Resource accounting put the armed forces in Iraq at risk

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The warning from Tory shadow defence minister Gerald Howarth followed the row over the shortage of vital kit during the Iraq war, which erupted when it emerged that a sergeant was shot after being ordered to give up his body armour to soldiers said to be facing more risk.

‘We have been saying for a long time that applying commercial practices suitable for Tesco or B&Q have limited value to our armed forces,’ said Howarth. P> The row reignited last week during a meeting of the House of Commons public accounts committee, where MPs considered an NAO report on major MOD projects. A Ministry of Defense spokesman insisted: ‘We never had a just-in-time policy, but we are looking at the levels of stock holding that we have.’ He said the department acknowledged there were problems with tracking supplies during the war.

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