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UK Govt ‘covered up botched Trident missile test’ weeks before crucial vote

Posted by feww on January 23, 2017

Sent by B.E.

Secrecy over failed Trident test launch ‘bizarre and stupid’ –Former Navy Chief

“A serious malfunction in Britain’s Trident nuclear weapons deterrent was covered up by Downing Street just weeks before the crucial House of Commons vote on the future of the missile system,” according to a report.

The Sunday Times has revealed that a Trident II D5 missile, capable of killing millions when armed with nuclear warheads — failed after being launched from HMS Vengeance, a British submarine, off the coast of Florida in June last year, and probably veered off towards the United States.

The intended target for HMS Vengeance’s missile was a sea target about 9,000km off the west coast of Africa.

“It was the only firing test of a British nuclear missile in four years and raises serious questions about the reliability and safety of the weapons system. The failure prompted a news blackout by Downing Street that has remained in place until this weekend.”

“There was a major panic at the highest level of government and the military after the first test of our nuclear deterrent in four years ended in disastrous failure,” a source told the paper.

“Ultimately Downing Street decided to cover up the failed test. If the information was made public, they knew how damaging it would be to the credibility of our nuclear deterrent. The upcoming Trident vote made it all the more sensitive.”

The incident occurred shortly before Theresa May became the UK Prime Minister; however, she failed to mention the failed test, and instead persuaded Parliament to spend £40bn ($50bn) on new Trident submarines in July.

The motion for the Trident renewal was carried out by 472 votes to 117, by almost the entire Conservative Party and more than half of Labour MPs(!)

A joint statement issued by both Downing Street and Ministry of Defence (MoD) called the capability and effectiveness of Trident “unquestionable.”

“In June the Royal Navy conducted a routine, unarmed Trident missile test launch from HMS Vengeance, as part of an operation which is designed to certify the submarine and its crew.

“Vengeance and her crew were successfully tested and certified, allowing Vengeance to return into service. We have absolute confidence in our independent nuclear deterrent.”

Theresa May has refused four times to admit that she knew of botched test, UK media reported.

The former head of the Royal Navy, Admiral Lord West, has slammed Downing street over its ‘bizarre and stupid’ decision to ‘cover up’ a major malfunction in the UK’s Trident nuclear missile deterrent, saying that it made Britain look like the former Soviets, North Korea or China.

Trident system was acquired by the Thatcher government in the early 1980s as a replacement for the Polaris missile system, which the UK had possessed since the 1960s.

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One Response to “UK Govt ‘covered up botched Trident missile test’ weeks before crucial vote”

  1. George S. said

    SECURITY, NOT TRIDENT

    The submarines which carry Britain’s nuclear weapons will need to come out of service from the early 2030s. The government is building four new submarines – the Dreadnought class – to take their place and eventually replace the entire Trident system. This new nuclear weapons system will cost at least £205 billion and will mean Britain remains a nuclear-armed state – at huge public expense – for decades to come.

    Former Labour Defence Secretary Des Browne recently pointed out that Trident could be rendered obsolete by cyber-attack – and he cited a ‘cyber resilience’ report from the US’s Department of Defence in evidence. Since then, some experts have observed that no system can be made totally immune to cyber-attack. Scathing comments have also been made about the computer systems used on the Trident subs, dubbed ‘windows for submarines’. What, as Lord Browne points out, would be the point of spending a lot of money on submarines which didn’t work when you wanted them? Worse still, what if someone could hack and use them?

    http://cnduk.org/images/stories/Security_not_Trident_report.pdf

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