HARD Brexit, hard border.

I’m aboard the last Belfast ferry on a night in the 1970s. It’s a cattle-buying trip to Ireland. 1am, I’m alone, it’s pitch dark.

At 2mph I cross the massive “sleeping policemen” outside Omagh. Two masked men pointing rifles step out in front of my car.

I stop dead. One man moves smartly to the window, points his rifle at me. I wind down the window. “What’s the problem, boys?” I ask. He says nothing. On hearing a Scottish accent they vanish silently. I drive on and stay with friends.

READ MORE: Government to back Brexit amendment on Irish backstop

Two days later, heading south, the checkpoint goes over both me and my car. Half an hour hold-up due to a bomb alert.

Had any Westminster “no dealers” ever faced a rifle thanks to the Irish troubles, their voting on Brexit might display human decency rather than unadulterated self-interest.

Staying fully in Europe, minus these type of politicians, is Scotland’s common-sense option, and there is one way to do it.

Iain R Thomson