LETTER: Lack of clarity on defence spending

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While grateful to Fiona Onasanya for providing her Westminster Life column, she needs to know that I found a shortage of both clarity and conviction in her latest offering (‘We must pay the price of their sacrifice’ September 7).

To be fair, she was referring primarily to the armed forces’ pay levels, but she appeared to suggest that defence cuts in general are all part of the Tory austerity program and should therefore be opposed by good socialists.

She is proud of our new aircraft carrier, regarded by many as a white elephant.

A potential cause of great sacrifice in itself and so sinkable that they are unwilling to equip it with expensive jets.

Six years apparently until it is fully operational.

Lots of time to think about it and the good things that could have been achieved with the £3 billion that it has erased from our social budget.

She mentions Trident but without any commitment whatever. Many in her Party will be disappointed if that huge and scary financial sacrifice gets voted through. No comment either about last week’s major DSEI Arms Fair in London or the demonstrations surrounding it. World military spending is a big obstacle to social progress and not irrelevant to our small puddle in Peterborough.

We have a local Peterborough Peace Campaign but sadly no active United Nations Association. Will anyone join me in an attempt to revive Peterborough UNA? Enquiries will be welcomed at timpsh@live.co.uk

Tim Hughes

Gladstone Street

Peterborough