"God Help Us" - British Army Readied In Case Of Hard Brexit
29 July, 2018
Just as was extremely evident prior to the actual vote in 2016, scaremongering around Brexit (deal or no deal) is escalating among the cognoscenti or desperate Remain 'told you so'-ers.
Britain's Sunday Times reports that UK ministers have drawn up plans to send in the army to deliver food, medicines and fuel in the event of shortages if Britain crashes out of the EU without a deal.
And while desperate not to have this positioned as the work of "Project Fear', pro-EU opposition MP David Lammy took aim at the news on Twitter saying: "God, help us. This is not coming from Remainers. This is not project fear. Pro-Brexit Ministers are drawing up blueprints for the army to deliver food, fuel and medicine if we leave the EU with no deal," adding his own touch of hysteria... "We have a duty to prevent this self-immolation."
However, as RT notes, the former Brexit secretary David Davis, who resigned from the position earlier this month over his dissatisfaction with a possible soft Brexit deal, dismissed the story as an attempt to scare people in order to secure a Free Trade Agreement “which will tank the economy.”
Talk of shortages of food and medicines in the wake of a possible no-deal has come to the fore recently, with NHS bosses planning to stockpile key drugs and blood supplies in the event the service has to go on a permanent winter-crisis footing.
Britain is relying on a bit of wartime spirit in the event of it crashing out of the European Union. It could get messy.
Brexit campaigners have long urged Prime Minister Theresa May’s government to do more to prepare for a no-deal departure from the European Union. They said it would bolster her negotiating position by making threats to walk out more credible.
Brexit campaigners have long urged Prime Minister Theresa May’s government to do more to prepare for a no-deal departure from the European Union. They said it would bolster her negotiating position by making threats to walk out more credible
Now the government is stepping up its efforts, but the details are a reminder of just how precarious a position Britain is in rather than any show of strength.
The plan is to get the message across to companies and citizens through the summer. It might also help focus the minds of lawmakers in the fall when May asks them to approve the divorce deal she strikes with Brussels—or risk the prospect of legal limbo and a hit to the economy.
Stockpiling Drugs and Blood
Health Secretary Matt Hancock said on Tuesday the government is working to make sure medical supplies won’t run out. “We are working right across government to ensure that the health sector and the industry are prepared,” he said. “This includes the chain of medical supplies, vaccines, medical devices, clinical consumables, blood products.”
U.S. pharmaceutical giant Merck & Co. is also planning for the possibility of a temporary supply blackout, and may stockpile as much as six months worth of goods, Bloomberg reported in June. The contingency plans include factoring in as much as two extra days of travel on routes between U.K. and EU destinations to allow for delays caused by border checks.
No-deal is a problem for food supplies because checks at ports—both for customs and regulations—could slow down deliveries and cause bottlenecks. Restrictions on free movement of labor could also have an impact on farmers’ ability to grow and harvest food.
Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab indicated on Tuesday that plans are being made to stockpile food, but it’s not the government itself that’s doing it. He also tried to offer some reassurance that Britain gets its food from lots of places beside the EU.
The government’s own documents say 70 percent of agri-food imports come from the bloc. J Sainsbury Plc warned in March that closing the borders just for a few days would result in “a food crisis the likes of which we haven’t seen.”