Monday, 2 May 2011

"The bravest political decision"

[What follows is a snippet from an article in yesterday's edition of The Observer by columnist Kevin McKenna, a former deputy editor of The Herald and executive editor of the Daily Mail in Scotland:]

The decision of Kenny MacAskill to free the only man found guilty of the Lockerbie bombing on compassionate grounds was the bravest political decision of the last session. Westminster correspondence since released by WikiLeaks has rendered most opposition to the decision dishonest and flawed. For that decision alone, which made me proud to be a Scot, I could justify voting for the SNP [in the Scottish Parliament election on 5 May].

[An editorial published yesterday on The Herald website contains the following:]

The Government’s most controversial action was the decision to free convicted Lockerbie bomber Abdelbaset Ali al-Megrahi on compassionate grounds. Regardless of whether you agree with that decision or not, the SNP have faced down their critics and emerged from the whirlwind with two strong moral arguments: first that this was a decision for the Scottish Government to take without outside interference; second, that the moral grounds for the release chime with Scottish values and indeed that those valued are enshrined in our laws. In contrast, other parties were left looking hypocritical, feigning public outrage at a decision they had previously signalled in private was in the national interest.


  1. McKenna wrote a piece at the time I recall applauding the decision.

    The other thing is of course, if the SNP are returned they have promised an Inquiry finally.

  2. Jo, when did this happen? Because I've been so busy at Gannaga Lodge, I'm a bit behind on the news.

  3. I didn't know they had promised an inquiry! You sure?

  4. Hold on, I will go and google it.

  5. Oops, deepest apologies. The promise made was that if the SNP are returned primary legislation will be put in place to allow the publication of the SCCRC report. It was made on Newsnight Scotland by Salmond on 10/2.

    I'm sincerely very sorry for the earlier statement.

    Salmond's promise however is highly significant. Let's hope he keeps it.

  6. But apart from the sanitation, the medicine, education, wine, public order, irrigation, roads, the fresh-water system, and public health, what have the SNP ever done for us? I just saw the SNP party political broadcast based on the old Monty Python sketch.