Letter: Nuclear review

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The Independent Online
Sir: Your article "Forces in revolt over cost-cutting review" (22 January) gave details of a Ministry of Defence document which revealed fragile morale in the military and a desire for more resources to be directed towards improved working conditions.

This follows the recent revelation in the House of Lords that the yearly running cost for Britain's nuclear weapons system is not pounds 200m, as both the Tory government and to date the Labour government have always claimed, but a whacking pounds 940m every year. CND believes the true cost is even higher - closer to pounds 1,500m a year.

A large part of this would be saved if Trident were taken off high alert status. Even more would be saved if our nuclear weapons system were completely abandoned. Surely here we have a solution to the Government's dilemma. They should at least listen to the advice coming from former military leaders who are now free to express their opinions - such as Lord Carver and Lord Bramall, and General Lee Butler in the United States - and start to get rid of nuclear weapons.

I'm sure that the military personnel referred to in the report would be more than happy to give some ideas on other ways the money could be spent.


Chair, Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament

London N7