Politics has been
classically defined as "the art of the possible". The SNP clung to its
"all or nothing" approach to independence for years - for so long, in
fact, that the achievement of "the possible”, in the shape of the
present restored Scottish Parliament and Government, is primarily the
achievement of the Scotland-UN Committee. See the representative
selection of its archive material at:
Or go straight to the Introduction:
Not only the entire London political establishment is trying to suppress
this story, for very good reasons, for the SNP also has no interest in
publicising the fact that the Scotland-UN Committee, and not the SNP
itself, was the first home rule organisation in 300 years to have
achieved concrete results in the shape of the present devolved system.
Whether Holyrood is the achievable limit to "the possible" we will see.
I think myself that constitutional independence will come, probably
accompanied by the establishment of a confederal association of
sovereign states within the archipelago of the British Isles, including
the whole of Ireland. How far removed this will be I cannot say at the
moment, although it could come sooner than we think, but without the
pioneering work of the Scotland-UN group it would not be coming at all,
because without devolution the SNP would never have got near the levers
So the ball is now in the court of Nicola Sturgeon and her colleagues,
and I wish them well in their endeavours. The SNP has a long way to go
before it will be capable of mastering the diplomatic and international
aspects of independence that were the basis of Scotland-UN's success.
The crucial stage will be after independence is achieved, which is the
SNP's raison d'ętre, but there are others coming up behind, including
the Scottish Democratic Alliance (SDA), which has effectively taken over
Scotland-UN's diplomatic role, to play their part in governing an
autonomous Scotland that is firmly integrated into the new global
political and economic system that is now developing.