Thatcher – and Many Still Active Tories – Did Support Apartheid 895

I am delighted that Sir Patrick Wright, former head of the Diplomatic Service, has confirmed that Margaret Thatcher did support apartheid. There has been a polite media airbrushing of this aspect of Tory history. For the first two years of my life in the FCO I spent every single day trying to undermine Thatcher’s support for apartheid. As I published last year of the FCO’s new official history:

Salmon acquits Thatcher of actually supporting apartheid. I would dispute this. I was only a Second Secretary but the South Africa (Political) desk was just me, and I knew exactly what was happening. My own view was that Thatcher was a strong believer in apartheid, but reluctantly accepted that in the face of international opposition, especially from the United States, it would have to be dismantled. Her hatred of Mandela and of the ANC was absolute. It is an undeniable statement that Thatcher hated the ANC and was highly sympathetic towards the apartheid regime.

By contrast the Tory FCO junior ministers at the time, including Malcolm Rifkind and Lynda Chalker, shared the absolute disgust at apartheid that is felt by any decent human being. The Foreign Secretary, Geoffrey Howe was somewhere between these two positions, but very anxious indeed not to anger Thatcher. South Africa was an issue in which Thatcher took an extreme interest and was very, very committed. Not in a good way.

British diplomats were almost banned from speaking to any black people at all. Thatcher favoured the Bantustan or Homelands policy, so an exception was made for Gatsha Buthelezi, the Zulu chief who was regarded as anti-ANC and prepared to oppose sanctions and be satisfied with a separate Zulu “homeland” for his Inkatha movement and essentially accept apartheid exclusions. That may be unfair on him, but it was the policy of the UK government to steer in that direction. Our Consulate General in Johannesburg was permitted to talk to black trades unionists, and that was our main angle in to the black resistance movement. These contacts were made by the excellent Tony Gooch and Stuart Gregson, and before them the equally excellent Terry Curran, then my immediate boss in London. Neither Terry nor Tony were “fast-track” public school diplomats. None of those talked to black South Africans at all.

I flew off the handle when I discovered, when dealing with the accounts of the Embassy in Pretoria/Capetown (a migratory capital), that the British Ambassador, Patrick Moberly, had entertained very few black people indeed in the Residence and the vast majority of Embassy social functions were whites only. In 1985 most of the black people who got in to the British Ambassador’s residence in South Africa were the servants. I recall distinctly the astonishment in the FCO that the quiet and mild-mannered young man at the side desk had suddenly lost his rag and got excited about something that seemed to them axiomatic. Black people as guests in the Residence in Pretoria? No, Craig, I was told, we speak with black people in Johannesburg. Different culture there.

Wright’s account collaborates mine both in general and in detail, eg on being banned from any contact with the ANC. Eventually we managed, as a tentative first step and unknown to No.10, to arrange a meeting, ostensibly by accident in the margins of a conference, between myself and a brilliant young man from the newly launched trades union federation named Cyril Ramaphosa. I wonder what happened to him? 🙂 I was the recipient of his justified ire at Tory government policy.

Tories who actively supported apartheid are still very influential in the Tory party, notably the St Andrews Federation of Conservative Students originating group, including Michael Forsyth. Even David Cameron’s contacts with South Africa in this period are a very murky part of his cv. It is important the Tories are not allowed off the hook on this. The moral taint should rightly be with them for generations.

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895 thoughts on “Thatcher – and Many Still Active Tories – Did Support Apartheid

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  • RogerDodger

    Craig I wonder if you have any thoughts on the Channel 4 interview of Jordan Peterson that has caused such a stir recently? It appears to have been a character-assassination attempt by the corporate media similar to the one you encountered with Sky.

    • John Spencer-Davis

      I hope you won’t mind if I offer a thought or two on that. I have a lot of time for Jordan Peterson, although I am a very vocal critic of his political offerings on Twitter and have taken a good deal of stick for it from some of his less critical admirers.

      In my opinion, Newman’s interview was pretty poor, because she seemed to approach it with considerable preconceptions about the views of the interviewee, and in most cases those preconceptions were mistaken. She seems of an obstinate character, and rather doggedly persisted in trying to force Peterson into those preconceptions, which he rightly resisted. I am not sure that there was anything more pre-planned and concerted about it. Peterson has not said so, and in fact has been a good deal less critical of Newman than many others. I also think that in the last third of the interview, Newman did rather better, and made rather more headway than she has been given credit for: I believe that is because she was more able to take on his positions as she began to understand them more clearly. I was more impressed with her interviewing skills than many have been.

      I’ve learned a great deal from following Peterson, who strikes me as a pretty honest and principled person. He knows a lot about Jung and about Carl Rogers, which is important to me professionally. He is also the first person I have ever come across who is able to show in a wholly convincing and serious manner that much of the content of the Bible is not the absurdity that it appears to be on the face of it. I really like that: he’s an original thinker.

      He’s not afraid to say what he thinks about atrocities attributable to “the left”, although I think he is wrongly contemptuous of people on the modern left who have always been equally strong critics: it is possible to be on the left and not to be an apologist for massacre, which does not seem to have occurred very readily to Peterson. I think enlisting him, where possible, much preferable to abusing him.

      Cheers, John

        • John Spencer-Davis

          Yes: thank you. That includes possibly the harshest things he has said: elsewhere, on Twitter and within the interview itself, he has to a certain extent recognized that she was attempting to do what journalists do, dig to find out what the hell is going on.

          Not sure I agree with him fully on “animus possession”, although he is infinitely more well-read in analytical psychology than I am. I think he overstates his case a little there, and when feminists have worked out what he means I anticipate that he will be attacked on that.

          Having watched the interview again, I urge anyone of a left-wing persuasion (indeed, anyone at all!) to watch, in isolation, the exchange from 17m 31s to 21m 39s. Newman was brilliant there, in my opinion, and the left owes her a debt of gratitude for that portion of this interview, which is also the point where Peterson is weakest and where he concedes most (and also where in my opinion he rather starts to talk nonsense in order to defend his own ideological preconceptions.) Essentially, Newman asks: “why should women accept, and be forced into, manifesting “masculine” psychological traits in the workplace in order to succeed, since it is presumably possible to change institutions so that the uglier traits which we are currently forced to manifest no longer bring success?” That is a thundering good question, and Peterson does not really have an answer to it except “OK – let’s try it.” His other answers around this point are also both unconvincing and somewhat offensive.

          Best, John

          • Johnstone

            Very interesting analysis but I give CN no credit WSE. She so badly underestimated his brilliance was astounding. My guess is she only read his work and hadn’t previously listened to him speak ..pretty unprofessional. She continues to put words into his mouth through the whole interview ..she’s doesn’t listen to him and DIDN’T do her home work so had no clue about where he’s coming from. I do not find his responses offensive. She needs to go to Canada and study philosophy, logic and rhetoric.

          • Phil the ex-frog

            JSD, Johnstone

            I’d not heard of Peterson before this interview and no nothing of him. I have just watched the post interview interview linked to by Johnston.

            Peterson called Newman a “radically neo-marxist postmodernist”.

            What does this mean? Isn’t it the case that postmodernism emhasises individual interpretation, whereas Marx fundamentally rejected relativism. Cause this sounds to me the ramblings of someone who has no grasp of Marx (or maybe postmodernism but I bet it’s Marx) and the use of “radically” suggests a pejorative. Yet you call him a genius so perhaps I’m missing the point. Perhaps you can explain.

          • John Spencer-Davis


            Peterson’s narrative is this. He sees postmodernism as arising out of the French intellectual current of the 1960s and 1970s (Lacan, Derrida) which, he claims, finally had to accept that to defend Marxism was to defend atrocity. The result was an abandonment of left moral indignation, into a nihilistic assertion that there are no values – only issues of power and ideology. This he terms postmodernism and neo-Marxism, pretty interchangeably. (I think Chomsky shares these views quite considerably, incidentally.)

            Somehow this French disease has gotten loose into Western culture and academia, and he connects it with identity politics, which he sees as a natural extension of the alleged Marxist idea that the group is greater than the individual.

            Identity politics has a strand he terms “equality of outcome”, which he particularly dislikes because he regards it as dehumanising and linked with ideologies of destruction and genocide. I believe his reason for applying the terms he did to Newman is because he apparently believed that she was arguing in favour of equality of outcome.

            I’ve been attacked an awful lot on Twitter, but I have never been attacked with such virulence as when I gently started to suggest to a mob of Peterson fans that equality of outcome might be desirable in some circumstances. I was immediately called some rather startling names including genocidal fanatic.

            Not sure I’ve done a great job of explaining, but that’s roughly the story.

            Cheers, John

          • John Spencer-Davis


            I understand you. Think we’ll have to agree to differ on that. The trouble is that Newman didn’t start well, and didn’t end well, and that remarkable passage in the middle of the interview doesn’t really make up for that and isn’t really very noticeable. It’s a shame, and a waste, because I think it shows what a great interview she could have done if only she had done her research and not approached him with such an agenda.


          • Johnstone

            Phil the ex-frog
            January 29, 2018 at 20:04
            He’s strongly influenced by Solzhenitsyn. Could that explain his grasp on marxism?
            He can be dogmatic, sometimes he rambles and some of his arguments are flawed. He’s a darwinian evolutionist, christian. His use of archetypes and myths to support his arguments undermines his logic. By no means do I agree with all his ideas but I still think he mind is brilliant and that showed during the CN interview. So what, she deserved one agreeable bit of contempt ..I doubt she was even listening. BTW I am not one of the millions of awestruck male followers CN referred to.. I’m female.

          • Johnstone

            Hello John
            Yes, you do a much better job of explaining JPs take on neo-marxist postmodernism. My daughter was at Uni in Canada so I saw for myself the level to which PC influences uni life there and JP’s C16 arguments in the viral video were an eyeopener.

          • Phil the ex-frog

            “He sees postmodernism as arising out of the French intellectual current of the 1960s and 1970s (Lacan, Derrida) which, he claims, finally had to accept that to defend Marxism was to defend atrocity. The result was an abandonment of left moral indignation, into a nihilistic assertion that there are no values – only issues of power and ideology. This he terms postmodernism and neo-Marxism, pretty interchangeably. (I think Chomsky shares these views quite considerably, incidentally.)

            Somehow this French disease has gotten loose into Western culture and academia, and he connects it with identity politics, which he sees as a natural extension of the alleged Marxist idea that the group is greater than the individual.

            Identity politics has a strand he terms “equality of outcome”,”

            Let me precis what I understand his argument to be.

            Postmoderism arose in reaction to the USSR and thus it is the same as Marxism. They are both ideologies! They both pursue equality of outcome which is dangerous commie stuff. Postmodernism/neo-marxism then infected teachers with political correctness and identity politics.

            All seems a bit odd to me.

          • John Spencer-Davis


            Not quite quite.

            His narrative is that French Marxists of the 1960s and 1970s and post modernists of the 1970s are the same people. They abandoned Marxism when it was no longer possible to defend Stalin intellectually. I don’t think I have seen him say this explicitly, but the very strong inference is that in order to justify their abandonment of Marxism, it was emotionally easier to abandon the whole idea of moral value than to admit that they had been committing themselves to a philosophy that was monstrously flawed and produced great moral evil. Hence post modernism.

            You may be interested in this. This might be Peterson speaking: I think his beliefs are very close to what is expressed here.


          • Phil the ex-frog


            So some French blokes gave up on the USSR and Marxism. They rationalised their previous support of an atrocious state by abandoning moral value.

            I really have no idea how this leads to conflating postmodenism and marxism which have opposing, incompatible fundamentals.

          • Phil the ex-frog


            In the video you link to Chomsky in no way conflates marxism and postmodernism.

            So I’m still none the wiser to what the hell Peterson means by “radically neo-Marxist postmodernist”. It still sounds like a hollow pejorative that most of his listeners will simply not even question because they too have never actually read marx.

  • reel guid

    Under fire Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson says that the Russians are planning to tear up Britain’s infrastructure, lay waste to the economy, cause death, destruction and chaos.

    Didn’t know the Russians had engineered Brexit.

    • Republicofscotland

      Yes reel guid, this is the kind of russophobic attitude that haunts Westminster. Williamson’s deliberate scaremongering, has been described by Russian Major Konashenkov, as like something out of a Monty Python’s sketch.

      You’ll recall that during the 2014 indyref, a Westminster blowhard, declared that they might need to bomb Scottish runways in the event of independence.

      Westminster politician’s especially this inept government must surely be seen as a bunch of loud mouthed incompetent fools. The Russian’s must be laughing their heads off at the antics of this lot.

      • reel guid


        Gavin Williamson himself is like a character from a Python sketch. Before becoming an MP he was a manager of a bespoke fireplace company in provincial England. Now he’s in charge of an army, navy and airforce, and from all accounts is not respected much by the warriors.

        He reminds me of the Pythons’ vocational guidance counsellor sketch where the chartered accountant wants to be a lion tamer.

        • Republicofscotland

          Yes reel guid, it appears as long as you’re willing to obey without question. You can find yourself quickly promoted to a ministers position in this government. The one common denominator is you need to be proficient in incompetency, oh, and a wild imagination also helps.

          Here’s Williamson, sorry I meant the accountant in action.

  • Monteverdi

    It’s not the sexual angle which should disturb us about the President’s Club scandal. However repulsive some may view it, women signing up as ‘ hostesses ‘ and being proved with sexy costumes must have had some idea of what they were letting themselves in for. What should concern us is the political make up of many of the attendees, the possibility of blackmail, and the opportunities for a ‘ honeypot trap ‘ by intelligence agencies.

  • Republicofscotland

    Meanwhile columnist Kevin McKenna, rips into the Britnat sophistry surrounding flagGate.

    The absurd Daily Mail has printed an apology, as did broadcaster Iain Dale. However the Scottish government reported the “fake” news story to IPSO, and the editors of the Telegraph and Express newspapers, would do well to recall IPSO’s Editors Code of Practice.

    There’s been no forthcoming apologies from a raft of Tory politicians, who wronly accused the FM over FlagGate.

    • reel guid


      I’m surprised the Express didn’t have a ‘Blow For Sturgeon As Express Refuses To Apologise’ headline.

      • Republicofscotland

        reel guid.

        The Express newspaper, is in my opinion the most rabid of the anti-SNP/independence unionist rags.

        If by chance they do print a retraction, it will be miniscule and hidden between articles that are least likely to be read. No front page apology, as was the original headline.

        • reel guid


          The comments in the Express web pages. It’s a haven for Britain First/BNP activists, and I might add, Scottish Tory councillor types. And the paper keeps their anger fed.

          I agree. That’s a superb piece by McKenna.

    • frankywiggles

      It’s relevant if you’re interested in the character of the people running our country: most of the highest-profile Tories of 2018 joined the party when it fervently supported apartheid and regarded Nelson Mandela as a terrorist. That’s who they are, whether the media buries it or not.

        • frankywiggles

          Thatcher was also racist, as uncomfortable as you and the Guardian seem to be with accepting that. And I’m not sure what the relevance of your second paragraph is. Surely you’re not suggesting the Tories were right to support apartheid because the ANC became disunited and corrupt?

          • SA

            The racism continues and not only in the Tory party but in all the neoliberal globalisers including the Blairites who have collaborated in the US plan to reshape the ME.

          • Republicofscotland


            You’ve grasped the wrong end of the stick, I’m not defending Thatcher, as for the ANC, I’m merely pointing out how badly they’ve governed (Mandela aside) since coming to power.

          • frankywiggles

            Apologies. It’s just I’ve read enough about Thatcher’s views on race to know that her pro-apartheid stance didn’t derive solely from her household’s economic interests. And for all today’s prominent Tories who supported apartheid, from Theresa May on down, there is no explanation other than inherent racism.

      • Ben

        It’s hardly irrelevant when the finger pointing begins and that’s what you’re bleating about.

        If you’re as narrow-minded as our host I wish you Charge of the Light Brigade success dreams.

        • JOML

          Ben, the charge of the light brigade was in the Crimean war, not the Boer wars. Thought you’d know that, given you want to discuss the Boer Wars. ?

          • Ben

            Mixing metaphors for war shouldn’t spoil the hellbroth.

            Romantic fantasies are a Putin favorite.

  • Republicofscotland

    Tony Blair is in most media quarters seen as a seasoned elder statesman, he’s given countless oportunities to air his points in the likes of the Guardian newspaper, and on the BBC.

    Yet we know that Blair, dragged Britain into the illegal war in Iraq, which led to the deaths of thousands, widespread poverty and disease, indeed Blair’s legacy is a unstable Iraq, yet there’s no warrants for this man’s arrest, no extradition document to the Hague, or any other nation lie outstanding.

    Then we have Julian Assange, a man who because of his dedication, uncovered the foul deeds that Blair had committed through going to war in Iraq. Even today Mr Assange puts his life on the line to bring you information, that the British and American governments don’t want you to know about.

    Yet Blair can freely walk down the streets, knowing he won’t see the inside of a court, or prison cell. The same cannot be said about Mr Assange, who blew the whistle, on various neferious actions, he showed us in part, what our governments are really up to.

    Yet he remains confined to a embasy in London, as countless so called lefty liberals walk by day in and day out, with their prawn sandwiches in one hand and their lattes in the other.

    What a Orwellian society we live in, when the likes of Tony Blair can be seen as a elder statesman. Whilst whistle blower Julian Assange is seen as a criminal for revealing the truth.

    • reel guid


      Tony Blair is a seasoned elder statesman.

      Only because he’s salted lots of money away.

    • Tony_0pmoc

      This is not exactly, that well presented, but it is pretty well researched. I haven’t watched it all yet. It attempts to piece together most of Julian Assange’s life, and tries to fill in some of the blanks. I am not necessarily, saying that I agree with it all, but it is very interesting. It suggests very strongly, that Julian Assange is an Intelligence Asset, which I have long suspected. However, that is not necessarily a bad thing, and even if he is a spy, he is a very interesting one, and should be free to go wherever he wants, even if he does believe the Official Story (which I find highly unlikely).

      “RichPlanet TV: Wikileaks & Assange: Made By The NSA”


        • Tony_0pmoc

          Courtenay Barnett,

          Well there are a lot of Intelligence Agencies – The Americans have got about 25, and we know about half of them…

          If you want to be a spy – you have got a very wide choice,,

          but as Julian Assange chose to come to the UK, hoping to seek Protection from all these evil forces (mostly American), who obviously really do not like him,,,

          He’s probably working for us British…check out where he stayed after his term in Wandsorth Prison (he was there at the same time as Anthony John Hill (ripple effect) who you have probably never heard of (found innocent by an English jury)

          I really like the man, though I do have a natural affinity to Australians- we kind of understand each other’s sense of humour…and I appreciate cold air – where no one actually says anything for a few seconds, because the converation is that deep as if you are playing chess with a grand master..Sometimes it is good to think before you speak.


          • Node


            Whilst I rule nothing in or out, one obvious question screams for attention :

            If Assange is a Western intelligence asset, what is Ecuador’s role?

          • Salford Lad

            The first method of attack on a whistleblower is to discredit him and sow seeds of doubt in the public mind.
            Tony Opmac you are doing Assange and Wikileaks a disservice and are inadvertently doing the dirty work of the Establishment by promoting this story. We are dealing with devious and evil people who have a well worn playbook in the methods to manipulate and control the message.
            Noam Chomsky expands on some of these methods in his book ‘,Manufacturing Consent.’

    • Courtenay Barnett


      ” yet there’s no warrants for this man’s arrest, no extradition document to the Hague, or any other nation lie outstanding.”

      We live in a corrupt world; and all nations in it too are – the only question seems to be – to what degree?

      Blair is a war criminal – but – where is the court to try him – and even if jurisdiction were conceded – then where is the power in the world to have the likes of George Bush Jr. and Blair indicted?

      Sure you know the answers.


      • Republicofscotland

        There may well be those at the UN or ECJ, who want to see the likes of Blair or Bush jr locked up. However there’s just not the political will to do so.

        So the likes of Edward Snowden and Julian Assange, need to move among the shadows, whilst the real criminals walk freely down the street unhindered.

          • Courtenay Barnett


            Even if an ECJ with global jurisdiction did exist; your comment would be just as accurate and equally valid. It is Sunday mate – and – I am in my law office preparing the week’s work but diverted a bit here – so I share with you and all the other good people on this blog:-

            As I said, I am working this Sunday in my law office and put a few thoughts on paper which I would like to share with all the bloggers here. I was born in Jamaica; educated part in Jamaica and my higher studies were completed at London University onwards. So here:-

            For years I have observed, read and written on world affairs. I had been accepted as a post-graduate student to read International Relations, but I changed my mind and focused solely on a career in the law. My intention at that time was to become a diplomat. However, despite abandoning that ambition and substituting it with an activist practice in the law, I have never lost my interest in world affairs – and would therefore describe myself as a self-educated student of world affairs.
            So – read and/or listen to each piece – and – hopefully there will be a realistic and comprehensive, objective understanding of some of the major tenets which presently drive our world. Not a majority of global here broached, by any stretch of the imagination, but at least a lucid introduction to some of the immediate and major ones – oil – the avowed violation of the concept of sovereignty – US Presidential racism – and so on. I shall confine myself to the post World War 11 period – for that is what the past 30 plus years of my readings have mainly focused on. The list of 5 issues below, for me is a brief refresher course. For all to whom I forward this email – it is also an invitation to share ideas, disagree with me at will, make comments if so motivated to do – and – please do so and tell me where I got it wrong.
            1. The structure of the post World War 11 period based on American ascendance. First – one needs to be acquainted with the name “George Keenan”, who was the US architect of the “Cold War”. He can googled, but I share with you some of his more prescient observations:-

            “We should cease to talk about vague and unreal objectives such as human rights, the raising of the living standards, and democratization. The day is not far off when we are going to have to deal in straight power concepts. The less we are then hampered by idealistic slogans, the better.”
            ( i.e. he is speaking here of what imperialism actually is – and – I observe that this is not an a mere aberration. To better understand what I am conveying – please watch the youtube video of General Westley Clarke below).
            ― George F. Kennan
            “Were the Soviet Union to sink tomorrow under the waters of the ocean, the American military-industrial establishment would have to go on, substantially unchanged, until some other adversary could be invented. Anything else would be an unacceptable shock to the American economy.”
            ― George F. Kennan

            2. One needs to understand that the basis for making sustainable argument is to back same with unassailable empirical evidence. Any properly trained scientist would have been taught this. The empirical evidence of US/NATO global aggression is there for all to see.

            3. On a smaller scale I forewarned of what Libya would become after the imperialists attacked that country.
            In Pazambuka, the largest all Africa online news publication, my article was published:-


            4. On a non-racist – and progressive note, the same publication accepted my submission on President Trump:-

            5. And – as a catalyst for global conflict, I explained my views and observations on the Iraq invasion, in this piece. I was invited to give a public lecture, which I did, and it was the US State Department official in attendance who asked the most questions of me ( but – details of that for another time):-
            HAPPY READING.

          • Republicofscotland

            A belated reply apologies.

            Thank Courtney for that wonderful insight into your life. I’m pleased for you, that you still possess a curious mind on world affairs, even though you didn’t quite reach your diplomatic dream.

            You make five very interesting points, which I will ponder on for awhile. Whilst opening and reading your links.

  • Republicofscotland

    Meanwhile it’s come to light, that late last year the (NAO) National Audit Office, produced tax figures, showing that the Scottish government had gotten its income tax figures wrong.

    The (NAO) didnt publish these figures, this was seen by the BBC and the Tories as pressure put on the (NAO) by the SNP not to do so. The BBC carried the story daily on its news channels, and the Tories backed it up.

    However it turns out that the (NAO) didnt release the figures because they were wrong. The SNP government had nothing whatsoever to do with the (NAO) not releasing the figures.

    This along with FlagGate and countless other false, fake, stories whatever you want to call them is now the mainstay of attack on Scotland/SNP government, by the foreign press and tv channels.

    As far as I know no retraction or apology has been forthcoming.

    • JOML

      RoS, for the third day running, The National is hidden from view in my local supermarket , covered up by other unionist papers. From the bottom to the top, many unionists are sleekit, lying and conniving scumbags. We should expect nothing less from their ‘sort’. Worth noting, there are decent unionists out there – but they stay below the radar and are guilty of not condemning these underhand and deceitful tactics.

      • reel guid


        I know. Just one daily paper in Scotland that takes the line of independence and even it gets hidden under the unionist rags in the shops. There’s no other democratic country in the world where the media is so slanted towards the establishment line as it is in Scotland.

      • Republicofscotland


        They’re hiding it because they’re afraid of the truth, afraid of the truth getting out there and into the community. Calum Baird, the National’s editor, is well aware of these going on’s, but is virtually powerless to do anything about it.

        I’m sure though like me, there are many pro-indy supporters, who’ve decided to fight back, in a similar fashion. By placing the National over say the Daily Mail, Express, Herald, or Daily Record when they leave the magazine/paper stand.

  • reel guid

    In a Daily Telegraph interview Jacob Rees-Mogg warns May to stick to a hard brexit. He thinks that’s what the British people voted for. In Scotland we didn’t even vote for the softest brexit ya diddy.

    He is quoted as having made this idiotic utterance. “Brexit is more important than anyone other than the Queen”.

    There’s Jacob’s philosophy in a nutshell. At the top of the great chain of being there’s the Queen. Then next in importance there’s Brexit. Below that, Tory landowners, aristocrats and (providing they’re of the right sort according to Jacob) Tory MPs. Then I suppose it’s captains of industry. And below them everyone else on the planet, including all foreigners.

    • Republicofscotland

      reel guid.

      In my opinion, Rees-Mogg, is a sign of the failure of Westminster politics as a whole. The rise of Mogg, a T-1000 model (meaning Tory) is the updated model of John Redwood, only with sharper suits.

      He’s your typical Eton/Trinity college educated toff, who hasn’t got a clue how the common man or woman thinks let alone decide policies for the masses.

      Add in his upperclass mannerism and excessive polite accent, along with his strong anti-EU ideology, so strong infact that he once called for the Tories to have a political pact with UKIP, over the EU, and you can plainly see that this man shouldn’t be anywhere near Westminster, let alone number ten.

      • Tony_0pmoc

        Well, I kind of like Jacob Rees-Mogg, not because of his political views (but I agree with him on Brexit), but mainly because he is not a brainwashed moron, and is far better at doing interviews, than the BBC eejits who ask the questions..

        Whereas Theresa May, is totally scripted, nearly as bad as Ed Miliiband, who kept on going back to the top of the soundbite, and then said the same nonesense 5 times more in the same interview…

        I mean regardless of their political views, our Prime Minister is supposed to be able to make at least some kind of sense, with people like Putin, who must by now, have almost given up hope of getting any sense from anyone in The British Government.

        This is not good.

        Morons do not make good Prime Ministers.

        Personally, I would prefer Jeremy Corbyn, but The Mogg ain’t daft either.


      • MJ

        “you can plainly see that this man shouldn’t be anywhere near Westminster”

        I blame the constituents who voted for him.

          • fred

            It’s hard to think of a fairer system than one where the candidate who gets more than twice as many votes as their nearest contender goes to Westminster.

          • SA

            So just look how fair the system is:

            Conservatives share of votes 42.3 % should have had 275 seats instead have 317
            Labour 40.0% should have 260 seats had 262 seats
            Lib Dems 7.8% share should have had 48 seats instead of 12

            So you can see that the system is heavily skewed don’t you think?

          • fred

            I think that has nothing to do with which candidate gets elected in individual constituencies.

            JRM got as many votes as the rest of the candidates put together, the voters did that, not the system.

          • Shatnersrug

            constituency based democracy is a perfectly workable and successful system if people were taught how to use it. Considering that 14% of the UK population are in London, PR would slant democracy even further towards the major cities. True it is now, but again if the public uses their MP more and we’re actively involved in choosing him or her then the system would not have become so warped – the best way to estranged a population from its democracy is to tell them it doesn’t work and then to demonstrate it doesn’t by filling it with establishment trolls parachuted from the same educational class.

  • Tony_0pmoc

    I bought it over a year ago in hardback, but have only just got around to reading it.

    My current book at bedtime, is

    Yanis Varoufakis “And the weak suffer what they must”

    Why didn’t the people of Greece, not only vote for him, but Escape The Fascists in The EU impoverishing them…

    At the time, I was writing my heart out (though no one noticed)…

    I Love The Greek People

    Go back to The Drachma – and tell all these EU cnts to Fck Off

    Their economy would have bounced back by now.

    Yanis Varoufakis – Rockstar, who hasn’t yet quite made it.

    I note some of the Extreme Left, Really don’t Like him.
    …and The Extreme Right seriously hate him…

    Yanis is a very clever nice man, with the best economics mentor in The World Australian Economics Professor Bill Michell (check out billyblog)

    Yanis is also a human being, with the best of intentions, and he realised how he totally fcked up, with his first speech to The Germans as The New Greek Finance Minister. He thought he was going to get wild applause, and when he finished speech, he got stunned silence.

    That is my kind of man. Doing the best he possibly could to represent his country Greece in Germany.

    Can’t we recruit him and try and make out he’s British?

    Surely its about recruiting the best talent isn’t it?

    Sure he might be a bit Greek, but he ain’t Thick.

    Look at the State of Our Lot?

    They ain’t even up to a Punch & Judy Show.

    They are totally useless.

    You guys in Westminster, seriously must improve – recruit Yanis. If the Greeks don’t want him


    • Paul Barbara

      @ Tony_0pmoc January 27, 2018 at 19:55
      I strongly suspect that Alexis Tsipras was warned off, both personally and with the threat of a coup.
      ‘Gladio’ is alive and on watch in that part of the world – the Greeks will remember the Colonel’s Coup, and also those old enough will remember the British treacherously turning on the Resistance at the end of WWII, telling the squaddies that they were German sympathisers.
      Terrible concentration camps were set up to house the prisoners, and Greece was handed over to the Right Wing (many pro-German).
      Perfidious Albion, not just in Palestine!

    • SA

      We are all focussed on the wrong target. Though I voted remain, I hate the EU. The problem is that it really is not at all about the EU it is about neoliberal globalisation project for which the EU has been coopted as an enforcer in this corner of the globe. Whether we are in or out will change nothing in the end.

      • Paul Barbara

        @ SA January 28, 2018 at 01:38
        With any luck, when (and if) we eventually get out of the EU, others may well follow suit, which to me seems an admirable situation.
        Bang goes a big piece of the NWO ‘One World Gulag’ plans of the PTB (Banksters and Corporations).

        • SA

          I know what you are saying but UK within the shark infested neoliberal waters is no better off outside the EU than inside. Its the system which will not change by leaving the EU.

          • Paul Barbara

            @ SA January 28, 2018 at 11:03
            Britain has been a shark for long enough to know how to survive.
            But the very real danger is cosying up to the Yanks even more than we have in the past.
            That is extremely worrying. The sooner Jeremy Corbyn is PM, the better I will sleep.

  • SA

    But Thatcher’s malign shadow is cast on the whole world not only SA. Lest we forget the origins of the current financial and public services mess: it was the wilful destruction of trade unions, extraction and manufacturing industries to convert the country into a financial services state, using North Sea oil to achieve this. It was Thatcherism with its planned misery for the many so that the rich could get richer. Let us not forget this part of our recent history. The Brexiters dream of converting this country to a European offshore financial speculation and tax haven is the latest episode of this plan. Although the EU is not perfect, it is the lesser of the two evils, but above all the dreadful monster spawned by Thatcher and Reagan that has led to globalisation is the monster to be combatted.

    • Republicofscotland

      Good points SA, also lets not forget that EU laws protect many our rights. Will that still be the case after we exit the EU? I’m not confident the so called British Bill of Rights will live up to its hype.

  • Paul Barbara

    ‘Theresa May suggests UK health services could be part of US trade deal
    PM insists Government remains ‘committed to an NHS that is free at the point of use’: -nhs-us-trade-deal-brexit-torture-a7548156.html



  • Republicofscotland

    To think that along with bishops, party cronies and by-their-sell-by-date politicians, and this airhead, will decide for the Scottish people.

    We have Governor Fluffy Mundell, and his thirteen judases to thank for that.

  • Stu

    The BBC excelled themselves this morning

    First up Marr had Corbyn on and asked him relevant such as whether he intended to get rid of capitalism and whether he was going to move homeless people into mansions. This completely coincidentally was immediately followed by a discussion with Nicky Campbell of whether the left ie the Labour Party has a problem with anti semitism. I only saw the beginning of this but a very intelligent Jewish lady did a fine job of explaining why anti Zionism is not anti Semitism.

    Corbyn completely breezed through the Marr interview despite the poorly set traps. The BBC don’t seem to realise that they are not going to change the political mood of the country at 9am on a Sunday politics show watched exclusively by people with firm political opinions. All they are achieving is motivating people to counter their narrative on social media.

  • reel guid

    Corbyn on Marr being questioned on why the uk can’t stay in the single market like non-EU Norway. He replies with the ridiculous defence that Norway’s economy is dependent on oil. Even if that was true how is that any kind of justification for being out the single market?

    It’s not true anyway. Norway’s economy is not dependent on oil. Albeit they wisely created a very beneficial oil fund. Norway is a big producer of aluminium . Has a large hydroelectric industry. Then there’s the gas production. The world’s second largest exporter of fish after China. Banking, telecommunications, forestry, tourism, shipbuilding, minerals and service industries. They have one of the world’s largest merchant fleets. Not to mention the oil as well.

    So Corbyn’s assertion that Norway is in the single market because of reliance on oil is a complete load of garbage.

    • SA

      reel guid
      It is true that oil is one of the major pillars of Norwegian economy contributing about 40% of the total income. But the point is that Norway is a small country of less than 10% of the population of UK. I am sure that the Norwegian model would not apply to UK .

      • Republicofscotland


        Nonetheless consecutive British governments squandred the returns from the North sea bounty, they didn’t even set up an
        oil fund for the future.

        No Norwegian model was required to do that.

        • SA

          Yes and in particular Thatcher used the North Sea oil to beat the trade unions and wind down British industry rather than build a new industrial basis.

      • reel guid


        The economic models of Germany, Iceland, France, Luxembourg, Finland, Spain, Liechtenstein, Belgium, Hungary and Italy are a total mixed bag. But they’re all content with being in the single market.

        • SA

          But the point is that Norway is the only oil rich one with a small population, they are like Nordic Sheiks and they can afford to do what they like in the EU.

      • reel guid


        Once again Corbyn makes no mention that he’s talking about England only, since housing is devolved to both Holyrood and the Senned. He doesn’t take devolution seriously. And if the Tories succeeded in taking it down then any subsequent Corbyn led government wouldn’t give any priority to restoration.

        • Republicofscotland

          Indeed reel guid, you just have to look at Labour in Wales to see that Labour in London promise one thing, but in the other home nations it’s a very different position.

          The last time Labour were in power in Scotland they built a grand total of six houses, no that’s not a mistake I really did type six houses.

          • reel guid

            They would have built more but McConnell wanted to earn brownie points for himself with his London masters by sending some of the block grant back. And he got his reward of a peerage.

    • Shatnersrug

      Whilst I think that’s shitty, I can’t help thinking the clue that it would be a terrible movie would be the part of the title that said ‘part 3’

  • Republicofscotland

    The Russian opposition figurehead Alexei Navalny and 15 others have been arrested in Moscow, after he attempted to lead a protest before presidential elections that are expected to return Vladimir Putin to power for another six

    I’ve no idea if Mr Navalny, is backed by the west, or if he’s a genuine candidate who wants to see a more democratic system in Russia. However not being able to protest, is another matter which is the case here.

    No one would back against Putin being returned as president of Russia again. When he does get re-elected this tenure will take him over the twenty year mark in power.

    • SA

      If Navalny represents ‘the opposition’ to Putin then god help them as his ratings are about 3-5%. The Communists are the real opposition to Putin. But anything about Putin in the Guardian has to be taken with a very large dollop of salt.

      • Republicofscotland

        “The Levada Center also conducted another survey, which was released on the April 6, 2017, showing Navalny’s recognition among the Russian population at 55%. Out of those who recognized Navalny, 18% would either “definitely” or “probably” vote for him in the presidential election”

        No SA, I think his ratings are slightly better than you suggest. Putin’s rating remain remarkably high in my opinion, not because he’s an excellent leader, but because the west’s current all round condemnation of all things Russian, has bolstered his popularity, in the eyes of the Russian people.

        As for the Guardian, it’s not just Putin, however Navalny was a genuine candidate before he was barred, by the Putin influenced judiciary.

        • SA

          Putin has pulled Russia out of the big mess of the Yeltsin years when Russia became a basket case defaulting on its debt. Russia can not only stand on its feet because of Putin but now also is thwarting the west’s agenda in Syria and elsewhere. He is also a true statesman who has outwitted the west on many occasions. That is why his ratings are high.

          • Republicofscotland

            SA, I agree, that Putin did the right thing over the wests/Saudi/Israeli, attempts to regime change in Syria because it suited them.

            However I disagree with you, that somehow you feel he’s a better statesman, which I’d imagine encompasses everything to do with governance.

            Putin, has been in power since around 1999. His style of statesmanship, has seen most if not all the indigenous media outlets, bar one or two, which have been raided and prominent broadcasters have either ended up dead or imprisioned, spout government propaganda.

            Many other opponents or vocal denouncers of Putin’s virtually unopposed tenure, have in the past conveinently turned up dead.

            The lastest elections due on March this year, has seen the front running opposition candidate, barred from running, by the judiciary.

            Putin will romp home again in the elections, due too two main reasons. One, he has a iron grip on Russia, through violence and intimidation, and propaganda, and two, his rating are constantly high.

            The latter point, may have something to do with the wests propaganda that denounces Russia at every turn, whilst imposing and calling for more sanctions. Putin only needs to relate that to the public, in the form of they’re trying break us, but we’ll stand fast.

            So the Russian people put up with Putin’s iron fist at home, because they think the west hates them and all things Russian, we don’t, well most of us don’t.

            Finally Putin even though he knows fine well, that Saudi Arabia sent thousands of proxy fighters into Syria, to try and overthrow Assad, has been selling King Salman weapons.

            Putin in my opinion is no better or worse than, most nations leaders.

          • SA

            There is a some truth in what you say but there is also a lot of western driven propaganda in the narrative that Putin liquidates all his opponents. To take the example of Nemtsov who was murdered next to the Kremlin. It is so blatantly a propaganda murder of a relatively minor opposition figure with a rating of 1-3% of voters that it really would not be worth Putin’s reputation to assassinate him I also post a link from Buzzfeed claiming not only that Putin murdered 14 tycoons in UK, but the british security service have ignored this. I stopped reading after the first three or four paragraphs, it is so pathetic. Similarly Navalny is really no threat electorally to Putin.


            Now it is very well known that there is a lot of anti Russian publicity at the moment. Can you explain to me why the British secret services would not pounce on this? Even May’s reaction to the Litvinenko case was rather muted. It is also known that the period of Yeltsin’s rule saw the rise of the Russian Mafia which although still functional, is much curtailed by Putin. Some of these assassinations and killings are surely Mafia originated and obviously because of the amounts of money involved secret services may well like to ignore some of them. You must watch the current BBC series Mc Mafia, based on a book by Misha Glenny to understand what really is going on.

          • Republicofscotland

            “Now it is very well known that there is a lot of anti Russian publicity at the moment. Can you explain to me why the British secret services would not pounce on this?”

            SA, re your above comment, Litvenenko, aside, it’s very unusual for either Britain, or Russia to wash their dirty linen in public, probably because they have so much dirt on each other, that no one would gain out of it, indeed both would lose credibility very quickly if it became at tit-for-tat exercise.

            As for your links, you post them as if its very unlikely that Putin would have anyone removed. Of course he’s remained in power for nearly 20 years because he’s such a likable guy.

            Where else would you find claims that Putin removed opposition and those who spoke out in the media? Certainly not in the Russian press as almost all the media falls under Putin’s iron fist.

            As far as I’m aware most of the “Robber barons” pledged loyalty to Putin, those that didn’t fled Russia, for various countries including Britain.

            You don’t remain in power in a quasi-democracy such as Russia, for nearly twenty years, and expect to win another tenure in March without any REAL opposition, unless you control the government, judiciary etc, with a iron fist.

            Here’s a few other links, they’re not of Russian origin, so they must be dubious. Remembering Putin controls the Russian media.



          • SA

            You can post many links which say the same thing about Navalny, Nemtsov, Berezovsky and so on. None of this is proven and a lot of it is circumstantial. As I said earlier , there is some truth in all this but this is not unique to Russia and certainly not to Putin because the major sell of of Russian assets occurred during the Yeltsin years and spawned the very powerful mafia framework. There is a power struggle in Russia and non of those the west support are all that clean or innocent. A lot of the oligarchs and supper rich have earned thier money in a crooked way and find a haven in London under the protection of HMG. You may right about governments not to display dirty washing in public but I am also sure that there are deals done. I am not condoning what Putin does, I am just saying that he is a statesman who has achieved a lot to curb and expose what is going on in Syria in terms of support of the west for IS and AQ and he has succeeded in rolling these back. There is no denying that there is of course an advantage for Russia to do so even if only it is to stop the Jihadists from attacking Russia as has happened with the Chechen wars.

  • reel guid

    Former Holyrood Presiding Officer David Steel says he’s going to speak out in the Lords debate to protect the devolution settlement. All very laudable, but he’s a bit superannuated to be playing the part of Horatius at the bridge.

    That Scotland’s devo settlement is now in the hands of a bunch of unelected and overwhelmingly non-Scottish octogenarians 20 years after it was instituted is beyond farce. And the no longer boy David is hardly going to be able to form a custodial ring of steel around it all on his own.

    The Scottish Labour Lords will likely stand up one after another in the chamber and make wholly ambiguous remarks that will in no way constitute a serious defence of devolution.

  • Tony_0pmoc

    Gavin Williamson in Deep Sh1t even with The Guardian, who for once both write the facts on the ground, and are funny with it. too.

    Gavin looks around, and wonders what did he say, to make Vladimir Putin, think he was still working with John Cleese on The Dead Parrot Sketch at Monty Python.

    “Gavin Williamson left firm ‘after meeting sparked by relationship’ ” (if it had been a bloke – well maybe it was???)


    “He went to the Mail hours after getting a series of questions from the Guardian. In the Daily Mail article, he said the relationship “became flirtatious and a couple of times we shared a kiss”.

    Williamson said he decided to leave the company to save his marriage to Joanne, a former schoolteacher.

    His lawyers refused to tell the Guardian:

    Whether the woman reported Williamson’s behaviour to her line manager and an internal process followed.
    What the outcome of that process was.
    The terms on which he departed and whether he received a payoff.
    Whether it was right for a managing director to engage in a relationship with a junior colleague.
    Why there appears to be no mention of his employment at Elgin & Hall in his official profile or social media.

    The latest details have emerged amid claims that he exaggerated a threat from Russia to distract the media from the allegations about his personal life.

    Unnamed security sources said Williamson made “alarmist” claims after telling the Daily Telegraph that Russia could kill thousands of British ­citizens in a cyber-attack. He was also accused of misusing US intelligence – a claim the MoD has denied.

    One security official told the Sunday Times of concerns that going into such detail about what is known about Russian surveillance in the UK could compromise sources and anger the UK’s intelligence partners: “He used intelligence, not all of it the UK’s, to try to distract attention.”

    A Whitehall source said the timing of both the Daily Mail and the Telegraph interviews – which both emerged on Thursday night after the Guardian had issued questions about Elgin & Hall – had surprised officials.”


  • BrianFujisan.

    January 29, 2018 at 00:31

    Whilst I rule nothing in or out, one obvious question screams for attention :

    If Assange is a Western intelligence asset, what is Ecuador’s role?…..

    Very Important Node

    I here Jullian is Pratically on death bed.. Imagine it…NO SUNLIGHT….

  • Loony

    I wonder exactly what kind of British people continue to support the EU and why they do so?

    According to media reports (probably lies) a lot of EU supporters consider themselves to be humanitarian liberal types – maybe the kind of people that think “meat is murder” are concerned about global warming, think that President Trump is a Nazi and cry over the fate of the latest victim group to be presented to them by their corporate masters.

    I wonder what EU supporters may have to say about the practice of willfully exposing both people and monkeys to toxic gases for no other reason than to make money

    Will there be outrage? Will there be protests? Will Jeremy Corbyn unreservedly condemn the corporate gassers? My guess is no because no-one cares.

    So for all EU lovers everywhere here is Bob Dylan speaking from the past about a future that is all yours to endure

    “Aint it hard when you discover that,he really wasn’t where its at, after he took from you everything he could steal”

        • glenn_nl

          Oh, so that link didn’t support your point – it was your entire point. How jolly original of you.

          Next time you want to cut & paste some right-wing BS, why don’t you find somewhere else to put it?

          • Loony

            I know ad-hominem attacks to be oh so jolly and oh so English.

            However the objective point is that Germany controls the EU and German car companies have been deliberately exposing both people and monkeys to toxic gas. The question is not whether the Washington Post is “some right wing BS” but whether the story is true.

            Posting it here would appear to be appropriate as a number of people are ardent fans of the EU and claim an interest in human rights and various victim groups. Perhaps those people would like to ask themselves on what basis the people and monkeys poisoned by German car companies are not accorded the status of officially recognized victims.

    • Republicofscotland

      “I wonder exactly what kind of British people continue to support the EU and why they do so?”

      Those who believe in free movement, those who want to keep their jobs, as part of the largest trading block in the world. Those who believe in the ECHR, which protects them.

      Those who want to share information as in science and medicine. Those who want see the continuation of other sharing and educational programmes such as the Erasmus one.

      Those who want to be able to live and work in other countries, without fear of unjust expulsion.

    • SA

      Not directly linked to the EU necessarily but directly linked to Capitalism inspired corporate greed. The system is evil I agree.

  • Loony

    Maybe God is also morally tainted as South Africa suffers its worst drought in more than 100 years with residents of Cape Town being limited to 50 liters of water per day as of February 1st.

    Or maybe God is off the hook for this one as evidence emerges that the current water crisis is in fact the fault of the Apartheid regime. A Queenstown (Eastern Cape) Councillor observed that racist water engineers had deliberately built reservoirs that were too large. As a consequence large reservoirs take longer to fill than smaller reservoirs, and hence less rain would be needed to fill small reservoirs.

    As long as South Africans can find a way to exist without water then everything is looking good. How I wonder what the difference in population is today from 100 years ago and whether this will have any impact on the ability of people to survive. Along with all other intelligent people I blame the British Tory party.

    • iain

      South Africa suffers a drought, ergo Tories were right to support apartheid. How did you come by the name?

      • Loony

        Did I say that? Let me help, the answer is No I did not say that.

        You might be better advised to acquaint yourself with the exponential function.

    • Republicofscotland

      I think maybe Obama was trying to be frank on the subject of illegal settlements, by using the words, “liberal J**” as a euphemism to convey his opinion on Israel’s current illegal expansions in the West Bank. It would not be lost on the Israeli’s as many new groups are popping up in Israel, advocating a peaceful two state solution.

      Lastly Obama’s hands so to speak were tied in office over Israeli actions towards the Palestinian people. Powerful groups, lobbyists and business men saw to that.

      All, he could really do without incurring the wrath of those who, shall we say want to see Israel expand, was to abstain on December’s 2016 UN Security Council vote denouncing Israeli settlements. A kind of meek parting shot, if you like.

      In hindsight without the facts of course, which I suppose makes it more like speculation. There’s probably been one or two POTUSes, who’ve actually wanted to do something positive and significant about the Israeli/Palestinian saga, but couldn’t, due to the reasons I mentioned above.

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