The National:

TORY MP Andrew Bowie has backed a controversial pro-Union Scottish education plan written by a colonialist supporter - but what does the paper actually say?

We told yesterday how the MP for West Aberdeenshire and Kincardine, wrote a foreword to the paper, published on Wednesday by the Council on Geostrategy, which was co-written by Professor Nigel Biggar, a noted colonial "apologist".

The SNP hit out at Bowie for backing the report written by an author with “extreme” views, and called for Douglas Ross to distance himself and the party from the paper.

The bizarre report has a number of strange suggestions, so The National has gone through the paper with a fine tooth comb to pick out the weirdest suggestions. 

READ MORE: Andrew Bowie endorses pro-Union Scots education plan from 'colonial apologist'


The paper states that both an Indy Scotland and “rump-UK'' would survive the break-up but would leave the UK “significantly weakened” and therefore theories that this would leave the West weakened too. This is based mostly on the obvious point that an independent Scotland and London would share different views on defence - particularly the potential removal of Trident.

However, reports earlier this year suggested the UK may have to move the nuclear deterrent overseas if Scotland became independent - so isn’t the reality that the English just don’t want a nuclear weapon that could wipe out thousands of people anywhere near their land?

Of course, it’s much preferred that it sits within killing distance of Glasgow, Scotland’s largest city. 

The National:

Hilariously, the report adds that post-indy negotiations could “drag on for many years” - creating a “major distraction” to the government in London. From the way the UK Cabinet Ministers have acted during this pandemic, with infighting and ministerial code breaches galore, they are more likely to distract themselves. 


Prof Biggar’s love for colonialism and Empire is barely disguised throughout the report, and in one strange passage he decries “separatist nationalism” as a “secular religion”. He claims the Yes movement infuses daily lives with “transcendent meaning, justifying the sacrifice of money and even life itself in the grand cause of the nation’s spiritual redemption.”

But a short few paragraphs later, unknowingly, Biggar sums up why support for independence is so strong, and it isn’t because of a nationwide brainwashing by the SNP, but failings of the UK government and the kind of society they are working to achieve.

He said: “The nationalist stereotype of post-Brexit, Tory Britain as worn-out, xenophobic, and devoted to impoverishing the poor needs to be confounded.” The sinister side to this is the attempts to re-write British history, by “developing a morally attractive story about the UK'' to tempt young people to identify with.

Good luck with that one. 

The National:


Prof Biggar and his co-author clearly haven’t had any discussions with Scottish fisherman, farmers, or anyone who works in exports and imports - as he claims the economic impact of Brexit has been “largely illusionary”.

He cites that the International Monetary Fund said in 2021 that Brexit “will have no macroeconomic effect” on the British Economy 10 years after the referendum, and says that “prosperity is linked to government policy rather than Brexit itself”.

This is a bold claim to make when there is a UK-Australia tariff-free, quota-free, trade deal in the works that has caused consternation and anger amongst Scottish farmers and crofters, who fear the UK market will be flooded with cheap imported meat that doesn’t require meeting the same high food safety standards as the UK. It is more true to say that we haven’t yet seen the full impact of Brexit, than that it has had very little effect at all. 

READ MORE: UK Government wants to increase tourism to Scotland with new rail scheme


Straight from the propaganda playbook, Prof Biggar thinks the way to stop the independence movement is through memes. Yes, memes, silly pictures on the internet that are used to make jokes with cultural references.

I dread to think what they would produce in order to “woo idealistic young Scots” away from their “revolutionary dreams of independence”. The author has clearly not considered that it would be absolutely ripped to shreds on social media, the Scottish people have a strong sense of humour, we love to take the piss - so I’d like to see them try. 

The National:


Did you know that in the author's eyes, that Scottish independence would in theory be an international crime? Prof Biggar quotes author John Lloyd who wrote a whole book dedicated to fighting the independence cause - who said independence would be “worse than a mistake, a crime”.

Biggar concurs and even goes so far as to argue it would be a “crime against the free and open nations and all that they stand for”. The real crime would be to deny an independence referendum, and therefore deny democracy.

The hypocrisy of suggesting Scotland is basically free enough and should shut up is an argument that isn’t going to cut it after the previous election, and the obvious pro-independence mandate our parliament was given. 

READ MORE: Calls for probe into whether Michael Gove has broken code after FOI revelations


Now, you would hope a paper which promotes propaganda, the revision of history and numerous other bonkers suggestions, would have at least some rational points. It doesn’t.

In fact, it suggests amending the Equality Act to “reduce the subjective element in the definition of harassment”. For what purpose?

In the next paragraph it becomes clear why, as the authors clearly dislike the “equality, diversity and inclusion bureaucracies, backed by technocratic elites, are assuming ever greater unelected power across universities, institutions, charities and even corporations”.

So the rich, white, privileged, male academics don’t like that they have to include people from other backgrounds, and if they want to harass them, they should be allowed to? The society these men have in mind is not one that fits in with Scotland’s progressive views. 

The National:


Not content with changing the perception of British History to Scots, to make it more palatable to us in general, Prof Biggar suggests that the way it is taught in schools should be reviewed.

They have clearly caught on to the fact that younger people are more likely to support independence, and want to brainwash our children from the start, just to make sure they don’t start getting any ideas outwith the pro-Union mould.

They want to expose any “undue Scottish nationalist bias” during the review, and claim it is to “maintain political neutrality”. There is nothing neutral about this paper or its intentions.