January 31st, 2013

Dave’s Defence Pledge: Has He or Hasn’t He?

There is considerable confusion in the Cabinet this morning over Dave’s defence spending promise. “No more defence cuts” booms the front page of the Telegraph, reporting that the PM has guaranteed defence spending will rise above inflation. Philip Hammond has other ideas however, telling Sky:

“I think what the Prime Minister was referring to was the pledge that was made – which Treasury ministers have repeated – that the equipment plan, the part of the defence budget which funds equipment, will rise by 1 per cent a year in real-terms after 2015. I don’t expect to be exempt.”

Which leaves us in a somewhat perverse situation:

Labour spinners are jumping on this as a pretty blatant example of less than joined-up government. So Dave, which is it?


  1. 1
    When I was a lad I served a term as office boy to an attorney's firm... says:

    Send a gunboat.

  2. 2
    EU Kommissar says:

    Agent Dave is destroying the old Empire forces in region 7 (formerly the UK).

    The glorious battalions of the EU Federation will soon be formed to sweep away the last vestiges of racist bigotted reactionary nationalism.

    European values will prevail. Or else.

  3. 3
    Sandra in Accounts says:

    £50 million a day for the EU

    £60 billion a year for DFID

    ……….Whilst British troops are made redundant & our pensioners freeze to death.

    Lib / Con / Lab – wrong priorities.

    Vote UKIP.

  4. 4
    I am not a number says:

    Right hand, meet left hand

  5. 5
    B Boyd says:

    …or two empty aircraft carriers.

  6. 6
    Alan Rusbridger, pianist says:

    Today I will be mostly playing The March of the Toy Soldiers by Tchaikovsky.

  7. 7
    Call me Dave says:

    What I meant to say was ‘We are NOT sending anyone to Mali’

  8. 8
    MoD Wankers R Us says:

    Hang on a couple of decades when we might just be able to get one aircraft carrier available.

  9. 9
    Harrier Jump Jet says:

    And some planes that will not fit on-board

  10. 10
    Dave the Cnut says:

    Don’t I look impressive, inspecting Algerian troops?

  11. 11
    MOD says:

    We have some choppers painted for desert operations we can send. So long as there is no sand that is.

  12. 12
    When I was a lad I served a term as office boy to an attorney's firm... says:

    Yeah, no crew, obviously! Does G4S have a maritime arm?

  13. 13
    Sir William says:

    Interviewer: Mr Politician, what does 2+2 make?

    Politician: What did you have in mind?

  14. 14
    Jo Moore says:

    It’s a good day to bury bad prime ministers.

  15. 15
    When I was a lad I served a term as office boy to an attorney's firm... says:

    Sugar Plum Fairy.

  16. 16
    Anonymous says:

    Easy STOP the useless MOD wankers from wasting money with their in efficiency!

  17. 17
    UK Watch says:

    Either someone is smelling the coffee, or they are trying to spin away the possibility of a military coup at home.

  18. 18
    Short of Kit Squaddie says:

    Are those the Chinooks that you lot bought 10 years ago that never entered service?

  19. 19
    MOD says:

    Yes, they are like new

  20. 20
    Corporal ben Dova says:

    A shoe is on your head, infidel!

  21. 21
    A Nazi wrote this in 1943 says:

    “States will have to lose their national sovereignty… People will warm to a Europe that is synonymous with justice and a new order, that is socialist in shape, that is one large community… There will be a federal Council with a European Executive, one currency, one police force, one army… The European Order will socialist or will be nothing at all…”

  22. 22
    UK Watch says:

    Bomb France, annexe Spain, strategic alliance with Germany.

  23. 23
    Rupert (aged 10) says:

    Dave. I’ve got an Airfix kit of H.M.S.Vanguard. Would it help if I start sticking it together.

  24. 24
    DEFCON 1 says:

    Send Trident

  25. 25
    Hilter says:

    So you won the War did you? Ha. Ha. Ha.

  26. 26
    Indian Dept of Lunar Call Centres says:

    Dear Mr Camermong

    As you have and continue to be so generous, would you like to borrow some military hardware? Mates rates for you.

  27. 27
    David Ward says:


  28. 28
    Dave the Cnut says:

    Thank you for presenting me with this delightful memento. It looks just like a small metal pineapple. What’s this pin thingy for?

  29. 29
    Butch Dave says:

    Calm down, arsebandits! I’m only a puppet.

  30. 30
    Obama says:

    Listen up you Limy cretins, you will spend what we fucking tell you to. Kapish?

  31. 31
    Gay Fawkes says:

    Oy vey! Will no one think of Israel’s need to indiscriminately bomb all goyim and instigate WW3?

  32. 32
    Lord Kitchener of the 101st Foot says:

    Hang on Boys. We’re coming..

  33. 33
    its all bollox says:

    who’s this olivia newton-dumb?

  34. 34
    Judge speaks sense says:

    TV cameras in court could lead to judges being booed, warns Lord Chief Justice

  35. 35
    the poor bloody tax-payer says:

    but how?

    would publication of the (secret?) defence review help?

  36. 36
    Tommy Atkins says:

    It’s a cast iron guarantee – what could possibly go wrong?

  37. 37
    Putr1d Labour ruined my Country says:

    Labour spinning? Surely not, they can rely on their own sensible policies to speak for them, massive immigration, waste all the money, support all the welfare scroungers and create jobs for all their mates.

  38. 38
    Sandra in Accounts says:

    The Coalition for Utter Incompetence.

    It will be worse next time with the Lib Dems & Labour in office.

    Hammond is a shoe in if The Thick of It returns.

  39. 39
    Tom Catesby says:

    Could we fight off an invasion by the Lundy bobby?

  40. 40
    goldman sucks says:

    we could let out the jobs to cut-price bulgarians and romanians -cf the proposals for the fuzz

    in essence one sells the franchises to gang-masters for rent & on renewable leases and what has been a hopeless liability can be presented as an income producing asset

    the electorate are mug enough to fall for that

  41. 41
    Nick Clegg useful idiot says:

    In 23 years as a parliamentary reporter, I’ve never felt such disgust for our political class, writes QUENTIN LETTS ( Mail)

  42. 42
    Judge Mental says:

    Judges? start living in the real world.

  43. 43
    goldman sucks says:

    how old is lenten quips – 24?

  44. 44
    Eyes Right! says:

    ‘ Military coup at home’!? What they gonna do, ask the Church Lads Brigade?

  45. 45
    Who'd have thought says:

    Don’t know what your complaining about, I understand HMS Illustrious is doing it’s last tour of of British ports before being put up on sale on Ebay, at least we will get a few bob back that can be used to buy a couple of rubber dinghies from Toys R Us or maybe a couple of those plastic electric cars they can use in the war we are not involved with in Mali.

  46. 46
    Nevile Chamberlain says:

    Alliance with Germany! 70 years too late probably.

  47. 47
    Ah! Monika 2013 +1 says:

    Milibands Labour PPB last night, was a very poor advert for…

    Plastic Surgeons

  48. 48
    Ah! Monika 2013 +1 says:

    Charles Dodgson owns up to writing all Dave’s speeches.

  49. 49
    Chris Bryant says:

    Next time they interview me…I’m going to uncross my legs.

    Coverage on every front page.

  50. 50
    Anonymous says:

    It’s not hard to understand. I am cutting off funding to our men and women who get blown to shit for the sake of my moralising and posturing that I and this country are a massive force in the world. But steady on old bean that does not mean my friends (relations) in the defence industry have to suffer – bally hell no. They might close the revolving door for my desk-bound chummies in the mod – god forbid that gravy train should ever be mothballed. No they have to have their bung – sorry annual increment.

  51. 51
    Leveson says:

    I’ve heard their biggest selling newspaper is the Daily Mali.

  52. 52

    “Of course we take it supremely seriously. Mr Ward has been summoned before the Party whips, he has been given what is effectively a yellow card. He has apologised profusely. I haven’t spoken to him personally.”

  53. 53
    rebekah aka nellnewman says:

    Well you just have to despair over pm’s and ministers who don’t clearly communicate their message – and cameron is as guilty of it as the rest.

    But let’s not forget which government it was that left us with a £30billion black hole at the mod under such ‘illustrious’ ministers as aintbusitingut and his sidekick kevan whilst they were troughing their way to personal £millionaire heaven on our money!

  54. 54
    UK Watch says:

    There is a fairly sizable cavalry force in London if you know where to look. It all depends on how much certain powers agree with what is happening.

    Firing service personnel who are returning from recent theaters and overtly cutting budgets is a very easy way to pi$$ of generals.

    The military is loyal to the crown first, but its highest priority is defense of the realm from enemies both without and within.

  55. 55
    Chris Bryant of the 69th mouth says:

    In here please ;)

  56. 56
    old SHEP says:

    O/T but what’s happened to the Weather forecasts again, just been outside and nearly took off, ended up clinging to a lamp post, just managed to get back inside, wind speed supposed to be 20 mph, must be gusting to 50 or 60 where I am.

  57. 57
    lojolondon says:

    If he said “I can give you a cast-iron guarantee that we will raise spending on defence from 2015, as long as it makes sense at that time” – then you know you are completely fucked!

  58. 58
  59. 59
    Gordon McRuin says:

    Today I’m going to see how my aircraft carriers are coming along. Nursey says that if I ask nicely I might be able to ride my toy car on the flight deck.

    Nursey says that they are going to change the name of one of them to HMS Cyclops.

  60. 60
    Top Cop says:

    We can investigate dead Top Pops but not dead Top Cops

    Graeme Ford ‏@HugoInterpreter
    PSNI Operation Yewtree GMPCC Tony Lloyd appeal4 info: Reported murder in connection by serving officers.Cover up. http://twitpic.com/bzlgjs

  61. 61
    The Cheshire Cat says:

    Had Rev Dodgson been alive to-day he would probably be answering a few questions from officers from Operation Yewtree about his relationship with the Liddell family and especially young Alice

  62. 62
    Fabian LabLibConsensus says:


    Your description fits the Cameron coalition to a tee also.

  63. 63
    old SHEP says:

    I would say that after saying the officer was deceased the additional comment that any way he is no longer serving with the Greater Manchester Police is superfluous but reassuring. (-:

  64. 64
    Mrs Top Cop says:

    His pension is reassuring to me.

  65. 65
    Shurley says:

    One for the Caption Comp

  66. 66
    Rolf says:

    Do you know where you are yet?

  67. 67
    The Filth says:

    Don’t worry, plebs, we’ll sell all your details to shyster lawyers, retire on gold-plated pensions at 50, and be rehired as ‘consultants’ at double the pay, oh, and fiddle the crime figures.

  68. 68
    Watch My Lips says:

    “‘We are NOT sending anyone to Mali’”

    Apart from those we have already sent, and any that we subsequently send to support them.

  69. 69
    old SHEP says:

    This must be the third class carriage on the Royal Train.

  70. 70
    Anonymous says:

    I suppose it’s too much to expect that any of these idiots know what they’re doing. Singing from different hymn sheets? – I doubt if some of them can read.

  71. 71
    fuzzy wuzzy says:

    dont panic , dpnt panic

  72. 72
    old SHEP says:

    Ok, yes I did notice after pressing there button.

  73. 73
    LCpl Gomer Pyle, USMC (ret.), and newlywed, says:

    As long as we’re on the subject of defense, did anybody miss the news that “don’t ask, don’t tell” was around back in the 60’s, before anyone knew?

    Well, g-o-l-l-l-e-e! Sha-ZAMMM! Surprise, surprise, surprise! (Well, maybe not– everybody knew about me and Rock Hudson.)

  74. 74


    Anyone wanna buy an interest rate swap cheap?

  75. 75
    genghiz the kahn says:

    Trust Cameron on defence – this is the guy who decided to put the Harriers into storage, made then unavailable for ops in Libya whilst lining up a sale to the USMC.

    What had Vichy Dave agreed with The French in 2010, other than the loan of an aircraft carrier which doesn’t go to sea?

  76. 76
    Let's not forget the other Pvt Pyle says:

  77. 77
    US Watch says:

    What exactly is your social security number again ?

  78. 78
  79. 79
    YouGov says:

    Our latest poll shows that british Public would prefer have our taxes spent on overseas aid rather than defense

  80. 80
    Sgt.Wilson says:

    Don’t look now, but you’ve peed yourself.

  81. 81
    The BBC causes serious mental illness says:

    Have you been watching us again ?

    The wind gods are very angry.

    We suggest that you stay indoors, or go out to the shops, relax and get upset about things, remain in a state of semi-vegetative depression unless we mention the happy word (Olympics) and guarantee that if you do this it may not be so windy later.

    Please don’t vote UKIP, long live the EUSSR.

  82. 82
    BBC says:

    Our latest poll shows that the British Public would prefer our taxes spent on the BBC rather than defense

  83. 83
    Geezer says:

    Yep. In return, can you take a bag of coke into Bali for me? It’s a low risk assignment.

  84. 84
    All our yesterdays...2006. Not a shot fired in anger edition says:

    Dave should take a leaf out of Labour’s book…..commit the UK to a” war on terror “in North Africa without adequate personnel;equipment or funding then lose the 2015 election and let Miliband take the shit

  85. 85
    Tortology says:

    Buy a swap?

  86. 86
    Ed Miliband says:

    Do we in labour have a policy on defence? No, but I did go to a secondary modern school.

  87. 87
    Putr1d Labour ruined my Country says:

    The more I find out about Labour the more disgusted I become. The thought that these foul people may be running the Country again is too much to bear. Australia or NZ are becoming infinitely more attractive.

  88. 88
    Wavy Dave's PR. says:

    Confirmation that the MOD equipment budget, currently at about 50% of budget will increase, and the remainder budget is up for negotiation. Message ends.
    Only the BBC and Labour Party plus the usual suspects are trying to make a storm in a teacup.

  89. 89
    old SHEP says:

    The proboscis is not good.

  90. 90
    Jimmy says:

    This is all part of Butch’s exciting new strategy of copying all the Lemon Party’s policies.

  91. 91
    YouGov says:

    And that the British public is …

    1. 100% Gay
    2. Does not have English as its first language
    3. Is an import

  92. 92
    General Gordon fights off the Mardi with only a fly-swish says:

    Too late

  93. 93
    Politician says:

    It all depends on the circumstances. After all this is a very complex situation.

  94. 94
    Jack Lemon says:

    How about a cup of shut the fuck up?

  95. 95
    Ed Miliband says:

    My one nation politics will not let the people of the UK have in/out referendum on the EU. The UK will become a soviet style state when I become your supreme glorious leader.

  96. 96
    old SHEP says:

    Another one bites the dust (wind turbines).

  97. 97
    Chris Bryant says:

    U turn if you want to.

  98. 98
    Anonymous says:

    Now that’s saying something…….From the day I started showing a interest in politics I have felt nothing but disgust for each and everyone of them….

  99. 99
    Putr1d Labour ruined my Country says:

    Don’t laugh we’ll have to pay for it and all the others that disintegrate in high winds.

  100. 100
    (I don't need no doctor) says:

    May I refer you to the years 1997 to 2010.

  101. 101
    Sir William says:

    A shoo-in: a reference to herding cattle rather than to footwear.

  102. 102
    pedantic twat says:

    Defense in our language is, “defence”,,and misul is, “missile” (File)..and
    process is “pro (flow) cess…Aluminium is not “aloominum”..

  103. 103
    UK Watch says:

    Now they need to bring back fox hunting, and flush the pesky failed immigrants out of the woods.

    One does not recall the teddy bears picnic being disturbed by eastern Europeans who can’t afford the rent.

  104. 104
    old SHEP says:

    Climate change secretary?, don’t laugh at me because I’m a clown.

  105. 105
    Anonymous says:

    OZ or NZ, I would rather take my chances in Afgan, Lybia or even Syria…

  106. 106
    Dave's statement to Parliament 1 March 2013 says:

    Around 600 military personnel will be sent to protect our military mission in the region…they’ll be in theatre by Easter BUT that is absolutely NOT putting combat troops on the ground they will be merely there in a non-combat role

  107. 107
    Jon Snow says:

    Watch C4 News tonight for unbiased reporting. You never know, we may just try the old bus pass routine again. Over to you Kathy, err I am Krash, err Krish, err.

  108. 108
    BBC Big Brother Comptroller says:

    Our programme to propogate PC into our armed forces and police service is now fully in place so that in a few years we should have a minor civil war and our EU allies will physically take over England.
    Wales and Scotland will go independent, and Norther Ireland have a referendum on independence.
    We have our own Lord Haw Haw waiting in the wings.

  109. 109
    Cap'n Bob says:

    I did my, ya know, best, ya know. I couldn’t help being thick.

  110. 110
    Walter Matthau says:

    How about you and I make yet another film together? What will it be, our 28th?

  111. 111
    Judge Judy says:

    I’ve made a good living from it, I can do consultancy on how to do your hair for you if you want. It won’t be pro bono though.

  112. 112
    The German army says:

    Just as long as our invasion is office hours only.

  113. 113
    Hugh Grant says:

    See you on the back seat of my cadillac , you naughty boy.

  114. 114
    Responder says:

    Might be easier if you got your fur trimmed poodle style, but your legs would look very skinny.

  115. 115
    stewartedwards says:

    Even a real terms rise of 1% is largely meaningless, if for example prices rise above 1% or new technolgies simply cost more.

    Hopefully our next government will have some skilled economists and accountants in there, and wont focus simply on money, money, money.

    Money is a man made invention, designed to make our world work better. Now it is crushing most of our world. Its broke, it needs to be fixed. Not replaced, simply fixed. A return to the real economy, focusing away from the markets.

    While I genuinely do have a lot of sympathy for what our government are trying to achieve, they just seem to me to be like lost boys trying to figure out why their grand plans are failing at every hurdle. Yet the answer is bleeding obvious – they havent accounted for social evolution and the natural cautionary stance of this nation.

    Defence is simple. Decide what this country really needs. Fund it. Cut what is no longer necessary. Along the way if you happen to employ a few people, that is a few off benefits, paying tax.

    Someone please remind me (as an ex Tory party member) what the tories today stand for? Mind you as Osbourne quipped recently (as reported in other press) they will soon be sitting around the shaddow cabinet, if they are not careful.

    With the cuts beginning to bite badly, if heaps of decent paying jobs (you will need both – decent wages and jobs) dont appear pre election the Tories could have their worst election ever.

    Just think of the millions of people who are worse off under government policies, (forgetting about the rights and wrongs of them), how likely are those millions of unemployed and disabled and their families, to vote the tories back in? How motivated are they to actually turn up and vote them out? Especially as the years pass and old family voting loyalties increasingly disappear as people think for themselves.

    The tories could win, but they will need to pull something astonishing out of the hat – assuming of course that labour can gets its act together and become credible – offering more of the same wont cut it with those who want the tories out. Ed Milliband if you read this – you can do it – but you really do need to get yourself into gear fast and you will need to find a better way – pity that you dont seem that courageous.

    I for one really dont know who to vote for now as they all really do seem to be as bad as each other. It is just a pity that Farage is UKIP for I would vote for him, but being pro EU it is a bit tricky. Perhaps the Lib Dems will rise to the challenge?

  116. 116
    Responder says:

    Terrorist How-To-Win book:” Retreat when attacked. It’s always worked.”

  117. 117
    WoRaft says:

    Thank you Rupert. We are currently requisitioning the boats which are used to fight naval battles in P*asholm park and are equipping the dragon and swan p*dalos (that means boats with p*dals, not anything sinister but the modbot is very sensitive) with zip-on protection. We think that johnny foreigner will be jolly terrified when he sees all those Viking figureheads coming towards him, fahasands of ‘em.

  118. 118
    US Military says:

    We could NOT believe our luck. We can sell you some of the spares back too!!!

  119. 119
    Living in 96.98 percent white Merseyside says:

    Didn’t you read about the M*uzzie Rage in Sydney last year. Far worse than anything we had here.

  120. 120
    Realist says:

    First thing to do is to FORBID councils and government departments from publishing documents in multiple languages.

  121. 121
    Pundit too too says:

    Oz is under a Labour harridan PM (think Harperson as PM), who is continuing the UK work of Gordon Brown in selling off the countries assets, destroying its economy, bringing in PC, and it eventually becomes a minor player in the far east. NZ might do better strangely enough.

  122. 122
    Let me make this absolutely clear says:

    You have my cast iron guarantee that there will be no more cuts to the MOD unless I am told that it’s the right thing to do by my Brussels head office.

  123. 123
    Ben Britten. says:

    I am glad to see that the BBC are defending me in spite of new revelations on the cause of my death and similar stories.

  124. 124
    Channel 4 says:

    Have you seen our fun new series with Ricky Gervais playing an autistic fellow for laughs? Such a civilised and uplfiting production.

  125. 125
    Gordon I'm in Charge Brown says:

    Lets face it putting a former sheet metal worker in charge of the MOD was a unique initiative in order to ensure our tanks and armoured vehicles could stop dum dum bullets.

  126. 126
    Shadow Minister of the Dark Environment says:

    Its the wrong kind of wind for wind farms.

  127. 127
    Mali Muslim Terrorists says:

    Like MacArther we will be back

  128. 128
    Geordieboy says:

    About 18 months ago a prominent Labour MP said that when they are next in government they will cut defense expenditure by £5 billion more than the coalition. Then surprisingly a leaked email from Jim Murphy said it would have to be £10 billion. That’s the cost of the two aircraft carriers Gordon Brown ordered to keep his constituents in a job.

  129. 129
    Living in 96.98 percent white Merseyside says:

    And to 1979 to 1997.

  130. 130
    Living in 96.98 percent white Merseyside says:

    I hope you ban religion.

  131. 131
    Jess The Dog says:

    I think Dave has been caught lying…again. With backstabbing redundancies and slashed military pensions, another section of society will be voting to kick Dave out in 2015.

  132. 132
    robbie says:

    it means that the budget will still reduce (through manpower cuts) but the requirement for equipment costs will be met out of a general inflation +1% rise which will be less than MOD equipment inflation. Simples.

  133. 133
    Catty Comment (Ms) says:

    Oh shit – your final line made me spit my tea all over the keyboard.

  134. 134
    Mr Quelch says:

    I think you’ll find that there isn’t a right kind of wind. Useless, useless, useless.

  135. 135
    Anonymous says:

    No Rupert, you are not qualified to use glue, nor have the parts been properly inventoried or undergone suitability studies and testing by companies I am a shareholder of.

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