We’ve never had a special relationship with the US – Kenny MacAskill

The Queen has met every president since Eisenhower but the special relationship has always been overplayed. Picture: Getty
The Queen has met every president since Eisenhower but the special relationship has always been overplayed. Picture: Getty
0
Have your say

As someone who has sought independence for Scotland and has disagreed with a great deal of American foreign policy, you’ll understand that the supposed special relationship between the UK and the USA means little to me

For sure there’s been warmth and friendship given two world wars, a common language and shared popular culture.

But it has always been overplayed. America has always looked after America, long before Trump espoused America First. Lend lease and only recently paid war debt testify to hard economic realities, not just apparent sympathy.

For sure the Queen has met every president since Eisenhower but the country has transformed. Not just a Catholic president but a black one. The USA is no longer the WASP (White Anglo Saxon Protestant) nation that some thought it was. Immigration has changed it and is changing it further. Through that and economic links, it’s the Pacific not Atlantic links that matter, and the USA has pivoted away from Europe.

Any special relationship will be entirely on American terms. Even Canada with membership of NAFTA and a common land border has been bullied and berated. This time demands will see direct or indirect involvement in further conflicts; and more worryingly the requirement to accept chlorinated chicken and provide access to the NHS in a trade deal.

I like America and Americans but it’s to visit and the country it can be, not the one it’s become under Trump. There never was a special relationship but there sure ain’t one now.