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Agents of fear

Posted on November 08, 2020 by

No explanation is given for why “writer at large” Neil Mackay has suddenly conducted a “wide-ranging, exclusive interview” with “one of Britain’s most senior spy chiefs” for today’s Herald On Sunday.

As far as we’re aware absolutely nothing has happened in respect of the UK’s nuclear “deterrent” to make the subject topical. Maybe Mackay just coincidentally bumped into Sir David Omand down the pub or something.

We can’t tell by reading the interview either, because the Herald doesn’t actually seem to have published it on its website, only the selected quotes from Mackay’s front-page splash. Other than the fact that Mackay has a long track record of sowing division in the Yes movement, we can’t think of a single reason for it to have happened now.

The article, it should go without saying, is purest drivel. Our favourite bit was Omand’s hilarious assertion that the UK government has never spied on the Yes movement, which if true we’ll be writing a stern letter to our MP about and demanding a refund on our taxes, because that’s LITERALLY THE UK SECURITY SERVICES’ JOB.

We are all of us engaged in an attempt – a peaceful, lawful, democratic attempt – to dismantle the very existence of the United Kingdom, the exact thing that the security services exist to protect. If they DON’T have – at the barest minimum – spies placed in the movement monitoring it (and more likely actively trying to sabotage it) then MI5 et al are guilty of an incredibly serious dereliction of their professional duty, because Scottish independence currently presents a vastly greater threat to the integrity of the UK than any external force. We should be their prime directive.

Remarkably, Omand in fact appears to believe that the world’s major powers don’t spy on every country of actual or potential significance already:

But the rest is barely any less comical. Take this paragraph:

It’s not at all clear which side Omand and Mackay are saying the Russians would try to interfere on. If it’s the Yes side, we’re not sure why we’re supposed to be worried about that. We’re already up against the entire might of the British state, all the media, big business and JK Rowling. Frankly we could use and should welcome any hauners that are on offer, just to even things up a tiny bit.

But running all the way through the piece is a quite extraordinary misunderstanding, from a man in Sir David’s position, of the direction of leverage that applies with regard to Scotland’s position in both the UK and the wider international community.

His implication is that Scotland would be a supplicant begging NATO for its protection. But Scotland’s strategic geopolitical position is such that the alliance would have an absolute shrieking panic fit at the thought of Scotland not being a member. It would be like leaving the Organisation’s back door open and the gate unlocked.

We can state with unmitigated confidence that far from being blackmailed into keeping Trident or financially extorted for our safety, NATO would crawl naked over broken glass to plead with Scotland to be a member, nukes or not.

Scotland is at one end of the “GIUK Gap” in the North Atlantic, with the other end being Iceland – one of the 90% of NATO member states that don’t have nuclear weapons. Indeed, thanks to that strategic position Iceland enjoys NATO membership without having any proper armed forces at all – it has no standing army and no navy, only a coastguard with three small and lightly-armed ships.

Scotland would have all the same advantages, because if you only control one end of a chain it’s no use as a barrier. We would hold all the cards in a future relationship with NATO, because NATO needs us to keep the Gap secure while we don’t actually need protecting from anything.

Nobody is planning to invade Scotland. Nobody except England has invaded Scotland for the last thousand years, and the only plausible threat to an independent Scotland would be a paranoid England – in very much the same way that the USA was always terrified of Cuba, like a cartoon elephant afraid of a mouse.

America, as we know, reacted to that fear by making life very awkward for Cuba, with decades of brutal sanctions and constant attempts to undermine or overthrow its government. Which is precisely the reason that any remotely sane government of an independent Scotland would be more than happy to keep Trident where it is, while also reaping a highly useful multi-billion pound bonus every year in rent.

Trident is the solid-gold Ace in Scotland’s deck when it comes to its future relationship with the rUK. It’s the bargaining chip that outranks all others. The UK is so obsessed with retaining its WMDs, to the exclusion of almost all else, that it puts Scotland in a position of massive strength. We have one thing – and one thing only – that England really, really, really desperately wants: Faslane.

And we know it wants it desperately because we were told by… Sir David Omand.

We do have other cool stuff it likes too, including energy and water and whatnot, but nothing that it can’t ultimately get from elsewhere. For a nuclear submarine base, it’s us or nobody, and “nobody” isn’t an option it’s willing to countenance.

So as long as an independent Scotland can threaten to close down a leased Faslane (and that would be very easy to do given its isolated location), the rUK will ultimately have little choice but to give us whatever we want all the time. It’s a magic trump card that we can play as many times as we like. You might call it a nuclear option.

If we threw that leverage away on the basis of a spurious and infantile argument that some kinds of bombs are more “moral” than other kinds of bombs, we’d be choosing to put ourselves in a position of enormous and perpetual weakness against a far bigger and more powerful neighbour for no rational reason.

(Ask the citizens of Hamburg or Tokyo how nice “conventional” bombs are.)

But hey, look at us, falling into Neil Mackay’s trap of inviting an argument with other Yes voices who take a different and honestly-held view. (Although when it comes to NATO membership we’d note that the absolutely overwhelming majority of Scots are on our side, whereas there’s no majority for expelling Trident.)

It’s almost as if that was what he wanted all along.

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    1. 08 11 20 11:56

      Agents of fear | speymouth

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    1. Giesabrek says:

      Ahem, Ireland – neither a nuclear power, nor a member of NATO, and the only fear of invasion they have is from the UK, which granted is a very small fear. They also spend a tiny amount on defense compared to other countries of comparable size, and don’t have a single fighter jet in their air corp.

    2. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “Ireland – neither a nuclear power, nor a member of NATO, and the only fear of invasion they have is from the UK, which granted is a very small fear”

      Ireland is literally invaded every day by the UK…

    3. McHaggis69 says:

      Yup, Neil has played a blinder today and has been responding to criticism on Twitter with “I’m only reporting what the guy said, take from it what you want”…

      Like fact checking and rebuttal are no part of what a journalist is expected to do.

      The fact he *laughingly* expects readers to believe the UK has never spied on the Yes Movement pretty much confirms just how much weight you need attach to the rest of this front page.

      Looks like recycled and reheated 2014 fearmongering is back on the menu boys!

    4. ScottieDog says:

      Getting rid of WMDs is far far harder than say, starting a new currency for example, for a whole myriad of reasons.
      Moving them away from Scotland would have to be a long term plan. It’s naive to think otherwise. In fact looking at the behaviour of the SNP inner sect, I’d say they will likely commit to keeping them, since they seem committed to looking after big landowners and the banks anyway.

    5. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “Yup, Neil has played a blinder today and has been responding to criticism on Twitter with “I’m only reporting what the guy said, take from it what you want”…”

      But WHY did he say it? Why was the Herald suddenly asking him about it?

    6. Martin says:

      Our position is extremely important to NATO. Vlad has done wonders for any post indy nato negotiations by sending Russian planes into our airspace so often (which seems more like a game for the bored pilots on both sides than anything else) that NATO will see our airspace as crucial.

      We should lease faslabe in a 12 monthly basis to the UK. Including an annual rent review and a comically short notice period for them to leave. These would ensure that the upper hand always remains with us. We shouldn’t be dicks about it, obviously, but we should use it as a tool to ensure fair play from the notorious cheats.

    7. McHaggis69 says:

      “But WHY did he say it?”

      Excellent question and it seems it might be a cross between –
      Shooting project fear mark 2 bolt early (or starting gun)
      Setting the scene for next military spending review and why Scotland can’t afford a military
      Nothing else to write about
      Tory party in disarray after Biden victory now using stories they never thought they’d have to (US/NATO support for Scotland)

      Maybe the lot?

    8. Effijy says:

      Excuse me! Scotland has been forced to pay a share of the
      Nuclear Weapon Costs and the NATO membership costs!

      When the UK Army, Navy and Airforce is divided up equally
      as they say we are equal partners, will have more protection
      than we ever had.

      Remember Westminster asking Norway for help when Russian ships
      We’re nearing Scottish waters but there were no available support from
      the UK Navy.

      All things get better when you take back control from Westminster corruption and lies!

      PS Does 1% of Scots bother to read the substandard propaganda in the Herald?

    9. McHaggis69 says:

      BTW for info…

      the talk of ‘leasing Faslane’ for billions I occasionally read?

      The base has a rateable value of £11.866million and Coulport is £6.605m
      A combined total just below £20million.
      Thats the rental value of the bases per annum (which is what Rateable Value is)

      Now of course you could add on sub docking fees etc but I’m not sure how we rent it for ‘billions’?

    10. Normski says:

      What’s dismaying though is not particularly the article in itself – but the number of pavlovian conditioned nodding donkeys in the Yes movement who are immediately triggered and begin retweeting the Herald’s tripe – thus spreading Yoonionist propaganda to a far wider audience.

    11. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “Now of course you could add on sub docking fees etc but I’m not sure how we rent it for ‘billions’?”

      Because something is only ever worth what someone will pay for it. And the rUK would pay just about anything.

    12. Dave Beveridge says:

      Nothing short of getting these dangerous monstrosities TF away from our citizens should be acceptable to us. If the English are really that desperate to play willie swinging they should house them down there.

    13. McHaggis69 says:

      “Because something is only ever worth what someone will pay for it. And the rUK would pay just about anything.”

      That only works for a relatively short period of time.
      the opportunity cost of paying ‘billions’ per year in rent is simply how long it takes them to find a new site and build a new facility.
      Astute jetty cost £100million.
      The sub refit building c£250million
      Weapons stores c£100million
      Support buildings c £250million

      You have to add on quite a bit more before getting to even 1 billion, but we expect them to pay us many times more than that per annum for anything longer than maybe 10 years?

      Sorry, but don’t see it.
      And I’m not saying that as some random with no real knoweldge of the subject.

      I think your point is well made and supportable, but not for very long.

    14. McHaggis69 says:

      and there is no getting away from the fact that the current rental values of both sites just now adds up to less than £20million.

    15. James Che. says:

      So hyped up journalism to persuade you to talk about something that you weren’t actually presently talking about, how easy is it to lead and we follow their ring in our nose.

    16. ahundredthidiot says:

      Look on the bright side – it’s 2020, the year where the Police stand back and allow BLM to tear down statues.

      Armistice Day and we see a ring of Police steel around Londons Cenotaph to prevent veterans reminding us about the cost to defend freedom.

      Maybe we should just use these nukes on ourselves.

    17. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “Nothing short of getting these dangerous monstrosities TF away from our citizens should be acceptable to us. If the English are really that desperate to play willie swinging they should house them down there.”

      Yeah, thanks for outlining the infantile and irrational argument I was talking about.

    18. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “That only works for a relatively short period of time.
      the opportunity cost of paying ‘billions’ per year in rent is simply how long it takes them to find a new site and build a new facility.”

      But we know that’s likely to be on the scale of at least 10, realistically more like 20 years. There have been countless studies on that, handily linked in the WBB and plenty other articles on this site. That’s one hell of a handy buffer in the tricky initial years of a new state.

    19. Bob Costello says:

      The main reason Iceland won the Cod war was because they threatened to leave NATO. Scotland wound be i a similar position with England if they started their nonsense

    20. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “So hyped up journalism to persuade you to talk about something that you weren’t actually presently talking about, how easy is it to lead and we follow their ring in our nose.”

      If you’d rather some more articles on how shit and corrupt the current SNP is, just ask.

    21. Black Joan says:

      The UN has just ratified a ban on nuclear weapons, but of course the “nuclear powers” have a problem with that, and haven’t signed.

      https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/oct/25/treaty-banning-nuclear-weapons-made-official-with-50th-un-signatory?ref=upstract.com&curator=upstract.com

    22. susanXX says:

      When Scotland gains its independence I expect the English state to play dirty and I could see an SNP led government bending over backwards to appease them. We need patriotic alternatives NOW.

    23. 1971Thistle says:

      Um, isn’t Iceland in the middle of the GIUK, with the ends being Greenland and the UK?

    24. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “The UN has just ratified a ban on nuclear weapons, but of course the “nuclear powers” have a problem with that, and haven’t signed.”

      What an embarrassing fiasco that whole resolution was, like East Plookton Borough Council declaring itself “nuclear free”.

    25. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “Um, isn’t Iceland in the middle of the GIUK, with the ends being Greenland and the UK?”

      It’s a lot closer to the Greenland end than the UK end.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/GIUK_gap#/media/File:GIUK_gap.png

      It would really be correctly punctuated as the G/I-UK Gap.

    26. Dave Beveridge says:

      “Yeah, thanks for outlining the infantile and irrational argument I was talking about.”

      You’re welcome. For years this “infantile and irrational argument” has been put forward as to why we need these things out of Scotland, but suddenly we should put a price on it instead? We’ll keep them after all if we’re getting money for it? It’s a bit better than paying for the privilege as we do now, I’ll give you that. Hardly likely to make us look like serious players on the world stage though. More likely to reinforce a few generalisations.

    27. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “We should lease faslabe in a 12 monthly basis to the UK. Including an annual rent review and a comically short notice period for them to leave. These would ensure that the upper hand always remains with us. We shouldn’t be dicks about it, obviously, but we should use it as a tool to ensure fair play from the notorious cheats.”

      Precisely. If we allow the rUK to keep us in a position of weakness, we’ll be treated – well, just like we are now, so what’s the point in being independent? We should speak softly, but carry a big stick.

    28. Heaver says:

      We should rent out our excellent deepwater submarine facilities and excercise areas to the highest bidder. I for one welcome our new Chinese tenants.

    29. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “You’re welcome. For years this “infantile and irrational argument” has been put forward as to why we need these things out of Scotland,”

      Not by me it hasn’t.

      “but suddenly we should put a price on it instead? We’ll keep them after all if we’re getting money for it? It’s a bit better than paying for the privilege as we do now, I’ll give you that. Hardly likely to make us look like serious players on the world stage though. More likely to reinforce a few generalisations.”

      Sorry, what did all that gibberish mean? Are you saying it WOULDN’T be better to get paid £5-10bn a year for parking Trident rather than paying out hundreds of millions for it? Sounds great to me for that reason alone. £10bn is not chump change in a small country like Scotland. I’m not sure what being “serious players on the world stage” has to do with anything. But I’d also rather like to be in a position of massive power and leverage over the rUK as opposed to the other way around. Wouldn’t you?

    30. vlad (not that one) says:

      @McHaggis69, 11:26
      … The base has a rateable value of £11.866 million and Coulport is £6.605 m … of course you could add on sub docking fees etc but I’m not sure how we rent it for ‘billions’?
      We’d lease it (not rent) for the going market rate for nuclear submarine bases. It is simply a case of supply and demand – just check with estate agents, see what other nuclear submarine bases are on offer, at what price, and negotiate based on that. Easy peasy.

    31. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “We should rent out our excellent deepwater submarine facilities and excercise areas to the highest bidder. I for one welcome our new Chinese tenants.”

      An auction is a hilarious and brilliant idea 😀

    32. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “It is simply a case of supply and demand – just check with estate agents, see what other nuclear submarine bases are on offer, at what price, and negotiate based on that. Easy peasy.”

      Exactly. The negotiations would be over before elevenses on day 1.

      “We want £10bn.”

      “We only want to pay £20m.”

      “Fine, get your submarines to fuck out of our country by the end of next week.”

      “£10bn it is.”

    33. Ottomanboi says:

      Scotland’s geo-strategic position is a massive bargaining chip. It is the supreme reason Scotland matters to Whitehall and Nato. However, we must be careful we do not end up with this situation https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Akrotiri_and_Dhekelia

    34. Mrs Grimble says:

      Of course the security services will do whatever it takes to protect the UK – just google ‘spycops’ to see how far they’ll go. EVERY country spies on it its own people. (For example, according to this article https://www.politico.com/news/magazine/2020/10/24/malcolm-x-biography-ku-klux-klan-meeting-431657 , during the 60s, up to one in ten members of the Klu Klux Klan were FBI informants.) So MI5 will most cerainly have people planted inside the Yes movement

    35. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “However, we must be careful we do not end up with this situation https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Akrotiri_and_Dhekelia

      What’s the problem there?

    36. Dave says:

      @Rev Stu

      “If you’d rather some more articles on how shit and corrupt the current SNP is, just ask.”

      The current SNP is a broad church of interests representations groups factions ideals and communions some of which share your own brand of reality. A reality your suggesting here is part of a corruption.

      I would love to see an article that can successfully separate your SNP from everybody else’s.

    37. Robert says:

      I see Craig Murray is today addressing the same matter.

      https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/

    38. McHaggis69 says:

      “We’d lease it (not rent) for the going market rate for nuclear submarine bases.”

      Hi Vlad.
      Don’t go there mate.
      I hinted earlier about my specific expertise here – you clearly haven’t picked that up.

      The definition of rateable value is (paraphrasing) – the rent a willing landlord and tenant would agree on a year to year basis for the subjects in its existing use.

      Because there are no actual rents for submarine bases, the RV is arrived at by decapitalising construction costs.

      circa £20million is the closest we have to anything that shows the rental value per annum of Faslane and Coulport right now.

      Like the reverend, I like to deal in facts. And all of the above is demonstrable fact.

      The fact you opened up with ‘we’d lease it, (not rent)’ tells me all I need to know about what speciifc expertise in rents for military establishments.
      Trust me mate I have *plenty* specific expertise in this area.

      Now – like the reverend saysthere may be circumstances where one side (us) can hold out for more… but figures of ‘billions’ per annum are just either never gonna happen, or if they do, then only for a short period of time.

      Remember £1billion is 10x what the new astute jetty recently cost. England would simply accelerate its need for an equivalent site and ride roughshod over any objections to build it. I reckon 10 years max.

    39. Lenny Hartley says:

      McHaggis69 The UK has no where else to build a nuke base, i wish they had, then they could move the Museum piece HMS Belfast and build a base on its spot. Job done.

    40. Hatuey says:

      “Nobody except England has invaded Scotland for a thousand years”

      I believe Vikings tried it on at the battle of Largs in the 13th century.

      But we don’t need to join NATO. Ireland didn’t.

    41. McHaggis69 says:

      “Exactly. The negotiations would be over before elevenses on day 1.

      “We want £10bn.”

      “We only want to pay £20m.”

      “Fine, get your submarines to fuck out of our country by the end of next week.”

      “£10bn it is.””

      Well, more seriously, if Scotland decided to take that kind of simplistic approach then I’m fairly sure no other country on the planet would then take us seriously, We’d be leaned on heavily by NATO and other countries. Westminster would in all likelihood deploy its military to protect the bases – if not Westmintser then other NATO countries. The UN would intervene as in intermediary and the ‘rent’ would be fixed propelry and fairly by external sources – arbitration if you will. We’d still be a total international pariah in some of the most powerful countries on earth eyes.

      Not a great start.

      Look I’m not here to argue what the rent will or wont be, but the Rev likes facts.
      £20million pa is the current RV.
      RV is an estimate of rental value.
      Facts.
      Its realistic to assume the ‘rent’ would in all likelihood be agreed well above that figure due to the various strengths of parties hands, but £10billion? I’m not sure people realise just how big a figure that is. Every year.

      Send me your actual evidence in support of £1billion or £10billion per annum. Leases, costs, comparisons and I’m happy to look at them. Until then, its pure guesswork by people who are not even surveyors or valuers.

    42. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “The current SNP is a broad church of interests representations groups factions ideals and communions”

      Well, no, it’s not. IN PRACTICE it’s a tool of its leadership, who in all meaningful senses solely control its actions.

    43. Effijy says:

      We should stop saying UK.
      It’s just another name for England that makes the local colonies think they have a say in anything.

    44. Helen Yates says:

      This is a tricky one for sure, I’d love nothing more than to see Scotland rid of this Brit vanity project from our shores yet it’s difficult to argue about the powerful position Scotland could be in by leasing Faslane and using the rent money to help build a better Scotland through the early difficult years of a new independent nation. it sure would feel good to know we finally had the upper hand over rUK.

    45. Dave says:

      @Rev Stu

      That suggests that the leadership cannot be deposed by SNP members.

    46. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “Well, more seriously, if Scotland decided to take that kind of simplistic approach then I’m fairly sure no other country on the planet would then take us seriously, We’d be leaned on heavily by NATO and other countries.”

      This is really silly. What does NATO care what Scotland charges the rUK? The rUK has a fiat currency, it has however much money it wants. If anything NATO would lean on the UK to pay up, because NATO desperately wants Scotland to stay a member and therefore we have all the leverage. Did you not read the article at all? If NATO says Scotland can’t be a member, Scotland shrugs its shoulders and says “Whatever, dudes. Good luck defending that gap without us” and NATO shits its pants.

    47. McHaggis69 says:

      Lenny Hartley says:
      8 November, 2020 at 12:14 pm
      McHaggis69 The UK has no where else to build a nuke base

      OK – which report confirms that?

      I’ve read reports on Devonport, Falmouth, Portland etc All possible with a bit of investment (Devonport already has seismic docks)

      Faslane and Coulport took (from memory) 6 years ot build from scratch.
      Total cost of both was somewhere bwteen 1 and 2 billion.

      No-one is paying us £10billion per year to rent the sites.

      They will pay, and they will pay handosmely, but pushing through an alternate that would cost, lets say £5billion in todays money is just the sensible way out.

    48. Ron Maclean says:

      From a proposed written ‘Constitution for Scotland’ (constitutionforscotland.scot) ;

      Section 15.11 Prohibition on nuclear, biological or chemical weapons. The Scottish State prohibits the presence, … Any such material currently existing within Scotland must be removed within three years of the date of ratification of this Constitution.

    49. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “That suggests that the leadership cannot be deposed by SNP members.”

      And why do you think the leadership fiddled it to keep Joanna Cherry out of Holyrood?

    50. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “From a proposed written ‘Constitution for Scotland’ (constitutionforscotland.scot) “

      And? So what? Who wrote that and who elected them to speak for Scotland?

    51. McHaggis69 says:

      I’ll bow out now –

      I have specific expertise in the area, but if people prefer to believe what they are reading on the internet from people with (checks notes) no expertise, and who are simply put, guessing what the rent would be then who am I to argue.

      I just thought our side was better than theres and didn’t go for fanciful tales to suit the agenda.

      All have a good day and apologies for sparking off the argument.

    52. Dave says:

      @Rev Stu

      I dont believe they did but if you have the evidence Im willing to give it the once over.

      But that doesnt alter the fact that if the membership can depose the leadership then the leadership doesnt have the level of autonomous control you suggested.

    53. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “OK – which report confirms that?”

      Oh for heaven’s sake pay attention.

      https://wingsoverscotland.com/the-bank-of-the-clyde/

      http://archive.is/nxQx9

      “As an indication of the scale of the facilities, the Trident Works Programme at Faslane and Coulport took 13 years and cost around £1.9 billion (at 1994 prices), the second most expensive works project in the UK after the Channel Tunnel.”

      And that was just to UPGRADE an EXISTING facility, not build a whole new one from scratch, assuming you have a location suitable for building it in the first place, which they don’t.

    54. James Che. says:

      My point, it’s the heralds story, they are leading the narrative, as all MSM do,
      I am not talking about a political party .
      It has always been the case the uk government or MSM say or do something and then, wait for it.
      We respond, it has been that way,
      Meanwhile no solution has been achieved for the last 300 years or more for Scotland to say, the suppression, the hostage prisoner nation has been freed, we now, at a time of emergency have not found our way out of a 300 year old paper bag,
      We are taught to turn our attention away to other issues. That has always been the way, Yes we need rid of corruption and corrupt parties, I totally agree with you whole heartedly,
      Can we do that while we are second or third best as a nation within the uk, no, can we do anything when we are in a hostage situation to Westminster, snp or the MSM, no.
      the issue is not to be led by deliberate uk propaganda for all of us, wether it’s the vow that was spread across news papers or this herald story,
      Of corse we will be in a mess after we gain independence, but it will be our mess, and we, the Scottish people will then decide what we will do about it,
      Independence first, herald last.

    55. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “I dont believe they did but if you have the evidence Im willing to give it the once over.”

      That’s quite enough trolling, thanks.

    56. Andy Ellis says:

      @McHaggis69 12.23

      I’ll break my WoS purdah briefly to respond to your deeply disingenuous post. Faslane and Coulport aren’t a semi-detached house in the suburbs or a commercial property on the High St. The britnat have literally no alternative credible home for WMD’s. Even if they did, building the infrastructure would take a decade and cost them a fortune to replicate existing facilities, and they simply won’t have the cash.

      The decision on what to do with them becomes a political one, not something that the government surveyors and land valuers will decide. A formal agreement and treaty will be required to detail under what terms access will be granted, how much will be paid, and who will be responsible for the cost of clean up operations when they leave.

      The basic issue for those who support the British independent nuclear deterrent is that it’s on borrowed time as soon as Scots vote for independence. Realpolitik dictates that the only real questions are that the annual cost is for the lease of the base areas, and how long it lasts.

      Scots voters will be astute enough to know that they need the money, and need to be seen to be reasonable. As the majority support NATO membership and being part of a nuclear armed alliance even if they’d prefer not to have them in Scotland, we can safely dismiss the posturing of those who say we should demand they leave the week after we achieve independence for the clueless cranks they undoubtedly are.

    57. Dan says:

      No doubt there’ll be the loss of jobs angle floated around again at some point too. It’s just so predictable.
      They are busy knocking out the Missile Tube Assemblies in Rosyth at the moment for Trident.

      https://ukdefencejournal.org.uk/babcock-awarded-missile-tube-contract-extension-by-electric-boat/

      Also, from a couple of months back.

      https://ukdefencejournal.org.uk/independent-scotland-could-have-its-defence-scot-free-say-experts/

    58. ‘Which is precisely the reason that any remotely sane government of an independent Scotland would be more than happy to keep Trident where it is, while also reaping a highly useful multi-billion pound bonus every year in rent’.

      Strongly disagree. Westminster and The White House can’t be trusted because both of them have been the recipients Scotland’s oil flows into The City of London & Wall St. And if the ‘threat’ of Scottish independence is going to stop that flow – they’re not only going to stop Scotland but engineer the conditions to ride to our ‘rescue’ – ‘financially’ AND *militarily*.

      Because that was/is what is supposed to happen in 2017. And if you can see It from this ‘Atlantic Bridge’ coup d’etat perspective, Faslane ceases to be an ‘ace’ and becomes a Trojan Horse;

      ‘Cracks in Hunterston nuclear reactor predicted to rise to 1,000’ @FerretScot 11th Oct 2020 https://theferret.scot/hunterston-nuclear-reactor-cracks-1000-safety/

      “If an injury has to be done to a man it should be so severe that his vengeance need not be feared”. Machiavelli

      A common characteristic with the academic level of understanding and associated confidence, is that if the intellect[uals] can’t envisage a scenario, then in that prism the outcome ‘couldn’t possibly happen’ and is then just dismissed (cognitive dissonance) out of hand. Whereas the *fact is* – according to The Ferret blog – it already *is happening* at Hunterston because #ToryAnalytica are engineering It – in line with and as per my previous observations;

      “Maybe someone dies in a terrorist attack coordinated on our tools. And we still connect people”. Andrew Bosworth, Facebook VP – 18th June 2016.

      ‘PlanA: #OpFukuglaschu’ by #GaslightingGilligan (2017) https://wp.me/p94Aj4-Gt

      ‘Hunterston (Brexit Plan) B: Scotland’s Tombstone?’ (2019) by #GaslightingGilligan https://wp.me/p94Aj4-1kf

      ‘Yellowhammer Anagram: ‘Orwell Mayhem’ by Cummings “Meltdown” Symbolism’ (2019) by #GaslightingGilligan https://wp.me/p94Aj4-1mL

      And is why, *regardless of pretext*, #ToryAnalytica (attempted) militarisation of mainland Britain is *inevitable*.

    59. Beaker says:

      @Lenny Hartley says:
      8 November, 2020 at 12:14 pm
      “McHaggis69 The UK has no where else to build a nuke base, i wish they had, then they could move the Museum piece HMS Belfast and build a base on its spot. Job done.”

      Falmouth has the deep water and natural harbour that would more than accommodate.

      However, I don’t think the locals would be too happy.

    60. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “Also, from a couple of months back.

      https://ukdefencejournal.org.uk/independent-scotland-could-have-its-defence-scot-free-say-experts/

      Aye, we covered that second one at the time, and the only hole in Crawford and Co’s analysis is that there’s no earthly reason to lease Faslane for as little as £1-1.5bn.

      https://wingsoverscotland.com/the-fire-sale/

    61. Fairliered says:

      Any connection between the timing of the Herald article and the change of US leadership?

    62. Effijy says:

      On the subject of killing in large numbers, it’s remembered day.

      In world war 1, Scotland lot 182,222 soldier while it seems the UK
      Lost approx 700,000.

      It looks like it’s near impossible to find an English only total but I’m confident
      the Irish and Welsh Soldiers would have been used in any second wave as the
      Scots get mowed down.

      Good to keeps God’s English soldiers safe while the fighting goes on.

      We never had 25% plus of the UK population, we are on record as being smaller in size and therefore more difficult to target.

      What other explanation could it be other than we were deemed collateral damage.
      We are all equal just as soon as we were dead.

    63. Contrary says:

      Well, isn’t Trident the popular topic of today.

      I like Craig Murray’s take: https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2020/11/trident-must-be-destroyed-not-given-to-westminster/comment-page-1/#comment-964348

      Its on our land, it’s ours, we are going to dismantle it. And as he says, if the English don’t like it, well, they can take it away.

      It’s a balance though – either idea has merit and either will give us the result of getting shot of Trident and foreign military bases eventually, after making either a stack of money from it, or some good amount from it, and either international kudos, or some self-respect.

    64. Effijy says:

      Found English fatalities in world war 1 at 380,000.
      Why that’s a little more than double the Scottish total
      and their population at the time would be about 9 times greater.

      Wasn’t that lucky for jolly old equal partner England?

    65. Stoker says:

      BritNat quote from the article above:

      “Referencing an independent Scotland joining the Eu, he added; I’m sure there’s a majority of EU states, which would say on the security front, we’d like you in NATO too, and that comes with a price as Scotland would be expected to pay its reasonable share of defending its very critical geographical position in the north Atlantic.”

      TRANSLATION (After all the laughter subsides): Our attempts to get EU countries onboard to crush Scottish independence aspirations failed miserably so here’s our plan-B: We will make up the bullshit as we go along, again.

    66. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “Strongly disagree. Westminster and The White House can’t be trusted because both of them have been the recipients Scotland’s oil flows into The City of London & Wall St.”

      Sorry, that doesn’t make any sense. What are you not trusting them to do? Pay the rent? If they don’t cough up the cash we chuck their submarines out.

    67. Lenny Hartley says:

      Beaker , i know but Falmouth is a non starter as is everywhere else in England.
      EFFIJY The Isle of Arran lost 81 in the first world war imagine that, we have 18 confirmed cases of Covid and folk are stressing out!m

    68. Doug says:

      Personally I’d have Indy Scotland in NATO without question. I’d also offer a few Military Bases to other NATO nations to use for training or just to have a base elsewhere in the world. The idea of a Canadian, Frence or German base in Scotland seems very international to me. Not convinced it should be an American Base, they have plenty of those in Europe.

      As for Faslane, I’d love to get it shut down and Trident kicked out of the country – but that is a LONG process and extracting 10 years worth of rent out of rUK (or maybe just England and Wales because I expect NI to leave not long after we do) seems a sensible idea to me.

    69. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “i know but Falmouth is a non starter as is everywhere else in England.”

      Falmouth itself isn’t a completely terrible plan for a Coulport replacement. It wouldn’t be popular locally, but the UK government would be happy enough riding roughshod over a town the size of Bathgate in the arse end of nowhere. The big problem with Falmouth is that it’d be dependent on the actual submarine base being in Devonport, which is not only a lot further away than Faslane is from Coulport (roughly 50 miles rather than about 10) but also slap bang in the middle of a city of a quarter of a million people, which is both a PR and a security nightmare.

      And also, since Falmouth isn’t currently a nuclear missile base, turning it into one would be a lot more expensive and take a lot longer than the 13-year refit of Coulport to switch from Polaris to Trident did.

    70. H Scott says:

      Perhaps the timing of this article is because it’s Remembrance Sunday, exploiting the day’s emotions in regard to the British military.

    71. Ron Maclean says:

      ‘And? So what? Who wrote that and who elected them to speak for Scotland?’

      The same people that elected you. Bath’s a long way from Faslane.

    72. Patrick Roden says:

      It’s also clear that America would be very keen to keep Scotland on its side.

      I am 100% convinced that the Americans would give us huge military aid including training equipment and logistical/intelligence support. to keep us from ‘falling into the hands of the Reds’

      The yanks like the Russians to be ‘hemmed-in’ and any opening of the door that would allow them to ‘break-out’ would be very threatening to the Americans.

      We would be in an unbelievable negotiation position when it came to defence, once we are independent.

    73. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “The same people that elected you. Bath’s a long way from Faslane.”

      So your point is that some random people have a different view to this random person. Once again, the question: so what? I already know people exist with different opinions to mine. Make an ARGUMENT.

    74. ScottieDog says:

      There’s no quick and easy solution to trident. A bit over-simplistic to say it’s someone else’s problem and get them removed in a few years. It won’t happen. We can however ensure that whilst they are in Scotland the safety regs are improved until a solution is found. If we want POTUS on our side or neutral we need to play the long game.

    75. Patrick Roden says:

      We don’t so much need to get rid of Trident as need to get rid of the Herald.

    76. Dave Beveridge says:

      Be honest, Rev… in the event of an accident (or worse) at Faslane, the radius of the kill zone would leave the Dons with the best chance they’ll ever have at the SPFL title. 😉

    77. ronnie anderson says:

      How old is that story / third from last paragraph it mentions Salmond / klick on the para & u get this Telegraph July 2014 story .

    78. Stoker says:

      @ H Scott on 8 November, 2020 at 12:55 pm

      Good call!

    79. Stan Broadwood says:

      Faslane,,, populated by 99% little englanders.

      Moray,,,populated by 99% little englanders.

      They actually do believe they are based in a northern territory of greater England.

      The word Scotland means nothing to them, apart from being a region within the area of Northern England.

      They think they can plant their stinkin butchers aprons in the ground and all of a sudden it becomes English.

    80. ronnie anderson says:

      https://archive.vn/APoeh / sos forgot to post link

    81. Tony O'Neill says:

      100% aggree with you Stu,I’ve been saying this since 2012.Faslane is our never ending trump card. Like a young John connor says in terminator 2,we’ve got sky net by the balls now,well we would certainly have Westminster by the balls big time.

    82. Stan Broadwood says:

      Let’s hope those butcher’s apron, No Voting Yoons who turned up at a very very wet George Sq in Glasgow this morning didn’t get too wet.

      Ok, I’m fuckin joking.

      I hope every single one of them got soaked, along with their detested butcher’s aprons.

    83. boris says:

      Aware of the operational methodology of the Secret Services confirms my belief that the “interview” is an attempt to justify events that are already well beyond the planning phase. The number of operatives deployed in Scotland is significant. I have written about this in some of my articles. The run-up to the imposition of a no-deal Brexit and the next year’s elections will most likely trigger some form of interference justifying the warnings contained in the interview.

    84. ahundredthidiot says:

      The Piper marching on Londons Cenotaph has been assaulted by the Police.

    85. t42 says:

      They want to remind Biden of the special relationship, and Scotlands role as a subordinate slave to that relationship.

      There are hundreds of subs at sea for months at a time. Being close to a “gap” to “pounce” lol, is pure theatre to stir up the issue amongst yes voters. Project fear reheated.

      https://worldpopulationreview.com/country-rankings/submarines-by-country

    86. Socrates MacSporran says:

      The English have this absurd world view of themselves still being important.

      When we go, the two last things England will want to give up will be “their” (the UK’s) permanent place on the UN Security clouncil, and the nuclear arms which more or less guarantee that place.

      They are also a petty people, they will try to get us to take “our” share of the national debt which they have largely built-up.

      This plays into Scotland’s hands. We may not like the idea and we certainly do not want nuclear weapons based on Scottish soil, so, we give them a deadline for their removal, but allow them the necessary time to build alternative facilities to Faslane and Coulport.

      We charge them rent, which rises with each passing year – that way, the sooner they get the alternative facilities built in England, the sooner they will have to stop paying. The longer they take, the more it costs them.

      They’ve done us no favours over the years, so, we play hard ball with them.

      We won’t like it up us Captain Mainwaring.

    87. ahundredthidiot says:

      2020

      police kneeling down to BLM marxists

      Police assaulting veterans on Armistice Day.

      and some of them have the audacity to wear poppies.

    88. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “Be honest, Rev… in the event of an accident (or worse) at Faslane, the radius of the kill zone would leave the Dons with the best chance they’ll ever have at the SPFL title.”

      LOLZ. But purely for light-hearted Sunday-afternoon funz I’ve just detonated a Trident II warhead (475 kilotons) at Faslane, using https://nuclearsecrecy.com/nukemap/. Go try it yourself if you like or just click this link.

      https://nuclearsecrecy.com/nukemap/?&kt=475&lat=56.0667414&lng=-4.8195648&airburst=0&hob_ft=0&casualties=1&fallout=1&psi=20,5,1&zm=11

      The total number of casualties it calculated was 740 dead (around a quarter of what we’ve lost to COVID-19 so far this year) and 4,700 injured.

      The fireball barely scratched the outer edge of Garelochhead (although if you were out in the open doing your gardening the thermal radiation would really spoil your day), the blast radius was scarcely enough to break windows in Helensburgh, and with prevailing winds the fallout (I set it to groundburst for maximum radiation, reflecting an accident or terrorist incident rather than a military attack from a hostile nation) travelled in a north-easterly direction towards Fraserburgh, completely bypassing Glasgow and Stirling and Aberdeen and all other sizeable population centres. The plume of radiation strong enough to actually do you any substantial harm was tiny and very narrow, ending about halfway to Aberfeldy, and covered almost totally uninhabited areas.

      (BTW even if you aim the wind directly at the centre of Glasgow it makes no difference to casualties.)

      There could be an Old Firm clash actually going on at the time at either Parkhead or Ibrox, with a full crowd, and the explosion would struggle to be even noticed or heard above the sound of “The Billy Boys”, let alone kill any key members of the first-team squads and give the Dons a credible shot at silverware.

      For contrast, I then detonated the exact same warhead at Devonport, and 82,000 died with another 91,000 injured, with fallout affecting places like Exeter, Taunton and Bristol – over a million people, and only a slight change of wind required to take in Cardiff too.

      https://nuclearsecrecy.com/nukemap/?&kt=475&lat=50.3739341&lng=-4.1748047&airburst=0&hob_ft=0&casualties=1&fallout=1&psi=20,5,1&zm=8

      And that’s why the UK government wants Trident to stay where it is.

    89. Stan Broadwood says:

      Question that should be put to Andy Burnham of Manchester Mayor’s Office.

      “If you are so against Local Government cuts by Westminster, why do you still support waisting over £200 Billion pounds on Trident renewal?”

      Hypocrites like Burnham and all the other opposition Parties at Westminster and Holyrood, are total Chancers and this question should be put to them more often than it is.

    90. Daisy Walker says:

      This article highlights a very important point about the tactics used n the YES Movement.

      Think back (if you’re old enough) – how did the BritNat establishment make Labour unelectable?

      It had an active media – fully briefed and engaged in the project. Tick

      It infiltrated the Labour party and movement with unelectables of different minority interests, and a large dose of corrupt chancers (think Liverpool – militant faction). Tick.

      They infiltrated the Labour Party with their own place men

      It went to town on making/portraying Nuclear Unilateral Disarmament seem hopelessly naive (not my personal view by the way, but a description of what they did).

      Oh look, its as if they’ve got a play book down off the shelf and have dusted it off, read the contents and are working their way through it.

    91. cirsium says:

      So the UK military is running an information control operation on the UK populace but not on the YES movement?
      https://www.dailymaverick.co.za/article/2020-09-30-uk-information-operations-in-the-time-of-coronavirus/

      I guess Sir David and Neil Mackay are speaking to the demographic which fits the G W Bush aphorism. “You can fool some of the people all of the time and these are the folk we want to concentrate on”.

    92. Prasad says:

      I am the only one to find that photo of a ‘remembrance’ poppy and a nuclear weapon, disgraceful.
      Were the article and poppy deliberate?
      Yeah probably.

    93. SOG says:

      There used to be a SOSUS line across the G-I-UK gap connecting sensors to detect Soviet submarines. Something else replaced it. Perhaps it has a landfall in NW Scotland? Would this enter the calculation?

    94. robert graham says:

      A good few Independence supporters welcoming Joe as the new US President and maybe getting a bit confused with the support Joe has voiced for Ireland and the good Friday agreement ,
      This support does not and can’t be automatically transferred to Scotlands fight for independence , it might just cause Bawjaws and the Tory government a bit of indigestion but in the whole scheme of things business is business ,
      Joe the EU or indeed the UN are not coming to our rescue they all might offer their best wishes but that’s all they will do until we make up our minds to leave this Union , however diminished England are on world rankings we don’t even register on the Radar and won’t because England continues to control all the Media ,
      A simple example is even a harmless Tweet by Nicola Sturgeon congratulating Joe for his win was openly shown on US Networks was effectively buried by our media that’s how spiteful and petty this English Tory Government are .
      Given that one stupid petty example of what’s going on makes the SNPs Luke warm approach to actually pushing it at every single opportunity very very questionable does this current leadership really want a independent Scotland or are they content to just give us the mouth music ?

    95. cirsium says:

      @Martin, 11.22
      by sending Russian planes into our airspace so often (which seems more like a game for the bored pilots on both sides than anything else) that NATO will see our airspace as crucial.

      Russian Federation planes have never crossed into UK airspace just as NATO planes have never crossed into Russian airspace. Any incursion would create an international incident.

      Could an increased number of patrols by the Russian Federation in international airspace near the UK be due to an increased number of patrols and mock attacks by NATO airforces in international airspace near the Russian Federation?

      NATO has increased the intensity of naval forces, strategic aviation, and air and naval intelligence means in the Black sea : Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation http://eng.mil.ru/en/news_page/country/more.htm?id=12314892@egNews

      https://sputniknews.com/military/202009061080383048-nato-routinely-imitates-missile-strikes-on-russia-during-test-flights-defence-minister-shoigu-says/

    96. Think Omand has a book just out so this will be part of punting his profile,

      just a shabby old ex spy trying to be relevent and make a buck, (The Spy Who Came In For The Gold)

      written by a shabby old hack trying to be relevent and make a buck

      for a shabby old rag newspaper trying to be relevent and make a buck.

      from wiki,

      `Omand was among those who decided that David Kelly should be pursued for talking to the media about the Government’s dossier on Iraq’s alleged WMD`

    97. Ottomanboi says:

      Covidism has knocked the UK well off track. Johnson is not a St George freeing the Brits from the EU dragon but a rabbit in headlights politician. His main asset is London and its liberal capitalist régime another is the supposed integration and political stability of the British state.
      The latter, I’m sure, will be defended to the death of the last freedom seeking Scot.
      You do not have to possess the mind of a John le Carré to work out that independence is a serious threat to the current order. Scottish independence has few sympathizers south of the border and paradoxically left leaning labelled liberals are the most anti.
      All is fair in this war including the likelihood the entire movement is riddled with ‘moles’ and this is no time to be ‘squeamish’.

    98. Willie Hogg says:

      The best question is why this article now, and the answer is that the MOD bosses have awoken to the probability of Scotland leaving the Union and are trying to see what can be salvaged. They are also trying to influence opinion to support the continuation of their bases on a low rent. I am glad to see that commentators are holding their nerve regarding the quick run down of the bases, post independence and to encourage that by exorbitant rents.

      In short I hope that the MOD realise that they should start spending on replacement bases elsewhere as it will be much cheaper in the long run, whatever the date of independence.

    99. Lizg says:

      While I’m minded to say no, no and no again to this proposal for alsorts of infantile and grown up reasons.
      If we are to consider it ( and that’s why I think it’s being dripped back in to the discussion to normalise the notion of a deal )
      Then we’ve a few other things to consider too.

      Firstly ….. That base becomes “British Intrests Abroad” if we leased it to them and to threaten to close it down no matter how practical geographically invites them to deploy forces to “protect ” these “British Intrests Abroad” they do it all the time…. NATO and the US will count that Base as a part of their over all defences so would most likely agree the Base needs defended.

      Secondly… We would be electing a government every 4 years, obviously ! So what if a government was elected to Holyrood with getting rid of Trident in their manifesto ?
      A four year lease is really no much use to the British so it’s likely to be for much longer and that puts us in a position of not being able to elect a government of our choice that has the practical ability to do the thing we voted for. Without again having to deal with whatever reaction Westminster chooses to have.
      We also run a much greate risk that the British state will do its utmost (more than it normally would) to ensure any party hostile to them having their military on our territory won’t be elected. We’re inviting greater election interference by hosting their weapon

      Thirdly….. To create a longer term Treaty , apart from how dare a fledgling government tie our hands almost immediately, also negates our ability to choose to have nuclear weapons banned being written into our Constitution.
      And/Or if some get around is found for Faslane and Coleport then we are allowing anther country ( the only other Country to have invaded us and visit violence on us ) to do something on Scottish soil that the Scottish Government is itself Constitutionally forbidden from doing.

      Fourthly…..
      Do we know if it’s a given that because of the international rules around nuclear weapons Faslane and Coleport have to be declared/designated as British Sovereign Territory?
      Because that reeks of partition and they might have left Hong Kong ( probably because it was China they’d have to deal with and even the US didn’t fancy that particular stramash ) but they don’t tend to leave any where else. We have to be mindful that they for a very long time are going to be a bigger more powerful Country and that they are very aggressive too. That base from a military point of view is a wee gem even without the neuks. Do we really want to risk that they never leave it?
      There’s no nuclear weapons base on the chaos islands and international law can’t shift their ownership there.

      Fifth….. We are expected to trust the safety of a large part of our country to the privatise everything British, to the keep everything secret British the same lot that can’t run a track and trace system we are to allow to put even more power weapons through the dangerous decoupling process at
      Coleport?
      The same Government who are in the process of reneging on the deal they just signed with the EU the ones breaking the good Friday agreement!
      Do they come across as a Government we want to be locked into another Treaty with?
      Not to mention any concerns at the other end of any lease. It seems to me that if the British can’t rule it they wreak it ( a concern when ever they leave the Clyde to be sure ) do we trust that they will not attempt to put that base beyond use ? It’s certainly in their own Intrests to. Time to plot that parting gift is mibbi no a good move?

      So on balance apart from money ( how badly do we need it or is it just a cushion) to rent that Base to the British bring with it its own problems that aren’t any less than telling them to go ..just different. Is it short term gain for long term pain ?
      But mainly giving them an excuse to occupy Scotland to keep those weapons and or that Base protected for NATO & the US.
      To hand them a reason to ensure Scotland is never powerful enough to evict them!
      I’d have said if there are to be nuclear weapons on the Clyde then they should be ours but that’s a whole other conversation although it is our conversation.
      I’m very much with an accelerated Alex Salmond type plan for the Base… We need it for our Navy and they have to go..

      We are not dealing with the British from a position of power at all here, I’d argue!
      We should only ever consider renting that Base to them if we were absolutely sure that we could indeed get them out any time we wanted to , that’s a real position of power ,and that certainly won’t be in the early years of independence

    100. Andy Ellis says:

      @Willie Hogg 2.13pm

      There are no such bases in rump UK. In your scenario, the only credible response from UK military & political planners would be to negotiate a deal which allowed Trident successor boats to stay until they became redundant. Scottish independence probably represents an existential threat to future replacement systems, as it’s hard to see an independent Scottish state allowing “new” development over and above what is already there.

      It is much more unlikely (whatever Scots unilateralists hope for) that a newly independent Scots government will pass up the money we could charge, and the political capital gained from NATO allies, in negotiating a time limited deal for the existing facilities to remain until redundant.

    101. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “We are not dealing with the British from a position of power at all here, I’d argue!
      We should only ever consider renting that Base to them if we were absolutely sure that we could indeed get them out any time we wanted to , that’s a real position of power ,and that certainly won’t be in the early years of independence”

      Of course we could. Faslane is pretty out of the way and would be easy to blockade if it ever came to a stand-off. That would be a terrible outcome, of course – we don’t want a shooting war with the rUK – but is easily enough circumvented by the terms of the lease.

      No government can be bound by its predecessor, although I very much doubt a party running on a platform of suddenly binning Trident at a cost of losing billions of pounds a year and causing massive ructions both with the rUK and the rest of the international community would have any chance of winning a majority anyway.

    102. SOG says:

      “No government can be bound by its predecessor,”

      Would that apply to any lease agreement?

    103. Willie says:

      Too right Ottomanboi when you say the independence movement is riddled with moles.That goes without saying and we should expect nothing less. That is how Britain works.

      But we can work round that when we know that infiltration is amongst us. And when we know it we can deal with it. And it is without doubt one of the primary reasons that the SNP leadership is the way that it is at present.

      Turning people to do what they otherwise wouldn’t do. Bribery or coercion is the tool. The security services know everything. They can set things up too. And so, if a successful politician, or her husband as an example has a dark secret, wouldn’t they be grateful for it to be kept a secret. Or what of the promise of a good job at the end of their tenure. Secretary General of some large international organisation or similar. The old sez scandal is as old as the hills – Ireland, India it’s tried and tested.

      And that then takes you to Salmond. A danger to the British State the sex allegations come as n o surprise, whilst all the while a Jimmy Saville potentially hides in plain sight influencing the campaign against an innocent Alex Salmond.

      And in that regard under noted is a link to a solicitor advocate piece which summarises very well how the forces of the state conspired to do down Alex Salmond. It’s a good summary and reinforces exactly how the British state operates.

      It also reinforces why we need to get rid of the Sturrells and their ilk. Were they always compromised. Probably not but circumstances change, as people do, as Freddie Scappaticci more than showed.

      https://gordondangerfield.com/2020/11/06/the-institutional-bias-of-copfs/

    104. Andy Ellis says:

      @SOG 2.28pm

      It’s likely rump UK would expect it to be an agreement bound by a treaty if the future of their deterrent depended on it – which of course it would.

      The international community takes a dim view of countries that agree treaties and then break them.

    105. Derek says:

      “Are you saying it WOULDN’T be better to get paid £5-10bn a year for parking Trident rather than paying out hundreds of millions for it?”

      I could live without the income and be happy with both the saving and the absence of a target.

      “…we all live near a nuclear submarine…”

    106. Stan Broadwood says:

      France is the only true Independent European Nuclear Power.

      The English Nuclear deterrent is very much tied to whatever America does.

      Boris probably has to ask America for the firing codes.

      England is just a useful idiot for America to use when and where it pleases.

      That is the true meaning of their ,”Special Relationship”.

    107. Stuart MacKay says:

      An independent Scotland not allowed to join NATO? Don’t make me laugh. Just air the thought of letting the Russian Navy use Loch Eriboll, between Durness and Tongue, as a bad weather haven whenever they needed it and the entire membership of NATO would be lining up to kiss the feet of whoever it took to say no to that decision.

    108. Livionian says:

      Well said. I have believed for a while that an independent Scotland should take a more pragmatic approach towards trident. It means that the ball is in our court, UK would have to listen to us in terms of trade arrangements, currency, international organizations and recognition, a whole host of issues.

      I think the hard left are being nieve when taking a fundamentalist stance towards nukes on our soil as we lose all of this, and London gets upper hand in our terms for leaving the Union. International relations are complicated, trade-off and compromise are essential. Any unilateral disarmament fundamentalists out there are not in touch with geopolitical reality.

      Whilst eventually I would like to see a world without nuclear weapons, to be perfectly honest this desire is way below economic prosperity, civil liberties, accountable democratic institutions, decent healthcare etc on the list. The SNP could also do worse than be flexible on Faslane

    109. Jill Sharpe says:

      Going to take a decade to clean the place up – we’d want it back all clean and sparkly and no hint of radiation.

    110. Suz says:

      “We only want to pay £20m.”

      “Fine, get your submarines to fuck out of our country by the end of next week.”

      “£10bn it is.”

      But what if they don’t pay up AND don’t “get their submarines to fuck out of our country by the end of next week”? What do we do then? We don’t have the ability to get the subs and warheads out of Scotland ourselves, do we? (I don’t know) and even if we did, what do we do with them?

    111. James Che. says:

      Just watched the army veteran playing pipes for rememberance day, the police behaved in a despicable horrific manner and with disrespect for the many people who died to keep our country free from dictatorship.
      Britain seems to be leaning towards a police or military state for the future, where people do not have freedoms,
      And we still are attached.
      If we don’t do it now there will be no chances for our tomorrow’s.

    112. BLMac says:

      So it’s true that the British secret services aren’t monitoring or interfering in Scotland?

      Aye, right…

    113. Fraser Reid says:

      What about just getting rid of everything nuclear as far away as possible from Scotland.

    114. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “I could live without the income and be happy with both the saving and the absence of a target.”

      It’s not just the money. It’s leverage over the rUK every single day in every aspect of our existence as a country. And if there’s ever a nuclear war, btw, we’re fucked whether there are subs in Faslane or not.

    115. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “But what if they don’t pay up AND don’t “get their submarines to fuck out of our country by the end of next week”? What do we do then? We don’t have the ability to get the subs and warheads out of Scotland ourselves, do we?”

      As I’ve said several times already – if things ever got that bad, which would be in nobody’s interests, Faslane is physically easy to blockade, rendering it useless as a base. It’s reached by a narrow sea channel and only a couple of single-carriageway roads.

    116. Lizg says:

      Rev @ 2.23
      I agree that from inside Scotland Faslane and the more valuable Coleport are easy to blockade. Not just because of its remote position either, its utilities especially its water are vulnerable and there’s a whole underground fuel supply direct from Grangemouth that they don’t have a big enough army to guard.Also ironically they have to drive them over the Scottish/ English border to Aldermartin for servicing ( then they’ve the cheek to say a border will only disadvantage us ) and we will control things on the Scottish side.
      But that was kind of my point…if we don’t have them leave from day one and we signal that the use of the base is available then we make it a British Intrest that they will want to defend.
      The only real way to defend the thing because of it’s vulnerability from within Scotland is to be in control of Scotland once again.
      That’s the real risk of leasing it.

      Our real power in the negotiations is to allow Coleport to continue to operate while we sort out assets and liabilities but with nothing written down.To retain the ability to shut it down on day one of independence is our biggest bargaining chip and how long it gets to operate the day after independence day should be the last thing we sign.
      In Faslane the subs are just subs and the missiles are just missiles it takes the process at Coleport to make it nuclear…. so this 10 year to move nuclear weapons stuff is not true we can indeed shut the nuclear aspect of the program down very quickly if we choose too.
      That’s what we should bargain with and not haggling over leases that will be potentially decades long ,that we could never enforce the terms of without risking occupation.
      They’ve taken control of countries much farther away for much less.

    117. Andrew Graham says:

      On rental values, the naval base at Sevastopol reportedly cost Russia $4 billion per annum when the contract was terminated by the tenant in 2014. An historic comparable, but interesting nonetheless:

      https://uk.reuters.com/article/uk-ukraine-crisis-crimea-costs-factbox/factbox-costs-and-benefits-from-russias-annexation-of-crimea-idUKBREA370NY20140408

      Ukraine got cheap natural gas and Russia secured a base for the least important of its four fleets, which had no nukes and an alternative, Russian, location in Novorossiysk. Slightly different bargaining positions in our instance, perhaps:

      https://www.csmonitor.com/World/Security-Watch/2014/0227/Russia-s-naval-base-in-Ukraine-Critical-asset-or-point-of-pride

    118. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “That’s what we should bargain with and not haggling over leases that will be potentially decades long”

      The day those subs sail out for the last time so does our main item of leverage against the rUK. I’d rather like to keep that for the tricky first years of independence, along with the handy tens of billion of pounds in revenue. The 10-20 year timespan of building an alternative UK base is fine by me to get ourselves solidly established as a nation.

    119. CSB says:

      Scotland is welcomed to join EU

      without

      the need to join NATO

      as already several EU members are not in NATO:

      Austria, Finland, Ireland, Sweden, Malta

    120. Fraser Reid says:

      Don’t forget – bath is not in Scotland when saying what you would like…

    121. Stuart MacKay says:

      McHaggis69

      On the viability of other sites your missing the vital point. The subs have to get in and out of port as stealthily as possible. Only sites with deep water access are viable. The English Channel is so shallow the Russians could just drop a couple of concrete blocks on them to sink them. Their comings and goings are also trivially trackable by satellite.

      As far as the price tag for leasing Faslane. You’re getting lost in the details with rateable values. It’s simple economics – supply and demand. The price is whatever an independent Scotland wants to be. The only upper limit is the cost of leasing versus the cost of England invading Scotland to secure the sites along with the rest of the Clyde estuary and the western approaches.

      As far as the morality of leasing the base. Well I think it’s near the end of the queue when it comes to all the choices we have. Ten billion are year for 20 years to end hunger in children or having old folks warm in their houses is a moral dilemma I’ll enthusiastically take responsibility for.

    122. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “Don’t forget – bath is not in Scotland when saying what you would like…”

      I’ve said a thousand times that I’d come home if Scotland became independent, so do wheesht.

    123. ahundredthidiot says:

      Make a bit of bling and hope they don’t go bang is my preference!

      Had a wee play with the map thingy – walloped all 3 of our (main) airports with a china ICBM……..Fort William is looking more and more attractive!

    124. t42 says:

      Biden could offer to rent the UK a ready-made spare berth for the USA built technology, allowing him to quietly cut his own submarine budget.
      Ok, so the sailors won’t enjoy hormone injected beef and chlorinated chicken as much as their Scottish food, but a few containers of HP sauce might hide that.

    125. Lizg says:

      Rev @ 3.09
      In the event of a nuclear war being “pissed and right underneath it” would be my preferred option.
      It is not that I fear from the Weapons on the Clyde.
      An accident on the other hand is a very real possibility and the reason they shouldn’t be there.
      This island is not big enough to safely host these weapons.
      But since they are there the question becomes do we trust the British government ( a foreign power when we’re independent) to ensure they are handled safely at all times?
      Because no amount of rent can recreate such a Base for our use if Faslane and Coleport became unusable
      Not to mention our livestock and produce mibbi even a good portion of our fresh water too depending on the extent of the incident.
      I think we need a indeapth honest analysis of Scotlands wealth with and without the projected rent to really weigh up if it’s at all necessary on balance to consider hosting these weapon for the British because we really need the income they bring…

    126. iain mhor says:

      Faslane, Coulport and Submarines are not the only game in town.
      How much is the rent for the real estate of Cape Wrath? How much for a couple of weeks paintballing, bi-annually, for Western Europe and the US military in and off the waters of Scotland?
      £100 a day and £30 a skull? Or maybe it’s paid in ‘Goodwill & Self-Esteem Vouchers? Perhaps our well placed source could calculate the going rate for us, or should I just check Zoopla…

    127. Alf Baird says:

      Rev Stu is right to raise the realpolitik nature of this matter and what an indy Scotland’s newfound geopolitical bargaining power means.

      I wuld pint out however that Scotland also has major strategic geopolitical power potential in commercial maritime matters as well as military. Aviation is another aspect in our advantage.

      This is due to our strategic location facing the Atlantic Ocean and our natural assets such as deep-water and position on the Great Circle global transport routes. These are primary attributes for developing international transport hubs based on ‘intermediacy’ rather than ‘centrality’.
      https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0966692305000086

      Scotland has been prevented from taking advantage of these attributes by a UK Government focused on maximising economic benefits for the south-east UK. At Holyrood our potential is further blocked by UK civil servants holding to the reserved powers mantra, i.e. Scotland is subordinate to UK objectives, and the inertia of SNP Ministers.

    128. ahundredthidiot says:

      The Piper in London has now been arrested.

      The IMF must be shitting itself about now.
      This will not play well.

    129. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “An accident on the other hand is a very real possibility and the reason they shouldn’t be there.”

      An accident is a microscopically small possibility. There has never since their invention in 1945 been an accidental explosion of a nuclear weapon. It’s actually really difficult to create a nuclear explosion even if you’re TRYING to, otherwise a lot more countries would have nukes, and the chances of one ever happening by mistake are infinitesimal.

      (And as I detailed above, even if a warhead somehow did go pop at Faslane, the likely number of deaths even from such an apocalyptic event would be in the hundreds, not the thousands or tens of thousands. An awful day to be sure, but less than half the number of people who die in car crashes in the UK every year. And again, an academic point since it’s just not going to happen.)

      And in radiation terms, nuclear weapons are barely any more radioactive than a banana.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Banana_equivalent_dose

      You’re at far, far more radiation risk from the nuclear power reactor of a conventionally-armed submarine than you are from a Trident missile.

    130. Dan says:

      https://peterabell.scot/2020/11/08/for-the-sake-of-scotland/

      From the above: “And it must be the SNP. The idea that all pro-independence MSPs are equivalent is political naivety of the most puerile and dangerous kind. Attend to what the British state’s man in Scotland had to say almost exactly a year ago.

      When did this change of position happen as it differs from what Ruth previously stated in the short vid at the start of the following article?

      https://wingsoverscotland.com/the-simple-ruth/

    131. t42 says:

      I’ve just spoke to the Chagos Islanders, they suggest banning subletting.

    132. Republicofscotland says:

      The nukes and the subs must be removed from Faslane/Coulport on the first instance of severely polluting the area, the MoD supercedes SEPA and God only knows just how polluted the region is now.

      I’m reminded of the USA’s base in Okinawa Japan, which has poisoned the whole area including the water supply, the nukes, and the subs must be removed permanently.

      https://theintercept.com/2020/11/07/military-pfas-pollution-japan/

      This must be taken into account even before we reach the ethical, and moral principals of housing them after independence, which I’d rather not do.

      I don’t even want Scotland to be a member of NATO after independence, though I agree there’s an element of safety to being a member. Ethically though NATO was created as a bulwark to Russia/USSR, that threat, if it ever did exist, and that’s debatable has long since gone. NATO now is nothing more that a bully a thug, a well armed and connected force, that pursues its own members goals.

    133. Andy Ellis says:

      @Dan 4.09pm

      I imagine you probably lost a lot of people right after “….peterabell.scot”?

      The idea that the sweary bloviator is in any way equipped to “persuade you of the need for unity, focus and discipline. For Scotland’s sake.” (or indeed of anything else before he began ranting at you for being a proponent of cunning plans and pop up parties) would be funny if it weren’t so desperately Quixotic.

      For someone with his record of abusing those who won’t uncritically accept his own brand of political snake oil, his chances of using the AUOB Assembly as a vehicle to push his cunning plan to somehow force the SNP into a commitment for his Manifesto for Independence seem about as likely as Trump winning a second term.

      If he can’t even change the SNP, why on earth would anyone believe he can somehow bend the Yes movement to his will?

      I see part of his blog strap-line is “No opinion humble” which is a shame, because he has much to be humble about.

    134. Republicofscotland says:

      “The day those subs sail out for the last time so does our main item of leverage against the rUK. I’d rather like to keep that for the tricky first years of independence, along with the handy tens of billion of pounds in revenue. The 10-20 year timespan of building an alternative UK base is fine by me to get ourselves solidly established as a nation.”

      The problem with retaining the notion of leasing Faslane to England, is that the Scottish government would soon get used to the money, and any agreed lease would more than likely be extended depending which party held power in Scotland. Eventually you end up back at square one where Scotland would house the nukes on a long term deal, at a cut down cost, so no that idea isn’t one that I’d promote myself.

      No better to have them sail away South of the border.

    135. BRIAN MACFARLANE says:

      Stu

      I look forward to you coming to live in Helensburgh. It would make all us who live in the kill zone feel so much better. 🙂

    136. Lizg says:

      Rev @ 4.03
      Well as I understand it , Thatcher got a special dispensation from the nuclear regulator to put the more powerful Trident on the Clyde because the base was already there.
      But HMS Clyde didn’t actually meet the safety distances laid down for Trident.
      Also the most dangerous part of the process is when they couple and uncouple the war head from the missile at Coleport and the facility for doing that has to be a designated distance from the sub with all sorts of specification too ..
      So …..that’s what informs my view that these are dangerous and risky to the public.
      Otherwise why all the regulations?
      Not arguing that your wrong but genuinely asking why all that care over them if they are not very dangerous at all?

    137. Republicofscotland says:

      “As I’ve said several times already – if things ever got that bad, which would be in nobody’s interests, Faslane is physically easy to blockade, rendering it useless as a base. It’s reached by a narrow sea channel and only a couple of single-carriageway roads.”

      Yes it would be utterly irresponsible of Holyrood to let relations deteriorate to such a level with our nearest and far more powerful in a military sense neighbour. Though blocking any channels or roads to Faslane would only further incite violence, violence that we could not possibly hope to retaliate to without any armed forces.

      The safest and course of action is to let England remove its nukes, yes there will be animosity but animosity will have already risen against an independent Scotland from Westminster anyway.

    138. Republicofscotland says:

      Of course those that say we should retain England’s nukes on lease basis have very short memories indeed. Is the MoD suddenly going to become super vigilante, at the base if its leased out.

      https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/trident-whistleblower-william-mcneilly-claims-it-easier-enter-sensitive-nuclear-weapons-installations-most-nightclubs-10256832.html

    139. Republicofscotland says:

      Of course then there’s this.

      https://theferret.scot/faslane-500-nuclear-safety-incidents/

    140. deerhill says:

      How much was Scotland’s deficit according to GERS?
      £13 + billion.

      Well, lets make the rent 15 billion for the first year, rising by 1 billion a year.
      What do you mean “thats too much”? OK, get tae….
      Whitehall aren’t the only people who can bandy figures about,but if you don’t think that’s a fair price,you can always base them on the Thames.
      OK, have a think about it and get back to us.

      Also, all negotiations should be conducted under the leadership of people like Craig Murray and Alex Salmond, not some McWoke who will cave at the first English bluster.

    141. Iain More says:

      I think we should lease the nukes back to the infantile English at several Billion English Pesos per year. That or tell Biden you can have Faslane lease free as long as you are President if you help us achieve Independence. Feck the Brits and the Brit Tories. Well the Yanks control those nukes anyway.

    142. Hatuey says:

      He didn’t lose me, Andy. And I’m not offended by swearing either.

      Everything Bell says about AUOB unity is irresistibly correct and rational. What he suggests ought to happen afterwards with that collective power is perplexing though, given the current character of the SNP and its leadership;

      ”I urge all those who consider themselves part of the Yes movement to set aside personal animosities and partisan interests and work to facilitate a unified movement capable of lending its strength to a Scottish Government charged with taking the bold, decisive, assertive action that will be required if Scotland is to be rescued from its present predicament.“

      At the moment we’d be lending our strength to a party embroiled in utter crap. We’ve had five solid years of utter crap. By crap I mean a party that has done virtually fuck all towards independence, fuck all towards the Yes movement, and worse than fuck all towards AUOB – they threw an AUOB organiser in jail ffs.

      It would be, to use Bells own words, “political naivety of the most puerile and dangerous kind” to even contemplate giving Sturgeon and the bunch of crooked bastards in her government one atom of support.

      AUOB should dedicate itself to getting rid of them, not supporting them. The big mistake Bell made is his article, conspicuous by its absence, was leaving out consideration of the need and requirement for Sturgeon to be replaced.

      And I’d recommend people read Bell’s article. Read everything you can get and never, ever listen to morons who tell you what you should and shouldn’t read.

      And Andy Ellis, if you aren’t able to distinguish between the man and the ball, the message and the messenger, you really are going to struggle in life, with this and much else.

      https://peterabell.scot/2020/11/08/for-the-sake-of-scotland/

    143. Republicofscotland says:

      “It’s not just the money. It’s leverage over the rUK every single day in every aspect of our existence as a country.”

      Well, that’s probably why we’ll remain in NATO, no NATO member may attack another NATO member. I’m not saying Article 5 would be invoked, but the rUK would need to think carefully about its actions.

      Of course there’s no written agreement that the rUK wouldn’t attack Scotland even if we did house their nukes.

    144. Alex says:

      A most illuminating piece. And entirely correct. Faslane is one chip we can use. Ruthlessly.

    145. Alec Lomax says:

      Brave new Scotland with its own nuclear arsenal. Tartan clad Trident.

    146. shug says:

      I think the head of MI5 might better serve his time by following up the Russian money flowing into the conservative party and key members!! and indeed any other foreign state.

      If Westminster continues to be problematic for Scottish democracy then come independence the cost of allowing Westminster access to Scottish assets like Fastlane might become very expensive indeed.

      If NATO don’t want us perhaps the Russians or Chinese will want to lease a base or two (one careful owner)

    147. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “I look forward to you coming to live in Helensburgh. It would make all us who live in the kill zone feel so much better”

      I have friends in Garelochhead. But as I demonstrated with the links above, Helensburgh in fact ISN’T in the “kill zone”. If a nuke went off at Faslane, pretty much nobody in Helensburgh would die, and certainly not unless they hung around waiting for fallout.

    148. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “The problem with retaining the notion of leasing Faslane to England, is that the Scottish government would soon get used to the money, and any agreed lease would more than likely be extended depending which party held power in Scotland.”

      Fine by me, and also by most of the Scottish public according to all the polling evidence.

    149. Oneliner says:

      Something else to ponder on this Remembrance Day

      https://britishseafishing.co.uk/the-sinking-of-fv-antares/

    150. shug says:

      BTW a short term lease for the next 5-10 year max, payable in dollars. There will be no new trident
      I would say a guarantee of no interference in Scottish affairs but their word is not worth the paper it is written on alternative penalties need to apply.

    151. John Jones says:

      All this talk of leasing/renting Faslane, how about taking a look at Cuba /Guantamino to see how well that worked out.How many years have the Cubans wanted the US out?
      No way any foreign bases in Scotland at any price.
      By the way previous comment about Russian planes in our airspace, never happened, they were in the international air corridor deemed our area of interest.along with all the other foreign air traffic.

    152. iain mhor says:

      Dunno about nuclear warheads being accidentally detonated and ensuing (limited?) carnage. However I do recall, years ago, a safety briefing at the whisky bond at Port Dundas; which reckoned that in the event of a ‘major incident’, the fallout of the firestorm and blast radius would be pretty grim as far down as Queen St. Station… fairly wakes you out of a snooze.

      On topic, re: NATO – recall that Glen Douglas munitions base is a NATO facility (their largest European facility) albeit operated primarily by the UK MOD.
      Also, on the subject of err.. disrupting access to bases – as the Rev pointed out, it’s not that difficult – ASLEF managed that in 2003, by the simple expedient of train drivers refusing to move shipments. Much wailng and gnashing of teeth all round.
      I don’t have the figures for the estimated rent of Glen Douglas real estate (or Beith etc) sadly, but here’s the old Graudian article at the time instead.

      https://www.theguardian.com/uk/2003/jan/09/politics.military

    153. mr thms says:

      Tomorrow night the House of Lords will vote to remove the six clauses from the Internal Market Bill that breach the EU Withdrawal Agreement/Treaty. I wonder what Boris Johnson will do and how Joe Biden will react? The countries of the UK are free to to set their own standards for goods and services when powers are returned from the EU but the UK government want the countries to accept goods and services from other parts of the UK that have different standards. Which is very odd. It suggests Brexit has made the countries more independent of each other. The Internal Market Bill should not be imposed. There needs to be a change in the constitution of the UK so the different countries of the UK have the power to mahe their own agreements/treaties. Seems to me independence for all the countries of the UK is the best solution. No need for a referendum.

    154. Willie Hogg says:

      Andy Ellis 2.34

      You mis the point that the MOD have just woken up to this threat to their bases. They are now trying to reduce our expectations to a viable figure, so that they may lease them from us. The figure we demand must be large enough to force them to build new bases.

      All the waffle about bases south of the border is a further attempt to obscure the real cost of replacing them and undermine our resolve. They clearly think we will accept a viable rent and want to establish it now, for if they can’t the sensible thing to do is to start building new bases elsewhere.

    155. Hatuey says:

      I have no moral or ethical problem with them leasing Faslane and the nukes staying but think of the fun we’d have telling them to get to fuck. For that reason and that alone, I’d vote to kick them out.

    156. Camz says:

      Why? Drip-drip-drip.

    157. Marshall Adair says:

      I may have missed it but does the MoD own the site outright? And if so, surely it will still own it after Scotland’s independence, just like any other foreign ownership (eg farms and plantations)? I agree that it would be good if the MoD pays an annual fee to carry on there, but if Scotland then bans the use of nuclear subs, would Scotland not have to pay the MoD a huge sum to buy the site off them and/or to compensate them for, in effect, rendering the site redundant?

    158. Republicofscotland says:

      “Fine by me, and also by most of the Scottish public according to all the polling evidence.”

      That may be so, but I’m under the impression that the current Scottish government opposes Trident and the renewal of it, which might equate to in an independent Scotland, if the SNP are in power, to not giving the public the option of leasing out the base, only the removal of the weapons.

    159. Andy Ellis says:

      @ Willie Hogg 2.34

      I disagree. Doubtless some in the establishment have been planning and strategising the “what ifs” of Scottish independence and its impact on the “independent” strategic deterrent for a while. Their problem is that there are no plausible alternatives in England as many others have already pointed out. That leaves 2 stark choices:

      1. scrap the lot and write the opportunity cost of all that investment off with little to show for it; or
      2. come to a reasonable negotiated settlement with the Scots to allow them to be used for a fixed period until they become obsolescent, and plan in the meantime to use the resources in future for something more constructive.

      Option 2 is far more likely, and gives Holyrood all the cards. They don’t have the cash to build alternatives in current economic climate, nor would they ever do so because it’d be an admission that the union is doomed.

    160. Pete Barton says:

      Oh, not to mention there might be a whole bunch of oil bearing pockets in the firth of Clyde, which can’t be accessed as the MOD sail their Trident vessels up and down there.

      I wonder if that comes into the equation?

    161. Stuart MacKay says:

      Andy Ellis

      Love the new image. You are the MAX!

    162. Andy Ellis says:

      @Hatuey 5.15pm

      I’m not offended by swearing per se either. I am put off by the alacrity with which roasters like Bell use it liberally to abuse those who are on his side but have the temerity to disagree with him. There are almost as many on his block list as on Pete Wishart’s I suspect.

      As for you accusing me of playing the man rather than the ball WRT Mr Bell, well….it is to laugh! 🙂

      You and I probably agree on a fair amount on many issues, so why you’d be defending him and his half baked ideas is beyond me. His plan is incoherent, and he’s the last person in Scotland I’d trust to help deliver it. He’s literally spent the past few months doing little else but rubbishing cunning plans and pop up parties.

      I’m quite able to distinguish between the man and the ball…and a heid the ba’ like Peter Bell. If folk like him are in the forefront of the movement, we might as well all give up and start planning for the best devo-max settlement we can get. He’s about as likely to help us reach the sunny uplands of independence as he is to become prima ballerina at the Bolshoi.

    163. Pete Barton says:

      Interesting that the GCHQ mannie tells us that you can’t ask a NATO base to remove it’s weapons, oh no sirree.

      Spain successfully did.

      But then, there was a wee ‘accident’ offshore, wasn’t there.

      Do we have to wait for that to happen, or just assume it was a one off?

    164. Andy Ellis says:

      @Stuart MacKay

      “Ah – love – the walks over soft grass, the smiles over candlelight, the fights over just about everything else…” 🙂

    165. Effijy says:

      The new Chinese built Nuclear Power Station that England is building
      and Scotland can chip in for, where do they hope to dump the nuclear
      waste for the next few thousand years?

      Will England take over 90% of the nuclear waste currently dumped in Scotland ?

      Thurso and Dalgety Bay already set off Geiger Counters.
      Dogs have picked up particles and died and no doubt human cancer developed.

    166. Muscleguy says:

      There will soon be a legal argument against giving Trident a home more than a millisecond more than it absolutely requires. Honduras has just ratified the UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons becoming the 50th state to do so and ensuring it will come into legal force in late January next year.

      UKGov are very aware of this. They recently nationalised the private company which manufactures our nuclear warheads. Why? simply because it is much harder to sue the govt than a private company. The lawsuits will come nevertheless, domestically and in the international courts.

      In the wake of Brexit the UK needs all the friends it can get yet it is in danger of becoming a pariah state. The rule of law here means it is likely to be the low hanging fruit of the Western Nuclear club.

      Trade deals or Trident could well be the choice facing the UK govt very soon.

      IF iScotland were to strike any sort of lease longer than that required for a move and rUK will have around 2 years from a Yes vote to ready one don’t forget then we too would be vulnerable to lawsuits and sanctions. We want to be members of the UN but we are in breach of a major UN Treaty? We will be blackballed.

      Trident must go and it must go soonest. My own opinion is that from Independence Day NO nuclear warheads can enter Scotland by convoy. They can only leave. There are lots of spares in the bunkers above Coulport. Bunkers at Aldermaston say can be constructed fairly quickly.

      “Billions” in lease fees will be as nothing when the world stops buying whisky or salmon. What if the continuing possession of illegal weapons causes us to be blackballed from the EU or EFTA? None of the EFTA countries is nuclear armed. Remember we need NOBODY in the EU to veto our membership. By retaining Trident, for money, we will give them a pretext.

      Can we afford to be like rUK, isolated in the world and trading under WTO rules? No trade deals?

      I cannot believe you are ignorant about the Treaty Rev.

    167. Effijy says:

      There is a great wealth of oil in the Firth of Clyde.
      Westminster will not allow drilling as it would lend
      weight again to the Independence campaign.

      They use the excuse of their nuclear subs potentially be
      hindered by oil rigs there but the nuclear subs are capable
      of sailing through a narrow channel only a few feet wider than
      the sub itself?

      Would very expensive satellite navigation on board and any oil rigs
      Firmly maxed out, they could miss any rigs by a country mile in that area.

      As soon as the North Sea is dry in 50 years, then it will be safe for Westminster to drill.

      Let us remember they have told Scots the oil would run out in every decade since the 70’s.
      They just laid a pipe to bring oil ashore for the next 50 years!

      That’s a 100 year long lie from Westminster and some Scots trust these people?

    168. Andy Ellis says:

      @Muscleguy

      Sorry to intrude on your rose tinted view of the world, but the treaty won’t change anything much in the short to medium term. The idea that states with nuclear terms are going to abandon their weapons as a result of the UN voting against them is for the birds, sorry.

      The EU or EFTA have neither the power nor the will to act as you are asserting they might. NATO members in both are members of a military alliance with nuclear deterrence at its core. Piously wishing it were otherwise might make folk feel better, but it doesn’t bring a nuclear free NATO or world one iota closer.

      The deal on Trident post indy is up for the Scottish people and their government to decide after independence is achieved. It’s not in the gift of the SNP or any other party now. The majority of Scots support NATO membership. Even if they’d ultimately prefer a Scotland which banned nuclear weapons from its territory (as quite a few including NATO members do) it is common sense for us to negotiate a deal. Imposing ridiculous conditions like those you propose is a short cut to losing support and ultimately the struggle for independence itself.

    169. Lothianlad says:

      MI5 are certainly doing their job infiltrating the SNP alright.

      58% of the population support Independence and we are no closer to independence under the current SNp regime!

      I’ve been posting previously about how the british secret service have infiltrated and are influencing policy in the SNP at the highest levels.

      The enemies of Scottish Independence are hard at work In the SNP Sg!

      They have been for years

    170. Robert graham says:

      Eh re the question was raised about the MOD actually owning the site where the Subs are based , Seems pretty simple ,

      As it has been said if is MOD Properly then after the Divorce one eight of it belongs to us , I bags the main gate and the access roads that should cover all our requirements I believe ,

      The internationally recognised 3 mile limit takes care of the backdoor and we control the front door ,

      Your move Bawjaws
      take yer time son
      we ain’t moving but you might have to ! .

    171. Confused says:

      NATO – the trouble starts when you try to LEAVE such organisations; like the camorra or the 33rd degree of the scottish rite. Our seas are full of SOSUS microphones anyway, and the cables need plugged in somewhere.

      Given the spineless (infiltrated?/sold out?) nature of the scotgov, it is hard to see them, on independence, ever being able to play “hardball” across the negotiating table

      – we would end up paying the english to keep their nuclear weapons here, for our protection, agreeing not to form our own armed forced and giving faslane english protectorate status with a 999 year lease; on the way out they would pick up the tab for the lattes and the muffins too

      to do it properly, you need a bit of game theory; if OTOH you had a scottish leader who expressed (credibly) a desire to maintain “an independent scottish nuclear deterrent” and insisted on 2 boats, half the missiles and warheads …

      well – you would not see them for dust; to get rid, you act as if you want to keep …

    172. robertknight says:

      Wouldn’t worry about where the Kingdom of England & Northern Ireland want to park their ‘Boomers’… they won’t be able to afford to replace the current ones, given the economy is tanking, and that’s BEFORE Boris’ easy-peasy Brexit has started to bite and Scotland has packed its bags.

      Why do you think the Head of UK Armed Forces is in the news bleating about a new world war on Remembrance Sunday of all days? Shit-scared the Defence Budget will be slashed to ribbons to pay for the COVID/Brexit cluster-f**k! No more shiny new toys for him and his generals and admirals to play with.

    173. wull says:

      Nuclear weapons are simply not acceptable. I know too many people who became convinced of the need for Scottish independence on account of that principle. And I wholeheartedly agree with them.

      This does not make various other forms of warfare any the more acceptable.

      I want an independent Scotland to take a moral standpoint, not only on this but also on various other issues. Right from the word ‘go’. And this one of the issues – maybe the most important one – that will make the world sit up, and take note of this new Scotland that, like one risen from the dead, now sits among them.

      Even if such a stance costs us money, or some leverage with our southern neighbours, so what? Some things are sacrosanct, and fostering and preserving human life is one of them. Scotland saying this loud and clear puts us on the map right away.

      The end does not justify the means.

      If such a decision, and maybe others like them, makes us financially poorer, even at the beginning – so be it. That is a price worth paying.

      Independence is about reclaiming Scotland, not leasing it out.

      There no doubt will be some financial problems to be faced in a newly independent Scotland, but their solution cannot be found in any arrangement that allows Trident to stay on the Clyde.

      The same goes for how to steer and re-invent the relationship we will have to forge with our erstwhile, so-called ‘partner in Union’, now our newly independent neighbour to our south. She will be ‘newly independent’, internally transformed, in such a way that she will very quickly have to re-envisage herself completely. She will no longer be what she once thought she was.

      In those circumstances, we will have to give her the right message, right from the start. It is not our job to lessen the shock to her system that our independence will cause her. Or to lessen the pain that she will feel running all the way through every pose of her body politic, as her delusions of grandeur are unmasked, and she has to look at her broken self-image in her own cracked mirror.

      Leasing out bits of ourselves to her, even temporarily, would be precisely the wrong message. Making her think she can still carry on playing the same kind of games, the same old tricks she always did with us. No way!

      The economic issues we will be facing are not about Trident, and cannot be solved by a compromise around these intrinsically immoral weapons. Our economic problems will be about what they have always been about: fairness, justice and financial distribution.

      These issues, even if they are tackled sensibly and gradually, will not be resolved by increasing resources by every means available, no matter what the moral cost. Money from Trident is blood money – at least potentially, and therefore in intent.

      Increased resources that continue to be used in corrupt ways won’t solve anything anyway. Just look at our present SG, and imagine what they would do with more money coming in to them. Since we missed out on getting an ‘Oil Fund’, are they going to set up a ‘Trident Fund’ …? Horrible name, horrible idea, perish the thought …

      These wasters in the SG would have even more money to waste. The lawyers would have a field day. Just imagine – more and more cases to concoct and bring to court against each other, as they play ever more toxic and dangerous political games with one another, at everyone’s expense. More walls to spaff the increased dosh up against, and more pockets to fill. Or maybe less pockets, but filling them fuller than ever.

      Even if it does not turn out as bad as that, these two issues – nuclear disarmament and economic resources in an independent Scotland – should not be confused with each other. The basic question is still this: What kind of Scotland do we really want?

      The world does not need another mini-version of England foisted upon it. We need to be – or become – genuinely different. Right from the word ‘go’.

      We need to get off to a good start, because how we start is how we will continue. Getting rid of Trident is a mighty message that the world needs to hear. Scotland needs to stand up, and be counted.

    174. Andrew Morton says:

      Assuming we do allow RUK to keep Faslane, we should not allow it to be defended by RUK soldiers. Scottish defence personnel should be in control of external security.

    175. Republicofscotland says:

      On independence and remaining in NATO, and with Trident hopefully across the border, I think England’s main goal as far as Scotland is concerned would be to try and stop the growth of its economy.

      We can possibly see what the future of an independent Scotland might be like, with England in mind, when we look at the Republic of Ireland’s relationship to the UK, namely England.

      Whilst the RoI isn’t a direct member of NATO it has ties with the organisation through the Partnership for Peace Programme, and it also has backing from the EU which we saw in action during Brexit, the RoI also has powerful friends in Washington, which Scotland does not.

    176. Lizg says:

      Marshall Adair @ 6.19
      The MOD probably do own the Base….but who owns the MOD?
      Remember when they bought / acquired it they did so on our behalf and with our tax money too.
      Just every bit as much as they did horse guards parade in London and all the other MOD sites around these island…..we paid our share for it all too Marshall.
      They ( the British ) have enjoyed the use of our land and waters for a very long time but I don’t think title deeds are going to come into play here..

      And just as an FYI…..
      I have heard but have no real way of knowing that the MOD buy every bit of land that comes on to the market around Faslane and Coleport.
      If that’s true there’s quite a bit of ground due to come back into Scottish hands ( land we already bought) so we should keep a wee eye on what Holyrood does with that…not forgetting that it should be included in any future lease arrangements if that’s what gets decided.

    177. ahundredthidiot says:

      Good footage on YT of a meteor hitting Norway last night.

      That is literally across the road.

    178. Willie B says:

      Rev. Stuart Campbell says:
      8 November, 2020 at 12:07 pm
      “It is simply a case of supply and demand – just check with estate agents, see what other nuclear submarine bases are on offer, at what price, and negotiate based on that. Easy peasy.”

      Exactly. The negotiations would be over before elevenses on day 1.

      “We want £10bn.”

      “We only want to pay £20m.”

      “Fine, get your submarines to fuck out of our country by the end of next week.”

      “£10bn it

      Sorry the price just went up another £2bn a year, now we only accept gold or dollars, pound sterling isn’t worth the paper it’s written on

    179. Republicofscotland says:

      Wull @7.40pm.

      Wull.

      I agree with much of what you say in that comment, there must surely be many countries that want to be something that they are not. The road to hell is paved with good intentions as they say, we might want to fufil our potential but will our government or our neighbouring countries governments allow such a noble deed in this ever increasing interlinked world.

    180. McHaggis69 says:

      Andy Ellis says:
      8 November, 2020 at 12:34 pm
      @McHaggis69 12.23

      “I’ll break my WoS purdah briefly to respond to your deeply disingenuous post. Faslane and Coulport aren’t a semi-detached house in the suburbs or a commercial property on the High St. The britnat have literally no alternative credible home for WMD’s.”

      I’ll break my self-imposed purdah of this thread to take issue with the clear accusation that somehow I’m someone who ‘values semi detached houses in the suburbs’…

      I assess the value of military sites all over Scotland – Including Faslane and Coulport. I have 31 years experience of doing so. I’ve inspected various military sites in England too. I’m not a fucking residential surveyor by any stretch of the imagination.

      If that is ‘disingenious’ then I don;t quite know how to describe your contribution Andy.

      As for not other sites in England?
      Seriously?
      You expect WM to pay us ‘billions’ per annum when they could temporarily move the subs even across to the fucking US if they wanted to (and although that may break some proliferation agreement do you think WM would really care?).
      Two nuclear docks exist already in Devonport.
      The thought of spending a couple of billion over say 10 years or paying us 10’s of billions in ‘rent’ for Faslane is no contest, it really isn’t. I do think the Rev has acknowledged somewhere that WM will ride roughshod over any protests to just get the thing built elsewhere.

      Now, to finish.

      If anyone here has *better qualifications than 31 years placing rental values on military sites’ and has (like me) actually inspected Coulport and Faslane to carry out said valuations, then come at me with your facts. Otherwise I might as well be reading fucking ‘Karen from facebooks’ view on the matter.

      So Andy.
      Go back to your purdah and stop embarrassing yourself.

    181. Lizg says:

      Andrew Morton @ 7.44
      I don’t think that can happen Andrew the *nuclear proliferation body* set the rules around these weapons.
      They are under the control of the British government and there’d be a shit load of problems if that were to change.
      No one can just hand over control of these weapons to another country.
      That’s probably why staying the UK continuer state really really matters to Westminster and they muddy the language away from two countries ending their Union.
      Don’t buy that narrative Andrew , it’s our MOD , our Pound and even our Union Jack too.
      We shouldn’t be so quick to agree that we’re walking away from all of it….. why can’t we use the brand recognition of the Saltire and the Jack …why should England get the St George Cross and the Jack for itself?
      Unless of course there’s a trade off….. that’s where I worry who is doing the negotiations here….!!!

    182. Pete Barton says:

      Good input, McHaggis.

      Thankyou for that.

      Serious informed comments are always appreciated.

    183. Colin Alexander says:

      This is all pie in the sky until we ACHIEVE the restoration of our national sovereignty.

      Currently, there is no realistic prospect of that happening via the SNP or by any other means.

      The likes of the SNP, ISP, or others subserviently looking to British Imperial devolution to deliver indy, is just repeating the mistakes of the last 21 years.

    184. Lizg says:

      McHaggis 69 @ 8.01
      OT
      Do you have any information about Fort George?
      This is a bug bear of mine.
      For me the MOD have no more right to sell it than they do Edinburgh Castle, yet it seems they intend to.
      I can’t see them being able to sell it to anyone other than the Scottish Government and that means we pay twice as the Scots built the thing in the first place….if the Scottish government did buy it!
      Then the money will go to the UK treasury I’d imagine , and if it becomes part of the Independence trade off we pay a bloody third time.
      Can you tell us anything?

    185. Jimac says:

      Here’s ISP’s take on it.. https://www.isp.scot/gunboat-diplomacy/

    186. Ottomanboi says:

      Republicofscotland 8pm
      Interlinked, until somebody pulls the plug….all that global connectivity is just cyber illusion. Not actually ‘real’.
      Humans need to physically connect again, that’s real.

    187. Lizg says:

      Colin Alexander @ 8.11
      You say this every time we are discussing our ideas of what could or should happen in an independent Scotland Colin.
      Do you not think we know it’s currently all academic?
      But surely you’d agree that exchanging thoughts and refining proposals is far better than running about wondering what to do with our Yes vote when it happens …???
      This is no independence for independence sake and then back tae the day job.
      Many , very many, of us are looking to build something here and you’ve been around long enough to know that Colin and if ye don’t ye should …..

    188. McHaggis69 says:

      “OT
      Do you have any information about Fort George?
      This is a bug bear of mine.”

      Been there lots of times.
      And no I won’t be sharing any information about specific sites. For obvious reasons.

      Its a cracking site and you’ll be aware is already open as a ‘visitor attraction’ anyway. Go see it if you haven’t already.

      I’m bowing out again, unless of course someone decides to have another dig at me.
      The whole point of even joining the thread was to confirm the facts that there is a current and viewable £20million or thereabouts rental valuation on Coulport and Faslane. Thats just an inconvenient fact. But a fact nonetheless.

      My expert view is yes, we could quite easily force a higher rent from Westminster.
      Would it be £1billion per annum? Possibly. We have a strong hand. Westminster know it will cost £10bliion and 10 years to build a new one.

      Would it be £10billion per annum or more? – fucking NO chance. Ye can get in the sea with that nonsense.

      Funny thing is someone somewhere on this thread told me WM didn’t have the money to build a new one, but seems to think the money to rent the site at £10billion would be available every year. Crazy stuff.

    189. Ian Brotherhood says:

      Just popping in to say, as someone who knows next to fuck-all about this subject (because I’ve been having vivid nightmares about it for as long as I can remember and trying to think about it ‘rationally’ makes me sweat) this has been a great thread.

      Cheers all.

      😉

    190. Andy Ellis says:

      @McHaggis 8.01pm

      You’re not just disingenuous you’re hilarious too. You honestly think the future Scots government is going to base the settlement on Derek from the Valuation Departments assessment of what the valuation of Faslane and Coulport is?

      There IS nowhere else to build it. No site in England is suitable. Not one. Even if there was one, it’d take years and billions the britnats (particularly their defence budget) simply don’t have.

      Your qualifications, however impressive, are immaterial to the issue at hand, because they have no bearing on the outcome of any eventual settlement. We’re not offering to rent them some random piece of land at £x and acre, we’re holding the Sword of Damocles over their much vaunted independent nuclear deterrent.

      Making some bogus point that the matter rests on the “ordinary” valuation of sites you may assess as part of your day job now, divorced from the general context, is fatuous.

    191. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “The whole point of even joining the thread was to confirm the facts that there is a current and viewable £20million or thereabouts rental valuation on Coulport and Faslane. Thats just an inconvenient fact. But a fact nonetheless.

      My expert view is yes, we could quite easily force a higher rent from Westminster.
      Would it be £1billion per annum? Possibly. We have a strong hand. Westminster know it will cost £10bliion and 10 years to build a new one.

      Would it be £10billion per annum or more? – fucking NO chance. Ye can get in the sea with that nonsense.”

      That isn’t a point, it’s a mad assertion that totally misses the point. We’re not selling it to build a fucking Tesco on. We’re not leasing the LAND. We’re leasing a PRE-MADE NUCLEAR SUBMARINE AND MISSILE BASE. If you can find me one of those on Zoopla for comparison purposes, go for it. It’s the difference between the Rolling Stones hiring out some wasteland in Mount Florida for a gig and hiring out Hampden Park. (No jokes about Hampden also being a wasteland.)

      Otherwise it’s worth whatever they’ll pay for it, and since nukes are as essential as oxygen to Westminster and they have no alternatives, they’ll pay just about anything we ask. It’s a seller’s market because THERE’S ONLY ONE OF THESE FOR SALE AND WE’VE GOT IT. They have plenty of money to build a new one, because they can print as much money as they like. What they DON’T have is 10-20 years in which they’re prepared to have no nuclear deterrent.

    192. shiregirl says:

      Someone tell Neil Mackay to keep away from the Robert Ludlum novels, please.

    193. Pete Barton says:

      Haud oan peeps!

      As Craig Murray and others will testify, there are international protocols involved in disentangling places from one another.

      Especially when dangerous kit and destabilisation of economies are concerned.

      Unless you happen to tell the international community to gtf.

      Then you’ve no friends..suddenly, you’re the Donald.

      So let’s stop haranguing over the details, rather look to the methodology used currently to mediate disputes etc between so called civilised states.

    194. Pete Barton says:

      Unless, of course you want to go down the Armenia/Azerbaijan route.

    195. McHaggis69 says:

      sheesh –

      Andy first.
      My valuations are of the whole base. Land and buildings in existing use. For annual rent. It also actually includes some items of plant and machinery too, the berths, jettys, the lot.

      There are *plenty* sites in England that with suitable will (which there would be obviously) and cash (which somehow you think isnt available to build a site but *is* available to rent a site?!?) to build it.

      None are ideal but all of them are possible – 5 I could rattle off the top of my head. All have been extensively investigated. All have problems. None insurmountable.

      Rev –
      The RV is the rent for the land and all the buildings on it plus some other plant and machinery items. Thats what the RV of both sites is.
      Look I wouldn’t dream of telling you how to be a journalist. You seem quite content to tell me who has *inspected* and *published* valuation reports on these two very specialised site, that I am making wild assertions. Seriously?

      Further, you don’t need actual comparisons of rentals from other bases to gauge the rental value of the sites. If you were a specialist surveyor, you’d know that.
      These kinds of sites are not valued like a tesco. If only it were that easy.
      For clarity, we work on whats called the ‘contractors approach’ – simple terms? decap the cost of building the base and providing the land.

      You also seem to think I’m arguing against you but I’m plainly not. The best evidence of rental value for all the land and all the buildings on those two sites is *published*. Its just short of £20million pa.

      Yes, we hold all the cards so we could up that. But you have to up that by 50x to get to just £1billion. Thats not an insubstantial uplift in anyones terms.

      You deal in facts.
      It is a fact the RV (which is a rental value) of both sites is below £20million

      Like I said, if you have more than 31 years experience of actually putting rental valuations on specialist military sites AND have inspected both Coulport and Faslane then thats great. I have.

      I might have thought you’d have actually welcomed some expert input.

      Genuinely now, I’m out – do your best to slag me off. I’m done trying to persuade you. I’ve had easier discussions with staunch ranjurs fans re: independence for Scotland on Facebook.

      Peace to you both.

    196. Colin Alexander says:

      I see this as the BritNats / SNP pulling the indy-movement’s wee string and we all start our patter like Woody or Buzz Lightyear toys from Toy Story films: “To infinity and beyond!”.

      It’s back to the BritNats setting the topic of debate and the indy-movement believing it has to be addressed cos some BritNat says it.

      It’s a start of all the same crap from Indyref1 about how we are gonnae dae this and dae that. How Scotland will be SNP utopia.

      By all means dream your dreams, if it makes youse happy.

      Me. I’d rather be talking about how to replace an SNP British colonial administration with a parliament that serves Scottish sovereignty by representing and upholding Scotland’s people’s sovereign will.

      As it is Remembrance Sunday, Mr Lincoln’s words are apt for Scotland:

      “…that these dead shall not have died in vain—that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom—and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth”.

    197. Lizg says:

      McHaggis69 @ 8. 26
      Aw that’s a wee shame….and yes I go every year to Fort George and never get tired of it…
      And I don’t think it’s the money that’s the problem for Westminster, it’s that they built the Olympic water park on the site and now it’s full of private boats.
      Therefore those that can afford said boats and keeping them on the state funded infrastructure are those who will never be asked to budge up for Trident…. same as it ever was

    198. Andy Ellis says:

      @Peter Barton

      What lessons do you think Azerbaijan/Armenia or Russia/Ukraine have to tell us? I’m not saying our situation is totally unique or without any precedent, but I think we have to be pretty careful about applying other situations to ours.

      As situations in Catalonia and Quebec show, there are as many (more?) differences as there are similarities, and it has always been *sort of* assumed that those 3 examples have more commonalities than say former African / Asian colonies or the collapse of the USSR or Yugoslavia for example.

      That cosy assumption took a bit of a knock with the suppression of the recent Catalan attempt at secession of course, but I don’t think conjuring the ghost of communal conflict à la Nagorno Karabakh or the Balkans is either helpful or realistic.

      There hasn’t been a precedent for our situation: the Ukraine did want rid of nuclear weapons, but the Russians had plenty of other options for taking former Soviet weapons in the Ukrainian SSR.

    199. deerhill says:

      The point I was trying to make in my original post was, requiring £15billion p.a. increasing. will concentrate the English MOD mind wonderfully. If we ask for 15 million they will just piss us about and still think they have the upper hand. ” Relax boys we’ve bought off the daft Jocks as usual”.

    200. Willie B says:

      McHaggis, one thing everyone seems to forget is what that base is stopping, remember there are oil reserves in the Clyde that are not able to be drilled for, all because of Faslane, and what was the Holy Loch when the American Polaris boats used it.
      It was deemed that rigs would be a navigation hazard so the Brit government deemed that oil licenses would not be granted, so loss of that revenue could easily be added onto the back of any rental evaluations, and that would Have been the ideal Place for a newly started Scottish state owned oil company to begin drilling

    201. Colin Alexander says:

      My view is that the only proposal should be achieving national sovereignty.

      The debate should be framed around: should Scotland be ruled by another country or should Scotland’s people rule Scotland?

      The debate should be about freedom v British Imperial colonial servitude, not arguing the price of everything from submarine bases to the price of text messages and postage stamps in an indy-Scotland.

      In that context, the idea that we achieve freedom after 300 years of slavery, and then allow even one single metre of Scottish soil or water to be home to ANY military bases of our former Imperial masters is simply ludicrous.

      Absolutely no. Even if no nukes were involved, the idea of the English Imperial military forces raising their flag over Scotland’s sovereign territory is unacceptable.

    202. Willie B says:

      Lizg says:
      8 November, 2020 at 8:14 pm
      McHaggis 69 @ 8.01
      OT
      Do you have any information about Fort George?
      This is a bug bear of mine.
      For me the MOD have no more right to sell it than they do Edinburgh Castle, yet it seems they intend to.
      I can’t see them being able to sell it to anyone other than the Scottish Government and that means we pay twice as the Scots built the thing in the first place….if the Scottish government did buy it!
      Then the money will go to the UK treasury I’d imagine , and if it becomes part of the Independence trade off we pay a bloody third time.
      Can you tell us anything
      Fort George is due to close in the next ten years, along with Rosyth, Redford Barracks, and Glencorse Barracks some of which is happening by 2025

    203. Dan says:

      Lest We Forget on Remembering Day that they used to cut up missile launch tubes under The Cooperative Threat Reduction Program, rather than build more of fuckers…

      https://www.flickr.com/photos/dod_dtra/4314558120

      The whole DODDTRA flckr site is worth a peruse through the albums to remind oneself of just a little of what the military machine gets up to.

      https://www.flickr.com/people/dod_dtra

      I note their “mission statement”:

      The Defense Threat Reduction Agency safeguards America & its allies from Weapons of Mass Destruction (chem, bio, radiological, nuclear & high-yield explosives)

    204. Andy Ellis says:

      @McHaggis69 9.04pm

      *sighs*

      “My valuations are of the whole base. Land and buildings in existing use. For annual rent. It also actually includes some items of plant and machinery too, the berths, jettys, the lot.”
      – So what? It signifies nothing WRT any future bi-lateral deal or treaty between Scotland and rump UK. The sunk costs of the facilities they’ve built would all have to be replicated in rump UK. That would take many years and billions of pounds they simply can’t afford. It’s pure fantasy.

      “There are *plenty* sites in England that with suitable will (which there would be obviously) and cash (which somehow you think isnt available to build a site but *is* available to rent a site?!?) to build it.”
      – No, there really aren’t. The rent for the years left of Trident Successor’s life would be dwarfed by the costs of duplicating all of the required infrastructure. The rump UK certainly couldn’t afford BOTH to lease Scottish facilities AND build duplicates in England or Wales.

      “None are ideal but all of them are possible – 5 I could rattle off the top of my head. All have been extensively investigated. All have problems. None insurmountable.”
      – So name the 5. All of them have been extensively discussed. Not one is realistic. Devonport and Falmouth are too close to built up areas and the Channel isn’t a suitable home base. Milford Haven is deep enough, but off limits due to hosting 25% of our oil refining capacity: SSBN’s and supertankers don’t mix. Barrow in Furness is only accessible on certain tides.

      Tell you what chief: stick to calculating rateable values. Best leave the heavy lifting of strategy and IR to folk with some clue about it.

    205. Willie B says:

      @Lizg

      https://www.forces.net/news/your-military-base-closing-read-full-list-sites-shutting

      Ministry of Defence (MOD) plans to overhaul its property portfolio will see a number of military bases closed down in the coming years.
      As part of the Defence Estate Optimisation (DEO) plan, mobilised in 2016 to kickstart 25 years of construction, key sites will receive investment while others will be disposed of to reduce the MOD’s footprint.
      A new Red Arrows base, Royal Air Force training facilities, infrastructure for British Army brigades and work on consolidating Royal Navy and Royal Marines estate will feature in an investment package worth billions of pounds.
      The DEO will also invest in more than 25,000 new and refurbished houses and single-living accommodation, contemporary office space for more than 12,000 people, and 63 specialist military workshops and garages. It is hoped the construction work will create about 20,000 jobs in the UK.

      UK
      Full List: Is Your Base Among Those Now Remaining Open?
      28th February 2019
      With many defence assets already shut down under the DEO, here is a timeline of sites which are set to close in the coming years:
      2021
      British Army
      * Cavalry Barracks (Hounslow)
      * Deverell Barracks (Ripon)
      * Kneller Hall (Twickenham)
      * Middlewick Ranges (Colchester)
      Other 
      * DIO Head Office (Sutton Coldfield)
      * Athena House (Swindon)

      ROYAL MARINES
      Royal Marines Bases Among UK Military Sites To Remain Open
      28th February 2019
      2022
      British Army
      * Catterick Town Centre Parcel (Catterick)
      * Harden Barracks [Duchess of Kent Psychiatric Hospital] (Catterick)
      * Parsons Barracks Donnington (Telford)
      * Venning Barracks (Telford)
      * St George’s Barracks North Luffenham (Oakham)
      * Kinnegar Logistic Base (Holywood)
      * Defence Support group (DSG) (Colchester)
      * Forthside Stirling Meadowforth Barracks (Stirling)
      Royal Air Force
      * RAF Barnham (Thetford)
      * RAF Scampton (Lincolnshire)
      Other
      * MOD Caledonia (Rosyth)

      RAF Scampton, home to the Red Arrows, will be disposed of in 2022.
      2023
      Royal Navy
      * HMS Nelson Wardroom (Portsmouth)
      British Army
      * Claro Barracks (Ripon)
      * Commander and Staff Trainer [North] (Catterick)
      Royal Air Force
      * 1300 Parkway, Bristol
      * RAF Henlow (Henlow)
      Other
      * DBS Finance Liverpool
      * DBS Cheadle Hulme
      * DBS Tomlinson House, Norcross (Blackpool)

      RAF
      Final RAF Firefighter Trainees At Manston Close To Completing Training
      16th October 2020
      2024
      Royal Navy
      * The Royal Citadel (Plymouth)
      British Army
      * Prince William of Gloucester Barracks (Grantham)
      * Chilwell Station (Nottingham)
      * Queen Elizabeth Barracks (Strensall)
      * Sir John Moore Barracks Winchester (Winchester)
      * Towthorpe Lines (Strensall)
      * Aldershot Distribution Centre (Aldershot)
      * Cawdor Barracks (Haverfordwest)
      * Leighton House (AOSB Westbury) (Westbury)
      Royal Air Force
      * RAF Alconbury (Alconbury)
      Other
      * Clayton Barracks (Aldershot)
      2025
      British Army
      * Clive Barracks (Market Drayton)
      * Redford Cavalry and Infantry Barracks (Edinburgh)
      * Southwick Park (Fareham)
      * Sennybridge Storage Compound (Sennybridge)
      Royal Air Force
      * RAF Colerne Airfield (Chippenham)
      * RAF Halton (Aylesbury)
      Other
      * MOD Police Wethersfield/Wethersfield Airfield (Wethersfield)

      According to the Government, the sun will set on Scotland’s Fort George for the last time in 2032.
      2027
      Royal Navy
      * Royal Marines Stonehouse (Plymouth)
      British Army
      * Fulwood Barracks (Preston)
      * Dale Barracks (Chester) 
      * Brecon Barracks (Brecon)
      * Beachley Barracks (Beachley)
      * Invicta Park Barracks (Maidstone)
      Royal Air Force
      * RAF Mildenhall (Mildenhall) 
      2028
      British Army
      * St David’s Barracks (Bicester)
      * Vauxhall Barracks (Didcot)
      * Woolwich Station (Woolwich)

      RAF
      RAF Mildenhall Closure Delayed Until At Least 2027
      14th February 2020
      2029
      British Army
      * Buckley Barracks [Hullavington Barracks] (Chippenham)
      * Dalton Barracks including Abingdon Airfield (Abingdon)
      Royal Air Force/Royal Navy
      * HMS Sultan (Gosport)
      2031
      British Army
      * Azimghur Barracks (Chippenham)
      * Carver Barracks (Saffron Walden)
      * Dishforth Barracks Airfield (York)
      * Imphal Barracks (York)
      * Robertson Barracks (Dereham)
      2032
      British Army
      * Fort George (Inverness)
      * Glencorse Barracks (Penicuik)

    206. Dan says:

      Just remembered myself to go and check out PoppyWatch.

      https://twitter.com/giantpoppywatch/status/1324413258686672896

      This will also probably be worth a scroll through after recent events.

      https://twitter.com/Coldwar_Steve

    207. Pete Barton says:

      @Andy Ellis:

      Good points.

      I’d say we remain passive, and choose the ballot box over the bomb.

      Too many have died around the world using the old systems.

      If there’s to be a gold standard, let it be this:

      That a democratic revolution can be peaceful, and an example to the world.

      Scotland has an agreement signed in 1707 that there are parameters and laws that hopefully replaced armed conflict.

      Although the 15 and 45 were fought, and wars followed..

      Our only hope is reason, above all.

    208. Beaker says:

      @Colin Alexander says:
      8 November, 2020 at 9:28 pm
      “In that context, the idea that we achieve freedom after 300 years of slavery”

      I don’t think that statement does much to promote independence. Better to stick to “remove all control from Westminster” narrative. i.e. take control of spending, budget etc.

      If anyone disagrees, please do so politely. I’ve had a fucking shit week due to an unexpected death at work.

    209. McDuff says:

      I`m sorry but I want rid of Trident when/if we become independent. I don’t want a dangerous nuclear facility on my doorstep and I certainly don’t want the English military based here also.
      And Mr MacKay, papers released in 2007 confirmed MI5 spied on the SNP so you have got to still be sucking on your dummy if you think they are not doing it now.

    210. Lizg says:

      Willie B @ 9. 49
      Why thank you sir 🙂
      This is what I ment..the MOD have found themselves in possession of some pretty choice real estate.
      Just like Thatcher before them the British want to sell it all offf..
      Well not only do we own it too…..some of it is actually in Scotland.
      ….
      What I am wondering though…. is , why McHaggis6 is bopping about doing rental evaluations for these properties and more to the point Faslane and Coleport.
      Who commissioned that and why?
      Especially Faslane and Coleport because that’s almost certainly no an asset the British are thinking of renting out any time soon….. It is a curious task is it no ?

    211. deerhill says:

      Lizg says:
      “What I am wondering though…. is , why McHaggis6 is bopping about doing rental evaluations for these properties and more to the point Faslane and Coleport.”

      Perhaps they are contemplating “selling” them to an independent Scotland. Maybe they’ll “sell” us the Forth Bridge too!

    212. Wullie B says:

      Lizg says:
      8 November, 2020 at 10:06 pm

      What I am wondering though…. is , why McHaggis6 is bopping about doing rental evaluations for these properties and more to the point Faslane and Coleport.
      Who commissioned that and why?
      Especially Faslane and Coleport because that’s almost certainly no an asset the British are thinking of renting out any time soon….. It is a curious task is it no ?

      The MoD have always kept a price on stock, more to do with repair and upkeep against selling it off, I notice one or two of the barracks I have served in are closing down, two alrready have, Milton Bridge which was sold off and turned into a housing estate, not sure of the other,but it used to be a stoppping off point for Trident missiles back in the 90s where the convoy would be able to pull over and sleep(Albemarle barracks just outside Newcastle which was an old airbase, the convoy would park on the old runway, and had some right dodgy looking geezers guarding it)
      I think the point the Rev is making is not what the MoD value rentalat, but how much they will pay for the use of it,
      Yes there are naval bases that have been looked at, but nearly every one is unsuitable, perhaps it could be shifted across teh water to Ulster, as deep water access is needed for screening the movement, and also Wales was volunteered by a former First Minister, but milford isnt suitable as I am sure its where Liquid Natural Gas is brought in from the US etc

    213. Stan Broadwood says:

      Liz g

      Stop the show boating.

      You’re a wee pain in the arse.

      End of.

      Away back to your “I love Nikla” website.

    214. Lizg says:

      Wullie B @ 10.21
      Thanks again Wullie B that certainly explains it….my Christ ye can get paranoid wi this lot , Perfidious Albion right enough…

    215. Lizg says:

      deerhill @ 10.19
      LOL.. aye they’d probably try … wonder which one though 🙂

    216. Stan Broadwood says:

      Liz g

      Not a bad word from you about Sturgeon the fraud.

      You crawl out your hole when the debate charges from Sturgeon Bad.

      You and the rest of your Sturgeon lovin’ weirdos are the reason she refuses to shift.

    217. Doug says:

      The real problem for both Scotland and rUK is Royal Naval Armaments Depot Coulport. The Vanguard submarines have alternate places they can dock. However RNAD Coulport is the only Nuclear Weapons facility on the British Isles and construction of a replacement in England or Wales would be an expensive, time consuming and politically sensitive problem. We can’t just “chuck them out” as they have nowhere safe to go and as long as the rent for using them is merely extortionate rUK doesn’t have much incentive to rush to replace it.

    218. cynicalHighlander says:

      @Stan Broadwood

      Go take a running jump.

    219. Lizg says:

      Doug @ 10.51
      Exactly…. that’s what I’ve been saying all day… Coleport is the keystone of the Trident system.
      Although to be fair it is being pedantic to the Revs point because I think it’s all classed together as HMS Clyde.
      But in the discourse around all this , the British seem keen to always just say Faslane.
      Their track record of mish mashing meaning such as British/UK / the Country/ the Government etc, leads me to making a point of emphasising Coleport.
      As you said the submarines can berth in other places but there’s only One Coleport.

    220. Lizg says:

      Cynical Highlander @ 11.19
      🙂

    221. Ronald Fraser says:

      Tomorrow’s National,,, some interesting reading, for a change.

      https://www.thenational.scot/

    222. Stan Broadwood says:

      Sink highlander

      Would you like to expand on that.

      Don’t remember addressing you at all.

    223. Stan Broadwood says:

      Sturgeonistas

      You can spot them a mile away

    224. Stan Broadwood says:

      Did anyone hear the story about the First Minister of a UK devolved nation,,,a female employee at the French Embassy in Edinburgh and a secret affair???

      Seemingly this is the story the english establishment have over this FM.

      Keep it under your bunnet,,,we can’t have this spreading all over MSM.

      Well,,, you know what they’re like.

    225. Alf Baird says:

      Just for info:

      According to former Tory Party Chairman Norman Tebbit – “(John) Major has made it clear that a majority of SNP MP’s after an election would serve as a mandate to begin negotiations for separation. There are no plans to hold a referendum.” (Robertson 1997)

      According to former Home Secretary Leon Brittan – ‘Scotland could be independent if the nationalists won a majority of seats in Scotland at two successive general elections’ and this was a view ‘almost universally shared among English Tory backbenchers’ (Woodifield 1988).

      And the view of Scottish Tories as recently as 2010 was that – “If people in Scotland were bursting to be free should the SNP not be campaigning to win a majority of Scotland’s 59 seats.” ( Swanson 2010)

      On this basis Scotland is already de facto independent. Somebody just needs to tell the 48 SNP MP’s!

    226. Breeks says:

      OT

      https://twitter.com/thenewsoncnbc/status/1324503704930832388

      This doesn’t pull any punches about Trump, but seems kinda gutless that it waited until he was no longer President.

      Can you just imagine if Scotland had it’s own media with no anti-Scottish undertones, and a reputable news station with proper journalists checking facts and demolishing tranche after tranche of the Scottish Government’s and Civil Service orchestrated smear conspiracy of Alex Salmond and their malicious attempt to have him jailed as a sex offender?

      Maybe by now, the right people, the guilty people, would be on their way to jail, but instead some of them are jockeying for better positions in the shabby Sturgeon Government, as due reward for their lies and part in the failed conspiracy. Guilt? Shame? Remorse? Not so much as a grain of contrition to be seen. Disgusting individuals without a conscience between them.

      Maybe too, Scotland wouldn’t have to suffer the scandal of a Judicial system which fiercely and vexatiously protects the anonymity of the crooked conspirators, while leaving “justice” to the cordial politeness of a parliamentary inquiry conducted by their peers. The Committee of Inquiry can’t send them to jail, so in some ways, they’ve already “gotten away with it”.

      Scotland and Scottish society is stunted and underdeveloped in so many ways that we hardly notice it, but the momentum for change has yet to catch up with the desire for change, and the ‘sham’ state of affairs we live in goes from strength to strength.

      They are dancing in the streets in America, euphoric that the crooked regime has been unseated. How I ache for Scotland to be intoxicated with similar such deliverance.

    227. James Barr Gardner says:

      The Scottish People do not want nuclear anything on Scottish soil or seas.

      England want their seat at the UN high table, well they can house their toys and troops on English soil.

      After Independence no English enclaves in Scotland.

    228. Hatuey says:

      Breeks, plenty of people in the MSM slated Trump before the election. Anything goes against vile fat bastards, though – even if it turned out they rigged the election, I’d applaud them. I’m sick of hearing nasty scumbags talking about their rights and victimhood.

      The situation in Scotland is different. In our case the scumbags have the MSM on their side. We have the worst of all worlds.

      The good news is that the argument for independence is quite an easy argument to win. That’s why support for Indy went up before the 2014 referendum. It’s a no-brainier. An easy sell. All the argument needs is someone to make it and air time.

      The biggest problem we have right now isn’t the MSM, it’s the SNP. The last five years have been a disaster. Before coronavirus the polls hadn’t moved. They’ve moved since because a lot of people thought the British policy of herd immunity was indistinguishable from a mass a suicide pact.

      It’s perplexing. Nobody wants to remember that Sturgeon went along with the herd strategy. She went along with everything really. Only in the last two months has she made any real effort to deviate from the UK / Westminster strategy, and even then she’s only done so in tedious and inconsequential ways. The numbers don’t lie.

    229. twathater says:

      @ Breeks 1.27am Robert Black posted on a thread a couple of days ago and has been confirmed by Gordon Dangerfield that Swinney and the rest of the spokespersons for the SG are blowing smoke up oor erses by saying they will have to consult with the lawyers to release any advice given re the AS inquiry

      As Robert B and Gordon D explained this pish that the SG have to gain permission from the lawyers to release info and docs as they hold the confidentiality btw lawyer and client is rubbish, the SG as client holds the confidentiality NOT the lawyers and CAN RELEASE any or ALL information required by the inquiry to reach a conclusion

      As there are many lawyers within the SG and on the inquiry committee they MUST know this so I HAVE to ask WHY are the committee NOT publicly STATING that the SG are DELIBERATELY and WILLFULLY withholding information that they can release to enable the committee to reach a decision and MORE interestingly why are the MSM who are like RABID dogs when it comes to the SNP NOT HEADLINING THESE LIES AND DUPLICITY
      The tories have intimated that they are willing to go to court to get the docs released if the SG withhold, are they waiting for the 2021 HR election

    230. Willie says:

      Twathater@3.05
      You make a very good point about the MSM waiting to maximise exposure of the Scottish Government and how it conspired to do down Alex Salmond. Rather than electoral asset next May the First Minister, her husband and the coterie of control could be, indeed probably will be an electoral liability.

      As such, the time to change the leadership and or the coterie of control is now. The First Minister and or her team, no doubt aided and abetted by the establishment, embarked on a vicious and evil scheme to fit up Alex Salmond. But it failed, and in its failing it has exposed the Scotish Government.

      Delaying document release in the forlorn hope that the issue will go away is just that, forlorn hope. The Sturrells and their coterie of control are a liability and the MSM and the establishment know the Sturrells are sitting ducks.

    231. Abalha says:

      Hello, anyone got a scooby on either point

      https://twitter.com/ABalharry62/status/1325685304058109957

    232. Bob says:

      I would say the decision to extend lease terms on Faslane should be put to the people of Scotland every year by referendum.

    233. Robert Graham says:

      o/t
      I guess the Embalming Fluid has worn off because Broon is out again ,
      He was on with Piers Morgan on good morning Britain eh well England to be precise ,every Tory Minister has refused to be interviewed by Morgan so i guess dragging out this relic from a bygone age is really dredging the bottom of the cesspit ,
      what was he saying I couldn’t give a Monkeys after the VOW pish anything he says on anything now is a waste of air.
      PUT HIM BACK in the crypt he escaped from

    234. Breeks says:


      twathater says:
      9 November, 2020 at 3:05 am

      As there are many lawyers within the SG and on the inquiry committee they MUST know this so I HAVE to ask WHY are the committee NOT publicly STATING that the SG are DELIBERATELY and WILLFULLY withholding information that they can release to enable the committee to reach a decision…

      That might be similar to the lawyer you get on a tribunal beside two lay people; they seem to think it’s a holiday from being a lawyer. Or maybe they’re just shite lawyers incapable of handling the day job to begin with.

      It leaves Scotland to kid itself it’s a modern democracy, but a democracy where apparently you are free to fabricate criminal evidence against an innocent person, collude and conspire with other co-conspirators to seek to have that person disgraced as a sex offender and jailed for events which never even happened.

      And when the flaws, dishonesty and incompetence of your conspiracy leads to it’s undoing, at vast cost to the Scottish taxpayer, while bringing the integrity of the Scottish Government to the level of the gutter, there is no sanction whatsoever to be brought against your grotesque conspiracy except a tame parliamentary inquiry of your peers which you can address down the phone.

      And what curious badge of honour is it which protects these conspirators from scrutiny and justice? It surely cannot be their dedication to Scottish Independence. Far more likely to be the British Establishment’s ongoing interest in the damage they can yet do to the Scottish Independence cause, and the further disgrace they bring down upon our Scottish Government.

      Maybe it’s their Wokist credentials which provides “access all areas” security clearance, which also provides immunity from censure and criminal prosecution. After all, the Wokist time bomb has yet to blow up in the Scottish Government’s faces, so the science deniers must be protected for now, and more and more whackos embedded in a Scottish Government until the time is right and Scottish Independence is most vulnerable.

    235. Ronald Fraser says:

      O/T
      This is when the Scottish Piper was knocked to the ground by Met Police.

      Not heard much of this on our beloved english media outlets this morning.

      https://mobile.twitter.com/accesssubject/status/1325423994464579585

    236. Dan says:

      As the Piper being pushed over was mentioned on here previously. It looks like there was more to it as tweet trail highlights.

      https://twitter.com/Jeggit/status/1325647318046142465

    237. Dan says:

      Soz Ronald, didn’t mean to duplicate. I was supping a coffee and reading through a few sites before posting and you beat me to it.

      Will tack this Common Weal discussion link on here as sort of relevant to the discussion re. Indy, Trident, Nuclear Weapons.

      https://twitter.com/thecommongreen/status/1325516888198311936

    238. Brian Doonthetoon says:

      With that accent, I don’t think there was too much Scottishness about him…

    239. Habib Steele says:

      “If we threw that leverage away on the basis of a spurious and infantile argument that some kinds of bombs are more “moral” than other kinds of bombs, we’d be choosing to put ourselves in a position of enormous and perpetual weakness against a far bigger and more powerful neighbour for no rational reason.”

      Truly, all bombs are immoral. In a Scotland that has military only for defence we would not need any bombs.

      What has happened to your ethics, Stuart? You would keep a weapon that could wipe out whole nations and, in a world war, even the planet! Would we want to use WMDs on England should they attack us? Many Scots have family living there. You live there! You would keep them for the money we’d receive for rent. The economy of Scotland is important, but your reasoning seems very the “economy before people’s health and life” of the English Tories.

    240. Republicofscotland says:

      Christ wonders will never cease, Pete Wishart supports some sort of Plan B now.

      https://www.thenational.scot/news/18856417.joanna-cherry-welcomes-support-indyref2-plan-b/

    241. Famous15 says:

      “Scottish” piper with Guards tie stirring the pot to give Scotland a bad name?

      It is not paranoia when they really are out to get you.

      He is just like the Trump supporters attacking shops to give BLM a bad look!

    242. ahundredthidiot says:

      Famous15

      you need help mate

      professional help

    243. Breeks says:


      Dan says:
      9 November, 2020 at 8:55 am

      As the Piper being pushed over was mentioned on here previously. It looks like there was more to it as tweet trail highlights.

      https://twitter.com/Jeggit/status/1325647318046142465

      Can’t believe what I’m seeing. What a despicable wretch. A provocative insult to veterans on Remembrance Day, a provocative insult to Scotland, and a provocative insult to the police.

      What a creep.

    244. ahundredthidiot says:

      I watched the Piper thing live. The Veterans gathered a hundred or so metres from the police barricades and then started marching towards it with the Piper at the front.

      When they got there the Veterans stopped as the police line hardened. The Piper then marched side ways along the police line and a half gap appeared between two cops which he decided to take – both then pushed him away, he lost his footing backwards and fell down.

      He then stood up, handed his bagpipes to a friend and moved towards the Police – he may have touched one Police on the chest with his left hand (hard to tell) and a Vet held him back and calmed him down in what was a tense situation.

      That the Police took this line of action – stopping Vets honour their war dead – is the issue here. They then, in their infinite wisdom, decided to hunt down the Piper an hour or so later and arrest him for assaulting a Police Constable.

      The police were (and increasingly are during this health crisis) a disgrace, and some of them even have the audacity to wear poppies.

      They’re also fucking pussies.

    245. Davie Oga says:

      Stan Broadwood says:
      8 November, 2020 at 11:41 pm
      “Did anyone hear the story about the First Minister of a UK devolved nation,,,a female employee at the French Embassy in Edinburgh and a secret affair???”

      Unionists like bringing this up on twitter for reason. True or not its irrelevant. It’s her business who she fucks.
      Our business is the failure to deliver independence, a complete lack of integrity, grotesque abuse of power, perversion of the justice system and the fact that she is a shameless, brazen, liar who has surrounded herself with people who have similar character issues.

    246. Ottomanboi says:

      In a realpolitik version of the Great Game a Scotland with nuclear weapons might well be envisaged. Why should ‘rUK’ be handed the nuclear option? Who would gain?
      Future Scoto-English relations may well not be particularly sweet so having such an asset, however unsavoury to idealistic CND veterans, ought not to be ruled out of the game.
      Nemo me impune lacessit.

    247. robbo says:

      Davie Oga says:
      9 November, 2020 at 10:03 am
      Stan Broadwood says:
      8 November, 2020 at 11:41 pm
      “Did anyone hear the story about the First Minister of a UK devolved nation,,,a female employee at the French Embassy in Edinburgh and a secret affair???”
      Unionists like bringing this up on twitter for reason.

      ——

      There you have it.- unionists like bringing it up- bejeez who’d of thought Stan.

    248. Famous15 says:

      Stan and the Idiot are just thugs.

      Challenge them and they revert to type. Very suspicious of both these Trump supporters and Maggie Thatcher fans. Hilton has pals not just on Fox.

    249. Robert graham says:

      Eh
      expletive filled comments like those above are not a good look

      Just Saying Like

    250. brian lucey says:

      Have you all stocked up on beans and pasta?
      https://twitter.com/morningireland/status/1325725852966019072?s=20
      US congressman notes how relatively unimportant UK-US trade is, in reality and further states that a FTA with the UK is a low priority. Context is repeated cross-aisle warnings from the USA that the proposed Internal Market Bill which signals an intent to break the GFA, an international treaty midwived by the USA and dear to its political heart, WILL put the kibosh on any such deal anyhow.
      In reply? BoJo government signal intent to “damn the torpedoes” and sail straight ahead to do just that. https://news.sky.com/story/brexit-government-vows-to-reinstate-any-uk-internal-market-bill-clauses-removed-by-house-of-lords-12128287?dcmp=snt-sf-twitter

      So : a raging pandemic + a crashout brexit + no hope of a US FTA…

      a bonny start to 2021

    251. Hatuey says:

      Ahundredthidiot, that whole thing was staged.

      Och aye the fake nooooz…

    252. Fireproofjim says:

      The French have a good phrase. “Agent Provocateur”.
      We have a few on here. Two of the most unpleasant and obvious are Stan Broadwood and the hundredth idiot.
      The English piper at the Cenotaph was another.

    253. tartanpiaspora says:

      it isnt about the rental in terms of £££’s

      it is a sword of damocles over westminsters head during the entire independence negotiations.

      it is a check on any attempt by westminster to negotiate in bad faith

      10% of the RN ships, the RAF planes and the army, tanks and artillery are bought and paid for by scotland. not to mention 10% of overseas territories, embassies, 10% of all movable items in the museums etc.

      these negotiations will make westminsters eyes water.

      more importantly, what happens to the scrapped subs in rosyth and the huge supply of redundant nukes stored under ground at the holy loch. Who pays for their disposal?

    254. James says:

      “…I have friends in Garelochhead. But as I demonstrated with the links above, Helensburgh in fact ISN’T in the “kill zone”. If a nuke went off at Faslane, pretty much nobody in Helensburgh would die, and certainly not unless they hung around waiting for fallout.”

      Oh, that’s alright, then.

    255. Stan Broadwood says:

      Famous15
      robbo
      Liz g
      Pig Sty

      Sturgeon’s resident “Gang of Four”

      Not a bad word shall be said about their beloved Nikla.

      Notice how they post about anything other than,,,Nicola Bad.

      And Nicola is now the darling of all Unionists don’t you know? So if I was a “Unionist”, don’t you think I would be on here defending her?

      She is doing more to stop indyRef2 than any Tory could.

      Independence IS normal.

      You four roasters certainly are not.

      Go on,,,I fuckin dare you,,,say just one bad word about your Nicky,,, just one.

      And if the establishment have proof of her having an affair with a female employee at the French Embassy in Edinburgh,,,and it is stopping her pushing for indyRef2,,,then it has quite a lot to do with me.

      She should resign immediately, then her and her burd can do what they want.

      I personally would jail the lying little bastard.

    256. tartandiaspora says:

      it isnt about the rental in terms of £££’s

      it is a sword of damocles over westminsters head during the entire independence negotiations.

      it is a check on any attempt by westminster to negotiate in bad faith

      10% of the RN ships, the RAF planes and the army, tanks and artillery are bought and paid for by scotland. not to mention 10% of overseas territories, embassies, 10% of all movable items in the museums etc.

      these negotiations will make westminsters eyes water.

      more importantly, what happens to the scrapped subs in rosyth and the huge supply of redundant nukes stored under ground at the holy loch. Who pays for their disposal?

    257. Famous15 says:

      Stan your like the Tories ranting about Indy2 and frothing at the mouth.

      How many times do I have to tell you that I am NOT a member of the SNP.

      Independence is normal but you aint. Go cool your jets Thatcherite loony.

    258. Hatuey says:

      It’s hard to take any of this Faslane stuff seriously when, as it stands, there is literally no party in a position to achieve a referendum on independence. Politically, we are further away from a referendum today than we were the day England voted to Brexit.

      It’s not all bad news though.

      “WATCH: Nicola Sturgeon quoted as ‘world leader’ in NBC News election report”
      https://www.thenational.scot/news/18854615.watch-nicola-sturgeon-quoted-world-leader-nbc-news-election-report/?ref=ar

      It’s the big reveal. The above is what Nicola is really committed to – grandstanding on some imagined world stage. Everything she has done in the last several years, from GRA to attacking Putin and Russia, can be explained in terms of trying to ingratiate herself with the US Democratic Parry.

      You idiots thought this story was about you, your children, and Scotland. It isn’t. It’s about Nicola. Mugs.

    259. Breeks says:

      Anybody know when we can expect the testimonies of Nicola Sturgeon and Alex Salmond at the Inquiry?

      Whole business is taking forever.

    260. kapelmeister says:

      Hatuey @11:58 am

      Thanks for the link. Yes, here we have the Sturgeonites pathetically grateful because their idol has been accorded ‘world leader’ status by NBC. There was probably even some lobbying to make it happen. If Sturgeon had devoted as much time and energy to the indy quest as she has to crafting her public image……

    261. Republicofscotland says:

      As Trump’s acolytes desperately search for voter fraud, Joe Biden begins picking his team, however the transition cannot shift into high gear until the U.S. General Services Administration, which oversees federal property, certifies the winner.

      Emily Murphy a Trump appointee runs the GSA, and she hasn’t given the go ahead for the transition period yet, she’s probably stalling for time, until she does, Biden’s people cannot enter Federal agencies or access Federal funds.

    262. Hatuey says:

      Breeks, I think the plan is for Salmond to give evidence in December. I’m not sure Nicola ever will or if is scheduled, although she could if called.

      In other news…

      BBC news are reporting Boris press conference at 5 pm tonight, expected to be on the subject of a vaccine that has a 90% success rate. They’re talking about rolling it out before Christmas.

    263. Stan Broadwood says:

      Famous

      STILL waiting on your Nicola Bad rant.

      I know INDEPENDENCE is normal.

      You and Nikla and whoever else supports her don’t

      If I was a Tory, I would vote for Nikla.

    264. cirsium says:

      @Hatuey, 12.11

      BBC news are reporting Boris press conference at 5 pm tonight, expected to be on the subject of a vaccine that has a 90% success rate. They’re talking about rolling it out before Christmas.

      The theme from an old BBC programme is going through my head. “Jackanory, Jackanory, Jackanory”

    265. Famous15 says:

      Stan ,who is Nikla you so often slaver about.A russian bride you fancy?

      Independence is normal but bullying is mental man.

      I am beginning to warm to Joe Bidan because he annoys so many annoying people.

      Just realised since you think Edinburgh has a French EMBASSY that Scotland is already independent. Stan you called it but CNN are silent. Are you going to have a press conference at the Four Seasons Cafe and Bistro in Leith?

    266. Stan Broadwood says:

      Famous

      You completely lost me with your last reply numbnut.

      I think you are pure dead jealous that your Nikla has a new burd.

    267. Hatuey says:

      Cirsium, I agree. Maybe the mink stuff panicked the board and they want to go to market ASAP.

      Either that or Boris is expecting the Coronavirus death toll to shoot up today and is trying to deflect. Fake news is better than bad news…

      Maybe both.

      We don’t know for sure that this is what the press conference is about. It could be about Brexit. It wouldn’t surprise me if they put brexit on hold one of these days… maybe they could blame corona.

      Sterling is worth watching over the next 10 days.

    268. Lochside says:

      Andy Ellis..I see you have flounced back..what’s up? your handlers told you to get back on here and defend your employers’interests in keeping a nuclear arsenal 45 mins away from most of Scotland’s population?

      You are the Andy Ellis PHD who went to England’s Uni in Scotland, St. Andrews, and studied International Relations, yet strangely keeps bracketing Quebec, a province, as an equal with Scotland when discussing our Sovereignty.

      You are the Andy Ellis who works for Babcock?..who describe themselves thus:
      ‘ a leading provider of critical, complex engineering services which support NATIONAL DEFENCE, save lives and protect communities.’

      Aye Andy..you’re a Scottish Nationalist right enough…I bet!

      Rev…you do know that there have been 789 x nuclear safety events (M.O.D. figures)since 2006 at Coulport and Faslane? Category ‘A’ events took place in 2006, 2007 and 2008; 22 x fires have taken place on nuclear subs since 2015.
      The nuclear weapons are transported through Scottish towns and villages to get to the bases putting everyone at risk of annihilation on a regular basis.
      And you think it is worth continuing to prostitute ourselves for ‘rent’ to bolster England’s imperial pretensions and vainglorious attempts to stay in NATO?
      Sorry but your statement about Helensburgh being safe is fatuous…the whole of Central Scotland would disappear..never mind that we remain a very large target in a nuclear war.. and shows no understanding of the present and clear danger we in Scotland face daily.

    269. C Griffiths says:

      Yes Trident/Faslane/Nukes subs are indeed a trump car for the pro-indy side. As you say it would take a decade at least to build a naval port capable of taking nuclear subs.

      Scotland could raise a few billion each year in lease to the Uk gov’t. I hope Yes side will hammer this point to the media again and again.

    270. Robert says:

      “Nothing has happened to make this issue topical ….”.

      And yet there is that Herald front page, a 2-page article in the Economist, and a post by Craig Murray.

      Must be something prodding people’s minds!

    271. Dan says:

      When you see the large amounts of cash the Conservatives can find to hand to their mates, it shouldn’t be too hard for them to rustle up the rent for their military exploits on the Clyde.

      https://twitter.com/JolyonMaugham/status/1325719176133152768

    272. Tam Fae somewhere says:

      Can we make sure any rent payable by rUK to base their nukes here for a few years has the rent based on something difficult for rUK to corrupt?

      I wouldn’t want the rent based on £ or $ but something like ozs of gold.

    273. Jams O'Donnell says:

      Not much forward thinking going on here, but lots of right-wing loonery. The US empire is in a steep decline and within 20 years will be replaced by China and its ally Russia. Whoever suggested leasing Faslane to China was onto a winner.

      Get the English nukes out as soon as Indi, get the Chinese in as protection against any English retaliation, and get Chinese investment in everything.

      For this who don’t like that idea, the Chinese are infinitely more civilised that the Yanks – read your history!

    274. WhoRattledYourCage says:

      Speaking of agents of fear – sorry, I mean ‘agents of radical colour and sexual change in America’ – tell me you would want this sociopathic lunatic at the helm of the USA:

      youtube.com/watch?app=desktop&v=WImAEf7D8Ss&fbclid=IwAR0X0WJh_omODVkqRmiuuvR6-uG0iww9oKikJw5GlEJlZ10kPEyx7vhP1N8&ab_channel=DemocraticInfoSites

    275. Don’t Voke Woke says:

      @Stan Broadwood
      I would worry less about what Nikla is into compared to the Penfold lookalike who is a CEO, I would say that’s why independence is on the back burner

    276. Goodgrief says:

      Arguably WW2 counts as someone trying to invade Scotland. No wonder you lose court cases.

    277. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “Arguably WW2 counts as someone trying to invade Scotland. No wonder you lose court cases.”

      When was that invasion attempted exactly?

    278. Terry says:

      “If we threw that leverage away on the basis of a spurious and infantile argument that some kinds of bombs are more “moral” than other kinds of bombs”
      This is a tiny part of the argument against allowing Trident to remain. The potential one million dead and dying in the event of an unlikely detonation accident (that number increases massively over time), the thousands to hundreds of thousands dead and dying in the event of an accidental dirty explosion, the insidious effects of the under reported but frequent contamination breaches, all coupled with the many near miss and actual accidents that have occurred during hazardous material and equipment transfers to and from these bases and the fact that once the hazardous materials are in Scotland they become Scotland’s problem because no one (including England) will be allowing radiation contaminated waste materials over their borders.
      So once again Scotland would be taking all the risks and being used as a dumping ground just so we can get a seat at a table that would be begging us to sit down with them anyway. That’s a heavy price for a low value chip.

      “Although when it comes to NATO membership we’d note that the absolutely overwhelming majority of Scots are on our side, whereas there’s no majority for expelling Trident”
      Your reference for NATO membership support is from 2013 and your no majority for expelling Trident claim is supported by references from 2015.
      So I think we can all call BS on your assertions here because since your first reference we have had 3 UK prime minister, 2 Scottish first ministers, a Scottish independence referendum, a Brexit referendum, 3 UK general elections, a Scottish parliamentary election, bucket loads of local elections, TRUMP’S America at the head of NATO, a rise in corporate global fascism and an almost unfathomably long list of consequences that came with all of it. For an informed individual to use such tactics is wilfully dishonest.

      Apart from that, I think your great. Just stick to facts instead of narrative building; most of the article does ring true.

    279. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      ““If we threw that leverage away on the basis of a spurious and infantile argument that some kinds of bombs are more “moral” than other kinds of bombs”
      This is a tiny part of the argument against allowing Trident to remain. The potential one million dead and dying in the event of an unlikely detonation accident (that number increases massively over time), the thousands to hundreds of thousands dead and dying in the event of an accidental dirty explosion,”

      I see someone didn’t read the comments before posting. The death toll from the most catastrophic explosion imaginable at Faslane (a warhead somehow detonating on the ground) would be measured in hundreds, not “one million”. See the links above for detail.

    280. Gregory Beekman says:

      @Rev at 1.28pm

      Your comment should really be an article, as that is probably the most astonishing thing I’ve read on here since we lost indyref.

      (The comment was basically saying that detonating Trident at Faslane produces a tiny death rate compared to detonating it at other possible UK sites.)

      Gobsmacked.

    281. Balgowan says:

      Faslane could very easily be closed down by Scotland.

      Which is why the rUK won’t be basing it’s deterrent there.

    282. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “Which is why the rUK won’t be basing it’s deterrent there.”

      It has nowhere else to go.

    283. Balgowan says:

      It has nowhere else to go.

      The USA. France. Portsmouth. Devonport.

      And then a new purpose-built home in the rUK.

      But not Scotland.

    284. Terry says:

      “I see someone didn’t read the comments before posting”
      I read the article but only a few comments, there are a lot of them, and I didn’t know reading them all was a requirement.

      “The death toll from the most catastrophic explosion imaginable at Faslane (a warhead somehow detonating on the ground) would be measured in hundreds, not “one million”. See the links above for detail.”
      Drivel, and any link that says otherwise isn’t worth the read. You may [only] get hundreds dead in the initial blast zone if all variables just happened to be favourable, but anyone suggesting the initial blast zone of a ground detonation is the big killer, with that type of event, is either ignorant or dishonest. An altitude explosion may cover a larger initial area, but a ground explosion produces a far greater and more insidious radiation fall out, even a dialled down Trident warhead, and on the west coast, with prevailing winds almost always pushing east to north east, this means Scotland’s most populated areas could become uninhabitable for years. The fallout would begin within an hour of any explosion, no time for evacuations, and if that came down anywhere near Glasgow and the central belt there definitely would be one million dead *and dying*, (that number increases massively over time). If not over populated areas, it would still destroy our country. If carried to Aberdeen, the devastation to our nation would be just as severe.
      Giving another nation that type of potential over our country would be moronic at best.
      And don’t think I didn’t note the deflection 🙂



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