Military ‘assets’

Your analysis of how the UK’s military “assets” might be divvied up if Scotland voted for independence was quite interesting (20 July), but even more so was the comment you quoted from your defence expert, Clive Fairweather, that “most of this equipment [our 9 per cent share] would be completely useless for Scotland”. So, Scottish taxpayers are paying more than £3 billion for this equipment that would be “completely useless” for the defence of Scotland as an independent country, and presumably it is just as “completely useless” to defend Scotland today.

The obvious corollary is that when we divvy up this arsenal, most of it should be disposed of at knock-down prices. There is plenty of precedent for this. After all Britain spent £3.8bn developing Nimrod replacement and then scrapped them and sold the bits for peanuts and left the aerial surveillance of Scotland’s Atlantic coast uncovered.

Maybe independence could become a wake-up call for the whole of the UK to look at the defence budget. I can see there being an “independence dividend” for the rest of the UK, particularly with respect to Trident. After all, it is only an expensive deterrent which nobody will ever use, but if nobody will ever use it who is it going to deter?

George Leslie

North Glassock

Fenwick, East Ayrshire