The National:

UNTIL yesterday, the Vietnamese people probably felt they didn’t really have a dog in the fight for Scotland’s independence. For the last four decades or so they’ve just been trying to keep themselves to themselves after America had spent the previous one trying to annihilate them with the world’s most coked-up military force.

Now an unnamed “senior UK Government source” has broken away from his daily Zoom calls with Laura Kuenssberg to re-awaken some wretched memories for the big Indochinese Socialist Republic. After the crimes the west has committed against this friendly and peace-loving country can we not just leave them alone?

The Downing Street source was discussing Unionist strategy during the next referendum on Scottish independence after it emerged that Boris Johnson wants to beef up his Union Directorate with another few dozen ‘advisors’.

READ MORE: Boris Johnson's team of Union advisers to 'triple in size to 30-50 staff'

America’s Vietnamese folly also started with ‘advisors’: tens of thousands of them and all cunningly disguised as soldiers.

Laura’s chum said the Unionists’ challenge was similar to that faced by US generals in Vietnam. “The strategy has been a bit like the US dealing with the Viet Cong. The generals there were playing chess, trying to land that killer blow, but the game they should have been playing was Go, where you surround the opposing side. We need a much more holistic approach. There’s too much soft support for independence.”

Some game of chess, that. Rook takes knight with the wholesale slaughter of more than 500 innocents at My Lai. Bishop attacks the queen with Agent Orange, the US chemical weapon which wiped out millions of acres of Vietnamese farmland over ten years and whose toxic effects killed almost 500,000 people.

Calm down chaps; it’s only an independence referendum. Small nations have them quite a lot. A few large ones too. In recent times, folk have generally tried to avoid genocide and chemical warfare.

Admittedly, Ruth Davidson once thought she saw some burly men in the Borders being beastly to her supporters but this was probably some locals on Day Four of those week-long benders they have for the Common Riding.

Jim Murphy also got pelted with eggs outside the Shawlands Arcade in what has since become known locally as the Wet Offensive.

Ruth and her pals in Scottish Labour have spent the last seven years complaining that the first referendum was “nasty and divisive”. Boris now obviously thinks it wasn’t nasty enough.

READ MORE: BBC staff are being taught how to be impartial ... by Nick Robinson

Does this mean we’re now going to have big chinooks flying over Barrhead blaring out Phil Collins while Jacob Rees-Mogg in his steampunk sunglasses yells: “I love the smell of nanny in the morning?” I think we can do without that sort of behaviour, thank you and instead ought to try to conduct proceedings in a civilised manner.

Jim’s encounter with the egg-thrower saw him call for a UN peace-keeping force to keep the warring factions apart. I’m sure though, he’d prefer that ordeal to being chibbed by a flame-thrower.

The job descriptions for these Union ‘advisers’ will be interesting.

“Successful candidates may be asked to fill a number of roles at short notice. These will range from driving a helicopter to being a deejay on Union FM with a taste for the back catalogue of Mr James Brown.

“Our flame-throwers are hybrid weapons operating with carbon-friendly and sustainable fuel sources. Please do not apply for this position unless you have pledged support for the UK Government’s drive to reduce net emissions of greenhouse gases by 100% by 2050.

“Most of Scotland is covered by swamps, forests and steep hills and our intelligence sources indicate a vast network of underground tunnels, built by rebel forces to support their supply chain. Many of these have been constructed to look like cannabis farms, so be on your guard for friendly, slow-moving big chaps with ponytails.

“In some parts – mainly North Lanarkshire - any mention of Agent Orange is to be avoided."