Lawmakers warn over British defence cuts


British lawmakers warned Wednesday that cuts to the defence budget, including scrapping aircraft carriers, planes and 17,000 troops, could leave the armed forces unable to fulfill key tasks within four years.
In a stinging report, the cross-party House of Commons defence committee challenged Prime Minister David Cameron’s assertion that Britain will retain a “full spectrum defence capability” despite the cuts. Cameron’s Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition claims it was left a 38-billion-pound (61.9 billion dollar, 43.6 billion euro) “black hole” of unfunded defence spending commitments when it took office in May last year.
The SDSR in October set out plans to reduce the size of the army, navy and air force by a total of 17,000 troops, cancel the Nimrod MRA4 reconnaissance planes and withdraw early the aircraft carrier Ark Royal and Harrier jump-jets.