“I know it isn’t what people want to hear, but world peace is bad for business,” declares former UK Ministry of Defence adviser Alan Wickler. “Besides, it simply isn’t natural – the truth is that people love a good war. It brings communities together, builds character and keeps the kids off of the streets. All we’re doing is returning the world to its natural state – it’s time people gave war a chance!” With the UK government still mired in allegations that former Defence Secretary Liam Fox and his unofficial ‘adviser’ Adam Werritty were conducting their own private foreign policy from the Defence Ministry, funded by a number of shady right-wing ‘think tanks’ fronting for defence contractors, another former defence adviser has claimed the existence of a secret official policy to promote armed conflicts overseas in order to boost UK defence exports. According to Wickler – who was forced to resign as an adviser to the Defence Secretary following allegations of impropriety involving two members of the Black Watch and a series of illegal floodlit military tattoos, and is now a consultant for one of the UK’s biggest defence contractors – the government’s recent Libyan adventure was a pilot project for this new policy. “That whole Libya business worked out pretty well for us,” he opines. “Not only was Gaddafi deposed but, more importantly for us, the whole country’s military capability was denuded. Creating a fantastic opportunity for British companies to sell new armaments and military equipment to the regime! Not to mention the openings for military training and private security firms in the potentially unstable new Libya.”

The only downside of the Libya adventure, Wickler believes, were the quantities of munitions that British forces had to expend in enforcing UN Resolution 1973 against Gaddafi’s forces. “All those bombs and missiles cost money, and the bloody military are insistent upon replacing them,” he says. “Ideally, we would have liked to have left it to the US to destroy Gaddafi’s military resources, with our boys just playing a supporting role, but Obama wouldn’t play ball.” The whole point of the policy was to boost Britain’s defence industries without increasing UK defence expenditures, he explains. “Reducing our own defence outlays by cutting Britain’s military to the bone is a central plank of the government’s attempts to reduce the deficit through cutting public spending,” he explains. “The problem is that this will inevitably lead to job losses in one of our few remaining successful manufacturing industries – defence contractors. The solution is to create new demand for their products by encouraging low level conflicts in far flung countries. Why else do you think an isolationist like Cameron, who had decried the last Labour government’s interventions in Iraq and Afghanistan, suddenly got a hard on for poking our noses into Libya?”

Ideally, the former adviser claims, such conflicts shouldn’t require the direct involvement of UK military forces, as this would obviously incur expenses for the British government. “To be honest, until the Libya business, we were favouring civil wars and internal conflicts – as long as they stay within their own borders there’s generally no wider threat to regional stability,” Wickler muses. “Best of all, arms embargoes are usually applied to both sides by the UN, ensuring that whoever wins will most likely need to buy a whole new armoury! But we had to expend so many munitions destroying Gaddafi’s military capability for the bloody rebels, it could end up seriously undercutting our profit margin.” The difficulties in Libya underline the potential dangers of the new policy. “There’s no doubt that for decades the arms suppliers had gotten carried away and completely over-supplied Libya with military equipment – they had two tanks for every family, for God’s sake! No wonder it took so long to destroy his military capabilities,” he explains, adding that Britain’s defence firms needed to maximise this new opportunity, not by selling vast quantities of expensive high quality equipment to the new regime, but rather lower tech, less reliable equipment. “Over the years they’ve become very adept at supplying our own armed forces with expensive equipment that is totally unreliable and requires frequent expensive repairs, upgrades and replacement. They need to apply these lessons to their export strategies – flog the foreign Johnnies a load of old tat that is so complex it will need to be accompanied by expensive training contracts, and that will break and need fixing within a couple of years.”

With civil wars now out of favour, the government is instead actively seeking third world countries sufficiently far away that there would be no direct military repercussions for the UK and that it would be unlikely to be called upon to provide forces for any UN peace-keeping efforts. “That’s the beauty of large parts of Africa and Asia – thanks to the fact that we had large tracts of both under our imperial rule for so long, there’s no way that we’d be seen as sufficiently neutral to serve as peace keepers,” Wickler chuckles. “But that very same imperial history means that we’ve got plenty of inside information on countries in these regions – we’ve got the inside track on the tribal rivalries and tensions that could be used to spark a war!” Wickler believes that this new policy will provide benefits to the UK beyond stimulating its defence industries, creating, for instance, a whole new role for Britain’s intelligence services. “As well as helping to identify target countries, they could also be employed to spread disinformation to the governments of potential combatants, so as to ramp up the tension between them. That’s the sort of thing that could help boost our defence exports without actually having to start a war – if our spooks can convince one of these foreign wallahs that their neighbours is building up its military forces with fake intelligence reports, then it’ll make it easier for us to sell them a whole stack of tanks, guns and planes. We could play one side off against the other like that for years, not mention billions of pounds of profits,” he enthuses. “Our Special Forces could get in on the act too, creating acts of sabotage and fake terrorist outrages in the rival capital cities to wind up the tension between them even further!”

Inevitably, Wickler’s claims have been dismissed by the government, with Foreign Secretary William Hague reiterating that the very idea of any ministers engaging in a private secret foreign policy was ridiculous. “As I’ve pointed out before, the foreign policy of the United Kingdom is decided by myself and the Prime Minister,” he told a press conference at a Middle Eastern arms fair he was attending. “It is quite ludicrous to even suggest that Her Majesty’s government would actually go around stoking up international tensions just to sell armaments.” The former adviser is unimpressed with Hague’s denials. “He would say that, wouldn’t he?” he says, snorting with derision. “The fact is that the Foreign Office and its diplomats are at the heart of this policy – you should see the lies they’re peddling to various heads of state to try and get a few wars going” Wickler is warning that the government is preparing its most audacious piece of war making yet – promoting armed conflict between the US and Iran. “Our spooks are working overtime to fabricate intelligence about Tehran’s supposed nuclear weapons programme,” he claims. “If we can get the Yanks to take out their nuclear facilities and topple their government, the way will be clear for us to flog them all manner of nuclear gear – centrifuges, reactors, the whole lot. We’re even getting draught contracts drawn up for our nuclear power industries in anticipation!”