Lions and Donkeys - and the Ringmaster
Defence chiefs believe that the military's fondness for traditional values and conservative tendencies have left them with very few friends within the Labour hierarchy. Mr Brown, who is preparing to succeed Tony Blair as Prime Minister, is known to regard the MoD as one of the most "financially wasteful" departments within the Government and is understood to hold the personal view that the military is a pro-Tory organisation.
The crisis has been fuelled in recent months by a deluge of leaked documents and a series of bitter attacks on the Government's defence policy by senior military figures, complaining that the Armed Forces are under-resourced but over-committed on operations around the world.
Senior officers fear that relations with Labour are so bad that the Chief of the Defence Staff will have to issue official orders at senior level, banning the leaking of stories damaging to the Government....
Patrick Mercer, the Tory spokesman for homeland security who was an infantry commanding officer, said: "The Armed Forces are not a political organisation but they have simply had enough of being treated with contempt by this Government."
Mr Fox said: "The reason that leaks are appearing is because of the build-up of frustration and anger in the Armed Forces about the way in which Labour are increasingly willing to commit our forces to combat without giving the support they require.
"These are men and women who are prepared to pay the ultimate price for this country's security but who have been betrayed by a Government which is possibly the most self-serving and party political in our history."
All good stuff but I wonder how this story alos came out today, Gordon is damned for calling the MoD wasteful and then lo and behold in The Times -
More than three miles of walls were demolished to create an open-plan “highly innovative” office space, costing £27,302 per square metre, with marble and oak features restored to the “highest quality”.
For staff, refit highlights include:
# Luxury office chairs worth more than £1,000 for each of the 3,100 civil servants
# The purchase of more than 3,500 oak doors for a total cost of £3m, or up to £1,200 each
# The restoration of a “terrazzo” marble and stone floor in the renovated “pillared hall”
# A restaurant, a coffee bar, three large plasma screens on each of the 10 floors, a gym and “quiet rooms” where staff can take a break.
Over the next decade, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) will spend the equivalent of more than £75,000 for each top official working at the ministry’s headquarters on refurbishments, repairs and services.