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'Resigned understanding' of Scots

Brian Taylor | 17:03 UK time, Sunday, 1 July 2007

I traversed Glasgow today. By car, then by the subway, then on foot.

The roads were busy. Our subway carriage was crowded.

As a gentle rain fell, permanently threatening more, the city centre streets offered a diverse, swaying bustle to those who cared to glance.

While in one shop, the news came through that the airport had just reopened.

“That’ll be good news for Jean,” commented one woman, “she’s trying to get off to Florida.”

Another said: “I expect it’ll be tight security again, ye’ll no’ be able to take any shampoo in your case and that sort o’ thing.”

But it was said with resigned understanding - not anger or even indignation.

In a large shopping centre, my eyes fell upon patrolling police officers - and the mall’s own security guards.

Doubtless, they are always there. Somehow their presence seemed more pertinent, more salient.

I also couldn’t help but glance at passing members of our Scots Asian community: a few traditionally dressed, most following the new customary fashion of jeans and trainers.

I couldn’t help but worry whether there might be an entirely unwarranted backlash against that section of our Scots society, whether indeed it had already begun.

Alex Salmond put it rather well when he said that acts of terror are committed by individuals, not a whole community.

He appealed for calm, as have Scots Asian leaders. The new Prime Minister spoke for all - or, by sad definition, nearly all - when he urged resilience in the face of terror.

Glasgow, gallus Glasgow.

Comments

  • 1.
  • At 06:16 PM on 01 Jul 2007,
  • Alan North wrote:

I seriously doubt that Glasgow would have been attacked if Gordon Brown wasn't the British prime minister. It's inevitable that an independent Scotland would have a substantially less controversial foreign policy than an independent England.

It'll be interesting to see the public reaction to this. Another good reason to go it alone or an excuse to cosy up the familiarity of the union?

  • 2.
  • At 06:37 PM on 01 Jul 2007,
  • Dorothy Rothschild wrote:

I find British people in general to be a lot more resigned about this sort of thing than, say, my fellow Americans - I tend to chalk it up to the IRA campaign and, for the older generation, the war. You all, sadly, have been here before.

  • 3.
  • At 07:28 PM on 01 Jul 2007,
  • Stephen wrote:

Why are you incapable of writing more than two sentences without missing a line and starting a new paragraph? Since when have "jeans and trainers" been a new fashion?

  • 4.
  • At 07:36 PM on 01 Jul 2007,
  • Duncan Hothersall wrote:

Can't believe I'm reading another Nat (comment no. 1) scoring party political points on the back of a terrorist attack a day after it occurred. Alex Salmond may be a statesman of some distinction, but some of his supporters are an embarrassment to our country. If the commenter really thinks that Scots will react to this incident with the notion of running away from our international obligations by becoming a small and insignificant player on the world stage, I strongly suspect he has misread the minds of his countrymen.

  • 5.
  • At 07:43 PM on 01 Jul 2007,
  • Clamjamfrie wrote:

I for one am very please at what appears to be the cooperation between Westminster and Holyrood on this. Alan North may be right in what he says, who can possibly know, but the really important thing is that cooperation and determination are in place. Political point scoring is irrelevant.

I am glad to say the statements by Brown, McAskill, Salmond and Smith have focused on what is important. Long may it continue.

  • 6.
  • At 08:06 PM on 01 Jul 2007,
  • Jonathan wrote:

What a beautiful post.

  • 7.
  • At 08:16 PM on 01 Jul 2007,
  • James in Osaka wrote:

I find No 1's interpretation that the attack was held in Scotland because we had a Scottish PM. Those people in Sedgefield must be signing with relief the TB has resigned.

We won't know right away why the attack was held in Scotland. Perhaps it was thought that given Scotland would be the last place for people to expect an attack given Scotlands history of virtually no terrorist attacks. My dad told me that the IRA shot a bullet after the war and it scarred the wall of the then Duke Street Prison, but I am not sure that we have had that much.

I am worried about the Pakistani and Indian community in Glasgow. I worry about a knee-jerk reaction. I think of how I would feel if I were an Asian person living in Glasgow at the moment. The Muslim community are embarrassed. However, I believe those who are bombing and committing acts of terror are not Muslims in the true sense of the religion. Those people are something else.

A few weeks ago Brian talked about bigotry in Scotland. I mentioned that I hoped that the bigotry that fueled tension between the Catholic and Protestant communities are not displaced by a bigotry towards newer arrivals in Scotland. I still have this hope.

Atticus Finch said that we don't really get to know someone until we get the chance to climb into their skin and walk around a bit. If we can do that, there will be little backlash, and more understanding towards the fears that our Asian Glaswegian brethren are facing.

  • 8.
  • At 08:28 PM on 01 Jul 2007,
  • Bob Blair wrote:

I still cant believe that this happened at the weekend, these cowardly people need to be rooted out of our society. I was impressed with the stories of bravery by staff and members of the public, they tackled the terrorists with no thoughts for their own safety. These people should get some form of Official recognition for their bravery, without their intervention this could have turned in to a real tragedy.

Well done all those who stepped up to the plate.

In reply to Alan North:

I don't think that the attack on Glasgow Airport will make a significant difference to people's opinions about independence. The constitutional future of our country - whether as part of a Union with our neighbours, or as a separate state - is something that goes to the heart of what every Scot thinks about his or her country politically.

It is far too important to let a few failed terrorists (who succeeded in doing little other than setting THEMSELVES on fire) influence our views either way.

  • 10.
  • At 08:45 PM on 01 Jul 2007,
  • Neil wrote:

I think that Glasgow was affected purely to show us that its not just London that's a target.

Incidently I was out in Glasgow today and gentle rain was an understatement Brian! But I do worry that living in Glasgow some of our minority communities might be affected by the actions of a few.

  • 11.
  • At 08:56 PM on 01 Jul 2007,
  • Scott Herd wrote:

You make so much sense and are truely wise of the politics world. Why don't you do try your luck in politics? I support independence, but even if you don't you'd still likely get my vote.

  • 12.
  • At 10:03 PM on 01 Jul 2007,
  • Bedd Gelert wrote:

Mr North, you make a good point, but one suspects that men of violence can find an excuse or another, whatever the political weather. The recent knighthood to a controversial author was a case in point. It is simply not practical to be able to avoid all potential 'reasons' for people to think they have a valid reason to turn to violence. Certainly British foreign policy hasn't helped in the past couple of years. But Scotland is part of the same EU that, depending on the current political situation, will be offering or withdrawing aid to the Palestinians, and therefore is not able to sit completely outside Middle East politics.

And the futility of blaming a group of people for political violence will be well known to people who visited Ireland at the time of the 'Troubles' to find most people were just getting on living a peaceful life.

Mind you, I was a little cross that Gordon Brown seemed to be suggesting that co-operating on such crime would be helped by remaining in the 'Union'. This seemed unfair, as I'm sure that police would continue to co-operate whatever happened to the union, just as the Garda and RUC did during the time of the Troubles.

  • 13.
  • At 10:48 PM on 01 Jul 2007,
  • Stuart McIntyre wrote:

#1

To quote Joseph N. Welch.

"Have you no sense of decency sir?"

Let us not make excuses or try to suggest that if we change our way of life that terrorists will cease carrying out such attacks.

Is such an act of terrorism not immune to the facile case for or against the current political arrangements here at home?

This issue transcends political differences, it hits at the heart of what all decent human beings hold dear; freedom from fear, freedom from terror and freedom to decide our own destiny, peacefully, for ourselves.

To act as an apologist for what is, in effect, the attempt to kill innocent people whose only crime was to be in the airport on Saturday; is as distasteful as it is ignorant of the truth.

S

I had to smile at a friends comment: He said it was typical of a Glaswegian to come face to face with an terrorist on fire, and clotheline him to the floor.

Nowhere else in the world, only Glasgow.

How sad and predictable that at least one of your commentators trying to make capital out of this attempted atrocity to make the case for Scottish Independance.

SNP supporters should really take a leaf out of their leaders book and at least maintain a dignified silence on the subject of independance for a little while. If Independance was such a big stopper for terrorists why attack a country that has just installed a pro-independance government?

The reality is that these fanatics hate evrything in the West that we stand for - whether its covered in tartan and shortbread or otherwise.

  • 16.
  • At 11:59 PM on 01 Jul 2007,
  • Iainb wrote:

Alan,

Come on now, at certain times and on certain subjects, political point scoring is inappropriate. Here is one such instance. Drumming up division as you do, benefits no one, least of all the independence movement.

  • 17.
  • At 12:02 AM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • Tim orkney wrote:


I feel sick to the stomach that terrorist have struck Glasgow. So now we are targets too. I do not believe that this has anything to do with Gordon Brown being at no.10.

We live in a multicultural society where we have bent over backwards not to offend these cultures, in doing so we have allowed pockets of anti british factions to thrive.
All cultures and indeed all religions must be taught at the same schools, allowing our younger generations to grow and develop together.

  • 18.
  • At 12:06 AM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • scothighland wrote:

1#
I couldn't agree more.What a dilemma
for us all!!!

  • 19.
  • At 12:13 AM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • Jim wrote:

* Alan North wrote:

"I seriously doubt that Glasgow would have been attacked if Gordon Brown wasn't the British prime minister."

Stuff and nonsense - and shame on you for trying to make political capital out of this attack on our island.

  • 20.
  • At 12:33 AM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • Dave "Boy" wrote:

To Mr North

Are the Nationalists really that craven that they will use a terrorist attack on Scottish soil to promote the idea of independance??

Shame on you

  • 21.
  • At 02:17 AM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • scotleag wrote:

Alan North's comment is just nonsense. What was so controversial about Indonesia's foreign policy when Bali was bombed?

And the union has nothing to do with it other than in the obsessed minds of those who can think of nothing else. Even Alex Salmond has said terrorism respects no boundaries.

Dorothy Rothschild, you are absolutely right. In fact it goes back for almost a century and a half. Since the first Irish-related bombings in the 1860s there have been few periods when the mainland UK hasn't been under some kind of threat or other. The inter-war period and 1945-1970 roughly. In other words for around 100 of the past 150 years a terrorist threat of some kind has existed.

We got through the rest. We'll get through this. We'll get through the next. And hopefully without targeting all members of minority communities with the same brush.

  • 22.
  • At 09:07 AM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • Will wrote:

In Response to Alan North

Actually an Independant Scotland would be equally, if not more, at risk from terrorist attacks. Scotland has a Muslim population too, therefore it has a small minority of extremists from that community as well. The idea that these extremists would stop targeting Scotland just because of indepenence, strikes me as a little bit too discriminate for people who target civilians deliberately. Can you imagine the conversation?

Terrorist 1: Lets Kill some innocent people!

Terrorist 2: Great Idea!

Terrorist 1: But not anyone from Scotland.

Terrorist 2: Why not? They are some of the western infidels that we were brain washed into hating?

Terrorist 1: But there Independant now, they have a completely different foriegn policy and we really shouldn't kill them, remember, we don't want to appear as indiscriminate killers.

Terrorist 2: Seems perfectly reasonable to me, so, what shall we blow up?

Terrorist 1: We could blow up a shopping centre, there are loads of people in there....

Just doesn't do it for me, and besides these terrorists are from outside the UK, they came from the middle east to Britain, they will be even less discerning. Coupled with the fact that an independant Scotland would no longer be covered by MI5 & MI6, and therefore be easier to target, I can't see how leaving the union, would solve Scotland's terror problem.

  • 23.
  • At 09:13 AM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • Stephen wrote:

I feel like the majority of people that all our diverse communities have been harmed in these attacks, although I would like to see more proactive and public approaches coming from communities which have or may be alienated by the extremists in their midst (whether that be christian extremism i.e. bombings carried out in the name of pro life or muslim extremism that we have seen this weekend). The lack of a ongoing public platform where these atrocities could and should be condemmed and a more publicised view from these comunities and their continuing attempts to stamp out the enemies within, may help ease tensions which arise after these events.

  • 24.
  • At 09:19 AM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • Scotsman wrote:

I think Alan North is right. Alex Salmond is too canny to come out and say it, but association with the UK has made Scotland a target for terrorists. Our soldiers are out in Iraq dying and our airports are being attacked. This kind of thing is likely to bring out a British blitz spirit of unity, but the reality is that Scotland would be safer out of the UK. Those nuclear weapons on the Clyde don't seem to have protected us, do they?

I don't thionk a change of policy on Iraq will now halt the terrorists, but has encouraged them to see Glasgow as a legitimate target. Sad- but true.

Some sort of explanation required here I think. According to Reuters/ABC news our USA allies knew for two weeks prior to the attack that an attack on infrastructure or craft at Glasgow Airport was intended & took this seriously enough to put US Air Marshalls in the vicinity and yet our Police knew/did nothing. Something stinks! http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=cdxdwxMNTAA

  • 26.
  • At 10:19 AM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • Peter, Fife wrote:

The obvious weakness with Alex Salmond’s statement “acts of terror are committed by individuals, not a whole community” lies in our ability to identify these said individuals.

These individuals are no more readily identifiable to our communities whether or not they are terrorists, the natural instincts of immigrants is to cluster; those who perpetrated the attack on Glasgow airport did not ‘cluster’ but moved into indigenous communities but remained aloof from the community they inhabited for the reported two months of their stay.

As these terrorists currently do not mix with the indigenous population the onus then falls on members of their own race to challenge incomers, such challenges will seem less threatening or onerous to incomers if it originated from their own race; however they may get wise to this weakness in their policy and try to ‘integrate’ either way they will increase the chances of them giving themselves away.

The leaders of these communities openly condemn such acts of terrorism, it is now time they went beyond such declarations; the leaders of these communities must instil in their peoples the fact that they are equally likely to be the targets of indiscriminate devices, it is they who must lead the way by challenging and monitoring incomers, feeding their suspicions to the police.

Where private house lets are arranged over the internet or from addresses distant from the location of the let the police should be informed; these incomers will be mainly innocent individuals but there may be a name or a detail that will alert our security services; terrorist will either need to transport their ‘product’ to the target or seek a local base from which to operate these weaknesses must be exploited by our security services.

The onus for identification of suspect activity must not fall wholly on the immigrant population; the onus is on every one of us to report anything suspicious to the police.

  • 27.
  • At 10:36 AM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • Brian wrote:

I agree with the posters above that we cannot allow the actions of a few fanatical extemists to cause rifts in our multi-cultural society. We have a large Muslim population in Scotland and across the UK, and we need to guard against any potential backlash against this group of our citizens.

Extemists are called extemists for a reason - because their opinions ARE extreme and they are on the absolute fringes of religious thinking. The vast majority of Muslims, as well as people from all other faiths and those of no faith, will unite in condemning these attacks. Every religion has its zealots and extemists who abuse a faith for their own ends, and they are rightly shunned by all right-thinking people of all faiths.

How many Muslims do we have in the UK? Around 1.6 Million. And how many have committed acts of terror? A handful, less than 0.01% of the population. And it seems as though those responsible for these latest attacks are not even from the UK. These extemists are attempting to tear our multi-cultural society apart, and we cannot let them. People of all faiths, and those of no faith at all, must stand united against the threat of these abusers of the Islamic faith. We cannot allow them to beat us and, by standing together and refusing to change our way of life, we will defeat this threat and continue to stand proud as a united, diverse nation.

Terrorism is a sad fact of life in Britain. Most of us have lived through the horror of the IRA bombings, many of which were far worse than anything the new wave of terrorists have attempted. The resignation, I believe, is in part due to that fact.

The other part is of course that people will get on with their lives because what else are they going to do? Life goes on, we can't all sit at home waiting for the threat to go away because it's not going to go away.

The suggestion that Glasgow was attacked because Gordon Brown is Scottish is just ridiculous. At risk of second guessing a group of people who are without sense, my best guess is that Glasgow was attacked to show that nowhere is immune.

I just LOVE being a Glaswegian and I love Glasgow people. We know how to deal with matters like this. We speak up. Unlike our politically correct English cousins there is no mincing of words. If we don't like something you will hear about it.

The way Glaswegians handled the event and "sorted out" the two men involved was commendible. Heroes ! The guys who went to help the police and the way the security guy hit the guy in the jeep by improvising with a fire extinguisher, was great to hear. This sends a message to anyone who wants to disrupt our peaceful life. Glaswegians are tolerant people who respect those around them, as long as they also show respect. Drop the respect and you are in for a fight and not just against ONE, but against a nation. We know that it is isolated individuals but if the authorities don't find them and remove them from our streets, the people in Glasgow will !

Well done Glasgow. I am so proud.

  • 30.
  • At 11:26 AM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • Duncan McDonald wrote:

Some in this blog appear to have concerns about Alan North's view. I ask them, do you think Glasgow would have been attacked if it were not for the fact that Brown has taken over as UK prime minister? Do you think Dublin, Oslo, Stockholm or Helsinki airports would be a targets?

That Scotland now has a voice that differs from London is refreshing and gives us a more distinctive voice. I will not change my nationality because some maladjusted religious fanatic psychopaths drive a burning car into an airport. As both Salmond and Brown have pointed out, life goes on and they will work together to ensure these people do not succeed.

Political debate must also go on and when someone points out the glaringly obvious, pulling out the “Terror Card” is unhelpful to the debate on Scotland’s future. Scotland whilst part of the union will be a target for these fanatics. Whilst Scotland remains in the Union, Scotland must play its part in fighting terrorism, equally those oppose to this union must not be castigated for highlighting the obvious. In sum, Scotland would not be a target for these lunatics if it were not of the union.

Duncan McDonald

  • 31.
  • At 11:43 AM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • interested by-stander wrote:

Terrorism cannot be condoned and is an attack on us all.

However it remains true that the attacks on both Glasgow and London are a consequence, at least in part, of UK foreign policy in regard to Iraq, Afghanistan and the Israel/Palestine conflict.

A consequence of being part of the UK is that Scotland is implicated in that policy.

Whilst we must not succumb to terrorist blackmail we have to be direct and honest about the bankruptcy of British foreign policy.

  • 32.
  • At 12:04 PM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • Andrew wrote:

Only attacking because of a Scottish PM. Get a grip. It's fair weekend, the schools have shut for summer and the airport will be packed. More salient reason for attack surely.

The response from all has been excellent. No complaining, just understanding and acceptance. If the goal is to cause us to become scared and have us living in fear, then the terrorists are failing. Well done to all who helped the police in the Airport. Truly commendable.

  • 33.
  • At 12:06 PM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • Oliver wrote:

This comment is just in response to Alan North's statement, I am obviously very glad there were no casualties in the Glasgow bombing, just really wanted to say if Scotland goes independant it is going to collapse without the funding it gets from the English taxpayer and we all know there are facts and figures to prove this. We must unite to face this terrorist threat not claim to be uninvolved and shy away from the responsibility to stop this threat faced by the whole british nation.

  • 34.
  • At 12:19 PM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • James McBethun wrote:

Perhaps those who take issue with Alan North protest too much!?

Is it wrong to point out why you believe Scotland was attacked? No!

Is it wrong to try and suppress those who make these observations? Yes!

Free speech, that's what defines us and sets us apart from those who seek to maim and kill, even when home truths cause us discomfiture!

J McBethun

  • 35.
  • At 12:26 PM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • Mark wrote:

I cannot believe post # 1. What utter self-deluding rot.

Oh, and I don't mind you starting new paragraphs after a couple of sentences -- I'm no pedant, and it reads well on screen!

  • 36.
  • At 12:37 PM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • David J wrote:

I am somewhat surprised that Brian Taylor's main concern seems to be the possiblity of a "backlash" against the Asian community. Every time there is a terrorist attack we read about the supposed backlash , which never happens. What about concern for the victims of Muslim terrorism? Similarly what about the Muslim community rooting out the terrorists within their ranks and facing head on the commands to violent subjagation of non Muslims which the Koran is full of? Little chance, I reckon.

  • 37.
  • At 12:42 PM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • Colin M wrote:

All this rubbish about "the Muslim community" etc. Isn't that the problem?
We are the British community and the sooner that everyone gets that into their heads, and stops pandering to sectarian groups the better.
Most decent people couldn't care less what religion a person chooses to follow. Remember religion is optional, we can choose to accept it or ignore it when classifying members of society.
As for those British citizens intent on carrying allegiances to other countries and cultures perhaps they should ask themselves "why am I here".

  • 38.
  • At 12:51 PM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • Peter, Edinburgh wrote:

Mr North (#1) and Mr Mcdonald (#22)display the narrow, nasty, isolationist face of nationalism.

The implication of their remarks is that they do not care how many bombs go off in London, New York, Bali or Madrid as long as they do not go off in Scotland.

Is that the generosity of spirit they wish an independent Scotland to show?

In contrast the co-operation between the Metropolitan Police and Strathclyde Police (as well as SEER and COBRA)demonstrates the joint efforts needed to combat global terrorism.

Even an independent Scotland would have to recognise it lives in a wider world and can't just shrink away and think nasty things only happen beyond its borders.

  • 39.
  • At 12:56 PM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • Average_John wrote:

I believe one defining factor may be the saving grace for Scotland’s multicultural communities, the simple fact that it would appear that these disillusioned fanatics were not home grown. Had that not been the case then the finger would have been pointed clearly at the ethnic communities for knowingly promoting such shameful acts of terrorism. This madness has to stop and like all cancers the only way to do so is by choking the source and removing its roots if the Muslim cannot live with Muslim ( Palestine for example ) then how can we expect integration into western cultures. I am proud to be Scottish, proud of being neither bigot nor racist but I cannot believe that the Muslim communities are proud that their religion is being used as a political tool for Terrorist activities. If this is the one great and peaceful religion that we all should subscribe too then where are the millions rising up against the few.
Slowly and surely opinions will change lets make them for the better Scotland has already had a bellyful of bigotry lets not allow racism in the door.

My congratulations to Wee Eck for what must be the soundbyte of the month: "Criminals commit crimes; communities don't."

Well said, that man!

Slainte
ed

  • 41.
  • At 01:13 PM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • chris wrote:

The people who attack Mr North are at best completely naive and at worst plain daft. He simply asked a reasonable question, the answer to which could save many lives.

The answer is utterly obvious. Of course Scotland would be less of a target if it were independent and had a normal, sensible foreign policy.

At the moment we are part of the UK, which is essentially the 51st state of the USA. So we are hitched at the waist to the foreign policy notions of right-wing radicals in Washington. For as long as that remains the case, Scotland will remain a high priority terrorist target.

It is therefore extremely easy to see how to remedy the situation - i.e. by having a political system that allows our foreign policy to reflect the views of the Scottish people. This requires Scotland to be a normal, independent nation.

This would be both the right thing to do from a global perspective, and also Scotland's perspective in that we would then become a terrorist target along the lines of Finland or Ireland as opposed to Britain.

To the people who say 'oh how terrible, this is not a time for scoring political points', I say yes, it's not a time for CHEAP political points. But of course politics must come into this. Politics got us into this position in the first place and it's the only way we're going to get out of it.

  • 42.
  • At 01:32 PM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • Colin wrote:

As a proud member of the Scottish diaspora, originally from the Hillington area a mere mile away from Glasgow Airport, I'm very deeply moved by the events on Saturday.

My initial reaction was that there was some connection with Lockerbie and the Megrahi case, as it would perhaps have forced an appeal into indefinite hiatus.

This in itself would have been serious enough, but if it is indeed the work of Al-Qaeda sympathisers, I am even more deeply concerned.

To those who accuse Mr. North of political point scoring, I ask:

What is Al-Qaeda's main reason detre for their terrorist campaign?

I'll give you a clue: the foreign policy of the US and her allies. This is a statement of fact, taken straight from statements by Al-Qaeda themselves.

If the events of Saturday are the price for a 'place on the world stage' I think I'll pass it up.

If now is not the time to distance ourselves from UK foreign policy, when?

Alba gu brath.

  • 43.
  • At 01:47 PM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • INTER-nationalist wrote:

Duncan Macdonald says we shouldn't pull out the 'terror card' then proceeds to do precisely that by suggesting that if Scotland were not part of the UK it would not be a target for attack. The only people playing the 'terror card' are those who are using this incident as a justification for separation from the UK - something Alex Salmond himself doesn't suggest

I've just watched Ed Husein on News 24 explaining that it was Bosnia which seduced him into extreme islamism (which he now rejects). For other sit is Iraq or Afghanistan. If there was no UK presence in either of these countries we would still - all of us - be under threat.

There have been terrorist attacks or plots in recent years in Germany, Canada, Kenya, Indonesia. None of these countries have a single soldier in Iraq. Indonesia has more moslesm than any other country in the world. None of this has prevented terrorist attacks.

Why would Scotland be any different?

  • 44.
  • At 01:57 PM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • Christine Partridge wrote:

This isn't a comment so much as a question - just wondering if Brian Taylor is married?

  • 45.
  • At 02:17 PM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • Margaret Yates wrote:

#1 - Alan North.

What absolute nonsense. Shame on you.

The only comments made by a politician yesterday that did concern me were those of Kenny MacAskill who said of those who had been arrested in connection with the terrorist attack, that they were not Scottish and hadn't been born here.

So what???!!! Does that mean that only those Asians who are "British/Scottish" Asians are to be trusted? What hope is there of fostering a more tolerant and peaceful nation, rid of bigotry and racism, if such notions are suggested by those in a position to influence - and who should know better.

I'd also like to note that the recent 'bombs' have been pretty amateurish. Not the product of the sophisticated terror network which brought down the twin towers.

The devices in London and Glasgow were more like incendiary devices, more capable of starting fires rather than major explosions.

The London police seem to have been pretty amateurish as well, letting the second car be towed to a multistorey carpark before anyone noticed its character.

We got lucky three times (four if you count the trip to the carpark without incident).

Slainte
ed

  • 47.
  • At 03:34 PM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • Malcolm wrote:

Paul Wilkinson, Professor of International Relations at St Andrew's University has already stated that "playing politics with terrorism" is to regreted.

Prof Wilkinson was referring to the politically motivated comments made by the John Reid, the then Labour Home Secretary, just before the Holyrood elections in May 2007.

  • 48.
  • At 03:39 PM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • Salmondwins wrote:

Scotland was attacked because it is part of UK - end of. Do u really think these scum think it is any different from England?????????

  • 49.
  • At 03:39 PM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • Steve wrote:

"The London police seem to have been pretty amateurish as well, letting the second car be towed to a multistorey carpark before anyone noticed its character." The police dont tow illegally parked cars away, the traffic wardens do that

  • 50.
  • At 03:52 PM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • Andrew Dundas wrote:

Terrorism is random.

Pollokshields was a target of Irish terrorists a few years back: a large store of guns and ammunition was found.

Many parts of our island have not yet suffered.

We shouldn't read anything into the arbitary choices of murderers.


  • 51.
  • At 04:00 PM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • Poppaea wrote:

I think you'll find that the perpetrators are probably unaware that Scotland is a separate country from England - and that they could care less. A *British* target, that's all they were looking for, and even if the union was no more, to them we'd still be *British* and a legitimate target. You'll never persuade them otherwise. Unless the Nationalist government has plans for us to ally ourselves with Iran and Iraq???

  • 52.
  • At 04:32 PM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • John, Edinburgh wrote:

Is it not somewhat ironic that a few days after the Executive tried to kick the Edinburgh Airport Rail Link into touch that they, the BAA and everyone else is advising impending travellers to make use of public transport links to our airports? There comes a point when decision-makers have to look at the 'big' picture when they are making decisions about infrastructure and other future strategic developments.

  • 53.
  • At 04:39 PM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • Fiona Campbell wrote:

A view from a proud Scots American.

If you are in with the crows your get shot at! Harsh, but true!

Do Ireland, Norway, New Zealand or Iceland have people who would drive bombs into airports?

No! Why?

Because they set their own foreign policy in line with the best interests of their people. If they set their foreign policy in-line with UK and USA, they'd be targets too!

The price of being in the UK is Trident, what did this do to stop Saturday? Nothing!

The truth hurts, but best it is told.

Fiona Campbell

  • 54.
  • At 04:41 PM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • John wrote:

Is it not possible that the reason Glasgow Airport was attacked was simply because the perpretators, who may well have been recent arrivals in this country, had got jobs in the area?

  • 55.
  • At 05:19 PM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • nigel watt wrote:

It is kind of strange that it has happened now, Gordon Brown being the new PM and a new SNP government in Scotland.

I dont agree with the comments above that this is a "random" attack, there is a message somewhere.. is it a message to the Scottish people or to the new Scottish PM?. Time will tell, its obviously early days and a lot more will be learned in the coming months.

  • 56.
  • At 08:03 PM on 02 Jul 2007,
  • Carrie wrote:

Who knows why they targeted us although it seems a very badly planned and orchestrated attack, like it was a last minute response to the police operation closing in which makes you wonder if something bigger was planned. Maybe Brown being Scottish made us a target, maybe they thought Scotland would be an easy target with less security. I find it hard to understand what they hoped to accomplish as some commentators are suggesting they are trying to influence political outcomes. Well as Scotland has just voted in an anti war nationalist government what are they trying to change our preference to? Perhaps they are just ignorant of the differences between Scotland and England and the whole political situation and just thought it was an easy target. I am very happy with Alex and the SNPs reponse and the way our new government is handling this, I don't think it'll make any differnece to us at all, we will get on with life as normal. I'm certainly not going to let any pathetic little coward change my way of life or intimidate my country.

  • 57.
  • At 10:19 AM on 03 Jul 2007,
  • Anne wrote:

Thank you #12 for picking up on Gordon Brown suggesting by only remaining in the Union that we could have co-operation on this terrorist attack. Mr Salmond has been exemplary in his conduct over the attack.

Steve (49),

"The police dont tow illegally parked cars away, the traffic wardens do that"

The police should be expected to have cleared the area, checking out anything out of place. Of course, it wasn't the police who towed the second bomb-car away, nor the police who discovered it's true nature. Negligence I say! Incompetence, even.

Slainte
ed

  • 59.
  • At 11:59 AM on 03 Jul 2007,
  • Jon wrote:

Well done Peter from Edinburgh! Aye, North and MacDonald should go to Glasgow airport, visit Fiona Campbell in the US, help her pack her bags and then exile themselves in the Bahamas with Sir Sean; that way you won't have to be hassled in your day-to-day little lives by Bush, Blair, Brown, Reid, The English, Taxation, the weather, Cameron, Campbell (Ming not Fiona), Darling, Alexander or anyone and anything else that annoys you. Alternatively take the family size fish supper off your shoulders.

  • 60.
  • At 05:30 AM on 04 Jul 2007,
  • David wrote:

The SNP belief that Scotland would not be attacked if it was a separate state from England is untenable.

We are joined at the hip with that country, not only geographically but also historically.

Sixty-eight years ago the U.K. stood up to a continental bully, who, if he had suceeded would have destroyed the freedoms that we now enjoy and the small nations of Europe that Salmond wishes Scotland to emulate would exist only as slave states if they were to exist at all.

If the U.K.were to be destoyed by terrorism, or broken up by narrow regional nationalism, the freeworld would be worse off at the loss of one of the true defenders of decency and democracy,and the position of Scotland and England and the rest of the U.K. in a balkanised Britain would be one of impotence in world affairs.

  • 61.
  • At 04:54 PM on 04 Jul 2007,
  • Roddy McLean wrote:

To wish, that your country runs its own affairs in some peoples eyes makes you out to be isolationist, have a chip on your shoulder and haltered of England.

I live in England; I like English people, wish them no other than complete well-being and hope they manage to rid them from the scourge of terror.

All that said, I wish my country to be free to run its own affairs and have excellent relations with its larger neighbour. Why have I got a chip on my shoulder?

How would the unionists like to be portrayed as collaborators, quislings or obsequious sycophants?

P.S. Unionists have yet to answer who got us into this mess, wonder why?

  • 62.
  • At 12:41 PM on 06 Jul 2007,
  • Poppaea wrote:

#61 - why is it for Unionists to answer? The bombers hate the West and all it stands for. In or out of the Union, we'd still be part of the West, would we not?

  • 63.
  • At 04:01 PM on 06 Jul 2007,
  • Dave "Boy" wrote:

To Chris, (41)

I dont think it is naive at all to criticise the "this wouldn't have happened if we were independant" theme of some of the posts on here.

Al Qaeda achieved "regime change" in Spain when, a week after the Madrid bombings, the government were defeated at the polls. They are a politically sophisticated organisation and as demonstrated in Spain, can hold some power over democratic processes through their acts.

Is that really an outcome we want for Scotland? Our journey to independance partly facilitated by terrorists?

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