Britain has made tanks since, well inventing the monsters in the First World War. We’ve made some of the best, exported them widely and employed many hundreds if not thousands of people in doing so. As a result the tank has not only been a crucial weapon for our military, but a truly economic weapon as well as all good decent procurement should be. Our Armed Forces now need a new tank, not big ones like the world famous Challenger or Chieftain, but a replacement for the Scimitar that is such an important part of the inventory in Afghanistan. The Armed Forces decided that their preferred option is the British Aerospace CV90, but for some unexplained reason the Government has decided that the replacements will be made by General Dynamics (a Canadian company) and will be built in Austria and Spain. My military history is not the best in the world, but I can’t recall any Austrian or Spanish tanks performing with distinction on battlefields over the years in the way that British tanks have. Nor can I recall how the research and development of armour in those countries has benefitted anyone, let alone Britain. The Government has evidently failed the country again: not only are we buying abroad when we could easily buy at home, we are also going to lose jobs at a time when we can ill afford to do so. And of course, when we decide to build tanks ourselves again in the future, we won’t have the skills to do so. This Government needs to be replaced.