Ministry of Defence.

Before turning his guns on the global warming scam on EU Referendum, Richard North blogged the subject comprehensively on Defence of the Realm and in his book Ministry of Defeat. There was plenty of money available, but it was contumaciously ill-spent. It always is.

To anyone with the slightest awareness of the history of MoD procurement, it can come as no surprise that it chooses the more expensive British or European option over far superior US kit, which is also cheaper because of their large production runs.

American manufacturers have been legally constrained in the pay-offs they can make ever since the Lockheed and other scandals a generation ago. Not so European manufacturers and our own 'national champion' BAe, who can always find a place on their boards of directors for senior officers and officials who, before they retired, steered lucrative contracts their way and then insisted on even more lucrative amendments to the original specifications.

I am sure it is a great consolation to those whose sons, daughters, husbands, wives, fathers and mothers have been maimed or killed that their sacrifice has enabled a number of knighted knaves to enjoy a higher standard of living in retirement than they enjoyed when supposedly serving their country.

P.S. Richard's guide to his own blogging on the subject is here. It is sad that he is giving up on DOTR, but as the Bible says, you cannot kick against the pricks.

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