As if that Iran business back in March didn’t provide more than a whiff of this.

Money quote:

Liam Fox, the shadow Tory defence secretary, said: “We have come all the way from Lord Nelson to a part-time defence secretary, with the consequence that the Royal Navy now finds itself in the most degenerated state in which it has ever been. Labour has done what none of this countries’ enemies have been able to do: bring the Navy to its knees.”

This puts the NIE release into some perspective, I guess. No enemy seriously doubts whether the US could bring a great deal of force to bear on any target in the world if we absolutely have to, and they have no reason to think that they’ll ever see us coming until we’re right on top of them. The intel that got us to the brink might lead us to the wrong target, but at least we could get there and do some damage. The Royal Navy, not so much.

And that puts this story into some disturbing perspective.

Exit question-o-rama: Did you now that in the UK, defense secretary is a part-time job? Would you rather your petrodollars go to Saudi sheiks, Hugo Chavez or Vlad Putin? If Britain’s Royal Navy is as bad as all this, do we have any real militarily strong allies left?