Home Business News Former spy chief warns ‘we are at war’ as the UK is ‘engaged in a grey war with Russia’

Former spy chief warns ‘we are at war’ as the UK is ‘engaged in a grey war with Russia’

15th Mar 24 1:45 pm

The former soy chief Sir Richard Dearlove has said that “we are at war” with Russia and the British government has some “tough” choices to make.

The retired spymaster of MI6 has said that the government had to boost defence spending to at least 2.5% of GDP amid the constant threats from Russia.

He then said “for God’s sake” we need “more boots on the ground” as the British Army has less than 76,000 full time troops.

Russia has at least 1,320,000 troops and China have more than 2,000,000 military personnel and the UK has less than 30,000 reservists.

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Sir Richard told Politico, “If you stopped anyone in the street here in the UK and asked them whether they thought Britain is at war, they’d look at you as if you were mad.

“But we are at war – we’re engaged in a grey war with Russia, and I am trying to remind people of that.”

Dearlove said told Politico the UK has to make some “tough” choices, adding 2.5% needs to be spent on defence.

The former spymaster added, “We need to be building more ships. We need a much bigger navy. And we need more boots on the ground, for God’s sake.”

The Security Minister has said the UK “must increase defence spending” to reach 2.5% of GDP “now” and he has urged Rishi Sunak to “lead the way” on increasing the budget.

Tom Tugendhat who is a former soldier posted on social media last week that the government must increase their defence spending to “2.5% and beyond.”

Speaking to Sky News Tugendhat was asked if he wants to see the Prime Minister to do more, he said, “Well, I want to achieve 2.5% now – as soon as possible.

“That is exactly what we need to achieve.

“You know, the first step is to get to 2.5% and then we’ll have to adjust as the challenges we face evolve.”

During the Spring Budget the Chancellor Jeremy Hunt told MPs in the House of Commons, “Our armed forces remain the most professional and best-funded in Europe with defence spending already more than 2% of GDP.

“We are providing more military support to Ukraine than nearly any other country and our spending will rise to 2.5% as soon as economic conditions allow.”

Tugendhat warned of the challenges of Iran’s ambitions in the Middle East,” along with the “threat that Russia poses to Ukraine.”

The Security Minister also warned of the “rise in autocratic states” which is another reasons to increase defence spending to 2.5% or more.

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