Salmond alienates with his Irish claim

With his delusional statements (claiming a link between the Irish freedom struggle and the campaign for Scottish independence, your report, 14 January), First Minister Alex Salmond in one fell swoop managed to severely embarrass his Irish hosts, alienate the rest of the UK, make us in Scotland a laughing stock and probably has lost the high ground in the independence debate. No international statesmen he.

Roger Peart


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If Alex Salmond wants another parallel to ponder, what would he do if Orkney or Shetland, or both, were to follow Ulster’s example and decline to abide by an independence “Yes” vote in the event that their own population were to return a majority “No” vote. Historically they probably have at least as much justification, if not more, and, geographically and politically, there being no physical connection to the mainland, it would be easier to manage.

Peter Kent

Meikle Wartle


Alex Salmond has been much criticised for comparing the coalition’s attempts to start discussions about Scottish independence to military interventions in Ireland.

Yet the two independence movements do have similarities – in particular the radically diverse nature of the populations of Ireland and Scotland.

In 1922, the Ulster Protestants were allowed to remain in Britain, but would the proto-Saxon populations of south and east Scotland be allowed to remain with England?

Or would the Celts of the west and industrial Scotland allow the proto-Vikings of Orkney and Shetland to opt for union with Scandinavia – and take their oil with them?

The First Minister is justified in drawing such parallels, which raise issues as important as our new currency or whether the Airdrie Savings Bank might set our interest rates.

(Dr) John Cameron

Howard Place

St Andrews

So THE Conservative peer Lord David Trimble accuses Alex Salmond of grandstanding on stilts (your report, 14 January).

Is that the same David Trimble who, not so long ago, was grandstanding with a sash at Drumcree, to ensure he got the leadership of the Ulster Unionist Party?

With opponents like that, Salmond should have no worries about the referendum.

Dennis Canavan



The labels “Briton” and “Scot” were originally coined by the Latins for respectively the Welsh and Irish, and those people do persist in the Cymric and Gaelic speaking, to what should be the embarrassment and discomfort of the English.

The Ulster Scot is, of course, no less a phoney than the Englishman who pontificates on being a true Brit, when typically he is nothing other than an Anglo Saxon with all the bad traits of his German and Teutonic predecessors.

The English have a bad history in these islands with a few, however, having the good grace to acknowledge the fact and would let us and what remains of their empire in these islands go.

Suas Leis a’ Ghaidhlig.

David McPhillips

Broomfield Crescent