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Letter: Incompetent defence.

Sir - How sad that five former Chiefs of the Defence Staff waited until retirement to say their piece, and others stay silent as they did when in uniform.

But, better later than never to expose the political incompetence and skullduggery that has blighted UK defence procurement for decades.

In today's wars, it's the Army that has suffered most from lack of funding because of the brutal physical and psychological nature of desert and mountain warfare, where death is a constant companion and facing a fanatical, elusive enemy, which doesn't fight to Marquess of Queensberry Rules but blows you up or stabs you in the back.

I salute the British Army. They deserve the very best equipment and support we can give them, and we could have given them a whole lot more if the Government had not permitted three core RAF programmes to be years late in service, billions over budget and under specification.

Sentinel, designed for these wars, is one; the much criticised Nimrod MPA replacement another. Add the Typhoon, a sledgehammer to crack a walnut, and the suspect Saudi export deal, and you have to ask who in Whitehall and our defence industry needs taking to task.

Millions of us hate this war and criticise those who connived in it. God forgive us if we don't support the men we've ordered to fight it.


RAF (Retd)

Glenboi, Mountain Ash
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:Nov 29, 2007
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