By Jeremy Corbyn
What we need is real security – my statement on today’s announcement 👇
Real security will be provided by working co-operatively internationally to tackle the major challenges of our time – from climate catastrophe to global poverty, to the international refugee crisis to health pandemics.
In contrast to this, today’s defence and security review shows Boris Johnson’s Tories are intent on an increasingly militaristic and belligerent agenda.
Lifting the cap on the number of Trident nuclear warheads the UK can stockpile by more than 40% to 260 is totally wrong. It is in conflict with our legal obligations under the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and is at odds with the new UN Treaty to ban all nuclear weapons globally. It also runs counter to the example set by President Biden of renewing a nuclear weapons reduction treaty with Russia.
At a time when our public services are at breaking point due to a decade of austerity, the decision to spend billions more on nuclear weapons we should never use shows the Tories have the wrong priorities.
Sabre rattling, initiating a new nuclear arms race and increasing tension with Russia and China provides no way forward for humanity and will make the world more, not less, dangerous. We need to be working together internationally to solve problems not creating new ones.
The Tories have not learnt the lessons of how ill-prepared we were to deal with the Coronavirus pandemic; they should be prioritising the health service and regenerating our economy rather than ploughing vast amounts of resources into nuclear weapons and hikes in military spending.
Real security is not provided by increasing our nuclear arsenal and taking an increasingly bellicose stance in the international arena.
Nor is it provided by continuing arms exports that fuel wars and conflicts, not least the UK’s continuing sales of arms to Saudi Arabia that are used in the war on Yemen.
It is time for a change of priorities – to push for peace and to put our planet, health, lives and livelihoods first.