This is my letter to the Herald following events on Monday. It was not selected for publication.It has since been moderated and included in the online comments, for which I thank Herald.
Your leader on the disruption of free speech on the streets of Glasgow is very welcome.
On Monday morning I went to St Enoch Square expecting to hear Eddie Izzard and Jim Murphy speak at a pro-Labour rally. What I expected was a street event with a popular comedian who would attract a crowd, and probably hecklers, too: all good free speech.
What happened however was that nationalist hooligans turned up with loudhailers, loud amplified music, and proceeded to chant and drown out any speeches and to ensure that no member of the public could hear Eddie’s or Jim’s messages. Brave men – some in masks – took our photographs and filmed us, and one was kind enough to call me an “English bastard” who should “fuck off home across the border.”
In short, what we saw was the nationalists’ strategy of the use of intimidation and physical force to drive political opponents and their message off the streets. I have never before equated Scottish nationalism with fascism or Nazism, and have warned others off doing so, but these are exactly same tactics used by the Brownshirts in Germany and by Mosley’s Blackshirts.
It is beyond doubt that nationalism attracts fascists, and it cannot be denied that in Glasgow, those who would use fascist tactics are supporting the SNP, whose posters and members were present in St Enoch Square.
Anyone considering voting nationalist should consider that fact, and that they are associating themselves with anti-democratic and violent behaviour.
Peter A. Russell