"I hold that the British empire is the biggest menace to the human race... A Scottish break-away at this juncture would bring the empire crashing to the ground and free the waiting workers of the world." - John Maclean
Neocolonial villain Henry Kissinger opposing Scottish independence for much the same reasons as I support it:
"I thought that that was important for us who would otherwise be stuck as an island between Eurasia and Europe. That’s why I’ve been in favour of a nuclear capability for Britain because I wanted Britain to be recognised as a significant country in terms of global strategy. So anything that makes it smaller, I cannot say I welcome."
A similar line to John Major, who says: "If the UK lost Scotland it would be diminished – be in no doubt about that. Our defence would be severely weakened. Trident would almost certainly be lost. Britain’s role as the second largest military force in the EU would be gone and, with it, many of our close ties to the United States."
So they join George Robertson, Barack Obama, David Cameron, Tony Abbott, Richard Shirreff, John McCain, Alan Greenspan, Robert Zoellick, and *all* the most vicious representatives of British/US/NATO imperialism in opposing independent Scotland. Even the Israelis are worried: "Given the more extreme bent of its support of the Palestinian cause, a Scotland in charge of its foreign affairs would likely be a far more vocal critic of Israel." Not to mention the Conservatives, Lib Dems, Labour and every single organisation of the far-right - UKIP, BNP, EDL, etc.
The entire international imperialist class is lined up against Scottish independence, because they see the United Kingdom as a key player in the struggle - heating up every day in Ukraine, Syria, Iraq, and the South China Sea - to maintain imperialist domination, to maintain the Washington Consensus, and to break the rise of a multipolar world. Scottish independence will be a historic blow to British imperialism and to the whole neocolonial project, hence the continuing relevance of the great John Maclean: "I hold that the British empire is the biggest menace to the human race... A Scottish break-away at this juncture would bring the empire crashing to the ground and free the waiting workers of the world."
Ultimately, independence will give the people of Scotland much greater ability to exercise POWER - political, economic, social, cultural. And all the indications are that they will exercise it in a FAR MORE PROGRESSIVE WAY than the UK parliament does. The Yes campaign has done a remarkable job of engaging Scottish people, ESPECIALLY working class and progressives. Are those voices, newly active and engaged, suddenly going to drop their demands for a fairer, more equal, more enlightened, more tolerant/welcoming society? For a state that opposes neoliberalism, austerity, wars of domination, nuclear weapons, racism, privatisation and the dismantling of the welfare state? For a state that wants to engage on an equal footing in a rising multipolar world? Hardly. People are mobilised and ready to push for progressive change, on a level that hasn't been seen in this island for a VERY long time.
And while the fearmongers claim that the Yes campaign's promises will evaporate after independence, the fact is that the Scottish Parliament has already proved itself to a significant degree, even with the limited power that it has - for example openly supporting Palestine, ending bedroom tax, keeping education free, opposing NHS privatisation, opposing racist UK immigration policy, speaking out vocally against the war in Iraq (remember when Salmond described Blair as a "man who buried the intelligence that was inconvenient, manipulated the information to suit his purpose, and entered into a secret pact with the American President to go to war come what may"?). Ultra-pragmatism over the queen and the pound mean zilch - they are a tactical manoeuvre to get a majority for independence, after which they can be reversed. (Do they constitute long-term policies of the independence movement, or were they introduced in the run-up to the vote in order to win over some waverers? You know the answer.)
Is the unity of the working class being broken? Errrr, what unity? Where is the meaningful united campaign in Britain against wars, imperialism, neoliberalism, austerity, bedroom tax, racism, xenophobia, unemployment, nuclear weapons... anything? On the contrary, the people of Scotland can blaze a trail, meaningfully opposing imperialism and pursuing progressive policies. This can serve to inspire us to step up the struggle in England, and lays the basis for a far more substantial unity - just as Irish freedom would create a basis for deeper unity between English and Irish workers.
I'm not Scottish and I wouldn't tell Scots how to vote. But I know which box I'd be ticking.
- Carlos Martinez