There is an increasing concern that Brexit will not mean Brexit; might Theresa May’s will be lost in business compromise? But what about military matters, which are by the day getting more and more intertwined in EU institutions? Not much is being mentioned in the media.
The Lancaster House Agreement of 2010 signed by David Cameron and Sarkozy is such a concern, where our military is merging with French forces as an “ever closer union” EU army, seen recently on exercises on Salisbury plain as an EU Battlegroup in May 2016. In October 2010, Mr Cameron opened his House of Commons’ statement by denying the Strategic Defence Review (2010) was simply a “cost saving exercise”, saying it was a “step change in the way we protect this country’s security interests”. He was not lying.
There has been a deafening silence on this issue from the Government. Can we seriously have our military forces and military procurement methods controlled by the EU once we have “left”? What effect will this have on any negotiations made after Article 50 is invoked?
Obviously the idea of an EU Army sends a chill down most people’s backs in the UK, but as my Mum used to say, “There’s more than one way to skin a cat”. The agreement was one of the first to this end, a back door arrangement to get an “ever closer union” EU Army (inc. Navy and Air force) with a series of similar bi-lateral agreements spanning across the EU, that at first, as we have become familiar with the tactics used, would supposedly be nothing to do with the EU, “just a cost saving exercise” to “pool resources” and other Eurospeak language to mean surrendering sovereignty. It was dubbed back in 2010 “Entente Frugale” by the gullible Lamestream Press, but as we know for sure, there are now 18 EU Battlegroups each with 1500 troops.
We are also connected with the EU Common Defence procurement of materials and supplies. They call it “harmonization” of equipment. Geoff Hoon at the Farnborough Air show in 2000 affixed his signature to a complex document between six EU member states, France, Germany, Spain, Italy, Sweden and the UK, ‘concerning measures to facilitate the restructuring and operation of the European defence industry’. This was later incorporated into Article 45 of the Lisbon Treaty. “the need to harmonize the military requirements of their armed forces”. The consequences mean any industrial capability to manufacture weapons is no longer under our control, but the EU.
Last week the Navy said they have a shortage of 4000 staff for the Royal Navy, predominantly for the 2 new aircraft carriers being constructed on the Clyde, ready for sea trials next year. Although we are told we are committed to purchasing 48 F-35B Joint Strike Fighter planes (STOVL) from Lockheed Martin, only 4 have been supplied so far to land on the Navy carriers and are dogged by flaws, faults and serious corrosion problems, described by some as having “crumbling parts”. Don’t be surprised if the order is canceled in favour of the Eurofighter.
By a strange coincidence, the aircraft carriers design was modified in 2010 to carry French fighter planes. The new capital ships would require escort vessels like frigates to flank them, but the Navy only has 19 surface vessels, many in port for maintenance, others on active service off Somalia, Falklands, Gibraltar, in the Mediterranean etc. So the logical question is where are these sailors, ships, materials and equipment going to come from just for the Navy to function? In my opinion various senior military staff, Civil Servants and Government ministers will look no further than France, who will remain an active member of the EU. Our Royal Navy would effectively be subsumed into La Royale Navy over time under eventual EU Control. It could potentially be the biggest military surrender and act of High Treason since 1066.
The independent procurement of materials for the military has been the very core of military policy for hundreds of years. It’s just as important as personnel; whether your forces can function efficiently, reliably, securely and independently and provides employment for our manufacturing market. If our military procurement is still part of an EU Common Security policy our military industrial capability will continue to be farmed out to other EU member states. Our independent manufacturing capability goes with it, as was the case of the latest Ajax tanks order, to be manufactured in Spain with Swedish steel.
There could also be a conflict of interest with foreign and domestic policy as our forces are increasingly merged with French forces, ultimately with Common EU foreign policy, under the EU’s Foreign Affairs spokesman Mogherini.
For example, when the UK withdraws from the EU Common Fisheries Policy and the UK reclaims all of its territorial waters for 200 miles under its control, up to the Median line and the French and other EU member states still demand to fish in our waters? What then? We potentially would have neither the ships nor the manpower nor capability to protect our waters from being plundered, our own “ever closer union” navy far from defending, used to intimidate our fishing fleet in our own waters. Too far fetched a theory? But why should we put the defence of this great country in obvious risk in foreign hands?
Would these French or other “Ever closer union” personnel put their lives, ships, planes and tanks at risk to defend British interests in the Falklands against Argentina or other sabre rattlers? Would they defend Gibraltar from Spain? The list of possible problems is endless.
Look here at a Youtube interview from UK Column News from 19 minutes into the show with David Lewis from Strategic Defence Initiatives for more information.
Let’s make sure Brexit means Brexit for the military and defence industrial section.
This is a condensed version of an article first published on Freenations.net