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Rutherglen Reformer - - The Ticket -

Tri­dent once again, made head­lines last week.

The new Labour leader Jeremy Cor­byn has re­peated his de­sire to can­cel Bri­tain’s nu­clear de­ter­rent.

If elected Prime Min­is­ter, he also de­clared he would never press the nu­clear but­ton.

His com­ments have sparked fresh de­bate on what we do with our nu­clear de­ter­rent.

First of all, let’s be clear: ev­ery­one - whether you’re a Con­ser­va­tive, Labour, SNP, or LibDem - wants a world free of nu­clear weapons.

The only real ques­tion is how best we bal­ance that wish with the need to main­tain our coun­try’s na­tional se­cu­rity. For me, se­cu­rity comes first ev­ery time. We can’t, sadly, un- in­vent nu­clear weapons. Nor can we, overnight, re­move them from parts of the world where we’d rather they didn’t ex­ist - like Vladimir Putin’s Rus­sia.

So for our part, Con­ser­va­tives are clear: in an un­cer­tain world, our nu­clear ar­se­nal de­fends us against threats both now and in the fu­ture.

Look­ing back, few pre­dicted the speedy col­lapse of the Soviet Union - and no-one, no mat­ter how well in­ten­tioned, can pos­si­bly fore­see the fu­ture threats we will face.

That’s why I sup­port the UK Gov­ern­ment in want­ing to press ahead with re­new­ing the sub­marines which carry our Tri­dent mis­siles, which are based in Faslane.

Of course we can’t pre­tend that this de­ci­sion will come cheap. But the bill for re­plac­ing Tri­dent cur­rently amounts to around five to six per cent of our de­fence bud­get.

If we were to scrap it, this money would have to be spent else­where - on forces that, by their very na­ture, lack the im­me­di­acy and ca­pa­bil­ity of Tri­dent.

So we’re clear, when it comes to the se­cu­rity of our na­tion Bri­tain’s nu­clear de­ter­rent is worth the price.

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