13 Events, No Witnesses: The Prosecution Concludes the Case Against Alex Salmond 305


Today the prosecution concluded its case against Alex Salmond. The most important point was that, now the final prosecution witness has been called, we can conclusively say that the Crown did not produce a single eye witness to any of the 13 alleged incidents. This is even though many of them occurred in public; at a photo opportunity in Stirling Castle, in restaurants, in a vehicle with other occupants. It is strange that a behaviour allegedly so continuous and so compulsive was simultaneously so invisible – that is invisible to anybody who was not either a member of Nicola Sturgeon’s very closed inner circle – which describes six of the nine accusers – or a senior Scottish government civil servant, which describes the other three. It is the very narrow and connected milieu of the accusers which distinguishes this case from the comparisons the media had everywhere drawn with the monstrous Weinstein.

The nearest thing the crown had to an eye witness was Mr Donald Cameron, head of the private office of Leslie Evans, Permanent Secretary to the Scottish Government. Mr Cameron testified on Friday that he had witnessed Alex Salmond attempt to brush the hair from the cheek of a civil servant in a lift (which is not one of the charges). Mr Cameron also agreed under questioning that there was not, to his knowledge, any policy against female civil servants working alongside Mr Salmond in Bute House, which claim had been the major trial media headline on Friday morning.

The other main point of interest since my last report has been the acknowledgement by accuser Ms J that she had been in messaging contact with Ms H – before making her allegations. The Crown did not after all call one of its listed witnesses, Ian McCann, the SNP official who had been in the WhatsApp group discussing (ahem) the accusations and who had been involved in the strategy to “sit on them” until they were “needed”. The cross-examination of McCann would have been very interesting; I am rather unsurprised the Crown have pulled him.

I had a conversation on the last AUOB march with a lady who used to be a senior British Airways air hostess. British Airways used to host promotional events such as conferences and dinners at venues such as Turnberry or Gleneagles. Air hostesses would be present for hospitality duties, in their uniforms in the day and then changing into evening wear for the evening function. Social mores change, and this would be viewed as pretty tacky now, but it was perfectly normal twenty or thirty years ago.

The lady told me that she very frequently had problems with guests becoming over familiar and trying it on with the hostesses, particularly after drinking at dinner. The guests were generally very senior executives and politicians. The hostesses would frequently discuss among themselves who was and who was not “handsy”, who to avoid and who was nice company. She told me that Alex Salmond had been very frequently, over many years, a guest of BA at these functions, in a variety of capacities. She had never once heard a single word of complaint about him. In the starkest contrast to many other public figures.

The media have had over a week of lurid headlines. Tomorrow will see the start of the defence case – and the good news is that means the court will be open to the public. If I can wake up and queue up early enough, I hope that I shall be able to bring you detailed reporting.

Shortly after Alex Salmond left the Scottish parliament, Robin Mcalpine told me that he had been entering the parliament with Alex Salmond for a meeting. The security guard had been rather embarrassed to tell the former First Minister that he would require to be signed in as he was no longer a member. Salmond replied “of course, call the First Minister’s office”. The guard did so, and the First Minister’s office refused to sign him in. That was when I first knew something was badly wrong.

Under Alex Salmond, Scottish nationalism was radical and challenged the imperialist English nationalist narrative that so dominates UK politics and media. Since his departure, there has been a radical change of emphasis. On Syria, on Ukraine, on Huawei, the SNP has decided to join in with Britnat union jack patriotism and indeed be still more militaristic than the Tory government. Rather than explain, let me present some contrasts which you should easily understand.

Last week the SNP at Westminster sided with the most right wing Tory rebels in voting against Huawei’s involvement in constructing the UK’s 5G network. On Syria the SNP is actively calling for regime change and criticising the UK government for not adopting a policy of regime change.

On Ukraine also the SNP is actively more hawkish and anti-Russian than the Tory government and criticises from the extreme NATO hawk position. The SNP defence spokesman, Stewart MacDonald, posted a twitter stream of the books he read in 2019 which was an astonishing collection of Russophobia, both Russophobic “research” and Russophobic spy fantasy fiction. MacDonald was actually awarded a medal by the President of Ukraine for his services to Russophobia – sorry, services to Ukraine’s image abroad. (This is true, not a joke).

With Salmond out of the picture, the SNP has been captured to become a political party with an absolutely safe, dependable neo-con worldview. The SNP leadership unquestioningly now accepts and actively promotes the Britnat framing of China and Russia as the enemy. Salmond never did. The SNP has been successfully neutered by the British Establishment both from challenging the Britnat worldview and from any genuine intention to break free of the UK state. This has been a major success for the security services in neutralising what the UK state saw as its biggest single danger. It explains absolutely why Alex Salmond needs, from a UK security service point of view, to be permanently put out of the picture.

Neither China nor Russia is the enemy of Scotland. Quite the opposite. I am going to say that again so it sinks in. Neither China nor Russia is the enemy of Scotland. The acceptance by the SNP hierarchy of this Britnat imperialist framing is a betrayal of the Independence movement.

On Huawei, it seems to me extremely improbable that the Chinese state – which has enjoyed phenomenal success through peaceful economic expansion – has any intention of spying aimed at harming the interests of Scotland. What I do know for certain is that the UK government will use 5G, exactly as it has used every other communications technology, for mass spying on its own citizens. What I know for certain is that the UK government’s mass spying on its own citizens includes those it views as being a danger to the UK state through their support for Scottish Independence.

I should have been a great deal more impressed by the SNP’s vast coterie of Westminster MP’s, all of whose arses are becoming increasingly well padded from their long and comfortable sojourn on the green benches in Westminster, if they had taken the opportunity of the Huawei debate to speak, not in Churchillian terms about the Chinese Red threat to the United Kingdom, but to speak about GCHQ and MI5 spying on Scottish people. That is what the SNP should be about, not British patriotism.

Consider the above change in the SNP’s geopolitical stance. Consider that the majority of accusers are senior SNP figures close to the current leadership. Consider the role of SNP Party HQ in (ahem) discussing the accusations. I hope you now understand that is why I shall be in court every day from tomorrow.

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305 thoughts on “13 Events, No Witnesses: The Prosecution Concludes the Case Against Alex Salmond

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  • Davie

    I’m so grateful for your insight I’ve been sceptical of this SNP gov for quite sometime now and have posted so, to ridicule how mandate after mandate has gone unused despite all lines being crossed the leader continues to drop the ball right now its the same with strategy for covid19 which goes against WHO advice ie test test test. nope nope nope I ain’t gonna do it is the answer of the ones we know to be globalists let’s give it a chance kill first then we can pretend it’s caused the collapse of global finance so many outs for them, with this sorry to be off point about the good Mr Salmond in my opinion of course its a fit up but we need your good self to report the truth and elaborate where safe to do so thank you. Craig

    • Spencer Eagle

      Davie…agreed, what we are witnessing is a recalibration of the broken global finance system, most likely an opportunist response by the globalists, however you have to wonder what if the so-called pandemic was a manufactured event. Take some time to look up ‘Event 201’, a global pandemic exercise carried out in October 2019 to simulate the effects such a scenario – guess what the fictional virus involved was? – none other than coronavirus.

      • independence

        I fear the threat to human liberty and independence is far worse.

        In Austria, one death from ‘corona virus’was sufficient for widespread restrictions on the freedom of movement of the entire healthy populace.
        In Denmark, forced vaccination (with penalties for dissidents) went through into law, giving police widespread powers to haul people out of their homes for ‘vaccination’ with untried substances –
        which could prove lethal to many of the population.

        Highly repressive legislation swept in like lightning after a World Health Organisation declaration of a ‘Pandemic’.

        Who is this organisation accountable to?

        Flu deaths always peak in February.
        Italy and Japan have the oldest populations in the world – who survive into a ripe old age because of good, free, medical care. It is true there is an extra strong virus in the country this winter.
        It will surely peak with a higher loss of life than ‘usual’ flu rate which is 14,000 per annum in Italy.
        It is true any virus can spread – if not addressed.

        Doctors in Italy, have emphasized that eldery people were dying ‘WITH’ corona virus’ as opposed to OF the virus because all elderly people are struggling with failing health conditions which make them vulnerable to flu and other pathogens.

        The lives of people in old age are always under greater threat from anything.
        When this flu subsides as the weather improves, the annual death rate will go up slightly.

        The mortality rate in Europe is circa 1 in a 100 which means that for every 10,000 people, 1,000 die annually.
        Germany has a population of 88,000,000 consequently 880,000 Germans die ‘normally’ every year.
        Italy has a population of 60,782,668 consequently circa 607,826 ‘normally’ die every year.
        When this flu subsides as the weather improves, the annual death rate will go up slightly.

        China’s population is 1,426,000,000,
        The Virus has peaked in China and numbers will fall.
        3,180 people died.
        That is not a lot of people in comparisdon to the whole.

        It is untrue to claim that if not for a pathology the human animal would continue to live permanently. It is a falsified perception of reality because all natural life is fixed in cycles of renewal.

        Flu deaths have previously been politically instrumentalized.
        Because of the allarming, perceived death threat, shall we be pummelled to wordlessly accept global decrees on:

        5G
        The introduction of untried, irreversible, dangerously high levels of radiation worldwide for the following reasons:
        a) People must work from home and therefore we need the fast connections which is weapons grade technology which will also enhance military capabilities and operations.
        b) Instant access to health services is indispensable therefore there must be enforced a medical ID card with personal records.
        c) Cash is dirty and must go, all transactions monitored.

        Why did we ever worry about Fukushima?

        2. Constant Surveillance
        Shall we eventually be forced to accept state interference with our health and literally an actual hands on approach to our actual physical bodies? Is there a herd ownership pending?
        An ownership of all that was once yours – for the good of the herd’s health?

        What is likely to happen to our mental health once our bodies become state territory?

        We live in a world where genocide and murder is taking place all the time in all the world under one pretext ot another. We have seen footage people gunned down from remote gunships.

        How safe and how sane is it to think this only happens in remote countries?

        Is there not an eminent danger that a convenient Medical ID card be linked to all information that can be gathered about your interior personal life, religion, movements and activities from data-mining? Is it unlikely that this data may be used against you?

        Who should need to know where we all are all the time?

        As to enforced vaccination – (maybe not enforced this time round but perhaps with next winter’s virus epidemic). Will we have any right to know what is being injected into us?

        Will we have any rights at all?

        3. The loss of private money is the loss of purchasing power. It is also paralyzing and inflexible.

        Enabling of a government to directly remove monies for fines, taxes, traffic offences – any pretence, and little recourse to law. enabling of finaciers to enact ‘Negative Interest’. That’s a good one.

        We will have Complete dependency on state wilfulness and efficiency.

        Could there not shortly be a social credit system introduced as in China, where facial recognition identifies people who cross the traffic lights when lights are just changing with consequences?

        The present situation must surely appear to any intelligence that what is happening around us is not leading to any form of Independence from anything.

  • Willie

    Davie @ 6.52.

    I think you make a very good point about the virus being an opportunity to cover up systemic failure in the financial system.

    Driven by years of fraudulent reporting company share prices have been driven higher and higher. Carillion for example, the UK’s second biggest construction group paid ever more generous dividends whilst its company accounts were a complete and utter tissue of lies.

    But Carillion was not alone. All of the other major construction groups are in the same boat. Kier, Mitie, Interserve, Galliford Try to name but a few. Over inflated revenue understated costs is the name of the game and the bail out, wel that comes with the huge increase in infrastructure spend – ergo HS2 et al.

    But it’s not just the construction sector. It’s every other sector too who have their share prices overvalued and loose or in fact non regulation has deliberately allowed this to happen. And so, the virus could well be a fantastic cover to reset the base. Just hard luck for those with pensions and investments who will have to thole the destruction of their savings.

    And for the special few, even the destruction of investor value can be a godsend for those in the real know and who can influence events. Only a suspicion, but being able to control the message on the progress or otherwise, it becomes ever so clear that in saying one thing, when actually expecting another, market sentiment can be manipulated whilst short traders in the real know take shorts in the sure fire knowledge that when the bad news is announced the market will fall.

    So think of the public announcements by HM Government only some 5 weeks ago assuring that everything is under control and think of the message now. Not dissimilar to Donal Trump it doesn’t take an Einstein to realise that information was being withheld whilst the dark money men took positions.

    It’s absolutely wild, and now, job done, the stock market has banned short selling, ( like it was banned in the Great Depression ).

    Ah well that’s what people voted for. Better together, they got the neo liberal shysters they deserve. You couldn’t make it up. But, it’s all the virus’s fault – innit?

  • Johny Conspiranoid

    I would suspect an element of subterfuge, because that can happen you know.

  • U Watt

    One need only contrast the headline up above of AS demanding Blair be tried for war crimes with the beaming visage of his successor just below. We are now being told – by careerist politicians and establishment scribes – that one of these Scottish leaders is morally beyond the pale.

    • Mary

      Oh you mean the photo of Campbell, the spin doctor and purveyor of the dodgy dossier to BLair, the waronger, with Ms Sturgeon posing as Jimmy Krankie.

      • Chris Downie

        A few English friends of mine referred to her as Krankie MacMerkel, commenting that she was more interested in pushing neoliberal politics and fervent pro-EU propaganda, than actually delivering independence. As time has gone on, I’ve been increasingly unable to refute any of this, much to the amusement of Unionists I know.

        • michael norton

          being old and old fashioned i am afraid i am unable to relate to gender politics,
          it is complete bollocks.

          • Mary

            Nothing to do with ‘gender politics’. It’s about phoney politicians in general, who say one thing to get elected and do another once they’re installed..

          • Giyane

            Michael norton

            Iraqi wife to husband with a very large sack of rice on his shoulders:
            However have you managed to lift that heavy thing when you can’t manage to lift your little teacup into the sink?

  • Brian

    I expect most commenting here would not expect Alex Salmond to be found guilty on the evidence available.

    Now imagine this. A man meets a woman they go out drinking together. She goes to his room at 1.40am and gets in bed while he takes a shower. He has sex with her. She later claims rape saying he was powerful and forceful.
    He was found guilty of rape serving three years of a six year sentence.
    He lost the right to appeal despite evidence of financial motivation for charge.
    His name is Mike Tyson

      • bevin

        On the contrary. In all of these cases there is a shocking and extremely dangerous presumption of guilt on the part of the man involved. Do you doubt that the standard of proof needed to establish the facts in a rape case are far lower than the “beyond reasonable doubt” threshold?

      • Ken Kenn

        Hi Ian

        I’m afraid it has a lot to do with the case.

        I hate to say this but the rush to a GE on the 14th of December 2019 was led by a a really crap Lib dem lot who were more against a Corbyn Labour led Labour Party than against Johnson’s Neo Liberal economic policy,

        Many forget that Johnson was trapped in a corner of his own making prior to the GE and could go nowhere.

        Lo and behold the Lib Dems ( scratch a liberal see a Tory) with the assistance of the opportunist SNP leadership let Johnson off the hook.

        This is politics and bad politics at that.

        The question is : Is the leadership of the SNP ( Sturgeon ) a genuine Left Liberal or does the Oil Lobby et al have her measure?

        My view of Scottish ( sorry British – because it belongs to us all?) interests in the oil revenues was – why didn’t we all just own the company and sod just deriving the revenues from the turnover?

        See Tony Benn and ‘ Britoil’

        This was before Thatcher handed the oil over job lot to BP.

        i assume that some people on here will know the long and sorry tale and difference of tax revenues versus owning the stuff.

        If not for this Thatcher could have been more munificent than she was.

        that’s a wry joke by the way.

        the leadership of the SNP are in hock to the oil lobby I propose – still.

  • Tony M

    I take back a small part of what I said, Sturgeon being a wrong ‘un seems a given, but doesn’t necessarily mean all her ministers are, the inner core are for sure but the still uncorrupted idealistic will be brought in, in the hope of snaring them, controlling them the more tightly, by dangling office, perks before them, to monitor them, control them the better. The lure is irresistible, but the hooks and and barbs vicious and sharp. Craig talked of a convention, of MPS, MSPs, even dog forbid, councillors, the time for that was in the landslide SNP GE result that followed the 2014 referendum (2015? 2016?). They should have sat in Edinburgh, but better still Glasgow, wasn’t the vast vacant Scottish Development Agency or something like that building, at Hillington, mooted for some purpose. They should never have went to Westminster, been shown where to hang their swords, but sadly also their brains and their guts. Their position, their mandate their right, on our behalf to relaunch Scotland, the nation re-awakened would have unassailable. Why not? Sturgeon slammed on brakes, stalled the engine that was fully warmed up and raring to go to the finish line. Deftly selected reverse, steered for this cul-de-sac.

  • Janice Moreland

    I’m getting frustrated with the SNP government they seem to be dragging their feet regarding independence since when do we need to go cap in hand to Westminster ?? When did this union become detrimental to Scotland we need to strike now out country is being bled dry 😠🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿

    • Badger Strang

      Honestly, I stopped believing that the SNP even wants independence, some time ago. No matter how many mandates, how good the polls are, how much support there is, or how much we are abused by Westminster, Sturgeon and co. don’t want to risk losing what they have. Even in Salmond’s day, there were obvious indicators that the push for independence was, at least in part, just lip-service – but now it seems to be nothing but.

      So many people say the SNP is the best or only route to independence, but, honestly, I think they are deluding themselves; we no longer have any real political push for independence, if we ever did. If we want it, we’re going to need to figure out a different way.

  • Michael Dexter

    Nine women have given evidence. Nine. I simply don’t believe a conspiracy theory that says nine women made up or exaggerated these stories in order to have an ex-minister prosecuted. Because if you ignore the other 95% of what you’ve written, that’s what you’re saying. While avoiding coming out and saying it.

    • Margaret

      And yet in their own evidence they admitted being members of the same WhatsApp group and other social media where they discussed the alleged assaults and encouraged each other to come forward. And remember also – they didn’t go to the police, they didn’t go to rape crisis or any other support group that helps the victims of sexual assault – they went to an internal SNP process to try to stop AS being a candidate. All this after AS had refused to endorse some of them in their own hopes to be SNP candidates.

      Now colour me stupid, but as a woman, I would have thought deciding to complain about an alleged sexual assault and seek justice, I wouldn’t have been approaching a political party to say “that person isn’t a fit and proper person to be a candidate at an election”, I’d have been approaching the police or other judicial authorities.

      • Deepgreenpuddock

        I think you make a very good point about police involvement long after the events.

      • Michael Dexter

        So you’re saying that nine women (three of them senior civil servants) made up or exaggerated these stories?

        • Cubby

          Michael Dexter

          If the police have the info from the WhatsApp and texts/ call data from their phones and therefore so does the defence we may well find out ( virus permitting) fairly soon.

        • Tom Welsh

          Have you ever watched even a single episode of “Yes, Minister”?

          How many senior civil servants agreed to pretend that Iraq had WMD?

          • Michael Dexter

            I must have missed the episode where three senior civil servants queued up to perjure themselves before a Judge?

          • Stonky

            I must have missed the episode where three senior civil servants queued up to perjure themselves before a Judge?

            As they will certainly be very well aware, whatever the outcome of the case there is absolutely zero chance of any of them being done for perjury. As the Guardian’s rabid hounding of Professor Sir Tim Hunt showed, among modern feminists there are substantial numbers of zealots whose lynch mob setting doesn’t even have an off-switch, far less a dial.

        • Maria

          “So you’re saying that nine women (three of them senior civil servants) made up or exaggerated these stories?”

          Where is the hard evidence that they didn’t? Where are the witnesses that corroborate those stories?

          Isn’t each and every one of those civil servants directly under the control of Whitehall and England appointed ministers? Isn’t independence directly against the interests of the England ruling elite?

          Didn’t the Civil Service “fought to save the union” in 2014#?

          Bigger walls have fallen, actually.

          Why is Ms Evans still in post after, in violation of GDPR, private, confidential information of a sensitive nature was deliberately leaked to a unionist newspaper to tarnish the reputation of a well known pro-independence figure, under her watch as the most senior civil servant in Scotland?
          Where is the investigation into this leak to find out WHO leaked the information and WHO gave the green light for that information to be leaked?
          Why has that investigation never been conducted? Doesn’t the civil service consider important violations of GDPR and leaks of confidential information?

          How can civil servants in Scotland ever be trusted again after that leak, after no investigation to find the culprit was ever conducted? At least they went to some lengths to find out who leaked CArmichael’s memo.

          How can the civil service be trusted again after giving away prizes for forgetting the commitment to political impartiality in their code of conduct and “saving the union”#?

          And by the way, was it not a civil servant also who leaked the infamous Carmichael’s memo?

          Frankly, Michael Dexter, it is not like the credibility of the Civil Service to handle the truth, to handle confidential information and worse, to abide by political impartiality is at its highest!!

          *https://www.civilserviceworld.com/articles/news/hm-treasury-team-wins-special-civil-service-award

        • Johny Conspiranoid

          “So you’re saying that nine women (three of them senior civil servants) made up or exaggerated these stories?”
          I think she’s saying its possible.

      • terence callachan

        Exactly Margaret

        Even if they were lesser accusations
        Can you imagine you return from the loo at work and find your boss stealing money £100 from your handbag
        Are you just going to go to your union rep and say I found the boss stealing money from my purse ?
        No of course not
        You would tell the police

        • Contrary

          Using your example Terence, even if you did go to your union rep first, you wouldn’t expect them to say ‘we’ll just sit on that in case we need to use it in the future against your boss’ – if they did I think you are more likely to go to the police! And report the union rep too. Unless, of course, maybe, if your union rep gave you £200 to keep a lid on it as long as you promised to testify at that future date,,,

    • Cubby

      Michael Dexter

      Presumably you do not know who the accusers are. Do you accept that more information may lead you to change your mind – or is your mind made up?

      • Michael Dexter

        No I don’t know. But nine women lying? ALL of them just made up stories and perjured themselves? As for ‘more information’ I recall we were told the other day they were all SNP workers, but now it turns out three of them are senior civil servants. So, given that further information, doesn’t it seem even less likely that nine people would perjure themselves to drag some ex-minister into Court? Or is your mind made up?

        • Stonky

          But nine women lying? ALL of them just made up stories and perjured themselves?

          It’s quite possible that some have been coerced into telling their stories.

        • Cubby

          Michael Dexter

          I follow the evidence/ information available to me and analyse it as appropriate. As more facts become available I may or may not change my mind as my mind is not set.

          So the simple answer is no.

          Seems like your mind is made up. Just as well you are not on the jury as you would probably be Ignoring the defence case this week.

          ” Three of them are civil servants” thought you didn’t know who they were.

          Hey what happened to number 10 ?

          • Michael Dexter

            Oh dear – did you miss this in the report above?: ‘…or a senior Scottish government civil servant, which describes the other three’

          • Cubby

            Michael Dexter

            Perhaps unlike you I didn’t need to ref Craig’s report for info. So you are happy to take Craig’s report for that info but totally diss the rest of it.

            Since you clearly think you are such a smart arse what was no. ten then. SNP/civil service/SNP contractor/SNP employee or other walk of life. Or does it matter. In your view they are all telling the truth even the no show even though the defence is just starting.

            Michael so in your opinion what number of accusers makes it guilty – > 5 or does it have to be a min of nine.

            So what happened to number 10 then ?

        • Johny Conspiranoid

          Michael Dexter
          “, given that further information, doesn’t it seem even less likely that nine people would perjure themselves to drag some ex-minister into Court”
          Why does this information make it less likely?

    • Johny Conspiranoid

      ” I simply don’t believe a conspiracy theory that says nine women made up or exaggerated these stories in order to have an ex-minister prosecuted. ”
      Why not?

        • Cubby

          Michael Dexter

          Did you miss the bit where the accuser said the SNP would hold on to the info until an appropriate time when it can best be used.

          Did you forget the judicial review case where A Salmond won his case that showed the Scot gov has acted unlawfully and stated the investigating officer had encouraged the accuser to complain.

          Did you miss the bit where they were using a What’s app group..

          Of course this does not mean they were conspiring we wouldn’t want to compromise a live court case would we Michael by making definitive statements of guilty or not guilty

          • Goose

            To what end? The risk v reward doesn’t make sense really, going after an increasingly peripheral figure like AS. And if you believe it’s all a conspiracy, why find nine when 4 or 5 would be equally convincing?

            What would be in it for one person doing that nevermind nine? It assumes really unethical behaviour on their part which is highly offensive.

            AS has admitted to ‘incidents’, but claims they were consensual. What was he doing jeopardising everything like that anyway ,when he knows that behaviour can sink him and damage the SNP?

            If he’s convicted(?) it’ll be a non-story among this coronavirus crisis- which is likely to lead to a huge financial crisis and recession. Sturgeon has shown impressive leadership thus far on that. Johnson has been terrible, with confusion and dithering over whether to force lockdowns. Got to look to the bigger prize of independence.

        • Maria

          “Because there’s no evidence to support such a theory”

          Where is the evidence that demolishes that theory? Where are the witnesses that can verify their stories?

          The judgement must be done on evidence, not probability.

        • Johny Conspiranoid

          “Because there’s no evidence to support such a theory.”
          Having no evidence to support a thing is not the same as proving it hasn’t happened. If there are two possible explanations then neither is proven.

    • Ruth

      I’d absolutely believe nine women could make up or exaggerate things. With the support of the state there’d be no repercussions only rewards.

  • Hatuey

    A couple of things that will undoubtedly seem odd coming from me.

    There is an Indy-positive rationale for the SNP veering to the right when it comes to international affairs. An independent Scotland has a much better chance of being realised, recognised, and accepted, if the international community are comfortable that it wouldn’t lead to any sort of instability or acrimony. The last thing the markets or decision makers in the world want is another Cuba on the cost of Europe.

    I am also of the view that we’d have a better chance of winning a referendum in Scotland if high earners and the business community generally were comfortable with the SNP. They’ll put up with a centre-left government but anything resembling a move towards a high tax, Scandinavian system will simply be opposed.

    We learned all this in 2014. The Indy movement was much too closely associated with the radical left, and that’s confirmed by the data on voter behaviour. (Links available on request).

    In terms of Sturgeon’s handling of Coronavirus, I actually don’t think it matters In the long run.

    • James G

      I agree with all of this – as evidenced my my previous comments.

      Scotland will never win independence on a radical independence ticket. The markets and big business have major influence of our everyday lives. They’ll never endorse a left-wing (even Corbyn style) independence.

      Once we are independent it’s a different matter and we can move to whichever political sphere we like, however history shows that Scotland is moderate with leanings both to the right of centre and left of centre.

      People forget that the Nordic nations have a deep rooted ideology that pervades society and politics as a whole. This is a template that all Scandinavian countries use and it makes it easier for them to retain talent, business and taxes. We border England who are centre right conservative. At the moment they are our biggest trading partner and in the immediate future of independence they will still be, therefore too much veering will see us lose business. It’s similar to Canada and USA – you can steer left but not too far.

      The SNP have it spot on in my opinion but they still deserve criticism where due.

      • Shatnersrug

        You numpties. The concept of an independent Scotland is by it’s very nature Radical. Conservatives do not like change.

        • Hatuey

          It’s not necessarily radical to Americans and other ex-colonies with similar histories, providing we don’t turn to extremes.

          • jake

            It’s not the radicals you need to worry about. It’s the counter-radicals. Always has been

  • Tony M

    You mean Hatuey, abandon all principles. Isn’t that what we’re trying to get away from? Softly soflty doesn’t so much catch the monkey as make monkeys of us.

    • Auld Wifey

      Alarm bells first sounded soon after Nicola Sturgeon became leader of the SNP and FM after the independence referendum when in June 2015 she visited the US where she spoke at the Council For Foreign Relations, a neocon foreign policy think tank aka Wall Streets Think Tank. She was very keen to pledge loyalty to the British state and the US and to give reassurance that an independent Scotland would not pose a threat to British and US foreign policy. Sturgeon told them,

      “…if Scotland had become an independent country or if we ever do in the future and, you know, stress the point I made in my opening remarks, there is no second independent referendum on the immediate horizon, so we’re talking hypothetically at the moment.
      …the United States, for example, in that scenario would go from having one close ally, the United Kingdom, to having two close allies, Scotland and the remainder of the United Kingdom. I don’t believe that weakens the United Kingdom in an international context.
      We would want to be a continuing member of the NATO Alliance to play our part in collective security.”
      When asked: “So the U.S. has nothing to fear from Scotland” Sturgeon replied “Nothing whatsoever. On the contrary.”
      “So do not—do not think that the SNP and the Scottish government takes a markedly different position from the U.K. government on the—the vast majority of international issues. We—we don’t. We are—are a responsible participant and a responsible voice when it comes to these matters. And on both of these issues, you will not find any great difference between our position and the position of the United Kingdom government.”

      Isn’t it extraordinary that the SNP demanding sovereignty for Scotland supports illegal regime change wars, coups, sanctions in violation of UN and international law, treating other nations right to sovereignty and self determination with absolute disdain.

      Link:https://www.cfr.org/event/assessing-scotlands-future
      Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EbSJT4znjTU )

    • Hatuey

      Well, I think before we accuse anyone of abandoning principles, we’d need to iron out what those principles are. As it stands, I believe in independence on principle.

      I’m a neo-realist when it comes to international relations. I’m also a globalist and don’t see an appealing or realistic alternative to systems based on the free market and trade, as much as I think we need to massively change how it all works towards wealth distribution, the environment, and offshore, to name just a few things.

      As far as Scotland’s future is concerned, the country is rich enough to embrace a generous mixed economy that operates more fairly towards the poor, etc. But I’m against the sort of configuration that existed in the UK in the 1970s. Those sort of state managed socialist systems are more suited to naturally poor countries like England.

      • Clydebuilt

        Hautey ,

        Exactly, look what happens to countries that are a thorn to America. Ruffle the USA’s feathers and Scotland will never become independent.

        • Hatuey

          Exactly. Regardless of what we think of the international order, you need to deal with it on its terms. Maybe once stabilised there will be more room to be principled.

  • Margaret

    “In Scotland, no new jury trials will begin util further notice as a result of the coronavirus outbreak.

    The Scottish courts and tribunals announced today that no new criminal jury trials will be commenced or new juries empanelled until further notice. The measure follows yesterday’s extraordinary advice that the general public stay at home as much as possible and avoid unnecessary social contact.

    In a statement, the Scottish authorities said jury trials that have already commenced will run to conclusion of the trial, if practical to do so.

    “It is likely that further measures will be announced in the coming days,” the statement notes.”

    An interesting development. I wonder what will happen in the AS trial if some of the court staff/jurors/lawyers show symptoms before the end of the trial.

    If I were on the jury, due to my underlying health conditions I would be very unhappy about going into court every day and exposing myself to risk.

    • Tom Welsh

      Interesting. Recent UK government announcements have laid the basis for a system of rigid dictatorship, in which citizens have no guaranteed rights, no appeal to the law, and no protection against arbitrary arrest and indefinite detention without trial.

      And all because of a virus that is (perhaps) slightly more dangerous than flu.

      The peoples of the West are like ripe fruit ready to drop into the hand of the next authoritarian ruler to shake the tree gently.

      “They that can give up essential Liberty to obtain a little temporary Safety deserve neither Liberty nor Safety”.
      – Benjamin Franklin

      • SA

        “And all because of a virus that is (perhaps) slightly more dangerous than flu.”
        Where have you been in the last two months?

  • Vronsky

    I’m no longer a member of the SNP but when I was (and I was entirely committed, a constituency convener) I often found some choices of policy direction disconcerting. This was rationalised to me by more experienced members, who said that the party always tried to steer a safe course – a little bit left, a little bit right, not too much of either. NATO membership (for example) was, and remains, morally astonishing to me.

    Unfortunately the party seem to have gone from not frightening the horses to shooting the horses. There is a difference between cautious moderation and adopting the hopelessly ingrained mediocratism of Westminster. Every day it becomes more depressingly clear why Craig failed vetting as a candidate.

    BUT.

    Lots of people are noticing, and Scots are sewer rats: we bite only when cornered and threatened. I think this could end well, and optimism is not my long suit.

    • Shatnersrug

      Vronsky, they’ll be considerably less Scots people in 3 months. A big wake up is is about to hit these isles and it ain’t gunna be pretty.

  • Loony

    I have no idea whether Alex Salmond is some kind of weird sex fiend – I suppose the current trial will provide answers.

    I have every idea that China is a serial thief of intellectual property – and that examples of such activity could fill an entire book.

    It seems odd to imply that mr. Salmond is some how being set up in order to provide a clearer path for the SNP to more readily express fears over Chinese spying. Over the years Scotland has produced quite a lot of ideas ranging from pneumatic tyres through to the telephone. Given the almost complete lack of invention emanating from China in recent times it seems inconceivable that the Chinese would not be keeping a very close eye on intellectual looting opportunities that may become available in Scotland.

      • michael norton

        Alright, hundreds of years ago they invented silk costumes, porcelain, gun powder, toilet paper and bamboo houses
        but not much since.
        Name one thing they have invented in the last one hundred years?

        • michael norton

          They did not invent the wireless, the television, the computer, computer code, calculus, graphene, jet engine, railways, hovercraft, they did not discover evolution, DNA or vaccines, they did not discover antibiotics, then did not discover the internet.
          Yet now we want them to build 5g for us?

          • fonso

            The article is about 21st century innovations that are seeing China race ahead of the rest.
            The British incidentally have been flogging off their national infrastructure and public utilities to overseas companies and governments for decades now; probably the only field in which it can still claim to be a world leader.

          • Tatyana

            They know how to be humans.

            Alibaba, Huawei, Baidu, Dodo etc. donated their billions to help Wohan. Organised support for medical stuff, food, medicine, logistics etc. Supported agricultural regions, that were about to loose the harvest.

            The Chinese saying “when the sky falls, the tall hold it”.

            Here is the source in russian: https://pikabu.ru/story/kitaytsyi_krasavchiki_7296837

          • Deb O'Nair

            China has a functioning quantum comms satellite, something that was believed to be technically impossible in the West until the Chinese did it. China also has a manned space program and is building it’s own space station. China is now leading many fields including wireless comms, radio telescopes, super computers, chemistry etc. etc. China is now moving into the technical innovation and leadership role as a consequence of huge investment in education. The Chinese have always been innovative and entrepreneurial, don’t let the last 60 years of history give you the wrong impression.

      • Loony

        If your post is to be attributed any meaning at all then it would be necessary to conclude that you see no difference at all between Bob Dylan and a Bob Dylan tribute act.

        One way of innovating is to take existing technology and then add value by improving the original technology with ideas stolen from somewhere else.

        • fonso

          Aye, probably a long book to be written on how theft from Scotland sparked the technological revolution in 21stC China. Perhaps you could be the author…

    • David

      The forerunner to UKUSAs modern pervasive surveillance was called ECHELON.(1)
      It was proved to have stolen much International IP, biased international competitive tendering processes, and abused basically everything in the same way as being hypothetically aimed at China.

      China is horribly autocratic towards their citizens, true and as the world’s dominant manufacturer and likely future world no.1 superpower, they might plausibly be seeking everyone’s 5G data for the future data driven world society, as is UKUSA; “a serial thief of intellectual property” applies to all of the usual suspects, not just a market competitor.

      Billion citizen China now internally teaches more science graduates than UK eats Greggs pies daily, so I suspect you might be somewhat abeam too with that “almost no invention” nudge.

      Salmond, I’ll leave to the judiciary to settle. Randomly, Scottish JL Baird invented (mechanical) TV, couldn’t get much in the way of corporate sponsorship – eventually ran a jam factory in the West Indies.

      (1) European Parliament STOA report February 2000 on echelon & privacy, try and find it yourselves, Duncan Campbell wrote a chunk.

      • Rhys Jaggar

        One thing the US did with impunity was to identify really good foreign research which had not yet filed IP, then file a spurious patent application without any data in it, merely to create ‘prior art’ to invalidate decent honorable researchers from gaining monetary reward for their hard work.

        I saw it three times in six months doing due diligence on promising UK projects: one is happenstance, twice is coincidence…I think we all know what three times signifies in Chicago……

    • Tom Welsh

      “Science and Civilisation in China (1954–present) is an ongoing series of books about the history of science and technology in China published by Cambridge University Press. It was initiated and edited by British historian Joseph Needham (1900–1995)”. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Science_and_Civilisation_in_China

      “Once Chinese inventions reached Europe, they revolutionized their sociopolitical system, which used the inventions to dominate political rivals.[18] According to Needham, Chinese innovations, such as gunpowder, the compass, paper, and printing, helped transform European Feudalism into Capitalism.[18] By the end of the 15th century, Europe was actively financing scientific discoveries, and nautical exploration.[18] The paradox of this conclusion was that Europe surpassed China in scientific innovations, using Chinese technologies.[18]”
      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Science_and_Civilisation_in_China

    • jake

      Loony, We Scots also invented the Illuminati conspiracy theory and we’ve a Professor Robison to thank for that. It’s been successfully exported all over the world and remains popular to this day. It travels well and has a good long shelf-life. It’s an idea that’s not been much improved upon other than in a few superficialities and packaging.

  • Nelson

    I think it is an indication of what this site is about, and aimed for, when so many people comment that it’s OK for 50 or 60 year-old men, in positions of great power, should be allowed to grope women under theirp ower. Its just gross. WTF

    • Cubby

      Nelson

      Kindly climb back up your column and socially isolate yourself because you obviously have something no decent person would want to be infected with.

      • William Nigel

        Another nationalist slogan is successfully road-tested and readied for deployment on the doorsteps.

    • nevermind

      Absolutely nobody asked you to come her, afaic, but just as Michael, you are allowed to have your own opinion here.
      I reject your allegation and so do many others here, let us see what Scotland justice can come up with.

      THAT IS AFTER WE HEARD ALL THE DEFENSE ARGUMENTS AND WITNESSES.

    • terence callachan

      Nelson don’t be daft , nobody should be allowed to grope anyone doesn’t matter what age they are doesn’t matter if it’s a man groping a woman or a woman groping a man
      But remember this , for every man having an affair there is a woman also having an affair

    • Deb O'Nair

      “that it’s OK for 50 or 60 year-old men, in positions of great power”

      You think AS held a position of “great power”? Is that why all those women “froze” and couldn’t speak about it for years? Because of his great power?

  • Howard Nicholas

    Thanks for this Craig. It is a frightening vision of what is likely to happen to those with the courage to stand up to the accepted narrative.

    Warmest regards/Howard

  • Nelson

    The adulation of Alex Salmond, and all things Alex Salmond, for years, has been pretty fing weird, but not as weird as Alex Salmond pontificating to the nation from a wing-chair in front of a log fire, all conducted on a with a tartan carpet. Although I merely dislike him, the women I have been talking to would rip his lungs out with a fork.

  • Nelson

    As for Salmonds’ new life: I once checked him out romping with Ann Widecome on stuffed toys on Russian TV. For real! I’m not watching any more of that stuff.

      • J

        MODS: this Nelson person is spamming the forum with identical messages, saying something once should suffice, no?

      • nevermind

        Nelson might also be guilty of various shit, go get some tissues befote you blub anymore.

      • terence callachan

        Yes but he might not
        The thing is there is no evidence from each woman other than what she has said
        No witnesses
        Contradictions in their accounts
        Is it enough ?

  • William Nigel

    Thank goodness this delusional old buffer has absolutely nowt to do with Scottish law.

  • Loony

    It is enlightening to learn that Russia is not the enemy of Scotland. What would be even more enlightening would be a considered view as to how concerned Russia may be with collateral damage.

    Russia has been poked and prodded for many a long year, and because they did not respond in a way that the western mindset would expect it was assumed that they were never going to respond. Well they seem to be responding now alright. Just because western media is too stupid to understand the response does not mean that no such response is underway.

    The Russian strategic aim is to take out the barbaric regime in Saudi Arabia and force the US to sacrifice the power of the $ in order to prop up its own shale industry. When it’s all over the worlds largest oil producer and custodian of the worlds largest natural gas reserves will be free to play a slightly different role in the world. All those that think Russia can be ignored because its GDP is only about the same as the GDP of Spain may have cause to think again.

    I have no idea how Scotland will benefit from any of this and don’t imagine that Russians care one way or the other whether everyone in Scotland becomes a billionaire or whether everyone in Scotland starves to death.

    • Rhys Jaggar

      I guess it depends whether there might be any profitable JVs in the Scottish waters for oil/gas exploitation where partnership with Russian companies were considered?

      Russia will care about Scotland to the exact degree that its commercial, cultural and social interests are intertwined with Scottish economy, cultural life and how many Russians decide to settle in Scotland and how many Scots settle in Russia.

      I have to say, looking at the Russian far east, it’s geography is in many ways similar to the Highlands of Scotland. Of course it is a lot colder in winter, but the sense of space, wilderness, mountains etc etc reminded me acutely of the Western Highlands of Scotland.

      If Scotland were planning any huge bridges to Scottish isles, the Russians may have relevant experience having recently bridged the Kerch strait.

      Think constructively, think what Russia has to offer Scotland and think what Scotland has to offer Russia, or maybe more realistically, a part of Russia of similar population to Scotland.

      That is how you build ties economic, cultural and social.

      • Tatyana

        Rhys Jaggar, thanks, I’ve never thought about real economic ties.
        The first that comes to mind is, Russia could provide new logistic ways to the world’s biggest manufacturer China. Scotland may like nothern seaway. Russia has means to sail there.

      • Tatyana

        Cultural and social interest are irrelevant. We are friends to asian China and India, to arabian Syria and Iran. Why not friends with europian Scotland of Christianity-based culture and roman-based law?

        • Kempe

          Russian and Chinese interest in Scotland will be driven by economic and strategic self-interest as is the norm. Anyone who thinks Russia or China have any benevolent feelings toward Scotland is delusional.

          • Tony

            And it’s also delusional to think that Russia and China have any malevolent feelings toward Scotland.

          • Loony

            What is delusional is to think that Russia cares one way or the other about Scotland. You can die just as easily through acts of omission as you can through acts of co-mission. So does it matter whether you are enemies, and you can’t be friends with someone who just does not care about you.

          • Tony

            Loony, thankyou for not quite describing how the world works when countries look for mutual interest, rather than pure, unbridled, evil self-interest (the USA being far and away the prime example of the latter).

    • terence callachan

      I don’t agree with you loony
      I think Russian people do care about other people in other countries including Scotland
      who are starving

    • Tatyana

      re: friends or enemies

      Stefano Valdegamberi explains the offense of Italian society:
      “The European Union did not help us. We were simply ridiculed as carriers of the virus… The neighbors immediately took the opportunity to block our goods at the border … But the most shameful was that they froze the supply of personal protective equipment – masks – at a time when the personnel of our hospitals were at risk of being infected. The only country that showed solidarity with Italy was China. “

      Maurizio Massari … in an article for Politico.
      “Italy asked to activate the EU civil defense mechanism for the supply of medical equipment and personal protective equipment. But, unfortunately, not a single EU country has answered the call of the (Euro) commission. Only China has answered bilaterally.”

      Germany has banned the export of medical masks and other protective equipment. Austria then closed its borders with Italy for those who could not confirm the abscence of virus.
      At the same time, China sent to Italy a second plane with medical equipment. The first board, in addition to medicines, delivered a team of doctors.

      https://ria.ru/20200318/1568747300.html

      “We have closer neighbours than Russia or China to worry about” – says Jake.
      I agree, you should really worry about that kind of friends.

  • Brianfujisan

    I wonder what happened to the Grouse Beater’s coverage from the Alex case.. They / She / He had great reports all last week.. But nothing at all this week.

    I seen a wee phone video of a lone piper playing Alex arriving at the court today… Lift the Spirits I hope.

  • Antiwar7

    The SNP sounds just like the Democratic Party in the US: a bunch of corrupt, soulless warmongers, who have actively sold out their main constituencies and who try to keep that a secret.

      • Davy Smith

        No it’s not. That’s exactly what the SNP leadership cadre at least has become.

  • Joe Cairns

    Interesting reporting and analysis Craig, but what’s the motive in trying to destroy Salmond? Was he known to be trying to get back into front line politics?

    • terence callachan

      Joe cairns…..The motive is to get him off RT who continue his show which is very critical of U.K. govt
      In addition the motive is to do what is provided as evidence in the court , keep AS out of Holyrood and Westminster forevermore and use his absence as propaganda for decades to come to show anyone thinking of challenging England’s control of Scotland that they will be attacked with great severity
      Nobody with common sense would find a person guilty of charges like this so many years later with no witnesses and nobody reporting it at the time it’s just not enough

      • Deb O'Nair

        Compare your last paragraph with the fact that only 3 in 100 reported rapes in the UK end in a prosecution. It must be galling to be a victim of a rape that hasn’t been investigated and prosecuted and to see historic allegations of bum and leg touching being treated so seriously by the state.

  • Davy Smith

    Craig.
    I always knew this stuff was at the root of it.
    Thank you for vindicating my suspicions and thank you for attending this ‘trial’.
    Just like John MacLean; what is really on trial here is the British State and it’s insidious dirty war against Scotland.

  • Jack

    “On Huawei, it seems to me extremely improbable that the Chinese state – which has enjoyed phenomenal success through peaceful economic expansion – has any intention of spying aimed at harming the interests of Scotland. ”

    Sorry, I really do support your efforts, but this is naive in the extreme.

    China is essentially a surveillance state, and they wish to extend this power world-wide.

    Their expansion has indeed been peaceful, but they have very much ‘gamed the system’ of open markets and free trade, through all kinds of restrictions, requirements and impositions on foreignn companies that want to do business in China.

  • Bill Walbertstein

    I’ve said it multiple times Jeffrey, the SNP do not exist. They are simply controlled opposition. The threats must have been significant for the entire Scottish Establishment to bend over, but then Galloway was correct when he said the Scot’s were right in there on the Empire’s mass murder & genocide.

    Hey, look over there. All the while they park an aircraft carrier in the back yard. Focus on the virus, all the while international finance are going to get their bonds bought at probably face value and not current market value. Then they are going to get their bought and paid for government operatives to issue trillions in debt to help with the virus. Straight to the several wealthiest banking families. While it is to early to say, it looks like it is the same old tired scam. a la 2008 et al. They will buy bust businesses for pennies on the dollar, again same old strategy.

    If you think this is far to large a job to pull such a scam, it simply is not. Virus = distraction, massive borrowing & depressed asset purchase the objective. While Carrie, the Mossad handler of Boris will make sure he sticks to the script.

    It can’t be true, the words of a lunatic. Sturgeon better watch when deploying the army.

  • Ruth

    Stink Pit of a case

    I am even more convinced by Craig’s conclusions when looking at the mutual support in twitter feeds of 2 of those (I have been told by others and think)accusers in past weeks, their , suppprt of another accuser’s new husband who has long made no secret of desire for power.
    This really seems to many to be a gross injustice, but highlights the blindfolds that so many have worn as to what is happening in a party that claims to have a progressive independent Scotland as a priority
    Good genuine committed people there certainly are in plenty but the power base?

    What has ever been progressive about stink pits-a horrible practice that the snp voted NOT to ban-along with a series of other votes to protect the elite shooting lobby
    One benefit of the current terrible health crisis is keeping this apparent injustice continually from the front of daily papers for weeks-but damage already done

  • William Nigel

    I’m interested in this Britnat label being dispersed liberally by this site. If I understand properly, it’s a collective term for ‘others’ excepting the SNP. Does this mean Scottish nationalists are Scotnat Brits or Brit Scotnats? Educate me please.

    • glenn_uk

      It’s a derogatory used by some Scottish nationalists to slur everyone else in the UK.

      • William Nigel

        Glen_UK
        An eminent author, broadcaster, human rights activist and – some would say – investigative journalist Indulging in playground name-calling. That can’t be right. But thanks anyway. I’ll wait for a better answer.

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