“Boris Johnson slaps down British Army chief as he defends cuts to troop numbers”

Long Ago And Far Away

“General Sir Patrick Sanders, the Chief of the General Staff, said it would be “perverse” to cut troops by almost 10,000 at a time when Russia had boots on the ground in Eastern Europe.

On Tuesday, he argued that it was not possible to “cyber your way across a river” and that a future review should focus on the hard power of the military.

Mr Johnson will on Wednesday call on Nato countries to increase their defence spending to at least two per cent of GDP – the alliance’s current target – and hopes to push for the target to be increased.

Nato allies are meeting in Madrid this week to discuss how to respond to Russia, and hope to accelerate Finland and Sweden’s accession to the alliance.

Speaking on Wednesday morning, Mr Johnson’s official spokesman said UK troop numbers were “the right size” following a defence review last year that plans to cut them by 9,500 by 2025.

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17 Responses to “Boris Johnson slaps down British Army chief as he defends cuts to troop numbers”

  1. Fred says:

    Boris knows the UK troops now have Pride! And those rainbow warriors are surely better than the straight kind. Which leaves me wondering when the Russian/Ukrainian LGBTQ units are going to be deployed in combat.

    • TTG says:


      LGBTQ Ukrainians are fully integrated into the Ukrainian military. Many have sewn unicorn patches under the Ukrainian flag on their uniforms. Given the situation, the LGBTQ’s willingness to fight trumps straight fear of the LGBTQ… at least while there’s a war on.

      • Fred says:


        You don’t take sarcasm very well. How’s the Covid policy over there? Mandatory vax or did they waive that for the duration, casualties from that be damned? Meanwhile in the USA:

        • leith says:

          At least we are not burning down recruiting offices yet. 23 in Russia so far since February. Add another arson for an FSB office makes 24. And another on the car of the leader of a pro-invasion cheerleading group makes 25.

          • Fred says:


            Yes they have. It is probably a mess for recruiting efforts, though I haven’t seen a good summary of just what the Russian military service rules are. It looks convoluted mess with ‘contract’ soldiers, conscripts, a lack of NCOs and an officer corps that doesn’t respect their own soldiers. It looks to be hard to win a war with a mess like that.

        • Steve says:


          The “contract” soldiers are the equivalent of the US’ active duty personnel. The whole system is still being reconfigured as the Russian military is phasing out conscription in favor of reserve service from the “contract” troops who were only created after the first Chechen war.

          Leith, what an odd thing to happen, to be able to do that in an authoritarian, police surveillance state. Something not quite right there…:)

    • Fourth and Long says:

      My Captain Video decoder ring needs an update. So far when I input:
      LGBTQ, it produces Great Britain The Queen and then says “Sorry, the L has us stumped for now.”

      I was certain it was the Captain Video Secret Decoder Ring, but on inspection it appears that the word “Secret” is not there. Maybe I forgot to mail in the boxtops.

  2. Does anyone have an explanation of how NATO will increase its forces stationed in Eastern Europe to 300,000 while all of NATO’s members decrease their troop strength? It’s a puzzlement to me.

    • TTG says:

      David Schuler,

      Poland and Romania, alone, puts NATO half way there.

      • Bill Roche says:

        TTG would you hazard a guess as to Romania’s reaction to a Russian thrust into Moldova. Just your personal guess.

        • TTG says:

          Bill Roche,

          Moldova only recently (2020) elected a pro-Western government that applied for membership into the EU. She received EU candidate status along with Ukraine. Over the last two years, we have sent North Carolina National Guard to Moldova to help train her small and outdated defense forces. Although officially neutral, I think, Moldova would most likely ask Romania for assistance if Russia’s two motorized rifle battalions were to invade. Romania would assist and, I believe, send ground forces into Moldova to do so. Other NATO countries would provide logistical and intelligence support, but I doubt they’d go any further than that.

          I doubt Putin would send those battalions into Moldova since he probably couldn’t provide any further assistance. He has his hands full keeping Kherson, never mind continuing to Odesa and linking up with Transnistria. But a surprise Pristina Dash-like move out of Transnistria is a possibility. At that point even Ukraine might make a quick move towards the huge Cobasna ammo dump in Transnistria. It’s nothing but old Soviet stuff in Cobasna, but there’s a lot of it.

          • Steve says:

            Some of you guys are still totally convinced that Mad Vlad is plotting to expand the empire. Total nonsense, especially when you’re watching in real time where the expansionism is coming from. The great success of course is having so many people believing it’s the other side’s imperialism that’s the main cause of this war.

          • TTG says:


            The Kremlin has stated its intention to soon announce the annexation of portions of Kherson and Zaporizhia oblasts, along with the previously recognized as independent Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts. That way they can claim that Ukraine is invading Russian territory when they counterattack to regain their territory. Pretty slick plan… in a way.

          • Steve says:


            That’s hardly marching on Berlin. None of it. It’s just crazy talk to manufacture consent for the killing and arms sales.

            If that killing continues at the current rate the Ukrainians will have nobody left to launch a counteroffensive. They’re already throwing 60 year olds onto the bonfire. Where will it end?

            Whatever the Russians capture through bloodletting becomes theirs to keep or dispose of as they see fit. The Melian Dialogue isn’t only available to the USA, others like to play these games too.

  3. jerseycityjoan says:

    One of my self-assigned tasks is giving Daily Mail readers my American view when I read about UK military cutbacks or other news about NATO countries saying this and that and me realizing that once again, we are going to be stuck. I do not get much pushback, surprisingly enough. I got a bit on the 26th when I wrote this about “World leaders agree to new ‘surge’ of support to defeat Vladimir Putin”…:

    “What is this going to lead to, in concrete terms? Is the UK going to cancel its planned military cutbacks? Are the Swedes amazed by our Marines recently going to pay them the ultimate compliment of imitating them? How about Russia bordering countries. Who is going to meet the call for having more people and equipment stationed there? At times like these, I assume all eyes are on the US as usual and wonder what are the European counties going to contribute? You all have received the wake-up call over there, far away from us. Are you all finally going to get serious about your own defenses? What else has to happen to get your defense spending up and stop depending so much on us? Please prove my skepticism wrong.”

    Someone said “What about NATO” and I said “NATO is the vehicle that is used by the US to prop you all up. What would NATO be without the US, given the current state of defense in all NATO countries in Europe? The UK has seen fit to cuts its military spending and troops by what — about 1/3 since 2000? And you are doing still doing about the best of anyone.”

    I thought of this when I read earlier today that the Baltics want another 50,000. Later I read that Biden is committing US troops to Poland.

    So I have a lot of questions about all these new commitments in Europe by us and others while China is still becoming a bigger problem with each passing day.

    Who is going to pay for it all is certainly one, the previously mentioned self-improvement and self-help on defense in Europe and others too. I just saw last night that we are not hitting the numbers of military recruitment and how few young people would qualify without a waiver and how few say they are interested.

    Past experience and recent changes make me very worried. I have been very worried for several years now over China, now Russia’s doubled the real trouble. How many countries will agree to meet 2% obligation, much less increase it, even after Ukraine? I am so disgusted.

    • Fourth and Long says:

      You miss the clever, secret, too easy to overlook point of the whole nefarious exercise. To better comprehend the masterminds of US and New World Order strategy, be reminded first of two facts:

      1: Our troops increasingly are lesbian, gay, bisexual and transexual or cross-dressing.

      2: Russia, our awful enemy, and it’s people, are predominantly conservative in social outlook and mores (or so we think, even though it’s really not true).

      Thus the idea. The Russians will be terrified, aghast, horrified and nauseated to such a degree that a large number will surrender immediately and the rest will retire far behind the Ural mountains.

    • Bill Roche says:

      JCJ: Trump was right. Europe wont to pay for its defense if America will. Western Europeans are craven cowards and liars to boot. If they would accept relatively small cost for their independence they could surround Ukraine w/t arms to hold the Russians off for a long while. But see who holds up the alliance. I think its worth saying again, Trump was right.

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