By Ian Hamilton
Sixty-nine years ago I joined the SNP. In those days independence meant national isolation. Now it means international cooperation. I am no sort of politician. Yet I listen. Alex Salmond’s recent speech struck so many chords it was like a Scottish symphony. We are a caring people. We do not like to see the poor support the rich. We have regained our self-respect. It is time to take charge.
Yet the battle is only commencing. Keep your eye on Mediawatch. It gives an overview of the world press. Even the foreign press are given in rough translation by Alan Clayton. He edits mediawatch as it keeps its vigil.
From Mediawatch we learn ordinary English people find us difficult to understand. They see part of their country being torn away with only England left. Ironically they regard the word ‘England’ as the province of hooligans and the BNP. For these there is full coverage. The Daily Mail’s columnist Letts is virulent and indeed racist against the Scots. (He doesn’t appear in the Scottish editions.) Alan Taylor tries and fails to hold Alex Salmond up for laughs in the New Statesman. In the (Scottish) Telegraph Alan Cochrane stands on his head to pretend he’s not SNP at heart. These people are unimportant and can be disregarded.
One who cannot be disregarded is Professor Vernon Bogdanor of Oxford University. Never heard of him? Neither had I. He’s billed as one of the world’s most respected constitutional experts. That means he’s saying what the yah yahs want to hear. He taught David Cameron that a UK referendum is required before Scotland can go its own way. This is the first real signal of an attempt to keep us in the UK against our will.
Make no mistake. We’ve put the frighteners on the English millionaires. They’ll lose our oil. They’ll lose the Scottish seabed for ten kilometres off-shore. It’s even more valuable as a source of energy than our oil. They’ll lose assets such as whisky, a major earner of taxation at home and currency abroad. To keep these they’ll lie to us by omission and commission. Of the former none could be more obvious than the BBC Scottish news on the day Alex Salmond announced his ministry. It started with fifteen minutes on a murder trial and gave two minutes to the cabinet. Smothering can be as effective as Gordon Brewer ramming unionism down the throats of everyone he interviews.
The first priority of every third world revolution is their broadcasting house. Those who control the media control the state. That’s why they dare not give us a devolved BBC. It’s the UK’s propaganda house. We now have a mandate to boycott it. If I didn’t get a free licence I would stop paying it. I once called for Minutemen to march on the BBC. I got hundreds. Then I discovered that at 85 I was too weak to walk the distance. I now call on Minutemen and women and on all nationalists, to stop paying their licence fee. There is little they can do against a mass defection.
One thing remains. On 1st July the Queen opens a devolved Scottish Parliament. The will of the people is for independence. Next time she’s here it may be to open a sovereign parliament.
Let us republicans welcome her. I’ve waited sixty-nine years to see the State Opening of a parliament that supports independence. On 1st July I hope to be there. I’ll celebrate with tears of joy not with petty criticism.