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Future UK Maritime Requirement to remain a secret

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Future UK Maritime Requirement to remain a secret

Old 3rd Feb 2012, 15:16
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Future UK Maritime Requirement to remain a secret

Having spectacularly axed the Nimrod fleet the government have decided to not publish the future requirement taken from Hansard;

Mrs Moon: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to the answer of 22 March 2011, Official Report, column 947W, on military aircraft, when he expects to publish the findings of the capability investigation on maritime surveillance capability; and if he will make a statement. [92528]
1 Feb 2012 : Column 654W
Peter Luff: The Ministry of Defence has completed its capability investigation into its long term requirements for maritime surveillance capability, but I am withholding the information as its disclosure would, or would be likely to prejudice the capability, effectiveness or security of the armed forces.
Now I'm not one for conspiracy theories, but is it possible there has been an awkward, embarrassing discovery? or could this be characterised as a normal process?
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Old 3rd Feb 2012, 15:24
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To my ears it sounds like he's saying "We have no plans, we have no budget for it anyway, go away and stop asking questions that expose the incompetence of the Government!"

But that's just how it sounds to me
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Old 3rd Feb 2012, 15:54
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Sounds reasonable enough, especially given the capabilities has to protect.
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Old 3rd Feb 2012, 15:56
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There are a variety of possible interpretations...

No doubt people will use this statement as a way of reinforcing their own point of view on the matter, irrespective of any alternative option!
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Old 3rd Feb 2012, 16:14
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Actually, in response to the question he put his hands over his ears and said loudly, "la la la, not listening".
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Old 3rd Feb 2012, 16:35
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No doubt people will use this statement as a way of reinforcing their own point of view on the matter, irrespective of any alternative option!
My experience of the military, coupled with the cock-up that is the MoD, leaves me in no doubt that it is because the government has something embarrassing to hide. Plain and simple.
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Old 3rd Feb 2012, 16:59
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Biggus,
on the balance of probabilities, which is more likely: that the Russians/Chinese/North Koreans/Iranians/baddy-of-choice don't watch Sky news and therefore don't know that our Nuclear deteterant is vastly less protected than it was 2 years ago, or that the government would be embarared by the document and have therefore decided to give it the 'security isn't a dirty word, Blackadder' treatment?

answers on a postcard to:

Rt. Hon i should be shot for my incompetance MP
Rm 407b
Ministry of Defence
Land of the Moron
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Old 3rd Feb 2012, 17:53
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Did he answer the question?

on military aircraft, when he expects to publish the findings of the capability investigation on maritime surveillance capability; and if he will make a statement.
MoD has completed its investigation into its long term requirements for maritime surveillance capability,
Subtle difference here.

withholding . . . disclosure . . . prejudice the capability, effectiveness or security of the armed forces.
She asked about maritime capability - clearly rather limited with only short range air assets.

He said the MOD had looked at the long term requirement - nothing about the now.

Clearly highlighting the capability now - limited - would indeed be prejudicial now.

Wonder what Private Eye would make of this?
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Old 3rd Feb 2012, 20:12
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Shhhhhh the Aurora is the long term secret strategy

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Old 3rd Feb 2012, 20:31
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No no no, you're all wrong. The master plan is to pour a few billion tons of concrete, making the nation an integral part of the continental mainland thus negating the need for a maritime capability.

Simples.
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Old 3rd Feb 2012, 20:43
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Seedcorn Initiative: 24 Nov 2011: Hansard Written Answers and Statements - TheyWorkForYou
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Old 3rd Feb 2012, 21:58
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With tensions increasing in the south Atlantic, their Lordships better make their minds up asap.

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Old 4th Feb 2012, 01:18
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Anybody remember the MP Michael Mates? Many, many moons ago I listened to him being interviewed on the radio during a long, boring road trip. He had been on a defence committee and he explained that whenever he asked a question the MOD did not want to answer, they simply claimed the information was "classified" and prejuducial to national security. Could have been about the cost of NAAFI biscuits...made no odds.

Given that context, yer mans answer is as unwaveringly a "standard response" as all the others over the past few decades. Roughly translated it means "too difficult, go away".
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Old 4th Feb 2012, 07:06
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Could have been about the cost of NAAFI biscuits...made no odds.
I remember the day an RAF officer was trying to tell our 2 Star that MRA4 was NOT on target (as the 2 Star had claimed), it had just slipped 4 years. The 2 Star (Director General Air Systems 2) dismissed him and turned to a more pressing matter. The cost of bananas in the Abbey Wood canteens.
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Old 4th Feb 2012, 10:05
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For those of us that used to watch 'Yes, Minister' or 'Yes, Prime Minister' will see straight away what is going on. Those programs are as relevant today as they were the year they were broadcast.

The Official Secrets Act is not to protect secrets, it is to protect officials.
Stage One: Refuse to publish in the public interest saying
1. There are security considerations.
2. The findings could be misinterpreted.
3. You are waiting for the results of a wider and more detailed report which is still in preparation. (If there isn't one, commission it; this gives you even more time).

Stage Two: Discredit the evidence you are not publishing, saying

1. It leaves important questions unanswered.
2. Much of the evidence is inconclusive.
3. The figures are open to other interpretations.
4. Certain findings are contradictory.
5. Some of the main conclusions have been questioned. (If they haven't, question them yourself; then they have).

Excellent TV series
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Old 4th Feb 2012, 11:25
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Nearly choked on my cornflakes then (late riser) (not riser sinker!)
Thought somebody was taking the subject of a maritime replacement aircraft seriously for a second!
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Old 4th Feb 2012, 13:13
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Oh goody....Another thread on MPAs - it must be at least 10 days since the last six threads on the same subject.
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Old 4th Feb 2012, 17:44
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Oh goody....Another thread on MPAs - it must be at least 10 days since the last six threads on the same subject.
Maybe that's because as an island nation, it's quite important, and the Govt and MOD have made a total cock-up of it but seem unwilling to rectify the problem.
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Old 4th Feb 2012, 19:25
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Maybe that's because as an island nation, it's quite important, and the Govt and MOD have made a total cock-up of it but seem unwilling to rectify the problem
Cause and Effect. There is no money because Mr Brown and that nice Mr Blair before him have spent it all trying to buy votes. Something has to give. Take a deep breath, accept that it has happened - constant harping will not change things.
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Old 4th Feb 2012, 19:48
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Oh goody....Another thread on MPAs - it must be at least 10 days since the last six threads on the same subject.
Some of us care about the maritime security of our island nation! If it is of no interest to YOU then FOXTROT OSCAR and don't read the thread
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