Industry reacts to Defense Committee report on Security

by Michael Smith (Veshengro)

The Society of British Aerospace Companies (SBAC), the UK's aerospace, defense and security trade association has reacted to the House of Commons Defense Committee report on the defense contribution to UK national security and resilience.

Ian Godden, SBAC Chief Executive, said: "The committee is right to recognise that the security industry works well with Government and to recommend a clear connection between industry and the National Security Strategy. The industry believes that 'we're all in this together' with the authorities and this should be reflected more formally when the NSS is updated this summer.

"The Government has improved its processes for working with the industry to deliver UK security on counter-terrorism issues. However, our sector still finds it difficult to engage the Government in a cross-departmental manner. The most notable omission from the first version of the National Security Strategy from an industry perspective was the absence of a high level sketch of the industrial interface mechanisms and broad capabilities available to the UK Government on security matters. Like the French defense and Security White Paper published in June 2008, the second iteration of the Government's National Security Strategy should consider in more detail how it plans to work with the defense and security industry."

The Society of British Aerospace Companies (SBAC) is the UK's national trade association representing companies supplying civil air transport, defense, security and space. SBAC encompasses the British Aviation Group. Together with its regional partners, SBAC represents over 2,600 companies, assisting them in developing new business globally, facilitating innovation and competitiveness and providing regulatory services in technical standards and accreditation.

The UK has the world's largest aerospace industry outside the USA. UK based aerospace activity had a turnover of £20bn in 2007, supporting a highly skilled workforce of over 164,000 people where 39 per cent have a degree and 2 per cent are apprentices (2,769). It is potentially well-placed to exploit further growth in the global marketplace with R&D spending in 2007 of £2.74 billion.

Therefore, I must says that one should not be surprised to the reaction of the SBAC seeing that they, after all, are the trade body of the British defense industry and they have a vested interest in keeping the status quo and even advancing defense spending to that their members can rake in vast profits for often garbage (as can be seen with the equipment the British soldiers have in the current theaters of operations).

As mentioned already in a previous article on this matter, that is to say on the recommendations of the House of Commons Defense Committee report, we no longer need the systems that the industry seems to be pushing upon the country.

What good are nuclear missiles in an age of insurgency warfare and one that could even come home to roost? No good at all. Not that they were ever much good in the first place.

Huge aircraft carriers that are sitting duck targets also are not the greatest idea in this changed nature of warfare. One can but wonder in which world some of those people live.

What is needed, as said previously, is a new approach and weapons and equipment that allows our military to counter the new treats with the proper tools.

© 2009