James Forsyth

Why we must keep Trident

Why we must keep Trident
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You go off to get a sandwich and you come back to find your colleague advocating scrapping Trident, not a good day. Those who advocate getting rid of Trident are, in effect, declaring that they can foresee every strategic threat to this country in the next generation and do not believe that Trident would be of any use in any of these circumstances. Well, I for one am not prepared to take that bet—and I do not believe that any responsible British government should either.

Pete says the geopolitical landscape is favourable to scrapping Trident. I find this statement bizarre in the extreme. Yes, we’re not in the Cold War with Soviet nukes aimed at British cities. But during the Cold War you could argue that any Soviet attack was certain to bring a US response and was highly unlikely because the Communists, who for all their faults were rational actors, knew that a strike would lead to the nuclear destruction of their own country and most of the globe. Now, we are faced with a variety of different potential nuclear threats—some of which might come from either non-state or non-rational actors. Indeed, if Iran crosses the nuclear threshold kicking off a wave of nuclear proliferation across the Middle East then the numbers of potential threats is going to increase dramatically.

This government has already mortgaged our children’s future. It would be folly to compound that error by mortgaging their security too.

Written byJames Forsyth

James Forsyth is Political Editor of the Spectator. He is also a columnist in The Sun.

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