Splendid piece of not thinking something through this week from the UK military. At the Defence and Security Equipment International arms fair in London, General Sir Mark Carleton-Smith made the following claim. Tanks and other vehicles must be made green, or young people won’t enlist. Sustainability has to be the watchword, low environmental impact is paramount.

Sorry, but that’s bollocks. Diesel fumes are the least of your problems in a warzone when everybody is lobbing depleted uranium around in big quantities. There’s all sorts of crap from propellants that gets released when you fire munitions. Look at the barrel smoke from tanks and SPGs. Does he intend to ban the use of smoke generators? That’s a bit nobhead, isn’t it? Look at the smoke trails off field missiles…

The claims that young people won’t enlist if the forces don’t clean up their act? Bollocks. You join up to bomb the fuck out of foreign countries, shell cities and towns, raze places to the ground, drop barrel bombs and some very suspect ordnance. Join up, you don’t give a rat’s arse, you want to make lots of bangs. Even small arms fire is filthy ecologically. The point of armed conflict isn’t to be nice. It’s to win. If you make a bit of a mess, well so be it. That’s the price the other side has to pay.

The ‘next generation of recruits increasingly make career decisions based on an employer’s environmental credentials.’ No, not if you join the armed forces you don’t. All that interests you is you and your mates not getting shot or blown up. The environment doesn’t come into. You don’t want to die. Environmental? Nobody’s going to join the RAF while we still have nuclear armaments that pollute for tens of years? Get real, General.

Also get real with this load of spurious toss. He’s warned that military vehicles would be stranded by a lack of fuel pumps. I think that’s wank. I simply do not believe it. In Iraq the biggest problem was lack of decent boots, not fuel pumps.

This is posturing of the first order, and trust me, I know about posturing. I’ve done a bit in my time, after all. His claims are patent nonsense. The present generation of vehicles will be the last to run on fossil fuels? Our survey said, ‘Nurr nurr.’

Tanks weigh into the ring at upwards of 50 tons. Add in the batteries needed for lecky power, there’s going to be no room for ordnance. To heavy to fight, but eco-friendly. Bollocks.

I’d love to be a fly on the wall when he tackles the aerospace companies to try to expand his reach, I really would.

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