British security relies on EU referendum ‘In’ vote – former generals
The former senior officers lobbying to stay in the EU include Field Marshals Erwin Bramall and Lord Charles Guthrie.
Sir Jock Stirrup, former head of the RAF, former Royal Navy admiral Lord Michael Boyce, and army generals Sir Michael Rose and Sir Mike Jackson also signed the letter arguing for continued membership.
“We are proud to have served our country, and to have played our part in keeping Britain safe,” the letter says.
“In the forthcoming referendum, therefore, we are particularly concerned with one central question: will Britain be safer inside the EU or outside it? When we look at the world today, there seems to us only one answer.”
The letter, which repeats key aspects of Prime Minister David Cameron’s position on the EU, was reported in the Daily Telegraph as having been orchestrated by Downing Street.
Cameron has placed national security at the center of his campaign for Britain to stay in the EU.
The generals’ letter continues: “Europe today is facing a series of grave security challenges, from instability in the Middle East and the rise of Daesh [Arabic pejorative term for Islamic State], to resurgent Russian nationalism and aggression.
“Britain will have to confront these challenges whether it is inside or outside the EU. But within the EU, we are stronger,” it adds.
The veterans pointed to past efforts to isolate enemies which had relied on pan-EU efforts for success.
“We can continue to collaborate closely with our European allies, just as we did when we helped to force the Iranians to the negotiating table through EU-wide sanctions, or made sure that [Russian President Vladimir] Putin would pay a price for his aggression in Ukraine,” they argued.