The British state has become anxiously dependent on its army


NSBritish soldier There are few fights to fight. But they have a lot of other things to do. On October 4, after rushing training, nearly 200 people crashed into the road and delivered gasoline to the country’s dry front yard. Deployment is shortly after others are sent to Northern Ireland and Scotland to drive ambulances, work in accident and emergency wards, and operate covid-19 testing facilities, and some just before being sent to Wales. Was done in. Within days, the squad left to help the struggling Interior Ministry gather information about Afghan refugees.

When the nation is in trouble, the army intervenes — and they are called more and more often. According to the Ministry of Defense, there were 359 private aids last year and 237 since the beginning of the year. This is an increase from around 120 over the last four years to less than 80 in 2015. The numbers cannot be traced further, but are expected to be less. As the former Tory minister has pointed out, the government has long sought military support for the crisis, but “the convocation of the army now seems to be of almost second nature.”

This trend reflects changing military attitudes and the nation’s naked abilities. Legally, the military is not responsible for preparing for a civil crisis. Its duties are left to local governments, medical services, police and others. Military intervention is intended for niche tasks when building expertise is impractical (such as bomb disposal) or when capacity is overwhelming. “In other words, it’s a last resort,” explains Marshal Edward Stringer, who conducted military operations at the Department of Defense from 2015 to 2017. This is a principle designed to prevent other parts of the state from being overly dependent on the military. To help, and keep the army focused on their actual work.

From 2010 to 2016, things began to change under Prime Minister David Cameron. In 2012, the military provided security (and filled vacant seats) at the Olympics after a private contractor. NSFourNS,Slipped. When the water level rose a few years later, Mr Cameron’s attitude was: Why are the soldiers still sitting in the barracks? I remember Marshal Stringer Air Force. Municipal budgets have been effectively reduced by a factor of five in the decade to 2020. The council no longer hesitates to ask for help and sets a new precedent.

Covid has accelerated the trend. The soldiers were recalled from overseas operations, but were only forced to work domestically. The military response, known as the “Operational Record,” put an army of 20,000 on standby at Covid height, built an emergency hospital, tested the entire city, and delivered jabs. The military took this as evidence of their adaptability. However, there were also reasons why their enlistment was unpalatable. “You can order your squad to work overnight. They don’t have a working hours directive or actually a minimum wage,” said the former minister. “You have a pool of unionized talent.”

More sophisticated work often reflected flaws elsewhere.Logistics experts were very well suited to build considerable expertise and sort out problems in Iraq and Afghanistan. PPE For example, the supply chain. Meanwhile, resilience forums, which were supposed to coordinate regional responses, turned out to be very different in quality. At least 300 military planners have been dispatched to the government and local governments. “They are the dark heroes of the pandemic,” says Elizabeth Blow of the American Enterprise Institute, a think tank. “Most civil servants have no experience in emergency response planning or coerced planning.”

The military has different attitudes towards domestic work. It was not applied by the people on earth. As the bookers have pointed out, the Olympic Games were held in the summer and London, which helped. “NS COP The summit will be held in Scotland in the winter. It’s a bit unattractive, “he admits. Still, demand is at a time when it is beneficial to senior management. “Afghanistan and Iraq have collapsed, so more and more troops are lying around,” says Rod Thornton of King’s College London. “If they just lie without doing anything, they will be cut.”

The fact that the military is still involved in covid’s response (almost two years after the crisis) shows that they are no longer a backup option. “If something happened, we were happy because we said,’We have British troops,’” says Blow. “It signals a country that wants to do harm. England That is, if something happens, we have no clue. When the pandemic recedes and things return to normal, the ability to take on extra work will diminish, according to Defense Ministry officials. There are many questions to ask about shrinking organizations. The number of military personnel has declined by more than 10% since 2012, with further reductions planned over the next few years.

You and who’s army?

The so-called “integrated review” of Britain’s foreign, defense and aid policies, released in March, sets the course for a Scandinavian-style “society-wide” approach. This includes a proposal to introduce a new team of private reserves with external expertise. Along with the reduction in the number of troops, it is part of what Defense Minister Ben Wallace characterized as “the transition from mass mobilization to the speed of the information age.” This can cause problems. It seems unlikely that a reduced army packed with coders, scientists and tech experts will be particularly enthusiastic about the possibility of driving a fuel tanker. ■■

This article was published in the printed UK section under the heading “Call the Army Again”.

The British state has become anxiously dependent on its army

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