I WAS quite astonished by the incredible jump of logic demonstrated by Councillor John Tanner’s letter (Oxford Mail, March 1).

Nobody would dispute the idea that we would rather spend money on services than armaments. By the same token however, we would rather not the necessity of paying for a police force because there ought not to be crime – but it would be absurd to suggest that this would be a good idea!

In the same vein, I’m sure many residents would rather spend the money they spend on car or home insurance on other things – but to do so would be an utterly false saving that would leave one vulnerable and unprotected should difficult times arise.

Councillor Tanner’s remarks in fact create a false dichotomy that implies that the defence of the United Kingdom is somehow an optional extra. I find this suggestion extraordinary!

As the late Paul Eddington eloquently put it in the classic sitcom Yes Minister: “I’m not in favour of nuclear conflict – no sane man is!”

But we recognise that we do not live in a safe world, and that the first line of defence for our compassionate services is making sure that the wealth and freedoms that make those services possible are protected from outside aggression.

Oxford’s residents would be wise to question whether Councillor Tanner really has their best interests at heart when he shows casual disdain for the defence of the realm for the sake of political point-scoring.

Deputy Chairman
Oxford East Conservatives