Saturday, January 28, 2017

Quote of the day 28th January 2017

"Years ago we had an aircraft missile called the Seaslug missile and we fired one into Wales."
"Those sort of things happen but you don't go and talk to the prime minister about that, unless their constituency happens to be there."


(Labour peer Admiral Lord West giving evidence to the Commons Defence Committee on Tuesday. as reported It is believed he was referring to a missile test incident in Cardigan Bay in 1958, when a missile crashed into a hillside.)

The point of this quote is that if you want to be confident that your military systems are working properly, like anything else, you have to check them or test them. Obviously you do test fire missiles without a live warhead and you test weapons well away from innocent people - so for example the Eskmeals MoD firing range in Copeland has big signs on the perimeter warning people to keep out.

You test things to the limit and it's the tests where things don't work perfectly that enable you to improve the system.

And only a total idiot - a category which apparently includes most of the people who have been criticising the government this week over Trident - would make it easier for the enemies of our country to find ways to defeat our weapon systems buy publishing detailed results of such tests.

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