Brown reveals extra cash for terror fight

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Britain's security services will be given hundreds of millions of pounds to boost the war on terror, the Chancellor said today.

Britain's security services will be given hundreds of millions of pounds to boost the war on terror, the Chancellor said today.

Gordon Brown has ruled out a pre-election spending spree but he said he would spend whatever it took to keep the people of Britain safe.

The Chancellor will set out his plans for the next three years on Monday with a squeeze on spending.

But in a key speech today he said extra money would go on strengthening security at home and on tackling terrorists abroad.

He said the Government's "first duty" was to defend the people of Britain.

"I will make available the resources needed to strengthen security at home and take action to counter the terrorist threat at home and abroad," he said.

"Those who wish to cut in real terms the budget even for security will need to answer to the British people.

"We will spend what it takes on security to safeguard the British people."

The Chancellor has been locked in tough negotiations with Cabinet colleagues ahead of his spending review.

Earlier this week he said Government spending would grow by no more than an average of 2.5% in real terms from 2006 to 2008, and where more money is invested it will go to the "front line".

But in today's speech to the British Council in London, Mr Brown made clear he would not skimp on national security.

His warning that any party wishing to cut back on security would have to answer to the people of Britain is a clear pointer to Tory plans to freeze all spending other than on health and education.

Mr Brown also used the speech to call on people to rediscover what it meant to be British.

He said just about every central question about our national future could only be fully answered if the country was clear about what it valued about being British and what gave the country its purpose and direction.

The Chancellor said Britain had lost confidence and direction and resigned itself to national decline.

But there were now sound reasons for a new confidence in the future of the country.

"We should think of Britain as a Britain discovering anew that its identity was never rooted just in imperial success or simply the authority of its institutions, nor in race or ethnicity," he said.

"We should think of a Britain rediscovering the shared values that bind us together."

Mr Brown said Britain's roots were in the "most solid foundation of all" - a passion for liberty anchored in a sense of duty and an intrinsic commitment to tolerance and fair play.