The next British government will come under great pressure to increase defence spending after decades of cuts. The ongoing battle against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria and the escalating conflict in the Ukraine means that only a fool would even consider cutting the defence budget even further.  But the Conservatives are considering slashing spending on the army, navy and air force if they are-elected as part of their drive to balance the books. Britain has already been left without a maritime patrol aircraft to protect the nuclear deterrent and only a few combat aircraft are available for air strikes on IS. The Royal Navy will not have a working aircraft carrier for at least the next four years, the regular army is being reduced to just 80,000 men and women and the Royal Air Force is just a shadow of its former self. Now, I know that the British economy is still in a seriously bad state but the defence budget must be ring-fenced because otherwise Britain will no longer be able to defend herself.