>Fox is no Ashdown, but he is still too experienced to leak private letter

>A leaked letter from Defence Secretary Dr. Liam Fox to David Cameron is causing chaos in Whitehall, as MOD police  search cupboards and computers to try and work out how it became public in the Daily Telegraph. The letter, marked ‘For the Prime Minister’s eyes only’, detailed Dr Fox’s fears that “this process [the strategic defence spending review,] is looking less and less defensible as a proper SDSR and more like a “super CSR” (comprehensive spending review).”


Many were hoping that the much respected former marine, and former Lib Dem Leader, Lord Ashdown would have some formal role to play in the coalition government’s defence team. Liam Fox has though been relatively strong in the role, although he is under increasing pressure on finances, Afghanistan, and the renewal of Trident. He is said to be furious that this letter has come out. 


The Defence Secretary’s fears at the outcome of the spending review are well known around Westminster but, as the Spectator’s Fraser Nelson points out, he is far too an experienced front bench politician, holding far too an important role, to pull such a stunt. Could it be a member of his staff, thinking they had a wink and a nod form their boss? Possibly. Could it be a member of the Prime Minister’s staff trying to outflank the MoD? Very unlikely. But the number people who previously knew the letter existed must be very small. The leaker needs to be weeded out.

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