British Defense Secretary: Cut Welfare, Not Troops

Demands Additional Cuts to Welfare Budget to Protect Military's Budget

British Defense Secretary Philip Hammond has publicly demanded that the government agree to yet more cuts to their welfare budget, saying that keeping military spending up should be a “first priority” for the nation.

The coalition government appears to be split on the matter, with Liberal Democrats opposed to any further cuts to the Welfare budget in the near term, and Hammond leading a call for a “Tory agenda” of getting military spending protected by cuts elsewhere.

Hammond may face even more opposition from within his own party, however, as Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne has been an outspoken supporter of cuts in the Afghan war as a way to save money in the overall budget.

Prime Minister David Cameron seems to be looking for a “have your cake and eat it too” solution where the government would pump money into the “foreign aid” budget instead, and then funnel that money into military spending by arguing that an occupation is the best “aid” of all.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.