The UK’s nuclear deterrent 26, April 2010Posted by thegulfblog.com in UK.
Tags: Conservatives, How much does Trident cost?, Labour Party, Liberal Democrats, Trident, Trident costs, Trident missiles, Trident nuclear deterrent, UK election, UK's Nuclear deterrent
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One issue floating around at the moment and being taken up by the three Parties is that of Britain’s independent nuclear deterrent, Trident. It is a submarine based nuclear technology that, in a few years, is coming up for renewal. The Conservatives and the Labour Party want it to be extended whereas the Liberal Democrats whose voice actually matters for once, are against it.
I think that on balance the UK needs a nuclear deterrent. Yes, I realise that Osama [yawn] will not be deterred by it but as we cannot predict the future (and given Russian nuclear bombers frequent incursions to UK airspace) I think that it’s prudent to maintain such a deterrent. Who, for example, could have predicted that in 1980 we would be at war with the Argentinians within a couple of years?
Apparently renewing Trident will cost just a bit less than £100 billion. Or, by the time that it’s late and over budget, around £130 billion. Just to be clear that is £100,000,000,000. That is a lot of cash but is still an awful lot cheaper than the French get their nuclear bits and pieces for (they make it themselves where as we buy it from our buddies across the Pond). Nevertheless, whilst this seems (or rather, is…) a boat load of cash that we don’t really have right now, these costs count for the entire 30+ year life of the missiles and submarines. Also, to look at it another way, that’s a lot of investment in parts of the British (and American) defense industries. Swings and roundabouts…