Well I hear you but I think you are wrong.
The 'Soviet threat' was, IMO, mostly, an invention.
The 'Bomber gap' and the 'Missile gap' were a western (mostly American) lie (with the usual émigrés telling people only what they wanted to hear
etc etc.....some things never change, right?
) and the clamour for ever more 'defence' spending finally gaving us the seriously dangerous
1980's - where on 3 separate occassions (that we know of, there may be more) we came very close to a global nuclear holocaust.
But for all that, whether one agrees with that point of view or not there is no cold war now.
There was no 'hot war' then either so our spending and level of 'deterrence' must have been sufficient, mustn't it? (otherwise - according to
those who believe in an aggressively imperialist Soviet threat - we would have had an actual war, right?)
There is no 'threat' even remotely
anything like what was imagined in those 'cold war' days so why should we fund a military as if there
I am not in the slightest bit interested in the 'wang - waving' nonsense of whether 'the UK's navy is smaller than France's for the 1st time in a
thousand years' or whatever.
Defence specialists, analysts and experts have examined the UK's defence needs only very recently and have concluded that taking account of any and
all realistic plausible 'threats' the UK can manage perfectly well and safely with a slightly lower level of manpower
(taking account of the new tech coming along and the very strong likelhood that Northern Ireland isn't going to be the permanent massive drain on BA
resources.....reducing the NI committment from the current level of approx 12 000 troops to a much more normal 4500 more than makes up for the few
thousand overall reduction planned, does it not?).
That's what we have specialists, analysts and experts for.....I prefer to read and take their informed advice rather than someone like Ed and his
pitch or those ideas which seem more rooted in putting on a show and a military with excessive numbers for the sake of it cos that's what (for some
unexplainable reason) 'proper' countries should do and have.
But whatever, the USA can go and bankrupt itself wasting fortunes outspending every other military budget on the planet combined......and still not
feel safe or secure!
We in Europe, thankfully, will not.
As for whether Europe's defence was paid for by the USA I think you should consider why that arrangement was entered into Ed.....it certainly wasn't
Maybe you might like to consider a little of what the USA got out of the deal, hmmmm?