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Defence Policy

Volume 26: debated on Tuesday 29 June 1982

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11.

asked the Secretary of State for Defence if, in the light of recent military events, he will review defence policy so as to give greater priority to conventional defence and less to the development and deployment of nuclear weapons.

The strategic nuclear deterrent, which successive Governments have retained and strengthened as the ultimate safeguard of the peace and the liberty of our people, accounts for only a very small proportion of the defence budget. No alternative use of these funds could possibly contribute as much to our security, and I have no plans to reduce expenditure in this vital area.