Do we need Trident?

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    This is probably my most controversial stance and I would be happy to admit I'm naive and wrong about this but do we really need Trident? Yes I've heard the arguments but here is my case.

    1. Yes nuclear weapons have caused relative peace and at the very least stopped the cold war from getting hot, however getting rid of trident isn't getting rid of all nuclear weapons on the earth.

    2. There are plenty of countries such as Japan, South Korea, Germany that are not being being directly supported by nuclear weapons and they don't seem to be under constant threat.

    3. We don't live in the 1945 anymore, most countries trade with each other now and trading partners tend not to go to war with each other, nobody would benefit politically or economically from most hypothetical wars.

    4. The US nukes can defend NATO countries and act as a deterrent.

    5. Investment and jobs could be used elsewhere and couldn't we make nukes later if circumstances do drastically change?
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    (Original post by Scottish Person)
    This is probably my most controversial stance
    not in scotland...and you *are* scottish...

    and I would be happy to admit I'm naive and wrong about this but do we really need Trident? Yes I've heard the arguments but here is my case.

    1. Yes nuclear weapons have caused relative peace and at the very least stopped the cold war from getting hot, however getting rid of trident isn't getting rid of all nuclear weapons on the earth.
    ....exactly

    2. There are plenty of countries such as Japan, South Korea, Germany that are not being being directly supported by nuclear weapons and they don't seem to be under constant threat.
    japan and south korea are under the american nuclear umbrella
    germany is kind of a special case because they've got a culture of self-castration after the holocaust - hence why at the moment they can't say no to mass immigration

    3. We don't live in the 1945 anymore, most countries trade with each other now and trading partners tend not to go to war with each other, nobody would benefit politically or economically from most hypothetical wars.
    ...exactly

    4. The US nukes can defend NATO countries and act as a deterrent.
    you really want a west where only 1 monolith has the nukes? today's allies could be tomorrow's enemies - that is a fundamental rule of political realism. this is why I actually think japan and SK need nukes, at least for the future. in international relations, there is no constant status quo.

    5. Investment and jobs could be used elsewhere and couldn't we make nukes later if circumstances do drastically change?
    you think now is really the best time? seriously? after everything NK and iran are up to? that's shocking
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    Yes.

    In a world where nations like Pakistan have nuclear weapons then we'd be stupid to give them up. & Russia isn't exactly particularly quiet at the moment. In fact, the Russians have said they'd be willing pursue a policy of "nuclear de-escalation" which involves taking out a European capital with a nuclear warhead should NATO & Russia come into a conventional conflict over the Baltic States.
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    (Original post by Scottish Person)
    5. Investment and jobs could be used elsewhere and couldn't we make nukes later if circumstances do drastically change?
    Consider the Successor class, the submarines that the government recently approved the building of.

    They were approved this year. They're not planned to enter service until (and this will be delayed, guarantee it) until 2028.

    12 years to build.

    You think any drastic geopolitic situation that might warrant needing nukes to defend us will just hover for 12 years? Also bear in mind that building them after years of not having them will mean that they a) cost more and b) work less well.



    I'm all in favour of reducing the number of weapons we have. But until everyone bins them, it's a hell of a lot easier to keep them.
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    Nuclear weapons are important to a Britain with ever-smaller global influence. We are one of only a handful of countries permitted these weapons by mandate of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Act, which in itself makes it important to retain this status.

    The future is never certain, especially with the possible crises that could arise in the next few decades. Being a nuclear power keeps us as one of the most powerful countries in the world by destructive force, an important bargaining chip for the future world.
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    We could of course have no Nuclear weapons of our own and just cede the nuclear threat to the Americans which already have many nuclear sites on our soil. It would save a shed load of money it has to be said. We'll still have the status to use weapons or build them if we see fit. And not actually have to expend money on it, seems a good idea to me. I'm not entirely sure though how the Yanks would feel about it.
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    Trident is the cheapest and quickest way to kill 100 million people, its like the Aldi of mass extermination.
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    (Original post by Martian872)
    We could of course have no Nuclear weapons of our own and just cede the nuclear threat to the Americans which already have many nuclear sites on our soil. It would save a shed load of money it has to be said. We'll still have the status to use weapons or build them if we see fit. And not actually have to expend money on it, seems a good idea to me. I'm not entirely sure though how the Yanks would feel about it.
    No they don't.

    They've definitely got some in Turkey and probably have some in Germany, but haven't had any here since an arms reduction agreement with the Russians in 1991.
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    The thing is that sooner or later these weapons will be used again.Its human nature.We have never just not used weapons.MAD has a fundamental flaw in that everyone is assumed to act rationally.Thats not true.There have been plenty of insane leaders.What happens when an islamist goverment like saudi or iran get nukes? We should be phasing them out.And antagonising russia doesnt help.Sure they are not particularly nice guys but we should try not to make enemies out of them.We should get rid of nukes because otherwise a nuclear war is inevitable and someone has to go first.Nuclear weapons are like two guys standing in a room filled with petrol, one has five matches, the other has 20.
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    (Original post by Scottish Person)
    This is probably my most controversial stance and I would be happy to admit I'm naive and wrong about this but do we really need Trident? Yes I've heard the arguments but here is my case.

    1. Yes nuclear weapons have caused relative peace and at the very least stopped the cold war from getting hot, however getting rid of trident isn't getting rid of all nuclear weapons on the earth.

    2. There are plenty of countries such as Japan, South Korea, Germany that are not being being directly supported by nuclear weapons and they don't seem to be under constant threat.

    3. We don't live in the 1945 anymore, most countries trade with each other now and trading partners tend not to go to war with each other, nobody would benefit politically or economically from most hypothetical wars.

    4. The US nukes can defend NATO countries and act as a deterrent.

    5. Investment and jobs could be used elsewhere and couldn't we make nukes later if circumstances do drastically change?
    1. What point are you making?

    2. Japan is within range of China, South Korea has a border with the North, and today Russia just moved some nuclear missiles within range of Berlin. The world is an unsafe place.

    3. See my point 2.

    4. Do you always want to be asking the US to protect us? Should we not be able to protect ourselves?

    5. For what they do, nuclear weapons are relatively inexpensive. And no, once they're gone you can't just decide to make a few more easily. Things like that take years, if not decades, to develop from scratch.

    Until the whole world sits down and agrees to disarm, we can't risk being the first one to give up our insurance policy. Not when there are places like North Korea, Russia and Iran out there.
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    (Original post by Drewski)
    No they don't.

    They've definitely got some in Turkey and probably have some in Germany, but haven't had any here since an arms reduction agreement with the Russians in 1991.
    Oh yeah they do. To think they don't is naive.
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    No. When has a weapon that can kill thousands of people every been a good idea?!

    The idea that we need these weapons to keep us safe is absolute rubbish. Only 9 countries have nuclear weapons, that is 5%. Are the the other 95% unsafe? Are they constantly being attacked? As far as I am aware the answer is NO!

    The cost of the weapons is also a disgrace. Why do we not try and use that money to try and talking inequality or why do we not try and invest some money into our health service that is currently underfunded. But instead we decided to throw our money away to a weapon that will hopefully never be used, and if it is, we will have been attacked first.

    These weapons have the power to destroy millions of people's live, why would be want our country to be even associated with that? I actually find it disgusting that there are some people who would be prepared to ruin millions of lives.

    Surely we should be trying to achieve world peace? The idea that these weapons help to create peace. It is just like America saying guns make them safe.
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    (Original post by Martian872)
    Oh yeah they do. To think they don't is naive.
    It's a legal agreement. We have our own deterrent, so they have nuclear weapons based in countries which don't.

    You're now just spouting typical conspiratorial ********. Grow up.
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    (Original post by DarthRoar)
    Nuclear weapons are important to a Britain with ever-smaller global influence. We are one of only a handful of countries permitted these weapons by mandate of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Act, which in itself makes it important to retain this status.

    The future is never certain, especially with the possible crises that could arise in the next few decades. Being a nuclear power keeps us as one of the most powerful countries in the world by destructive force, an important bargaining chip for the future world.
    The Nuclear Non-Proliferation Act is a piece of US federal law, one which declares nuclear weapons a danger to US security and world peace, I'm going to assume you meant the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons. The treaty boils down to non-nuclear states agreeing not to work towards weapons while nuclear states both share peaceful nuclear developments AND work to eliminate their nuclear arsenals. It would fair to say in recent years the UK has resolutely failed to do anything about that second part and renewing Trident is basically just a big **** you to the whole thing.


    As for the weapons neccesity, in order for them to be a 'deterent' you have to be willing to use them. Launching a nuclear weapon is a huge decion, it will likely kill thousands if not millions of innocent people, I doubt many people would support the killing of that many people for any reason unless fired upon first, at which point killing all those people is just vindictive.
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    I'm unsure.

    To those in this thread who are in favour of Trident, what do you think about a shared nuclear weapons program? I believe some countries in Europe have this.

    Just curious to what you think, I'm not proposing it as a better alternative.
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    (Original post by SHallowvale)
    I'm unsure.

    To those in this thread who are in favour of Trident, what do you think about a shared nuclear weapons program? I believe some countries in Europe have this.
    The issue is command and control.

    Who's in charge of something that's shared? Are there multiple sites, or just one that you all look after?

    Out of curiosity, which countries do you think have a shared weapons policy?
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    (Original post by SHallowvale)
    I'm unsure.

    To those in this thread who are in favour of Trident, what do you think about a shared nuclear weapons program? I believe some countries in Europe have this.

    Just curious to what you think, I'm not proposing it as a better alternative.
    It wouldn't work. Where would it be sited, manufactured, funded, maintained, controlled from etc? Who would press the big red button should it be needed? Multi-national defence procurement does not have a good track record, and if we were to hand over ultimate control for this country's defence to a coalition/European/NATO committee we might as well declare neutrality and start making cuckoo clocks and chocolate.
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    (Original post by SHallowvale)
    I'm unsure.

    To those in this thread who are in favour of Trident, what do you think about a shared nuclear weapons program? I believe some countries in Europe have this.

    Just curious to what you think, I'm not proposing it as a better alternative.
    Trident mostly came from the Americans which is why it was cheaper than the "homegrown" nuclear weapons the French had.
    I imagine the replacement will also share American tech.
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    (Original post by Scottish Person)
    This is probably my most controversial stance and I would be happy to admit I'm naive and wrong about this but do we really need Trident? Yes I've heard the arguments but here is my case.

    1. Yes nuclear weapons have caused relative peace and at the very least stopped the cold war from getting hot, however getting rid of trident isn't getting rid of all nuclear weapons on the earth.

    2. There are plenty of countries such as Japan, South Korea, Germany that are not being being directly supported by nuclear weapons and they don't seem to be under constant threat.

    3. We don't live in the 1945 anymore, most countries trade with each other now and trading partners tend not to go to war with each other, nobody would benefit politically or economically from most hypothetical wars.

    4. The US nukes can defend NATO countries and act as a deterrent.

    5. Investment and jobs could be used elsewhere and couldn't we make nukes later if circumstances do drastically change?
    1. That's hardly an argument when some of those nukes are held by hostile states like Russia and North Korea.

    2 Those countries are each protected by nuclear weapons held by another country. One of them is a borderline nuclear state and the other is starting to have a debate about developing an indigenous nuclear weapon.

    3 There was significant trade among nations in 1914, a similar argument was advanced on the eve of ww1 that war was not possible due to economic interdependence.

    4 Given that European nations not paying for their defence is a key electoral issue in the US that is hardly a reliable defence policy.

    5 No, once a nuclear infrastructure is lost it very quickly disappears. Nuclear subs cannot be built quickly and the agreements that give us access to much cheaper US developed weapons have taken decades to perfect.
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    After we've disarmed ourselves and gotten rid of all the nukes, we're really going to regret it when we see a giant comet heading straight for us. Even if Bruce Willis and Ben Affleck make 800ft, they can't blow that thing up with a regular bomb.
 
 
 
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