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Buffoonery Without Equal

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According to MI5’s website the Threat Level for International Terrorism today is SEVERE, which is only one less than the maximum of CRITICAL.

Since March 2010 this unelected coalition, led by a man intent on become the least popular Prime Minister ever, has reduced the strength of the Police Forces of England and Wales by almost 17,000 officers, not counting PCSOs and Specials, whose numbers are also being slashed.  The government was hoping to make up the slack by recruiting more Specials, but the evidence doesn’t seem to support that happening.

The Armed Forces fare no better;

If I may quote from the September 2014 UK Armed Forces Monthly Personnel Report

The full time trained strength of the UK Armed Forces was 147,660 at 1 September 2014, down from 148,160 at 1 August 2014 and down from 150,890 at 1 April 2014. This trend is likely to continue due to the SDSR’s decision to reduce the size of the Regular Armed Forces by around 17,000 posts (around 5,000 each from the RN/RM and RAF and approximately 7,000 from the Army). A further reduction of 12,000 to the Army was subsequently announced as a result of the 3ME, bringing the total reduction of 19,000 to the Army.

The requirement for full time trained UK Armed Forces was 154,890 at 1 September 2014, down from 155,460 at 1 August 2014 and down from 159,640 at 1 April 2014. This is likely to continue to decrease as the Services move towards the targets identified in the SDSR and 3ME exercises (RN/RM 29,000 Army, 82,000 and RAF, 31,500) in 2020.

The deficit for the UK Armed Forces trained strength was 7,230 (4.7 per cent of the requirement) at 1 September 2014, compared to a deficit of 8,750 (5.5 per cent of the requirement for trained UK Armed Forces) at 1 April 2014 and a deficit of 2,230 (1.4 per cent of the requirement for trained UK Armed Forces) at 1 April 2013.

At 1 September 2014, all three services the RN/RM, Army and RAF were in deficit (50, 5120 and
2,070 respectively).”
Closer scrutiny of that document shows that the strength of the UK Armed Forces has been below the Required Level since at least 2008.
So the Threat Level is increasing.  We have allegedly 100s of disaffected Jihadis making their way to Syria and elsewhere to fight for a cause.
An unprecedented number of arrests are being made for Terrorism-related offences, Border Controls are virtually non-existent.  It is absolutely impossible for the Police and Security Services to maintain surveillance on even the most serious of suspects for any length of time, resource-sapping activity that one.
So what are our illustrious government doing about it?
I’m not quite sure is the answer.  I’m reasonably confident that SB, MI5, MI6 and GCHQ will be doing absolutely everything within their remits and abilities to keep us safe, but I’m left seriously questioning the sanity of a Prime Minister, Defence Secretary and Home Secretary that can sanction wholesale slaughter of our trained Defenders in such times.  Maybe they’re hoping to just ‘wing it’ till after next May and that any disasters will be on someone else’s watch?
I do hope Alexander the Meercat is standing for election next year, he must be able to do a better job than this crowd.


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One Reply to “Buffoonery Without Equal”

  1. ideb8

    Yes, also wonder if another threat to addressing terrorism without resources is the possibility that future members of the College of Policing might leave it in disgust, reducing manpower even further..

    a) “What we would be trying to do is to get a better price, a better deal and a better service for those things that [an officer] is currently spending his money on [to help gain promotion] elsewhere”

    I wonder what officers are currently paying for in order to “gain promotion” – is there some “internal market” already offered by ACPO?

    b) “we will be asking them to reconfirm to the code of ethics”

    Can college members insist that alumni – or even Bernard Hogan-Howe (eg) – also “reconfirm to the code of ethics” to ensure ‘ethical development’ is not discontinuous or inconsistent?

    c) “availability of ‘premium’ services will really depend on consultation with our members [and] what they value most”

    Aren’t officers already expected to value certain qualities the most – rather than paying extra for self-promotion or associated leg-up services to some profit-oriented body?

    d) “connect me to people across forces who have got an interest in particular areas, inside or outside of policing. Personalised job opportunities and career advice is clearly something to me that would fit within a “premium”, professional body”

    Is ACPO falling down in this area then or is the plan that the College intends to replace both it and the Federation perhaps..?

    e) “providers of services are very keen to get access to a very trusted and large potential client base”

    I bet they are. Who are these private providers?

    “and, ultimately, I’ve just got to match that price to what we can give [officers]”

    Of course, the College shouldn’t profit from its captive members, should it? That’s the job of the private providers, after all..

    f) “you are signing up to some terms and conditions and we are going to be expecting as people [interact] with College and that they become members at that “standard” level, including signing up to the code of ethics and the terms of use. So I cannot see a reason why someone would find that difficult”

    You don’t?

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