“ACTIVIST lawyers” frustrating deportations and now Extinction Rebellion protestors labelled as “criminals” by the Home Secretary Priti Patel. “Treacherous”, D Ross calls the SNP and Holyrood, and adds that they have “undermined” the Brexit talks!

The Northern Ireland Secretary admits that the government in London is breaking international law as it will renege on the Withdrawal Agreement and the Northern Irish aspects within it.

These developments are worrying as they start to accuse lawyers of operating within the law. Treachery is a crime when there are clandestine dealings with foreign powers. Criminals can only be termed thus if found guilty in a court of law, not by the mere pronouncement by a politician.

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The language and knee-jerk reactions by the above, which obviously have the approval of the PM, or Cummings, are disturbing.

As senior officials in the civil service resign or are pushed out after orchestrated whispering campaigns from within the governing party and its acolytes, the trends towards autocracy and diminishing of the rule of law are slowly being revealed.

Covid-19 and, above all, Brexit are the two aspects within the country at present which are in the end phase now of developments to rule by fiat and not govern.

Surrounding issues in the register of Land of Hope and Glory and Rule Britannia and the worst sentiments of Britain past and present come to the fore.

If treaties are torn up in a boorish, triumphalist Trumpist manner, the future of these islands is not secure. The danger is now from within and not from without.

John Edgar

IT would appear that it is not just Scotland that has a cause to be grateful for Ian Blackford’s leadership in the House of Commons, judging by his performance during Prime Minister’s Questions this week.

Though the official leader of the opposition, Keir Starmer, carefully omitted to hold the government to account following Brandon Lewis’ outrageous statement on international law, Mr Blackford, as always, endeavoured to hold the Prime Minister and his government to close scrutiny on the matter.

Mr Starmer’s reticence to follow up on the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland’s hugely controversial statement on Tuesday can no doubt be explained by his fear of losing even more voters who deserted Labour over Brexit in their traditional heartlands. Whatever the reason, it is a poor excuse and reeks of moral and political cowardice.

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By contrast, Ian Blackford stepped up to the plate to highlight what many political commentators, including those within government ranks and the Conservative party, now fear: that the UK has become a rogue state that cannot be trusted to follow the rule of law or, in this case, even to abide by an agreement that they themselves took such unconstitutional pains to compose last year.

Breaking international law regarding the Withdrawal Agreement, regardless of “specific and limited” intent, shows to the world that the UK is beyond the pale with regards international treaty obligations and that its future as a third-rate pariah state is all but guaranteed.

What Mr Blackford calls close attention to are the transparent difference between the values and ethics of the parties that are in control of the Scottish Government and that of the UK. Boris Johnson and his government will obfuscate, wallow in falsehoods and cheat to deliver their right-wing, deregulated vision of Brexit, irrespective of the cost to present and future generations.

He is supported by his peripheral, gravitas-free minions who are supposed to represent Scotland. Both Douglas Ross and Alister Jack have mumbled their support for an impending No-Deal Brexit, adopting a “hear and see no evil” approach to their subservient roles in government. History will not judge them kindly.

All of this political activity does beg the question of just how corrupt and iniquitous the UK administration has to become before we take matters into our own hands and decide that, under present circumstances, international law can no longer be regarded as sacrosanct. Do we really need to wait for an authorised referendum on independence from a government that has no respect for the rule of law or consideration for the people of Scotland?

Owen Kelly

DURING the Napoleonic War, Napoleon referred to Great Britain as “Perfidious Albion”, saying no-one should trust Britain.

Desperately seeking trade treaties, the government now think it is a good idea to negate an international agreement into which Britain freely entered.

The spin is being put out that this is merely precautionary. But the clear perception is that Britain is illegally preparing to break the Brexit Withdrawal Agreement. With the great risk of reigniting the Irish Troubles once again!

When a trade deal with our biggest (and nearest) trading partner is immediately threatened, the reputation of this country and every British business operating abroad is put at serious risk. This has a knock-on effect. What reputable country will make a trade deal with a country that cannot be trusted? That seeks to break international treaties when it suits them?

When would-be trade partners look more closely, they will see the pattern of government decision-making, of at least ELEVEN U-turns, and will back away, or demand massive financial guarantees up front.

Great Britain’s reputation took centuries to build. This country is increasingly being seen as some kind of banana republic, its government as dodgy and unreliable. Cummings’s corrupt crew are using Covid-19 scares as a useful distraction to keep their scandals off the front pages. And their destructive strategies still continue behind the scenes. We need to be protected from the small clique who have seized control of this government!

Pete Milory