COMMONS

Chair comments on Defence Secretary's speech at RUSI

11 February 2019

Chair's comments

In response to Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson’s speech at RUSI on 11 February, the Chairman of the House of Commons Defence Committee, Rt Hon Dr Julian Lewis MP said:

"The speech rightly recognises that new threats we face, in cyberspace and from asymmetric warfare, must not blind us to the revival of traditional dangers from aggressive nation-states seeking to establish and consolidate spheres of influence, control and domination. 

This time last year, the Defence Committee warned that the plan to scrap our amphibious assault ships, HMS Albion and HMS Bulwark, fifteen years early, was ‘militarily illiterate’ and ‘totally at odds with strategic reality’. In the autumn, the Defence Secretary insisted that they must be saved, and now we see them – together with the proposed new Littoral Strike Ships – at the heart of a Littoral Strike Group strategic concept. 

It is a profoundly welcome development, and shows what can be done when Treasury-led attempts to hollow-out the armed forces are successfully resisted."

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