• Short Summary

    BRITAIN'S DEFENCE MINISTER, MR DENIS HEALEY TOLD PARLIAMENT YESTERDAY (WEDNESDAY) THAT BRITAIN WAS STILL SPENDING TOO MUCH ON DEFENCE -- AND IN PARTICULAR ON THE ARMY OF THE RHINE.

  • Description

    BRITAIN'S DEFENCE MINISTER, MR DENIS HEALEY TOLD PARLIAMENT YESTERDAY (WEDNESDAY) THAT BRITAIN WAS STILL SPENDING TOO MUCH ON DEFENCE -- AND IN PARTICULAR ON THE ARMY OF THE RHINE. HE SAID THAT "WITH THE BEST WILL IN THE WORLD" IT WOULD BE DIFFICULT "TO PERSUADE THE AVERAGE ENGLISHMAN TO CARRY THE FULL ECONOMIC BURDEN OF MAINTAINING THESE FORCES." THIS WAS ESPECIALLY SO WHEN BRITAIN WAS FACING BALANCE OF PAYMENTS PROBLEMS AND HAD MILITARY COMMITMENTS IN WIDELY SCATTERED PARTS OF THE WORLD.

    THIS YEAR THE COST OF THE RHINE ARMY HAD RISEN TO GBP85 MILLION, WHITE THERE WAS NO ASSURANCE -- MR HEALEY SAID -- THAT GERMAN PURCHASES IN BRITAIN WOULD RISE ABOVE GBP25 MILLION. AND "WESTERN GERMANY SEEMS ABLE TO DO SO LITTLE TO RELIEVE THIS STRAIN". THE MINISTER'S STATEMENT COMES AS BRITAIN'S PRIME MINISTER, MR HAROLD WILSON, AND THE CHIEF SECRETARY TO THE TREASURY PREPARE FOR OFFICIAL TALKS WITH THE WEST GERMAN CHANCELLOR NEXT MONDAY.

    MR HEALEY SAID THAT THREE YEARS AGO WEST GERMANY HAD BOUGHT JUST OVER TWICE AS MUCH IN BRITAIN AS IT WAS DOING AT PRESENT. THE BRITISH DEFENCE BUDGET WAS A THIRD GREATER THAN WEST GERMANY'S. TALKING OF BRITAIN'S WORLD-RANGING MILITARY COMMITMENTS, MR HEALEY SPOKE OF THE NECESSITY OF NOT ABDICATING RESPONSIBILITIES "WITHOUT ARRANGING TO SHARE THEM OR HAND THEM OVER TO SOMEONE ELSE". BUT, HE WARNED, "WE CANNOT BE PERMANENT POLICEMEN FOR THE WHOLE OF AFRICA AND ASIA".

    THE B.A.O.R. NUMBERS AT THE MOMENT 51,000, BUT BRITAIN IS COMMITTED TO INCREASE THIS TO 55,000 UNDER THE TREATY OF BRUSSELS. NEXT WEEK MR HEALEY WILL, HIMSELF, SOUND OUT NATO LEADERS ON THEIR REACTION TO MR WILSON'S SUGGESTIONS THAT ALLIED FORCES IN EUROPE COULD BE THINNED OUT. THE MOVE CAME AS THE RESULT OF LAST MONTH'S DEFENCE WHITE PAPER IN WHICH THE BRITISH GOVERNMENT ARGUED THAT THE FAR EAST WAS TODAY MORE SUBJECT TO AGGRESSION THAN EUROPE.

    MR WILSON'S TALKS IN BONN ARE DUE TO END ON TUESDAY MORNING.

  • Tags

  • Data

    Film ID:
    VLVAABEKAL5CEZ3QK86H53VQD40RD
    Media URN:
    VLVAABEKAL5CEZ3QK86H53VQD40RD
    Group:
    Reuters - Source to be Verified
    Archive:
    Reuters
    Issue Date:
    04/03/1965
    Sound:
    Unknown
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Stock:
    Black & White
    Duration:
    00:01:04:00
    Time in/Out:
    /
    Canister:
    N/A

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