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New Defence Secretary

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New Defence Secretary

Old 2nd Nov 2017, 23:17
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New Defence Secretary

I may be doing Gavin Williamson a disservice, but is he really the right man for the job? Look up his history.
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Old 3rd Nov 2017, 00:33
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Sharpie,

Looking back over the Sec Defs since I joined in 1970 there have been a few good men and a whole heap of plonkers. Those that spring to mind: Carrington - carried the can for Falklands unpreparedness; "Sleepy" Fred Mulley - embarrassment; Pym - Sec Def for a while then sacked as FM; Nott - offered to resign over how the Falklands campaign was going - but told to stay where he was by MT; Hesletine - resigned over Westland Affair; "Buff" Hoon - enough said; Hutton - lasted 6 months then resigned politics altogether; Ainsworth - named as one of the highest spenders in Allowances Scandal; Fox - not bad but then let his best man and friend into defence meetings and had to resign; Hammond - over promoted and with high ideas of further promotion.

So, do we give the guy some room to show himself, and Spiderman is a cool nickname!
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Old 3rd Nov 2017, 04:47
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Judging the book entirely by its cover, he looks an unctuous little git.
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Old 3rd Nov 2017, 04:50
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Is that not part of the job spec?
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Old 3rd Nov 2017, 10:11
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OK, so if we don't like this new fellow, who then? By the standards presently being demanded its hard to see how ANY politician from any party will measure up.
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Old 3rd Nov 2017, 10:28
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Heaven forfend that it should be someone with military experience!
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Old 3rd Nov 2017, 10:31
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Too hard to read how it will go at this stage. On the one hand, he is clearly no pushover and is an operator. He will also want to make an impression and is high tempo. On the other, he appears to have got up the nose of some of the men in grey suits, there being some disapproval swirling about how he came into the job, including his part in that. As has been said, guess we have to give him a chance and keep everything crossed...
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Old 3rd Nov 2017, 10:43
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Originally Posted by ShotOne View Post
OK, so if we don't like this new fellow, who then? By the standards presently being demanded its hard to see how ANY politician from any party will measure up.
Penny Mourdaunt, Mark Lancaster, Tobias Ellwood?

They all know quite a bit about Defence....but, no, let's have someone who probably gave himself the job and knows very little about the portfolio.

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Old 3rd Nov 2017, 10:44
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Originally Posted by ShotOne View Post
OK, so if we don't like this new fellow, who then? By the standards presently being demanded its hard to see how ANY politician from any party will measure up.
Tom Tugendhat
Hard to disagree with his credentials
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Old 3rd Nov 2017, 10:48
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Originally Posted by muppetofthenorth View Post
Caution warning on this one....gained from working experience.
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Old 3rd Nov 2017, 11:04
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TT has also been rather too close to VSOs in his military service, so would be influenced through the old boy network? Also, it would be hard to imagine that his policies would anything other than pongo-centric...

Anyway, thanks to the stupid plebiscite last year and Mother Mayday's daft idea to hold a general election earlier this year, I can't see the government staying in power for much longer, particularly if the Labour mob can bin Comrade Corbychev...
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Old 3rd Nov 2017, 11:12
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BEagle,

pongo-centric...FFS...get over it!
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Old 3rd Nov 2017, 11:16
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Originally Posted by BEagle View Post
TT has also been rather too close to VSOs in his military service, so would be influenced through the old boy network? Also, it would be hard to imagine that his policies would anything other than pongo-centric...
And anybody who served in the RAF of the last ~10 years didn't serve in, according to you, the 'real' RAF, so they don't count either.


When you look around and see something wrong with everybody, maybe the real problem is you...?
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Old 3rd Nov 2017, 11:32
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Hmmm. What is more important is that the Pollies get a grip on UK Defence policy. It seems to me that we have a dichotomy of political opinion that varies between making War with anyone we disagree with and, withdrawing from any conflict. The result is a terrible mish-mash of hollowed-out capabilities because the UK cannot afford real "war-with-anyone" armed forces strength. IMO, part of the responsibility of the government is to have a clearly defined policy on defence that is fully funded and would definitely be able to achieve the stated policy. The Service Chiefs should provide the specialist knowledge to achieve the Government policy. Unfortunately, the last 50 years or so seem to have been a bunfight between the Services as the funds have shrunk and the Government has asked for capabilites that we cannot afford, against a Defence policy that is ill-defined.
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Old 3rd Nov 2017, 11:37
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The way the current government are performing I suspect that before long Nia Griffith will be the first female to hold the post.
We'll have something to moan about then!
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Old 3rd Nov 2017, 11:51
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we don't expect the Home Secretary to be an ex-copper, the Minister of Health an ex-doctor or nurse etc etc so why should the MoD be run by an ex-military man?

And if he was the matelots would complain if he wsn't one of them, likewise the RAF & Army...............

If he has any sense he'll have extracted a few promises re funding before he took the job.................
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Old 3rd Nov 2017, 11:55
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With respect to Beags our generation saw a major shift on how defence budgets worked.'
When we joined. the respective Chiefs of Staffs submitted their requirements estimates to government for negotiation and settlement .'
Then,it changed. Basically Government said "This is what we've got ,sort it out among yourselves as to how it will be spent".$
The door was then open to those currying political favour.

"The RAF ? Stretched ,but not over-stretched Minister."
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Old 3rd Nov 2017, 13:08
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The new guy was described yesterday by a female MP (Tory) as "A self-serving c**t."

From a polllie. Ironic eh?
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Old 3rd Nov 2017, 13:14
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Fallon had stepped down on Wednesday night, admitting that his conduct towards women in the past had fallen short of the standards expected of the armed forces, of which he was in charge.
Really? I have heard worse in the NAFF 1
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Old 3rd Nov 2017, 13:20
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https://www.theguardian.com/politics...f1ae05ff6eb789

Intersting quotes

Text from senior Tory MP about Gavin Williamson: "He's out of the shitstorm. Knifed Fallon and pinched his job. It's way above his ability."

Fallon timeline: Gavin Williamson tells PM that Fallon might have to go. Fallon goes. Williamson gets his job

One minister tells me ‘She is so weak she has let Williamson appoint himself-this is appalling’

There are times when offered a job that it would be better to advise that another would be more experienced & suited to the role.

Another minister:" Gavin is an appalling appointment. He's never stepped foot in a dept + now he's running one of the most important"

Minister tells me: "She's gone mad. It's real 'end of days' stuff. He's [Williamson] a real slimeball, w/ his own leadership team in place"
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