‘ Eunuchs complaining about cost of viagra’
>> NEWS: HOW TO JOIN THE BIG GARDEN BIRDWATCH Michael Gove’s colourful put- down of Labour unilateralists in the row over Trident missile tests 84 - 88 Frimley High Street, Frimley, Surrey, GU16 7JE SEE PAGE 8
TWO MPs in the Star Courier patch used a debate on Monday on the test firing of a Trident nuclear missile in June 2016 to fire several shots of their own.
The Sunday Times ruffled feathers when it claimed at the weekend that a missile veered off course during test flights in June, weeks before a crucial Commons vote on Trident’s future.
MPs voted in July to spend £ 40 billion replacing the nuclear deterrent.
Kevan Jones, Labour MP for North Durham, asked Secretary of State for Defence Michael Fallon to make a statement on the test firing of a Trident nuclear missile in June 2016.
Speaking during the debate on Monday, Surrey Heath MP Michael Gove said: “Does my right hon. Friend agree that investment in our continuous at- sea nuclear deterrent has not only bought us peace since 1968 and the protection of western Europe, but is congruent with our position as a permanent five member of the UN Security Council; and is it not the case that the unilateralists on the opposition benches who are complaining today are in the position of eunuchs complaining about the cost of viagra?”
Secretary of State for Defence Michael Fallon replied that he agreed ‘ with all three of my right hon. Friend’s propositions.’
Aldershot MP Sir Gerald Howarth said: “I welcome the government’s approach and thank my right hon. Friend for his reassurance about the effectiveness of the Trident system.
“Will he confirm that there have been 160 successful firings of the missile?
“Surely that should reassure the British people rather more than the prospect of the leader of the opposition having his finger on the button.”
Mr Fallon said: “The House might want to know that the demonstration and shakedown operation is critical at intervals for demonstrating the effectiveness of the deterrent.
“It comprises a comprehensive series of system and sub- system tests, and it provides a period of intensive training for the submarine’s crew. It evaluates the complex weapons system involved in Trident, including the performance of the crew, and it concludes each time with an unarmed missile firing. HMS Vengeance successfully concluded that shakedown operation.”
MP Michael Gove made his point in colourful style.
Sir Gerald Howarth.