A note on the British Army’s reduction of numbers, and the reorganization of some units.
Earlier in the month a comment was seen on the British Army’s Facebook page which will be paraphrased here: “the shrinking of the British Army is a step into a unified European armed forces.” Well allow an outsider such as myself (I am not British) to elaborate on this “new phenomenon:” it is not new at all. Britain has and always will be a maritime nation, therefore it is in her best interest to be able to project force abroad, rather than rely solely on ground forces – that and there is not a lot of turf to fight on, thereby rendering large forces pseudo-obsolete per se.
The United States and Canada require larger armies than they do navies because of the land mass that they must defend. Germany and France likewise have had a tradition of strong ground forces and smaller naval forces. Britain however is an island nation, and as such her navy is the biggest asset she brings to any coalition sent abroad to snuff out conflict to say the least. The air force and the army all fall beneath the navy in the food chain when it comes to Britain, and it would be in both the air force and the army’s best interest to adapt themselves to this “traditional” role that Britain has always played in the past. True enough wars are won by ground forces, but consider that Britain has a large amount of overseas territories still under her control, she needs to be able to project force in order to defend those who still owe Britain their allegiance. Out of all the European countries, Britain is the least interested in a unified European army, likewise is a good majority of the countries on that continent. Britain is therefore NOT going to toss away her sovereignty, and this new size of 130,000 strong does NOT mean that Britain is preparing for a European army: a maritime nation needs a military that is mobile and adept at taking to the high seas at a moments notice to fend off invasion and to protect holdings.