MacDonald welcomes rise in public opposition to Trident
Thursday, 28 October 2010 05:15
As Westminater cuts bite, majority support conventional defence
A YouGov poll, conducted during the defence review last week shows rising opposition to trident nuclear weapons at a time of conventional defence cuts.
The poll shows 67% of people opposed Government spending on renewing trident nuclear weapons at a time of cuts to conventional defence. A majority of voters across all parties agreed that the Government should not buy a replacement for Trident and secure the conventional defences.
Welcoming the poll results the SNP’s candidate for Falkirk East, Councillor Angus MacDonald said it was “a clear indication that with Westminster cuts beginning to bite it was increasingly unacceptable for money to be spent on new nuclear weapons”.
The YouGov poll was conducted in the week of the UK Government’s Strategic Defence and Security Review which announced the closure of RAF Kinloss and created uncertainty over the future of RAF Lossiemouth, Fort George and the Army’s Edinburgh HQ.
Angus MacDonald continued:
“This poll result comes just months after remarks by the former deputy commander-in-chief of UK land forces, General Sir Hugh Beach, who said that the UK's Trident missile system is no use and that no more money should be wasted on it.
“Labour are just as guilty as the Tories on this issue as they also planned to waste £25 billion on a new Trident nuclear weapons system even in the face of huge spending cuts to Scotland being imposed from Westminster.
“On one hand the ConDem government is slashing £1.3 billion from next year’s Scottish budget and cutting £800 million of capital projects yet we have the insane intention of the UK Government, of whatever hue, to keep on wasting millions on a weapon of mass destruction that former high ranking UK officers view as a waste of money.
“Trident is frankly obscene, and in the current economic climate it must be obvious that these resources should be better spent on health, policing and education in Falkirk East and all across Scotland, not to mention our conventional armed forces, who have been plagued with poor quality equipment for some time.
“People are clearly struggling to understand, at a time when budgets are being slashed by Tories and LibDems in London, why renewal of these weapons has not been ruled out completely.
“The Tory and Lib Dem Government may not have said much about Trident in the last week but it is still going ahead. Instead of delay – which will no doubt increase cost – the LibDems should use what little influence they have and see Trident’s replacement scrapped for good.
“Even Tory voters now agree that spending money on new nuclear weapons is wasteful.
“Trident is morally wrong, it is now economically insane and there is an increasingly clear view from the public that they do not want these weapons on our shores.