To reply to Gravelbelly's points on equipment procurement from the War Office forum- and for all those interested a link on the main points re smart procurement is here: http://www.mod.uk/issues/sdr/procurement.htm I agree hardly ever. A bad PM can keep the project on track until he departs. In practice what happens is that a bad decision is made which saves the day now, but comes back to bite his successor in the future. Accountability is what we need. Put someone in who will see the project through to its conclusion. You can then be sure that his decisions will take the long term view ! As GB says we want better technology. But to be fair, measures are taken to ensure that new technology is risk reduced to such an extant to make sure that it will eventually work. Example, the current BOWMAN trials are checking that the new technology being offered does work before further equipment is produced for the troop trials later in the year. There is balance between short procurement programmes and getting new technology in quickly against cost of development and proper trialling. At the end of the day even if the risk of failure (financially) rests with the contractor, soldiers expectations and lives could be at stake. Therefore the balance of cost, capability and time is a delicate one.