Having been the Chair of the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament in the course of two successive Parliaments, I am acutely aware that the United Kingdom faces serious threats both from domestic and international terrorism and from other states such as Russia which are seeking to undermine NATO and our other alliances, subvert our democracy and interfere in our elections. There are also global challenges from the increasingly aggressive stances taken by China and rogue states.
Our Armed Forces are currently seriously underfunded and having to work with inadequate systems and equipment. Building more (not just bigger) warships and modernising our Defence capability needs to be a top priority of any Government. The impact of Brexit on our ability to defend ourselves and to provide security for the people of this country both at home and abroad will be entirely negative. We will lose automatic co-operation with our European neighbours. Our international influence and leverage and soft power is being diminished.
I am very concerned by the reckless attitude being displayed to foreign affairs and, Defence and Security by the leaders of both the major political parties. I would use my best endeavours and my now considerable experience to promote better policies and action in these vitally important areas.