I have strengths, and I have weaknesses. I don't pretend to be able to write a great thesis or doctorate - I have no pretensions in that direction.
We need a leader able to project his or her personality and present our policies in today's media environment. All this is true - but we also need a leader capable of building a team, inspiring loyalty from colleagues, and one genuinely open to ideas.
Defence must be more adaptable, able to respond quickly to the changes in the security environment and the character of conflict.
The reasoning for our civil-military plan is that lasting success will be when the Afghan government, security forces and people can resist the insurgents and terrorists themselves.
We are not in Afghanistan because girls were not allowed to go to school, but helping them do so will give the Afghan people hope for a better future.
We in the West walked away from Afghanistan at the end of the Cold War and left it as a country devastated socially and armed to the teeth. If we do that again, there will be consequences.
Failure in Afghanistan would have profound consequences for our national security. It would undermine the NATO alliance structure that has been the bedrock of Britain's defence for the last 60 years... I will not allow this to happen on my watch.
The war in Afghanistan is too important to be reduced to a political football. We are fighting there to protect our national security. We are confronting the Taliban-led insurgency to prevent terrorists returning to that country.
We cannot allow Afghanistan to become again a haven for terrorists who inspire, plan and provide support for attacks like those of 11 September 2001, of 7 July 2005 in London, and more.
Our aim is always to minimise casualties and to separate a hardline Taliban from those who have been caught up in the insurgency.
My heroes are the non-commissioned officers. If I had another life that's what I'd be - a regimental sergeant major or a similar rank. That's where the spirit of the armed forces is.
On the back benches, you can have your say but no power to do anything.
I have always had a keen interest in defence and military history and read more on this subject than anything else.
I was Minister for the Armed Forces in the Ministry of Defence for two years prior to being appointed Defence Secretary.
I got a tooth bust by somebody who decided they didn't like me and I thought the moustache hid a scar on my lip. It's true that people were told facial hair was not appreciated by the British public, but I just decided to keep the moustache.
It's true that people were told facial hair was not appreciated by the British public, but I just decided to keep the moustache.