SMALL bands of lightning troops will win wars of the future, backed by hi-tech drones and cyber weapons.
Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said the speed and stamina of the armed forces was more important than size.
Speaking on HMS Tamar, the Navy’s newest warship, he said the UK’s forces would be “nimble”.
“Instead of mass mobilisation, this future force will be about speed, readiness and resilience, operating much more in the newest domains of space, cyber and subsea,” he said.
In a sign of looming cuts he said “difficult decisions” would have to be made about how Britain faces its threats.
“Ours will be an armed forces that operates at full capacity with a more flexible force structure that is better equipped for lighter tasks,” he added.
He pointed to a fleet of drones onboard as examples of future weapons.
They included a Malloy quadcopter which can carry an anti-ship torpedo and an Anduril Anvil – known as the drone basher – which is designed to knock hostile drones out of the sky.
General Sir Nick Carter, the chief of the defence staff, said new technology would be the armed forces “digital backbone” – but he insisted there would always be a role for soldiers.
“The nature of war never changes,” he said. “It will always be visceral, violent and about politics. And ultimately it will always require people to go head to head on the ground to seek a result and a decision.”
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