It was perplexing to note the comments made by the UK Foreign Secretary, William Hague, on the apparent plethora of obstacles an independent Scotland will face on becoming an EU member state (your report, 28 April).
Putting aside the issue that Scotland is already within the European Union and complies with all the necessary criteria, it is strange that a man who is part of a government pledging an In/Out referendum in 2017 should be warning Scotland of the apparent membership challenges it would face.
With Ukip set to gain the most number of MEPs south of the Border at the forthcoming European Parliamentary elections, and the Tories pushed into third place, this will see the Tories become even more Eurosceptic than they currently are.
As Tory leader and in advance of the 1997 devolution referendum Mr Hague predicted: “Five years into a Scottish Parliament, Scots will be disappointed, disillusioned, depressed and living in a high-tax ghetto.”
He further went on to comment that the Scottish Parliament would be a “flop”.
Mr Hague was wrong then and is wrong now. The greatest threat to Scottish membership of the EU is not independence, but continued membership of the UK.
Now Alex Salmond cuddles up to the EU as a “linchpin of the EU” and claims that his new Scotland is fully committed to the founding values of the European ideals.
The European vision has always been acceptance of the euro as the currency required for each new member.
If it is such a keen linchpin of euro virtues, surely the SNP should have the honesty to ditch any rUK currency options, the primary one already ruled out by every major UK party, which would improve its negotiation chances of its claimed, but very doubtful, “seamless entry to the EU” after a Yes vote.
The UK fought hard to stay out of the euro currency and it is beyond belief that the SNP wants to desert the UK but assume that all the UK benefits will be extended to Scotland.
You can’t leave membership of any organisation and still claim you are still a member.
The reason is not hard to fathom.
The threat of the euro as Scotland’s currency would mean that the number of industries, banks, financial institutions, trade unions and small business that back a No vote would double and his 10 per cent floating voters would halve.