How did Britain fund much larger armed forces during the 1980s?

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Thomas2
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Defence chiefs keep comparing our capabilities now to during the First Gulf War in 1990/1 and to a lesser extent the Falklands War. Did Britain spend a higher proportion of GDP on defence during the cold war and if so where did the money come from?

Why is Putin's Russia\ISIS\China\Iran etc. seen as less of a threat than the USSR and not worthy of spending the same amount on defence?
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Gerald DGrilla
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Good idea.
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Crb822
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This country needs more money used for defense and military. We need more of a deterrent.
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Thomas2
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(Original post by gerald dgrilla)
prevalent factors:

- hawkish thatcher government.
- us special relationship.
- us strong anti-commie line.
- strong military influence in whitehall.
- clear enemy and potential theatre of war.
- soviet threat.
- leaders who lived through or saw the effects of wwii first hand.
- no china.
- no techno-hacking-web war/crime.
- much reduced terror threat (ira).
- strong economy (mostly).
- no prospect of an incompetent labour government tanking the economy (eg allowing northern rock to lend 110% mortgages, as they subsequently did).
- war on unions.
- belief in keynesian economics (for part of the time anyway).
- balls (not the ed variety, spit).
- alan clark.
- coca-cola.

All of these things meant:

- more money.
- more focused threat.
- less distraction on terror/cyber (and thus cost).
- government (and pm in particular) who believed it needed more military manpower/hardware.
- the will and desire to have a strong defense.
neil??? Kinnock???
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Gerald DGrilla
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(Original post by Crb822)
This country needs more money used for defense and military. We need more of a deterrent.
Yes.
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Gerald DGrilla
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(Original post by Thomas2)
neil??? Kinnock???
oh yes.
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Thomas2
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(Original post by Gerald DGrilla)
1. We need to attack the deficit. If we allow our debt to drag us down, everything falls apart.

2. We need to know who the enemy is and spend accordingly. Tanks ain't no good against Chinese hackers or stupid boys with rucksacks.
I agree we need to spend A LOT more on the defense of the country but it needs to be on covert strategies, not men in uniform.
Yes but we sent 12 squadrons of tornados to Irag in 1990. Now we seem to have only 1 squadron which can be deployed at any one time.
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Gerald DGrilla
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Oh, right.
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Swanbow
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For the most part higher taxes, believe it or not.

Plus the political situation made a capable and well funded military a necessity.

However government spending as a percentage was much lower in 1980 and 1990 for things such Health spending and Pensions compared to now. That leaves less room in the budget to be spent on defence. In effect the consequences of an ageing population.
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MatureStudent36
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Lower wage bill due to lower pay and pensions.

less expensive equipment.

increased spending prioritise due to political and military need.
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