Regarding the resignation of Jean Urquhart and John Finnie from the SNP following the Nato debate (your report, 24 October), I note their adherence to their principles regarding membership of Nato. But therein lies a bit of a problem.
Firstly, here is a democratic debate and vote. Their argument loses the vote. Had it won the vote, I would have accepted the decision. But, apparently, they both support democracy only if it goes their way. What happened to the principle of democracy?
Then there is the wee matter of their continued membership of the Scottish Parliament.
They were both elected on the regional list. They were both elected as SNP members. Their names were not on that ballot paper.
They are no longer SNP members. Surely, being people of principle, they should resign and allow the next on the list to take their place as SNP MSPs.
Somehow, I don’t think that’s likely.
Christine Grahame MSP
Midlothian South Tweeddale & Lauderdale
Surely, in resigning the SNP whip at Holyrood, MSPs John Finnie and Jean Urquhart have raised an intriguing constitutional point. They are list MSPs, not constituency MSPs, so they were not elected as individuals to represent their constituents at Holyrood. They were chosen as SNP members to reflect the electoral balance of their region.
If they are no longer SNP should they, therefore, no longer be MSPs?
Now that the SNP has decided that Nato is a good thing and deserves our support, it is appropriate to recall the words of the very first Nato leader, Supreme Allied Commander in Europe, President Dwight D Eisenhower: “Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed.
“This world in arms is not spending money alone. It is spending the sweat of its labourers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children. This is not a way of life at all, in any true sense. Under the cloud of threatening war it is humanity hanging from a cross of iron.”
As a member of Nato, which in 2011 spent $300 billion (£187bn) on military forces, what will the new Scotland’s message be to “humanity hanging from a cross of iron”?
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