British military needs 10 YEARS to fight off Russian invasion, Top General Claims

A former top general warned that the United Kingdom’s armed forces have been degraded to the point where they would require “five to ten years” advanced warning to repel an invasion from a power like Russia.

General Sir Richard Barrons, who led the Joint Forces Command (JFC) — which has since been renamed Strategic Command (StratCom) — from 2013 until his retirement in 2016, blasted the country’s political leadership in Downing Street for failing to recognise the critical importance of defending the realm.

“During the Cold War the Army, at all times, was ready to fight at four hours’ notice. When the Cold War ended and there was no sense of existential risk to the UK, all of that was dismantled,” General Sir Richard said.

“Now we would need five to 10 years’ notice of a Russian surprise attack to manage to deal with it. That’s not a cool place to be… It’s deeply disappointing.”

In comparison, Russia has approximately 1,350,000 soldiers, over 30,000 armoured vehicles, and approximately 12,500 tanks, whereas the United Kingdom has only 137,000 active military personnel, 5,015 armoured vehicles, and 227 tanks.

Despite its long history, Britain’s Royal Navy has shrunk to just 70 ships, compared to Russia’s 605.

“Russia is clearly angry and rearming so their capability will be restored and when the shooting stops in Ukraine, Russia will blame the outcome on us,” the former commander warned. “We are already in confrontation with Russia. Right now, we have chosen to do very little about it.”

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Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s government pledged last week to spend an additional £5 billion on defence over the next two years — far less than the £11 billion reportedly requested by Defence Secretary Ben Wallace.

General Sir Richard pointed out that the £5 billion would not reverse planned cuts to the Army, which is expected to be reduced by 3,000 troops to 73,000, because nearly all of the money has already been designated to upgrade the nation’s nuclear-armed submarines and replenish ammunition stores depleted by arms shipments to Ukraine.

“It probably suggests the heart of Government doesn’t really get it,” he explained. “The risks I and others see are not accepted by the Prime Minister and Chancellor. They are content to spend our money on a whole range of other things and then worry about defence later.”

“We’re still working on the old model to sort out the NHS, migration, and potholes then, if we really must, we will keep defence bubbling along.”