On Remembrance Sunday we shall all pause to reflect on those who have laid down their lives for their country. This year, there will be an extra poignancy. There have been 35 deaths in Iraq and Afghanistan since the beginning of the year, and it is only right that our thoughts should be with their families.

However, it is shocking to hear that the Ministry of Defence is still consistently failing to provide troops with the equipment they need to do their job on the ground.

Over the weekend an SAS Major resigned because of the “chronic underinvestment” in equipment by the Ministry of Defence which was to blame for the deaths of four soliders in a Snatch Land Rover in Afghanistan.

Snatch Land Rovers are known in the service as “coffins” – lightly armoured, and extremely vulnerable to roadside bombs. Over the past five years, more than 30 servicemen have been killed in these vehicles, and despite intense pressure, the Government has failed to act to protect our soldiers.

Instead, a Labour Defence Minister said that: “Obviously there may be occasions when in retrospect a commander chose the wrong piece of equipment, the wrong vehicle, for the particular threat.”

This is a disgraceful way to treat our armed forces. The Government claims that they have funded new vehicles to replace the Snatches, but these will not take over any of its combat duties. These vehicles will be used for combat patrols and operations while Snatch will continue to be used in urban centres.

The Government must act now to safeguard our troops, or we shall see more servicemen die in the line of duty because of inadequate equipment.