We need nukes says CMD.

Doesn't mention whether he thinks the Norks can be ready in 45 minutes....

David Cameron has issued a stark warning against any move to abandon Britain's Trident deterrent in the face of the growing nuclear threat from North Korea and Iran.

The Prime Minister said it would be "foolish" to leave the country defenceless at a time when the "highly unpredictable and aggressive" regime in North Korea was developing ballistic missiles which could eventually threaten Europe.
His comments came as the United States said that it was moving an advanced missile system to the Pacific island of Guam as Pyongyang continued to ratchet up the rhetoric against South Korea and its American ally.
Writing in The Daily Telegraph, Mr Cameron said such "evolving threats" underlined the need for the UK to maintain the ultimate deterrent.
"We need our nuclear deterrent as much today as we did when a previous British Government embarked on it over six decades ago. Of course, the world has changed dramatically. The Soviet Union no longer exists. But the nuclear threat has not gone away," he said. "In terms of uncertainty and potential risk it has, if anything, increased."
Mr Cameron said that Iran was continuing to defy the will of the international community over its nuclear programme while North Korea may already be building a nuclear arsenal.
"The highly unpredictable and aggressive regime in North Korea recently conducted its third nuclear test and could already have enough fissile material to produce more than a dozen nuclear weapons," he said. "Last year North Korea unveiled a long-range ballistic missile which it claims can reach the whole of the United States. If this became a reality it would also affect the whole of Europe, including the UK."
He went on: "Does anyone seriously argue that it would be wise for Britain, faced with this evolving threat today, to surrender our deterrent? Only the retention of our independent deterrent makes clear to any adversary that the devastating cost of an attack on the UK or its allies will always be far greater than anything it might hope to gain."
His comments underline the Conservatives' commitment to a like-for-like replacement for the ageing Trident submarine fleet while their Liberal Democrat coalition partners are seeking a cheaper alternative. The future of Trident is also likely to feature in next year's looming Scottish independence referendum campaign, with the SNP insisting that it would not allow nuclear missiles to be based in an independent Scotland.
Shadow defence minister Kevan Jones said it was "absolutely right and necessary" for the UK to retain an independent nuclear deterrent, but it must take into account the costs involved. "World events demonstrate that in an unpredictable era our country needs the ultimate security guarantee," he said. "The precise nature of the deterrent must be judged on meeting military capability requirements and cost."

Cameron warning of nuclear threat - BelfastTelegraph.co.uk
So what'd happen if an independent jockistan went nuke free? If they got glassed by the nasty men would we tell 'em "I told you so" 'n insist they kept the fizzing clouds on their side of the border?
It seems that the Norks have a missle that is, theoretically, capable of reaching the northern most bit of Scotland.

Time to nuke 'em till they glow and then shoot them in the dark!
"The Prime Minister said it would be "foolish" to leave the country defenceless". Quite, particularly by reducing the Armed Forces to little more than a token militia.
All you need if you've got big missiles, innit?
What's the point. They're not ours, and we can't use them on our own.
The missiles aren't, but possession is nine tenths of the law.

We can use them any time we like. Entirely alone.
IDF is very much a defence force, no amphibious capability or blue water navy. Relies on its nuclear umbrella to keep the well tooled up restless natives playing at home.
Oh right. Sorry.
if cmd says we need nukes then we probably dont.
I think we need a nuclear component BUT I dont think we should replace Trident (yet) some form of SLEP must be available for them.... after all nuclear confrontation against a soveriegn country is much less likely (lunatic Norks excluded!) the most likely nuclear scenarion is some insurgent group with a dirty bomb and our nukes would be useless then, better to direct defence budgets earmarked for Trident Replacement into maintaining/improving convention forces predominantly tasked for COIN (or is it "asymentrical warfare"these days?)
The issue is that there are several components to the Deterrent which need replacement over time.

Firstly the submarines themselves - these need replacing in the 2025 timeframe as they will be too old to continue and be certain of availability to meet the needs of the deterrent patrol schedule. This is the primary requirement to replace.

Secondly you need to update the warheads to ensure they are safe when not required, and can deliver an instant dose of sunshine when needed. This is ridiculously complex and requires a range of rocket scientists who have more letters after their name than Jarrod's had lovers. This process is an ongoing one, but will take a lot of time and money to keep going. The problem is if you mothball it then suddenly restarting it proves problematic. One thing AWE has done well recently is recruit young grads - the US hasn't and they have recently woken up to the fact their rocket scientists are very old and do you really want someone who can't remember what he had for breakfast fiddling about with a nuclear weapon?

Thirdly, you need to maintain the delivery mechanism - this is about ensuring Trident is fit for purpose. Trident as the rocket will continue till the 2040s - we will then buy and help develop whatever the US goes for as a replacement system then. This needs perhaps the least amount of updating. The problem is that people think Trident, and assume we're buying new rockets too.

Finally you need to maintain the security and assurance of the Nuclear Firing Chain. Essentially we need to invest in the command, control and communications networks necessary to ensure that we know where the bomber is, that we know where the threats to the bomber may be lurking and have adequate means to deal with them. We then need to have the ability to ensure that when the PM requests a nuclear strike, and CDS orders it (important distinction there), that the Nuclear Firing Chain is able to communicate the message in appropriate length of time to the bomber who can in turn deliver the package. Again, this is expensive and ongoing and often forgotten about. One reason why we are investing in Hydrography, MCMV, ASW frigates and SSNs is in part to ensure the surety of the Nuclear Firing Chain.

One other point - I will scream loudly the next time someone suggests 'why don't we just use cruise missiles'. The simple reason above all else is that there are no nuclear tipped TLAMs in use anymore and we'd have to develop a new miniaturised warhead to merge with the technology. We'd then need an entirely new set of warheads, C2 measures and also other requirements. The cost would be vastly more than just keeping Trident.

One very final point - I will also scream very loudly if someone tells me that we cannot fire without US permission. As I (and others) have hinted at in the past here - the system can work and will work without the US. I have yet to meet anyone who has worked on and briefed on how the NFC really works who would post such garbage. Those who suggest we cannot fire it are not properly briefed and do not know what they are talking about.
Providing the Boomers were built in the UK then it would provide an econonic stimulus especially round Barrow which is pretty well dependent on the Sub Shipyard..........
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