Brexit: Former Navy officer says EU has a 'can't fight, won't fight' policy on defence

Brexit: 'The UK gives more to the EU in defence than it gets back', says former Royal Navy officer

The Government has said it will support European security

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

A former Royal Navy officer says the EU has a "can't fight, won't fight" policy on defence and the UK gives far more to Brussels in defence than it gets back.

The Government has announced that it will continue to be committed to European security even after Brexit. The UK had previously been criticised for using defence as a bargaining chip, with some even accusing Britain's Brexit negotiators of resorting to "gunboat diplomacy."

Former Royal Navy officer Chris Parry told Sam Delaney that, when it comes to defence, the EU "don’t have the capability. They don’t have the political will to actually fight any real battles. It's very much a case of 'can't fight, won't fight.'

"The fact of life is what they get from us is inordinately greater than what they give to us. That’s been proven over many years."

If the UK stopped supporting EU defence "in terms of cyber security intelligence, and all those other soft defence skills, it would be a huge gap. We're the biggest hitter, along with the French."

He thinks "we’re going to carry on doing intelligence" but doesn't think "we’ll be bound by any European defence and security policy."

Instead our Government "will see to it that we come in and out [of war] as and when we think it fit."

Europe, meanwhile, will continue to depend on Nato for military reinforcement as and when required.

Listen to the full interview above