Boots and blue berets

George Macpherson is bemused by Britain’s devotion to Trident

Why are most of our major political parties so devoted to Trident, the nuclear-powered submarine that can be within devastation distance of any city in the world without anyone knowing? They say it’s an essential deterrent.

The cost of keeping this weapon system updated is huge. In January this year, The Guardian reported that: ‘A Ministry of Defence report, slipped out over Christmas, reveals that spending on the project’s “assessment phase” is to increase by a further £261m this year. Of this money, which will be drawn down from the project’s future budget, £206m will be spent on new facilities at the BAE Systems shipyard at Barrow-in-Furness’. The newspaper predicts that the SNP and Plaid Cymru will force a debate on the Trident upgrade, which is expected to cost £20bn in total.

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