When Sky News’ Alistair Bunkall posted an opinion piece online in late July chastising the leadership of the Armed Forces and MoD for ducking serious media scrutiny in favour of arranged appearances, it chimed with the impressions of a general disengagement in the vital debates around the future of the UK’s defence and security.
Further media reports today suggest the MoD is indeed in chaos: a £20bn funding shortfall; low manning levels not seen since before World War 1; a historically small Royal Navy; a forward procurement programme the National Audit Office (NAO) says is ‘at greater risk than at any time since reporting was introduced’.
Having acted for members of the armed forces for over 25 years, I have obtained a unique insight into the inner workings of the MoD – and it’s not a pretty picture.
Its leaders have run this major establishment along outdated and historic lines for too long. There modernisation so urgently required has been sadly lacking.
The old rule book now needs to be thrown away. A complete, transparent overhaul into modern warfare and threats is required.
The MoD needs to be run like a corporate company with the best strategists and leaders looking at procurement, recruitment, safety and efficiency. It is the only way forward.