International Observation for Indyref2 139

I believe international observation to be absolutely essential to another independence referendum. This is the submission I just submitted to the Scottish government’s consultation on rules for the next referendum. I do urge everyone to contact their MSP and support it.

I believe it is essential to add an element of independent international observation of the referendum process.

The referendum is about the creation of a new nation state. Neither the referendum itself can create a nation state, nor the subsequent negotiation between Scotland and Westminster. The nation state is only created by recognition by the United Nations. The international community therefore has a strong interest in the process.

There was a great deal of disquiet in Scotland over the fairness of the referendum campaign in 2014, and particularly the role played by the broadcast and print media, and especially the state media. There is significant public perception of BBC bias against Independence.

Electoral monitoring of the referendum should be undertaken by the Office of Democratic Institutions and Human Rights of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe. The Scottish Government should write to ODIHR and OSCE and request such monitoring, and at the same time write to the UK government and ask them to support such request. The request must be supported by the UK government to be accepted by OSCE, but it would be politically very difficult, and look suspicious to members of the international community, if the UK government refused it when the Scottish government believed it to be necessary.

Not only will the OSCE send a large team to observe the conduct of the campaign and physical balloting and counting process, they will send an advance team of experts with international experience in monitoring media bias in campaign situations, with a particular emphasis on state media. These experts will produce a careful and scientific quantitative and qualitative analysis of the extent of media bias, and this analysis will be presented to all the member states of the Organisation of Security and Cooperation in Europe. The very presence of the international monitoring team will be a strong deterrent to bad media behaviour, and will boost public confidence in the process.

I wish to strongly commend this work by the ODIHR and I believe this proposal is essential to another referendum campaign.

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139 thoughts on “International Observation for Indyref2

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  • Rob

    I’m wondering if Craig Murray would be demanding outside monitoring if in 2014, the BBC had shown itself to be fanatically in favour of independence? Somehow I don’t think so.

    Craig’s argument is a self-serving and patronising dismissal of our ability to read, listen and make up our own minds.

    Remember that the corporate media were 150% behind Hilary – including the BBC-Guardian – but look what happened to her.

    • fred

      It’s a standard brainwashing technique for cults.

      “You can’t trust the BBC, you can’t trust the MSM, you can’t trust the government, you can’t trust your family, we are the only ones you can trust, we are your family now, look into the light, they are all trying to harm you, we will save you…”

    • Dave

      Rob…? but they didnt and thats the issue. What Craig Murray is asking for is just the utmost transparency at the next referendu. Nothing wrong with that. Its not contested by many that the research by Prof’ Robertson that there is bias towards a pro Union in and by the BBC and that this was endemic in the 2014 referendum. I doubt there would be any Inform Scotland posters, no Films by Alan Knight (London Calling) or any calls for the BBC to be taken to task if…it was obvious that there was equal distribution of Pro Independence Info as there was Pro Union..Anti Independence info. Eeryone …or mostly everyone knows that there wasnt and that is why Craig Murray is asking for this (a separate issue from the blatant BBC bias and the info overt and covert given to the Scottish and the UK public) ad the addressing of and creation of robust procedures to ensure any foul play that may occur is absolutely minimised…

    • Gerry Imrie

      Your comment is no doubt self serving, anyone against International Observation or who see’s nothing wrong with the BBC or the rest of the British
      mainline media’s ‘150%’ opposition to Scottish Independence is. Your comment is also patronizing as is deceitful as the British media ‘of our ability to read, listen and make up our own minds’ when what people are reading and listening to is ‘150%’ biased.

  • BrianPowell

    My MSP is a LibDem and against there being a 2nd Referendum on Independence( though touting a 2nd Ref on Brexit!). Of course the LibDems were for Federalism until they had the chance to work for it, then abandoned the whole principle, tho they have apparently found it again down the back of the spa.
    So not expecting much from the wittering fool, Willie Rennie MSP.

    • BrianPowell

      Predicitve text! That’s sofa, tho spa would represent a better description of LibDem politics, sitting in the warm water dreaming of great things.

  • CameronB Brodie

    British nationalism is ideological in construction, it is alien to nature. Scottish nationalism is organic and is shaped through landscape and culture. British nationalism is a self-harming pathology of reason. Scottish nationalism might turn out the same but then that would be on our own heads. Not England’s, as a result of the 10-1 democratic deficit in the UK Parliament.

    Ideology is positivist in nature, it constructs a totalised reality of pseudo-cultural value that is bound in time. Pragmatism is rooted in biology through semiotics and is responsive to real life circumstances and human values.

    Anti-posiitivism is the root of Critical Social Theory and much of contemporary post-modern social science. It is philosophically and methodologically related and relevant to the development of nursing practice, as it seeks to understand from the ‘subject’s’ perspective.

    Semiotics of Identity: Politics and Education

    Old Mark
    Perhaps so but I have limited means to communicate the bigger picture, in limited space. Please see above.

  • crosscourt lob

    Fully agree with your submission Craig.

    We don’t want a repeat of what happened at the count at Dundee for indyref1 when a fire alarm went off and the hall was cleared for some time. For indyref2 the international observers should be allowed to set up cctv cameras at the counts.

    • c rober

      Unhappy now are they where the nobbling of the parliament means less and less Slabour elected , which in no doubt their introduced system was meant to protect – they now wish to change it to increasing the numbers? Whats next being 100 percent behind SNP and the upper chamber?

      Where was the change in WM to D Hondt ?

      What is preferred , imo , is that the Civil service maths/legal dept of Holyrood is done at the university , removing political bribery for votes , and decisions made on Science not bent accounting.

      Slab is dead Mr McLeish , all that is left is where to bury it , yet your still looking from a personal income from the stinking corpse for yourself and the sycophants.

  • Ian sanderson

    Would the ‘observations’ be available prior to the actual vote, or is the implied ‘threat’ of condemnation supposed to be enough to rein-in Project Fear MkII?

  • John Mcillaney

    Is there a site where we can sign a petition to the Scottish government to respond favourably to this suggestion?

  • c rober

    Craig , would they do such a thing as cross reference personal bills , tax residence and nhs addresses – especially postal votes?

  • Jim Stamper

    I strongly agree and included international monitoring in my comments sent during the consultation period on the draft referendum bill

    • michael norton

      It is also increasingly likely that it will be a HARD BREXIT.

      So does that mean that Inderef2 is more likely?

  • michael norton

    The United Kingdom is “doing great” following its vote to leave the hated E.U., President-elect The Scottish Donald has said.

    In his first UK interview, with former justice secretary Michael Gove for the Times, Mr Trump said he thought the UK was “so smart in getting out”.

    Mr Trump promised a quick trade deal between the US and the UK after he takes office in five days time.

    He also criticised Nato and German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s immigration policies.
    Ministry of Truth

    • michael norton

      Ms Nicola Sturgeon warned: “It seems the Westminster Tory Government now think they can do anything they like to Scotland and get away with it. They must start to understand how wrong they are.”

      It would seem that Theresa May is calling the bluff of Nicola Sturgeon.

      Ball in the court of Nicola Sturgeon.

  • michael norton

    Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has kickstarted his Scottish fight back with a blistering attack on the SNP.

    In a speech in Glasgow, Mr Corbyn accused the Scottish Government of “simply passing on Tory austerity” as he tried to turn around his party’s fortunes north of the border.

    He slammed the ruling SNP government for making £327m worth of cuts, telling Labour activists: “Trying to talk left at Westminster when in opposition, whilst acting right in power at Holyrood, is not standing up for Scotland.

    “It is not standing up for Scotland failing to tackle the scandalous level of health inequalities here in this great city of Glasgow and across Scotland. It is not standing up for Scotland overseeing a growing attainment gap between children from poorer and wealthier backgrounds.

    “It is not standing up for Scotland refusing to use the powers of the Scottish Parliament to invest in all of these areas – and many more where we believe the SNP has failed.

    “The SNP is not standing up for Scotland. It’s standing up for the establishment.”

    Well said J.C.

    • michael norton

      Jeremy Corbyn angers SNP with claims IndyRef2 Yes vote would “TURBO-CHARGE” Scottish austerity
      The Labour leader also slammed SNP cuts to council budgets during speech to supporters in Glasgow.
      Separation would see political power lie with “the Edinburgh establishment” while economic power stayed in London, he added.

      Corbyn said: “It would lead to turbo-charged austerity and a glaring hole in the money required to fund essential services, and would not be in the interests of the people of Scotland.”

      His comments were rejected by First Minister Nicola Sturgeon

      • michael norton

        Sturgeon has said it is “HIGHLY LIKELY” that a second independence referendum will be held after PM Theresa May confirmed she plans to take the United Kingdom out of the EU single market.

        But Corbyn said the vision of an independent Scotland as an oil-based economy was no longer viable, adding:
        “The days of oil at $150 a barrel ARE NOT COMING BACK.

  • michael norton

    The FM said she “WASN’T BLUFFING” about holding Indy2.–same-old-9666224
    The clock is ticking on another indy referendum.

    Theresa May pledged the United Kingdom was going to leave the single market in a speech last week.

    That crosses Nicola Sturgeon’s RED LINE of what is unacceptable about Brexit to her Government.

    The FM said she “wasn’t bluffing” about holding Indy2.

    So get on with it Nicola.

  • michael norton

    The UK economy grew 0.6% from October to December, maintaining the rate of growth of the previous quarter.

    The figures, from the Office for National Statistics (ONS), show that a feared slowdown in the UK economy as a result of Brexit has not shown up in official data.

    BBC Ministry of Truth

    stick with us Scotland and share in the wealth

    • michael norton

      The United Kingdom has recently had sixteen quarters of continuous, gentle growth.
      During this time there have been both The Scottish Referendum and the Brexit Referendum but the Economy of the United Kingdom has not missed a beat.

    • michael norton

      Shell agrees United Kingdom North Sea, Thai asset sales worth $4.7 billion
      Royal Dutch Shell announced two divestments on Tuesday worth $4.7 billion including selling a chunk of its North Sea assets to private-equity backed Chrysaor which will now become a top three oil and gas producer in Britain.

      The deals bring Shell’s disposals to $12.5 billion since mid-2015 as it aims for $30 billion in deals by 2018.

      Shell agreed to sell a mixture of new and late-life North Sea oil and gas assets, accounting for more than half of Shell’s UK North Sea production, to Chrysaor for up to $3.8 billion.

      “(The deal is) providing a springboard for Chrysaor to bring new investment and growth into the basin,” said Shell Upstream Director Andy Brown.

      The deal is expected to complete in the second half of the year and will make Chrysaor Britain’s leading independent exploration and production company.

      Chrysaor is backed by EIG and Noble Group (NOBG.SI) investment firm Harbour Energy. BMO Capital Markets Ltd advised the company, while Bank of America Merrill Lynch advised Shell.

      Major oil companies such as Shell and BP (BP.L) are withdrawing from the mature North Sea basin to instead focus on higher-profit areas like Brazil or the Gulf of Mexico.

      Perhaps Ms. Nicola Sturgeon needs to spend more time on her day job?

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