We saw dramatic evidence of that again as over 130 service personnel deployed to help communities hammered by Storm Arwen.

Within hours of Grampian Local Resilience Partnership seeking help, men and women from the military were out in the snow checking on people in remote homes.

It’s the latest example of Military Assistance to Civil Authorities (Maca). Throughout the pandemic, the Army, Royal Navy and Royal Air Force have built medical facilities, run test centres, administered life-saving vaccines and helped the ambulance service.

So extensive are Scotland’s martial connections that most of us know someone who’s in uniform or has served ‘with the colours’. And most of us also know someone who works in the wider defence industry, a crucial part of Scotland’s economic landscape with an estimated 12,700 people directly employed.

While once an army marched on its stomach, modern militaries rely on a hinterland of civilian businesses for the essential equipment to keep us safe.

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