Salmond’s views on Putin are telling

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I enjoyed reading Hugh Reilly’s perceptive article (Perspective, 29 April) on the predictable furore which has been generated by First Minister Alex Salmond’s comments about the Russian leader, Vladimir Putin.

I’m intrigued by the absence of similar objections to Salmond’s comments about Ukip leader Nigel Farage, which I would have expected to evoke some response.

However, my interest in the self-righteous posturing by Labour politicians like Patricia Ferguson MSP is negligible compared with my fascination for the psychological mechanisms which underpin Salmond’s qualified admiration for these men.

His choice of words reveals much about his own political aspirations, and the motivation which drives him to ensure success in his ambition to lead Scotland into independence.

He admires Putin’s restoration of “Russian pride”, and has “a sneaking regard” for Farage, as someone “who takes on powerful establishments”.

Salmond is passionate about restoring Scottish pride, which he believes can only come with independence.

He also takes personal pride in being a man who has taken on the powerful establishment of the Westminster government.

Unfortunately, to offer even qualified admiration for those whose political agendas encourage or promote the abuse of human rights is questionable. His biggest mistake during that interview for GQ magazine was to miss the signs of a trap being laid for him to walk right into.

Carolyn Taylor

Wellbank

Broughty Ferry

Apparently expressing admiration of President Putin is a good thing.

Dave McEwan Hill (Letters, 29 April) claims that Mr Salmond’s pronouncement is an example of his ability to make “honest commentary” which is “part of his success”. Could Mr Salmond please 
reveal “honestly” what the “certain aspects” are that he “admires”? Could one of them be Mr Putin’s penchant for suppressing dissent?

Certainly Mr Salmond has a alarming record in that context himself as can be seen by the effective way he has muzzled any dissenters.

Business leaders cowed into silence and local authorities which have been overruled on wind farm applications could also testify to Mr Salmond’s Putin-like efficiency.

Colin Hamilton

Braid Hills Avenue

Edinburgh

Dave McEwan Hill’s letter displays blind allegiance to the cause (Vote Yes) at the expense of facts or reality. GQ magazine has excellent PR and has received free coverage in various media outlets by selective release of details of Alastair Campbell’s interview in next month’s magazine. No stitch up – just good PR.

Might I suggest that Mr 
McEwan Hill and other such die-hard Nationalists read For the Good of the Cause, the book by Russian novelist Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn.

This blind and rabid form of nationalism is one of the reasons I will not be voting Yes.

Also I cannot ignore all the unanswered questions which are dismissed as “bullying”.

Neil Sinclair

Clarence Street

Edinburgh