CND’s Kate Hudson makes the case for investing in society, and not in Weapons of Mass Destruction

Kate Hudson

Stop Trident

Why does the government say there is no money for jobs, health, education, social services – but there is always money for nuclear weapons and war?

We know how expensive the wars and interventions of this century have been – over £40 billion to the British taxpayer.

Now the government plans to spend as much as £183 billion on replacing Britain’s nuclear weapons system Trident. This figure is based on £41 billion on building the four submarines that carry the system, (the MoD’s own figure) plus the lifetime cost calculated by Crispin Blunt MP (chair of the Foreign Affairs select committee) on the government’s own formula: 6% of the defence budget which is based on a NATO commitment of 2% of GDP, with GDP growing at a rate of 2.48%, the historic growth rate between 1956-2015 = £142 billion. So that’s £183 billion based on government figures – not a wild figure made up by CND

So what could this buy instead?

Just look at one example – housing. Shelter estimates that £3 billion a year will build 50,000 new, genuinely affordable, homes. Just a fraction of the money wasted on Trident could begin to deal with our housing crisis. And investment in renewable energy could boost our economy and provide high skilled jobs for those who have worked on the nuclear weapons programme. Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn is committed to a Defence Diversification policy, to ensure that cancellation of Trident boosts industry and jobs, and we all need to get behind him in support.

We can all think of things we would prefer to spend the money on. And the truth is, Trident is just a massive, useless drain on our national resources. It does nothing to meet the security threats we face in the twenty first century. It is twentieth century old technology that will be made redundant through cyberattack and underwater drones. These are weapons of mass destruction, a hangover from the cold war, and they should have no place in British society and have no part of our role in the world.

As parliament heads towards the vote on whether or not to replace Trident, now’s the time to say No

Join us on the Stop Trident demo: Saturday 27th February, 12 noon at Marble Arch, London.

Source: CND

18 Feb 2016

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