The chairman of Veterans for Britain, a military pressure group which campaigned for Brexit during the EU referendum, claims that the Government has signed up to advanced European military and security integration plans which are tantamount to “the UK joining the single currency in its last two years of EU membership”.
“The plans use all means at the EU’s disposal to encroach on every single area of UK defence planning,” warned Major-General Julian Thompson, a decorated veteran who led 3 Commando Brigade during the Falklands War and served as land commander for the British forces charged with liberating the islands.
“Policy, procurement, funding, intelligence services, command structure and defence research are all appropriated by these EU plans,” he claims, cautioning that “completely unnecessary” proposals for participants to establish “defence autonomy from NATO” will disincentivise funding for the American-led alliance and undermine it.
Rear-Admiral Roger Lane-Nott, who served as operational commander for the Royal Navy in the 1990s and captained the HMS Splendid during the Falklands War, has added that the plans “represent a startling escalation of central activity and control.”
“UK politicians should know that these plans have many different components across research, supply, intelligence, deployment and command structure, and EU chiefs have indicated they will move very quickly, with the UK involved. With such a comprehensive, enveloping range of strategies at once, their intention is clear.
“It is staggering that the UK is a part of all this”, he concluded, calling on the Government to make “definitive statements” that the UK will be “free from these political impositions” after Brexit.
Ministers may have been persuaded to rubber stamp the proposals without a full appreciation for the implications by Sir Ivan Rogers, the controversial UK Permanent Representative to the EU who made headlines after his claims that a UK/EU trade deal could take ten years were rubbished by the bloc’s own negotiators in a private meeting.
Speaking exclusively to Breitbart London, Veterans for Britain co-ordination David Banks insisted that the plans will have far-reaching consequences for the UK.
“No-one should believe that the plans don’t apply to the UK. European Council staff have confirmed to me that the UK is expected to participate as much as any other EU state.”
Banks says Council staff told him the UK may “adjust” its participation after Brexit, but notes that “by that time the EU’s fingers will be in every single aspect of defence decision-making and procurement.”
“Representatives in other European capitals such as Helsinki are demanding answers from their leaders yet here in the UK it is not even being discussed. Where are Gina Miller, Jolyon Maugham and the other campaigners who have been in the courts insisting on parliamentary scrutiny in the context of the Brexit process?”
The revelations follow a European Parliament report which urged EU members to “unleash the full potential of the Lisbon Treaty with regard to the Common Security and Defence Policy”, declaring that they were “empowered to build a European Security and Defence Union that should lead in due time to the establishment of the European Armed Forces”.
Questioned on plans for European Armed Forces in 2014 by Brexit campaign leader Nigel Farage, former Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg claimed they were “a dangerous fantasy that is simply not true”.