Army Barmy


Michael Fallon was quizzed by Marr on Army numbers, Marr saying a promise in the 2015 manifesto to keep regular army numbers above 82,000 has been broken…the BBC’s Reality Check agrees….

The Ministry of Defence publishes monthly figures for the size of the armed forces, the most recent of which are for March this year.

It has fallen gradually in the two years since then, so that it now stands at 78,432.

The actual pledge from the manifesto was: “We will maintain the size of the regular armed services and not reduce the army to below 82,000.”

But is that true?  The BBC seem very selective in their choice of figures…The MOD report quoted by the BBC actually says…..

As at 1 March 2017, the Tri-Service Full-time Trained Strength was 142,720. A Service breakdown is shown below in Table 3. Comparisons prior to October 2016 are not available for the Army because it is not possible to identify a split between Phase 1 and Phase 2 training prior to that.

Don’t know about you but a figure of 82,390 is higher than 82,000….isn’t it?

Or another figure from the same MOD publication…bearing in mind there are differences in how regulars are categorised in these reports…as to phase of training and trades and the inclusion of reservists who work and are contracted as regulars….

So again a figure for the regular army of more than 82,000….83,310 in fact…..

The BBC has chosen to quote this figure alone, 78,430……which is the figure only for fully trade trained soldiers…there are raw recruits, then those who have qualified as soldiers and then those who go on to do their specialist trade training….the figure here is of that last unique group and does not include those with no trade training and those still in basic training……

As at 1 March 2017, the FTTS (RN/RM & RAF) and FTTTS (Army) is 138,760, a decrease of 1.3 per cent (1,800 personnel) since 1 March 2016. Of this, the FTTS for the RN/RM is 29,480 , 30,850 for the RAF and the FTTTS [full time trade trained service]  is 78,430 for the Army.

The BBC has not taken into account the regular recruits still in training, trade or basic, and just uses the one figure that suits them to ‘prove’ the Tories failed to deliver on their manifesto and inteprets the manifesto comment in a similar vein.

The BBC’s fact check is deliberately misleading not making clear the differences between trained, trade trained and those in training and not including the figures for the total number of regulars including those still in training.

It tells us that….

  [The Army strength] currently stands at nearly 78,500 so that pledge has been broken.

Fake news.






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10 Responses to Army Barmy

  1. seismicboy says:

    BBC Reality Check – an oxymoron if ever there was one.


    • Guest Who says:

      James Harding is currently busy building barricade at his office door against Nick ‘not old, just receding’ Robinson.


  2. EnglandExpects says:

    So-called Reality Check is being used by the BBC to attack the a government at every opportunity. There was one on wages versus prices yesterday. It was presented by Steph McGovern whom the BBC has decided is ‘talented’ and will figure significantly in General Election coverage. The piece sounded just like a party political broadcast for the Labour Party. Only at the end did it show that wages were still slightly ahead of prices in the latest stats and that wages would start pulling ahead again in a few months as sterling devaluation ( now ended) stopped influencing inflation figures.


  3. Owen Morgan says:

    Yet again, the Beebyanka is aping the left in America. The self-styled “fact-checkers” over there, such as Politifact and the Washington Post’s Pinocchio rating, are themselves notoriously biased. Essentially, they exist to support the Democrats, so valid claims made by Republicans are undermined by selective editing and resorts to pedantry, whereas blatant falsehoods, by the likes of Obama, Clinton, or Schumer, are supported outright, or, in desperation, defined as “half-true”. As a recent observer put it, when Politifact calls a leftist assertion “half-true”, they mean “We would like it to be true, but it wasn’t.”

    Defending the so-called “half-true” is actually ideal for an ideologically biased “fact-checker”. After all, if you come out straight away and judge something to be true, you’ve no real excuse to expend any more effort on it. If you call it “half-true”, you have an excuse to give a new platform to all the baloney claims and dodgy statistics – and all with a pretence of pious devotion to objective truth.

    In the aftermath of the November 2016 elections, hunting for supposed fake news became an obsession on the American left. The Democrats’ love of the expression is a classic case of projection, since their own talking-points have been so obviously fake: Hillary won the election; the Russians won the election; Trump is Putin’s puppet; Jeff Sessions is kkk; EPA head Pruitt is in the pocket of Big Oil… The Beebyanka has been more than happy to indulge and disseminate similar fictions about Brexit-supporters, since well before the actual vote.

    As part of the left’s Crusade (I know: the word would have the islamoluvvies squirming) for Truth, Twitter and Facebook both professed a newfound devotion to accuracy. They would employ dedicated “fact-checkers”, to flag news stories of dubious accuracy that appeared on their sites. The problem was that these fact-checkers were already compromised by their known political leanings, so the supposed intention to verify fact sounded more like a blueprint to censor genuine facts that were politically inconvenient.

    That, I am sure, is what we can expect from any Beebyanka fact-checking service, but, of course, there is a big difference. Facebook and Twitter are owned and staffed by members of Generation Snowflake and they are private companies. You’d have to be pretty naive to expect a culturally immature hypocrite such as Mark Zuckerberg to impose objective truth on his company, but he doesn’t have to. It’s dishonest of him to pretend that that is what he intends, but Facebook has no obligation to host opinions, or even outright facts, which are not to the corporate taste.

    The Beebyanka seems to be taking its cue from Facebook, but in so doing, it is displaying its bias. It is handing the task, not to any even nominally independent scrutiny, but to a randomly selected bunch of its own Guardianistas. As with Politifact and its “half-true” weasel, this is just a device for the Beeboids to give yet more publicity to their favoured propaganda. For all Tony Hall’s tedious insistence that the Beebyanka is impartial, nobody really believes that.

    For a good skewering of the American state of fact-checking, see


  4. Doublethinker says:

    One point that I think is critical but often overlooked when discussing the size and purpose of the army is its role in maintaining law and order in the UK. We have never seen the army employed in this role on the UK mainland for many decades but the time is coming when , just as the French have done, will need to put a couple of hundred thousand armed police/ troops on the streets to maintain public safety. I think we would struggle to maintain a level of even twenty or thirty thousand 24/7 for a month right now. I think the size of the army must be increased by a factor of four if we are to be able to defer the coming Muslim attacks. These troops need to be trained and equipped to fight and defeat Muslim urban guerillas not Russian troops. I would also add that no Muslims should be employed in this force.


    • theisland says:



      • EnglandExpects says:

        I’ve noticed that some of our Muslim brethren sneer at the size of European armies. They know that when the Muslim insurrection starts these small armies won’t be big enough to stop them . As pointed out, an army of around 80,000 can maintain only a fraction of that as front line troops at any one time . A recently retired general has commented that. Britain would not even be able to form a front line division. That’s 14-17,000 men.


        • vesnadog says:

          “They know that when the Muslim insurrection starts these small armies won’t be big enough to stop them”

          Our enemy plainly has better foresight than our Government ever will have – i.e. the enemy looks 30-50 years in the future, while we tend to think we have convinced our enemies by spoiling them with benefits/houses no doubt hoping to convert them to our ways while all along the opposite is the case!


    • Lucy Pevensey says:

      I hear alarm bells every time we are told about Muslims serving in our military
      or police force in any capacity. They shouldn’t be included at all.
      Muslims being trained in our procedures, methods & tactics? DUH?
      What a great way to give the enemy an advantage.


  5. vesnadog says:

    “The BBC’s fact check is deliberately misleading”

    Caught again!

    Yet another example of the devious elites at the BBC spearheading the on-going agenda to create an atmosphere were the UK military – being so weak and timid – they hope, should one day join with the French military to form (i.e. sneak in the back door to re-join their spendthrift cohorts within Strasburg) a UK/FRENCH armed services!