The sigh of relief

Alex Salmond is going home a free man. He has been found not guilty on all charges except one which was found not proven, and another charge which was dropped by the prosecution earlier in the trial. Our faith in Scottish justice shines today and BBC Scotland’s Sarah Smith has gone into self-isolation. Was it just me or did she seem to be barely containing her displeasure as she reported the verdict?

The British nationalists were rubbing their hands in glee at the prospect of Alex Salmond being handcuffed and sent to prison. All over the country, newspaper editors are having to bin their gleefully malicious headlines, and the British nationalist frothers on social media are having a collective meltdown. This wasn’t supposed to happen. This was supposed to be all their SNPbad Schadenfreude union flag Christmasses come at once, and it’s all been snatched away by the common sense of a Scottish jury.

It should go without saying that the cause of independence is greater than any one of us. We are all the rocks that support this movement. We are all the trees in the Great Caledonian Forest. It is also true that nothing that has happened today changes the contempt with which successive British governments and British politicians have treated Scotland. Even if Alex Salmond had been convicted on one or more of the charges he faced, Brexit would still be happening. Boris Johnson would still be fnaugh fnaughing his posh boy disdain for Scottish democracy. Johnson would still be in charge during a health crisis which he is so clearly incapable of rising to. All the reasons for independence would have remained exactly the same, and once the dust from the trial had settled, the dynamic driving support for independence would inevitably reassert itself.

But Alex Salmond is and will always be a giant amongst us. He’s the foundation upon which we build our path. He has, more than any other individual, wrested the cause of Scottish independence out of the jaws of hopelessness and marginalisation where it languished for generations and brought it squarely into the very centre of Scottish political debate and discussion. No more can it be ignored. No more can anyone, least of all a British nationalist, pretend that it’s not a serious prospect. Above all, that’s thanks to Alex Salmond. He is the individual who our opponents have striven to identify personally with the independence cause. Removing him from the picture under a cloud of disgrace would have given them a cheap and handy weapon with which to taunt us for years to come.

This verdict comes after two extensive investigations, one by the Scottish Goverment, and one by Police Scotland. Both have cleared Alex Salmond. There are now questions to be answered about what seems to have been a particularly vicious bout of party infighting which was allowed to get so spectacularly and dangerously out of hand. As he spoke to the media after his acquittal, Alex mentioned that there was evidence which he was not allowed to present in court, and that would come out when the time was appropriate. There will be scores to settle here, but we can now hope that this will not be a destructive process, but rather one which ensures that the SNP is a party which provides justice and fair treatment to those accused of wrongdoing.

There has been some disquiet for a while about the way in which the party seems to turn on its own. There has been disquiet for a while that the party seems to have lost its focus on the goal of independence in favour of the goal of governing a devolved administration well. There will be immense disquiet if it is proven that there are those within the SNP who were prepared to risk such a potentially disastrous outcome as the conviction of Alex Salmond for their personal ends within the party. Because if that is indeed true, then they were not merely prepared to see the personal destruction and humiliation of a former First Minister, they would also have been prepared to see the independence movement suffer a humiliating and deeply damaging reverse.

So yes, there are uncomfortable times ahead, but unlike the conviction of Alex Salmond on charges of sexual assault, these uncomfortable times will only lead to a stronger and more focussed SNP, an SNP which is better able to lead the independence movement. There are uncomfortable times ahead for Nicola Sturgeon, as questions will be asked about what she knew and when she knew it, all the more so since one of the statements she gave to Holyrood appears to be at variance with the evidence that was presented during the trial. There may be an innocent explanation, we shall have to wait and see. Those who were so keen to assert that Alex Salmond was innocent of wrongdoing before the investigation and the trial must also extend that presumption to Nicola Sturgeon. That’s doubly the case for those who claim to be zealous in their pursuit of independence. They would then be guilty of the exact same sin that they would convict Nicola Sturgeon of – allowing their personal agendas to damage the independence cause and giving our opponents a weapon with which to hurt us.

Under normal circumstances, this political story would be all that occupied the news. But as we all know these are not normal times. In his dignifed and statesman like comments to the press after his acquittal, Alex said that the tribulations which he has faced recently pall into insignificance compared to the life or death issues facing so many people as a result of the coronavirus epidemic. There will be a time for dealing with the fallout from his trial, and for dealing with the circumstances within the SNP which led to it. That time will come, but it is not now.

Today is a day for breathing a collective sigh of relief. One of the giants of the Scottish independence movement will now be able to focus his efforts on helping us toward that goal we all share. He will not be languishing in prison, with a conviction around his neck which would have destroyed his reputation. He will not be able to be used by our opponents as a stick with which to beat us, he will be one of the biggest sticks beating the drum for independence. For that, every supporter of independence is grateful.

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177 thoughts on “The sigh of relief

    • Some did appear to frame him Anne, but they didn’t get away with it!
      Thank goodness for Scottish Justice and a Scottish jury who were able to recognise the truth from the various arguments and statements presented.

      Thanks should go to Craig Murray who valiantly gained access to the public gallery to report on some of the arguments by prosecution and defence. I was most heartened by his determination to highlight this.

      I was absolutely delighted with the result and so pleased for Alec. It has restored my faith a little.

      I do believe, however, that some in the SNP have looked to further their own agendas here, having got their feet comfortably under the table (so to speak) and they surely have to be made to justify their actions. The SNP have shattered by faith in the last year or so by their seeming lack of direction and courage for the cause of independence for Scotland.

  1. Delighted for Alex. That the prosecution was led by one of the country’s most able lawyers makes the verdict even more resolute. The speech on the steps of the High Court, measured, respectful and ominous. Glad that’s over.

    Don’t wish to take the thread O/T but just a suggestion if you are involved an any local organisations or community groups. This could increase the NHS capacity tenfold within a week – but we should act now.

    Don’t wait for government or Local Councils to organise services – form local groups and do this now.

    Contact all the local sports halls and requisition their facility. Modern sports halls have excellent ventilation and air conditioning systems and have catering facilities on site.

    Local companies with single beds and bedding should make their stock available. Prepare the halls with well-separated beds and use this as a triage and treatment centre for the initial cases. Local GPs and community nurses can volunteer there.

    Only the most serious patients are transferred onto the NHS for ventilation and critical care.

    Source a local hyperbaric oxygen chamber – if it’s mobile, have it taken to the community centres – it is the gold standard for oxygenation and does not require ventilators.

    Many schools have sports halls too – they too should be utilised and prepared – without delay.

    This is happening right now in Madrid. We need to do the same here immediately.

    Please share with any community groups you have contact with.

    • Thought about this too Mark. And Gleneagles hotel, yup the biggie, has shut shop. Now there’s a great big, already kitted out facility that could really help people.

      • That should be the second stage – I don’t know why we’re clearing hospitals for coronavirus patients when we should be trying to keep those very hospitals as free from the virus as possible. People will still have acute medical and surgical needs. The government should have commandeered all hotels – starting with the luxury ones – they all have individual rooms with ensuite facilities, good communication, laundry and catering facilities. Those are the places to treat severe victims – away from the hospitals. And it would provide some dignity for many – rather than dying alone at home.

        Difficult and astonishing to witness such incompetence.

        • This is and has been what my local area are focused on with much being done and organised. As a rural community many of our volunteers are over 70 so much also done in this regard too. Must say I’m impressed by all the thinking that is being undertaken and consider these folks more than capable of running the uk instead of who we have!

  2. I’ve been waiting for the alert from your blog. I knew you could be relied upon to give a calm, fair and thoughtful analysis of the Alex Salmond verdicts. You never disappoint Paul. As you say, there are questions which need to be answered at the appropriate time. I am so glad that I am not a a unionist, they must be spitting feathers!!

  3. “Was it just me or did she seem to be barely containing her displeasure as she reported the verdict?”

    No, it certainly wasn’t just you! She was bealing LOL.

    A great result and justice has been done. His fellow Scots weren’t taken in by this politically orchestrated attempt to destroy the reputation and any future career of the man responsible for bringing Scotland so close to gaining Independence.

    This is a bad loss for them and I absolutely believe Alex Salmond will come back stronger than ever. Today’s verdict is a pivotal moment.

    • “Politically orchestrated attempt” yes but who is/are the conductors. Getting nine woman to lie and fabricate nonsensical stories. No mean feat. A Salmond obviously knows exactly what has been going on but was not allowed to go their in the trial. He will release that info when he sees fit unless it is leaked by someone earlier.

      The majority of the alphabet sisters are still picking up a salary from SNP subscriptions or taxpayers. Should they be?

  4. Well, one silver lining in this series of unfortunate events is that Mr. Salmond will now be perfectly free, if he so wishes, to return to the fray once politics returns to the (ab)normal.

    • And to lead the party once more, Independence is a journey, and the SNP are the means to Get there, but the ship has been left rudderless, and Alex S is the man to take on the skippers job , sorry but we all know Nicola must be complicit in this along with her group of acolytes, and all are desperate to retain the power they find themselves, with, Was Nicola scared when salmond said he would make a come back, damn right she was, it wouldnt have been the first time that Alex would have come back to take the helm when the party was going nowhere, just look what happened with Swinneys short term in charge, there must be an investigation into this shitstorm and how it was allowed to get so far, the judge should have thrown it out after the prosecution finished their case

      • ..”sorry but we all know Nicola must be complicit in this along with her group of acolytes.”..

        Who’s ”we”? You’re making the same assumptions about Nicola Sturgeon that the MSM, and others, made about Alex Salmond, Wullie. What happened to being innocent until proven guilty? Let’s just wait and see what emerges from the forthcoming investigations, why don’t we.

      • I’m with Paul on this Wullie B.

        As he writes above: “Those who were so keen to assert that Alex Salmond was innocent of wrongdoing before the investigation and the trial must also extend that presumption to Nicola Sturgeon. That’s doubly the case for those who claim to be zealous in their pursuit of independence. They would then be guilty of the exact same sin that they would convict Nicola Sturgeon of – allowing their personal agendas to damage the independence cause and giving our opponents a weapon with which to hurt us.”

        Let the process of further enquiry run its course. Let the FM be faced with any formal charges if there are any and let her answer them. Any citizen deserves to be regarded as innocent until proven guilty – of something. And with her record of public service our FM certainly merits having that too.

  5. So pleased Alex is going home a free man. I do believe though that the unioinists will see a not proven verdict as “No smoke without fire” and that will be the stick with which they will beat us. I’m just worried for his safety now as this pandemic gives the opportunity for “unfortunate events”. Please stay sae Alex and you too Paul. this lot are capable of anything.

  6. Well done to Alex and his legal team, and the Jury of course. I was always suspicious of this case following comments from Craig Murray on his blog regarding Civil Service smear campaigns (himself, Assange, Salmond). Lots of prominent names here;

    It’s going to get messy. Hopefully Alex settles scores behind the scenes – but publicly if he has to. Enemies within shouldn’t be allowed to stay in post.

      • accusers of sexual assault have anonymity for life. they do not deserve punishment or publicity, that’s not how justice works.

        • rudi
          I want to see Alex Salmond going after the politicians and Civil Servants (and MSM editors) who have tried twice now to destroy him and failed. The “accusers of sexual assault” I could care less about; the jury did not believe them, nuff said. Who architected this fit-up? Who kept it going, even after the first case against Alex collapsed after a cost of £500,00? Time for a clear-out.

          • No before he was mouthing off to STV news presenters, Cubby, and his comments about Alex Salmond were totally out of order.

          • Clegg is always out of order. Pity the reporter didn’t ask him who leaked all the confidential details of the accusers ( false ) statements and did he now feel guilty for plastering all that false info all over his rag. Of course that was never going to happen – it’s STV.

            I’ll give Clegg credit for having the brass neck to go on camera but I suppose it gave STV the excuse to once again show pages of the Daily Redcoat hammering Salmond as a sex monster. A bunch of Britnat scumbags the lot of them.

        • That’s not how the law works – I think that is more appropriate.

          Nine accusers all colluding to stitch up, on serious charges, an ex political colleague and friend and thats fine by you.

        • Even if they have lied? The are guilty of contempt of court and trying to obstruct the course of justice. why should a sex crime be any adifferent from any other?

      • Salmond wouldnt allow that to happen in case it damaged the SNP, but I am sure some quiet words in some ears will occur, unlike this sham of a case and how the SNP heid yins tried get Salmond to back off from returning to party politics, I hope he throws his hat into the ring for Holyrood next year, that will be the only way the party puts independence back in the game, because the present lot are hapy with what they have

      • I think he will in due course. They certainly do deserve to be held to account. I hope he can sue some of the media as well.

        Should any member of the SNP who is not believed in a criminal trial to have told the truth still be a member. Michelle Thomson got dispatched pretty quickly for nothing. Gareth Wardell got dispatched pretty quickly on dodgy grounds. Neale Hanvey as well.

  7. very, very happy for Mr Salmond . The whole process must have been an awful ordeal for him and his wife.Great victory for his legal team and all his supporters

    • It was a great victory but it was also an easy one. Personally, I think the defence could have brought more witnesses etc to the trial but they didn’t want to risk it being suspended due to the virus and then a whole retrial a year later.

  8. Thank goodness for the return of a decent verdict….the case as laid out by the prosecution was so full of holes and unbelievable scenarios….

    So glad for Alec and his family …..Way to go Alec!

  9. Let’s face it, they tried to destroy not just Alex Salmond but the whole Independence movement with these false accusations. Let’s be absolutely clear and that is that the jury heard the evidence and decided that all accusations were now justified.

    He was found to be innocent of all charges,

    Some of the charges of “sexual assault” though I can only describe as ridiculous, tugging a colleague’s curly hair in a lift, stupid but assault? Placing your hand on a persons lower back to get your photo taken can be called sexual assault when done in front of dozens of witnesses including the photographer!

    So where was the picture?

    It’s pretty clear that the prosecution case was to gather as much “evidence” as possible of so called “inappropriate” behavior in the hope of showing a pattern. They had to go back all the way to 2008 in order to do this. Thinking about it now it appears ridiculous that it got as far as a trial.

    They will be repercussions from this, that is certain. I’m sure Alex Salmond will know exactly how this has to be approached. Me? I’m just glad to have him back and we have a sensible Scottish jury who would not be fooled to thank for that.

    • Well, repercussions can be damaging also. Much more so than the original accusations, because one man – however significant – can’t impact a whole movement, whereas wholesale bloodletting within the SNP certainly could. So it’s time for cool heads to prevail. But if it causes the SNP to soberly re-evaluate where its extremist minority factions have been attempting to take it of late, and do something effective about it, that would surely be no bad thing.

      • We have a two month hiatus at least to deal with the internal issues that have manifested under NS. The purge must start at the top.

        • Here it starts. An unholy alliance of Unionists and sick-jealous nobody zoomers, Alex Salmond having dodged the traps, now all desperate to destabilise and decapitate the SNP.

          • All bored stiff with WoS, as they have already decimated it, and reckoning that they can now start poisoning this site too.

        • Let’s not make assumptions about N.Sturgeon either, how do you know she hasn’t been played like a fiddle by the Brit state, she is a clever cookie, but the Britnat state are not daft and know how to manipulate, and fabricate, and infiltrate at the highest level of government, anywhere on the freaking planet.
          Just saying, let’s not jump to any conclusions as yet. The Britnat state have been trying to silence the SNP since they started as a party FOR Scotland, and be in no doubt they would do anything to undermine the genuine ones at the top, the ones who worked their way up to high office, who were not just placed there to convenience the monied and powerful in London.

          The Brit state hate N.Sturgeon as much as they hate A. Salmond, be in no doubt.

          • Oh definitely they hate anyone that dont conform to there views thats how they always act hence there hatred of Scotland voting different to England and the system is rigged in Englands favour its all a dirty tactic to make England the head of the uk forever which the snp and we independence supporters are a threat to that simply because we believe different that Scotland is better politically on its own and we arent going away.

          • Getting rid of Nicola works just as well for the brit state and their msm hacks as toppling AS, and maybe Nicola was the prime target all along. The get Nicola brigade have been frothing for quite a while now. One point I would add, had Nicola quashed these complaints, do you think that it would have remained a secret or would it have been used just as viciously against her, as the accusations against AS.

    • Thepnr your second sentence I think “now”should be “not”.

      Tugging the hair was not one of the official charges. It was just a pathetic freebee chucked in so that Donald Cameron, Lesley Evans assistant could take the stand as a witness to try and blacken Salmonds character.

      20 detectives worked on this investigation and took 386 statements. No manpower to investigate burglaries though. It was a nonsense it went to trial.

      A lot of Britnats must be scratching their head at the moment as they have been fed the usual one sided propaganda by the Britnat media who tried their best to ignore the overwhelming evidence for Salmond being innocent. Sadly so many are so conditioned that they will explain it away by saying the jury was full of SNP supporters.

      In the history of political stitch ups/smears it must be one of the most inept.

    • The witches of Salmond?
      I’m dying to know who the Glasgow based senior political journalist is who passed out after an alleged ‘drunken fellatio romp’ in Bute House.

      I’m sure that the Mail or the SUN will be waving their cheque book at some lady reveller.
      Like his wee willie winkie, the truth will out.

      There will surely be sackings now.

      • It was a witch trial with a key difference. The Witches were the accusers.

        But who was the master Witch or Wizard directing them?

  10. A sensible article on a disgraceful political stitch up that will have a number of further chapters in the future. As I said before if members of the SNP are found to be not believed in this trial then they should do the decent thing and resign from the party. If not, the same harsh disciplinary approach that has been taken with others should be applied to them at a similar fast pace.

    I’m guessing some people still do not know who these women are. The sensible one was the accuser who got cold feet at the last moment and did not go through with this charade.

  11. At this miserable time with corona virus trapping and bankrupting , it was great to have the verdict and I am as pleased as punch that Alex Salmond walks free and can recoup his health ready for the fight ahead.

    • What!!! Ten women collude and fabricate serious criminal allegations. Thank goodness you were not Salmonds defence lawyer.

      • no I am not a defence lawyer but I dont go in for retribution or revenge either. I dont think that helps anyone at all or the independence movement. The fighting among indy supporters and within the SNP is totally depressing

  12. Just listened to Sarah Smith’s report on the main news. She and the BBC are an absolute disgrace. It will backfire on them.

  13. Well done Alec and the legal team. There must be an investigation into this affair.

    The guilty must be removed from the party, regardless of who they are. If there is evidence of criminality the Police must act.

    I am confident heads will roll.

    It’s too early to say but if I was a betting type I would put a couple of quid on someone getting the jail.

    • Jason not sure if someone will get the jail but I am 100% certain some should be held accountable. The accuser who pulled out at the last moment obviously thought she didn’t want to go down with a sinking ship.

      The accusers obviously thought they were untouchable and could present silly stories that were false without any comeback if the jury didn’t fall for it.

      They were basically sticking two fingers up to the justice system and the Scottish people.

  14. Pingback: The sigh of relief | speymouth

  15. I think we should all be agreed that Nicola has some serious questions to answer re her role in both the civil and criminal cases that involved Salmond. He has been vindicated in the highest civil and criminal courts in the land. Meantime our cause has dissipated under her leadership.. time for a change… time for introspection and valediction of Sturgeon.

      • Am i?, Where is the Independence vote your Sturgeon has a mandate for and promised
        ; if i’m the pone peddling ( sorry that’s how you spell it) crap?

          • Your Sturgeon has a mandate for a further independence referendum but wont use it. She gives the impression of being a unionist satrap. If im wrong in this assumption can you lease specify the date on which she has arranged a second indy ref to take place on. Lets not judge her on superlatives but commitments to independence.

          • Yep, they are out for blood and now Nicola Sturgeon will be their target. Watch out folks, we don’t know what;s gone on, who was involved, and what role some people played in all of this.

            All that we need is for the Scottish government headed by N.Sturgeon to steer Scotland at this hugely critical time for all of us. The Britnats won’t give up trying to conjure up all sorts of SNP bad, even now, they really are scum.

    • She had no role what so ever, she had to let it take its course, she could not be seen to take sides. The unionist side would have had a field day. Salmond knew that. Everyone should stop surmising

      • I think maybe Nicola Sturgeon was unable to say anything, do anything or even sack someone(s) while all this was going on.
        Westminster, and anti independence people would like nothing more than for there to be trouble between Alex and Nicola.
        Why would Alex, when he stepped down from being FM, support Nicola in taking over the position if things were so wrong between them?

        • Nicola is not Boris Johnson or Dominic Cummings. She acts like a rational human being those two idiots do not.You are clearly a troll so why don’t you crawl back under the unionist rock from whence you came

  16. “In his dignifed and statesman like comments to the press after his acquittal”………that’s the Alex we all know, dignified and statesman-like

    Then compare Boris Johnson, the Prime Ministerial equivalent of forty ferrets fighting it out in a laundry basket full of Father Jack’s underpants

    Oh God I can’t wait until Alex is back in the SNP and leading the charge to Independence – or not in the SNP and leading the charge of the YES movement to independence

    I said earlier this afternoon, we have missed his fire and drive – we have so given so many mandates to the SNP there is now enough for all members to have one each, and there’s over 100,000 of us.

    Alex relax, keep safe and look after your loved ones – and once this difficult time for us all is over, HASTE YE BACK

  17. Eloquently put, justice has been served, Salmond’s torment is ended, but this is far from over for those who accused or the media obsessed with getting a head on a platter, some time soon there will be a reckoning.
    I doubt the dirty deeds in the case will ever see public scrutiny, but those of Scottish media and in particular the BBC, have been blatant.

  18. Great to see Alex Salmond being acquitted of these allegations. His brief speech outside the court was indeed statesmanlike. I believe this result will give a boost to those in the SNP, and those members of the public, who desire to see a more radical approach by the SNP and Scottish government regarding Scotland’s independence.

    The FM has been calm and dignified throughout her time as First Minister, including her handling of the current health crisis. I believe, however, she has been too equivocal in her approach to independence.

    The next FM must be someone who is not shy in putting independence first and foremost amongst Scotland’s priorities.

  19. Count me out – and everyone else who genuinely wants Scotland’s independence – of the statement “we all know Nicola must be complicit”. It is John Bull shit.

    Any stitch up was initiated by Brits who have embedded themselves in the SNP.

    Nine Scottish women were on the jury that found Alex innocent. They were unimpressed by the similar number of women who accused him. Scottish women are not daft, they aren’t wet behind ears, they saw through it. Nicola Sturgeon is far from daft. If she had wanted to destroy Alex she would have made a better fist of it.

    Let’s not allow this moment of happiness to be peed upon from a great height by people masquerading as our friends. It would be a shame to fall into that – not seriously important, just a shame. The blow that doesn’t break us ……..

    • Arthur I agree with every word.
      I think a lot is down to “legalities”. What could and couldn’t be said.

      I wanted to see them having a Big Hug outside Holyrood, but thanks to the virus, that can’t happen!

    • I agree – why is everyone saying “innocent until proven guilty” for Alex (and quite rightly, as he was innocent) yet there are some willing to hang Nicola from the yard arm without a fair trial ?

      There will be investigations I am sure, but what purpose would it serve her ?

      Innocent until proven otherwise……..she’s the FM and she’s playing a blinder just now. Let’s not start snatching defeat from the jaws of victory

      • Molly’s Mum I totally agree too. Leave the pitchforks and flaming torches to our opponents and judge actions on the evidence. When we have it!

        Hope you’re well by the way 🙂

  20. Hallelujah!!!

    I never doubted him for a moment…but must admit I had ma doots about a fair trial.
    Thankfully I was wrong.

    Paul, thank you for one of your best blogs and summations ever.

    O/T but really…on topic!

    To all of you, please be sensible about how you interact with people…keep your distance….
    We will come through this, there in Scotland and here in Canada.

    But remember we now are, our brothers keepers.

    Never before have we depended on one another to keep each other healthy.

    Every selfish step taken beyond the social distancing area puts us all at risk.

    Stay well, stay wary…but keep a smile on your face. We shall survive.

    and will … Rise Again

    Digital Hugs to All!

  21. You know what disappoints me most about Independence supporters?

    Despite Alex Salmond being totally vindicated and the accusations against him having been proven to be false and that he is entirely innocent. There are still those that instead of being happy to celebrate that fact they instead want to attack Nicola Sturgeon.

    Why? That is absolutely mental, we have no idea what part Nicola Sturgeon played in the prosecution against Alex Salmond. We may learn that in the future but I say the two of them together in Perth on the 17th September 2014 and they were as close as could be.

    Their friendship could not be hidden from their faces and it was obvious to all, the respect they had for one another.

    Now, why would anyone want to cause a split in the Yes movement by using innuendo that Nicola Sturgeon was behind the accusations against Alex Salmond?

    Oh! I get it they want to cause a split in the movement, create factions and divide the SNP?

    Hahaha and there are those that fall for such utter rubbish. Nicola Sturgeon, I’m certain will explain her role in all of this, there will be inquiries and fingers crossed, we will get to the bottom of it.

    Keep your accusations to yourself might be good advice, innocent until proven guilty.

    • “Oh! I get it they want to cause a split in the movement, create factions and divide the SNP?
      Hahaha and there are those that fall for such utter rubbish. ”
      Indeed, the old “Divide and Rule Handbook” has always relied on insiders doing their dirty work…

    • Thepnr – you are of course correct – innocent until proven guilty.

      Salmond has been proven innocent today and the accusers are in turn thought to have lied in a criminal court case. SNP people lying under oath. Nicola Sturgeon knows who they are – will they be disciplined?

      I truly truly hope Nicola Sturgeon has nothing to do with this. However, she has a lot of questions to answer.

      Simple question for you thepnr do you know the identity of any of the accusers? Just to be clear I am not asking you to tell me who they are.

      Do you know who women A is for example? A simple yes or no just so I can put your comments into perspective.

      I have seen Nicola Interviewed and asked about the trial – no words of congratulations for Salmond. No words of empathy for him and Moira. Now the Britnat media may have cut it out or I may have missed it. Anyone seen this?

      Will Nicola issue a statement congratulating Alex Salmond and his wife Moira.

      Will Alex Salmond be reinstated in the SNP history after he was shamefully removed by ??

      • I thought Mr Salmond resigned in 2018 from the SNP so that he could concentrate on clearing his name and said he would rejoin when he cleared his name.

        Any comment Ms Sturgeon made tonight on the outcome of the case would certainly be edited out just as the BBC cut off the statement and Q&A session she was holding tonight after Boris Johnson’s statement.

        As to not issuing a statement I think she has more than enough tonight, of all nights, to keep her fully occupied.

        • Legerwood, I never said he didn’t resign from the SNP. I am referring to his HISTORY in the SNP – you know the fact that he was the SNP leader for a long time, the fact that he was the first SNP leader to be First Minister of Scotland and the only SNP leader to have carried out an independence referendum. No mention of Alex Salmond anywhere – removed last year on the SNP website – implying he was guilty and the SNP were trying to disown him.

          I also saw Sky cutoff the Q&A session as well. We Scots not worthy of seeing the whole presentation.

          I am sure Nicola Sturgeon is more than capable of issuing via one of her SPADS a brief statement if she really wanted to even in these extreme circumstances. She is by far the most capable politician in the UK.

          • Alex Salmond resigned as leader when we lost Indyref1. He didn’t have to do so, but seemingly did it, as he saw it, in the best interests of the party and cause. Maybe when he resigned his membership he asked for his name to be removed from the SNP history section also for the very same reasons, in particular not knowing if he would win his case or not.

          • Petra that is a reasonable point you make but I don’t think so. If he had been found guilty I am sure he would not complain if his name was removed but to ask for it to be removed beforehand I can’t see it. History is history. The Germans don’t try to kid on Hitler is not part of their history.

            Simple way of finding out. An SNP member asks who removed his name and why and can he please be restored as a significant part of the history of the SNP.

      • Sorry Cubby, but it would have been completely inappropriate for her to have made such a commitment. She is all to aware that there will have to be an inquiry.

        • Sorry Golfnut – like you I think we will both be missing our golf for a lot of the year, hopefully not all year – you said commitment – did you mean to say something else as I never said she should make any sort of commitment.

          I referred to a basic statement expressing empathy with A Salmond and his wife on his acquital. Not a comprehensive statement on the whole trial.

    • My reaction also.

      Watched RepScot this evening for the first time in ages to see the reaction, and there’s the full retailing of all the charges in detail even after the verdicts have been announced. Plus Glenn Campbell obviously exerting his utmost to rally the frustrated troops round what he clearly expects (hopes?) will now be rifts, disagreements and mutual recriminations within the ranks and upper echelons of the SNP. Jackson Carlaw pointing his finger at the FM.

      Accompanied, all too inevitably, by a new slime of trolls on social media calling for Nicola’s head.

      The familiar Unionist playbook, amplified by the usual black flag operators and their useful idiots.

      • Yep, the next move is to create divide because of the whole thing, it was probably a fall back option anyway. Many will fall for the cr*p, but more will see it for what it is.

        Stay indoors all, if you can, and stay well.

    • ”There are still those that instead of being happy to celebrate that fact they instead want to attack Nicola Sturgeon. Why?”

      Why Thepnr? Because most of them are Unionists and I’ll reckon that we’ll find out one day that some have even been threatened and / or bribed by the BritNat Security Services to do what it takes to destroy our chances of getting our Independence.

      • I don’t think that’s true Petra. I think it’s more that they’re so blinded by their own frustration and impatience that they don’t see the damage they’re doing.

        • Paul, I’ll ask you the question I asked thepnr which he is yet to answer. Do you know the identities of all or some of the alphabet sisters and in particular do you know who Woman A is.

          • Paul, as a reasonable man can you accept that if other independence supporters know the identity of Woman A in particular and some or all of the other women they may hold a different viewpoint from independence supporters who do not have this information. Surely knowledge based on facts should always be considered when constructing your opinion.

          • You seem to know who’s who, Cubby, and the ins and outs of the case. Are you part of Nicola Sturgeon’s inner circle?

          • Petra, no I am not part of Nicola Sturgeons inner circle, whatever that is. Yes I know a lot about the case as I have spent a lot of time analysing the trial reports. A lot more free time thanks to this miserable virus.

  22. Kenny McKaskil’s comments after the trial were more interesting for what he didn’t say. Like the old Chinese (and Scottish) curse, we are living in interesting times.

  23. Delighted that Alex Salmond saw off the fit-up that Craig Murray so well described. Whoever was behind it made the fatal error of not holding the trial in an English court !

    The double would be Julian Assange freed, and free to his continue his extraordinary revalations on the shameful reality of the UK’s disgustingly servile acquiescence to the relentless cretinous stupidity, never mind evil, that is the US (Neo-Con Nazi?) Empire.



    – 6/ + UPDATE + ‘Mainstream media now publicly revealing the inside story of how Dominic Cummings drove British exceptionalism Coronavirus policy. If I’ve known about this for weeks… …you can be damn sure rest of Westminster/SW1 journalists have too. – Nick @nicktolhurst twitter

    – 5/ “It’s hard to put into words my thoughts and feelings on this disaster so I will leave it to the professionals.”

    ‘Coronavirus: People Will Die because this Government Wasted Time | Professor John Ashton’ – DoubleDown News, Youtube

    Is killing some of your viewers and readers, and more of their elderly relatives, in a particularly gruesome and painful way, a career-ending move? Asking for the UK’s lobby journalists. No friends of ours based on their shameful silence that has condemned many more to death than necessary. F^&$ You Very Much !!

    From a retweet by the excellent Isabel Hilton, wife of Neal Ascherson – @isabelhilton

  24. Yes.

    What a disgrace wasting £Millions on a sham, show trial. Just a total waste of public money. Hope Alex gets his expenses.

    The media is a disgrace.

  25. This verdict must be the biggest “sour plum” stuffed doon the throats of the unionist MSM in years.
    All their one sided headlines have evaporated like a fart in the wind, I hope the public remember the MSM’s part in this and respond accordingly.

    Ah the best Alex.

  26. I think the role of Clegg, Record and Sunday Mail should be investigated. Who encouraged who? Was any monies promised for someone’s life story to be promoted? The role and connections between the Labour Party newspapers in Scotland and the BBC should be instituted.

  27. Well I was told that Nicola had bought a house somewhere with some woman. And also that she had an affair with the French Ambassador’s wife. But “I hae my doots” The finishing bit on the affair story was ” and they were all sworn to secrecy” How do you ensure the “swearers” stay sworn. I think Nicola is too smart for this stuff. Maybe of course she manufactured the Coronavirus in order to deflect requests for Indy 2. You could come up with all sorts of shit.

    A smear attempt on Nicola I think. Once you get a smart, powerful woman there are usually sex smears. Think of Catherine the Great ? Not on the same level but have heard tales about Kate Bush and that Carol Vorderman which were identical and obviously some sort of male crap. Just thought – so glad I stopped smoking. I would have been freaked out at very prospect of lack. Hope whisky stays available 🤗 Cheers keep well.

  28. Great article Paul and yes ”one of the giants of the Scottish independence movement will now be able to focus his efforts on helping us toward that goal we all share.”

    With Alex help now we WILL achieve our objective and that’s what they all wanted to prevent, seemingly. Too bad that their wee plan didn’t quite work out for them. Dearie, dearie me. Backfired, lol.

    Wishing Alex, Moira and their loved ones some much deserved peaceful and relaxing time out now XX


    Alex making a speech outside of the Court.


    Bernard Ponsonby was also interviewed and didn’t let us or Alex down. For some strange reason David Clegg, of all people, was interviewed and I wish I could post his comments / video here, but can’t. Along the lines of yes he’s been found innocent, BUT his behaviour was inappropriate etc, etc.

    • Oh, but now they’re trying their level best to rescue something from the wreckage. “Bad behaviour”, “serious rifts within the SNP”, “repercussions to come”, “Sturgeon’s position under question”, and suchlike. As pathetic as it is predictable.

      Just a pity for them that NS is such a visibly-competent leader in a time of great (real) crisis.

  29. The question I have to ask is directed at the Procurator Fiscal’s office. I realise there are difficulties in amassing evidence in sexual prosecutions but why oh why were Police Scotland not interrogating the evidence more thoroughly. Couldn’t they have used polygraphs extensively to weed out the spurious evidence and couldn’t the Procurator Fiscal have been more discriminating in assembling the prosecution case? This looks amateur in the extreme. I will be interested to find out why the defence could not bring forward the ‘other’ evidence that Alex talked about.

    • Polygraphs are not used by the Probation Service or the Police in Scotland, Bob. In England and Wales they are currently only used by the Probation Service on Sex Offenders out on parole. The results of Polygraph tests would probably not be admissable in court even if they were used. Even some USA States which use them do not allow the results as admissable evidence. I don’t think they are considered to be 100% accurate in any case. And like it or not, it’s not the ‘victim’ who’s on trial so why should they be grilled in this way? Although I understand your frustration, Bob, and I say that as a woman.

    • It was not admissible as evidence as per the laws of evidence.

      It was probably more info about collusion. None of the reports on the trial clarified just who exactly was a member of the WhatsApp group and what was said on it by everyone.

  30. Just read this by Philip Sim, BBC Scotland political reporter on the Salmond verdict. I’ve read it several times and still not sure I find it ‘acceptable’ – or perhaps just not understandable – comment. Any views on what point Mr Sim was seeking to make? Maybe just garbled!

    “Ultimately it feels like there is little room for analysis or evaluation of the arguments actually made in court. In general, we accept the verdict of the jury in absolute terms; they pronounce an accused guilty because he is guilty, not because of the particular skill of the prosecution. They pronounce him innocent because his guilt has not been proved, not because his defence team have yanked him from the fire.”

    • Ergo, the defence evidence proved that he was innocent, not ‘guilt has not been proved’.
      See what Sim did there?
      Glenn Campbell’s face was a picture. He looked as though he had lost a pound, and found a penny.
      Sarah Smith’s sneering report for BBC News Channel had all the poison that her Mother, sister, and Kezia Dugdale are attempting to ‘Think Tank’ out of political discourse.

      By god, are they hurting.

  31. Got a bad feeling that this story has just got started. And that the fallout might damage the SNP far more effectively than a guilty verdict today.

    • The fallout for the SNP is utterly insignificant if it would have been better for an innocent person to be wrongfully imprisoned to avoid it.

      Only the fallout for the SNP won’t be fallout at all.

      The Brit mouthpieces in the media always have a bad news story for us – invented or just embellished beyond reality. Nine women saw through this garbage presented to a court. All remotely sensible people now understand that it was a setup. The guns have been spiked and ALL genuine supporters of Indy have been made more aware and brought closer together.

      Those who think of it as a game are already off on another tangent. Those who want to destroy us are back to work plotting our downfall using all available useful idiots.

      WE are as committed as we ever were plus some. And Alex will sleep tonight.

  32. Oh that’s the best news I’ve had this year! Anyone who had two functioning brain-cells MUST have known that Alex was innocent of these trumped-up charges. My day has been made!

  33. Nicola is no more guilty than Alex himself in being found not guilty..Fact!! I do think people below Nicola have been plotting and hiding information from her and haven’t been true to the SNP and Scotland as a whole just like the brit/ feels their has been dirty dealings going on and that some British spies have had their dirty hands in it. Ive been saying for a while that British spies are in the SNP, Scottish government and in all our public services as well as the unions in these services, its why we have all the firkin problems..that’s just FACT!! They are trying to do serious damage to the SNP, the Scottish govement and OUR seperation from this crap uk. The SNP some how have managed to get results in doing the day job and to a good standard, even with the dirty british hands all over our education, emergency services, the unions and MSM..I just wonder how they do it. So big 👏👏 👏 to the SNP the Scottish goverment and with a little help from our friends ‘most of the time’ the greens.. All the unionists will be caken themselves if these two get together again, what a force to be reckon with and with the backing of TRUE strong SCOTS SNP mps.
    Go get them!! Let the lion roar again..

  34. The lion is sleeping tonite and will be free to roar again!!.. c’mon SCOTLAND this time more than any other time I just want to break free.

  35. Given her ardent advocacy of womans rights, the First Minister was hoist on a petard engineered by Whitehall, pure and simple.

    This affair has been orchestrated to destroy them both.

    I’m with the defence QC – the whole thing stinks of conspiracy.

    I am happy the jury has seen through the whole dispicable fiasco.

        • She didn’t say that Nicola Sturgeon had no involvement in this matter contrary to some speculation. Now as Tricia Marwick knows who the alphabet sisters are that would be a reasonable thing for her to say if she felt that was definitely the case.

  36. I have no idea of what went on behind closed doors in the lead up to this case. Alex Salmond has been cleared of the charges against him. I do not know what part, if any, the First Minister or other senior officers or elected members of the SNP played in this event.

    I am an SNP member and therefore I have a legitimate interest in this – but then again so do all Scottish citizens.

    Alex Salmond has said that he has evidence which will be laid before the Scottish people in due course. The sensible course of action for any interested person would be to await the publication of this evidence and make a judgement based on same.

    In the meantime we should support the First Minister in the present emergency, as I’m sure Mr Salmond would agree, and leave whatever needs to happen until the appropriate time.

    In the meantime whatever our instincts are telling us, perhaps we should just keep a lid on it.

  37. Nicola is not Boris Johnson or Dominic Cummings. She acts like a rational human being those two idiots do not.You are clearly a troll so why don’t you crawl back under the unionist rock from whence you came

  38. Alex Salmond’s enemies had better be careful what they say from now on. I don’t imagine he’s in any mood to put up with their nonsense.

  39. FGS I just happened to see the tail end of Scotland Tonight. Colin MacKay is a bl**dy disgrace. Another one coming out with the, “he may have been found to be innocent BUT his RT programme etc, etc” ..

    They never give up, but they had better watch their backs because I don’t think that Alex Salmond is in the mood to put up with anymore of this sh*t.

  40. Listening to an SNP MSP on the radio earlier who was being pressed hard to say something negative about who was complicit in the way the allegations were initially handled, he said (and I’m paraphrasing here) that Nicola was doing an excellent job and that he was confident in her handling of government, BUT that those ELSEWHERE in the Scottish Government would have questions to answer. This is an MSP who knows what’s been going on, and I’m of the same opinion as him: that Nicola is not behind any attempt to oust Alex. I think she was in a very difficult position.

    We should wait until this pandemic is over, and listen to what Alex has to say. I’m confident that people will finally see exactly how he was stitched up in an effort to attack the independence movement.

  41. A lot of the above comments are about Nicola Sturgeons role or not in this matter. I am not aware that she was ever mentioned in the trial. That of course cannot be verified as the trial reporting is generally very heavily self censored by the reporters.

    On the other hand the SNP official Ian Mc Cann was reported as responding to Woman H that the SNP would sit on the matter and hold it unless we need it in the future – I believe the police got this from text messages – should Mc Cann not be immediately suspended as this evidence was not challenged in court as being inaccurate. I believe Mc Cann reports to The SNP Chief Executive. Did he agree this course of action or was he kept in the dark.

    In summary there is no evidence showing Nicola Sturgeon has done anything wrong but there is for Mc Cann. It is not just the alphabet sisters who have to be held accountable.

    • I reckon it’s a bit like the Evans and MacKinnon situation Cubby. They probably couldn’t be sacked whilst legal proceedings were in the offing and now investigations have to be carried out. And as far as the Civil Service employees are concerned it’s unclear to me who exactly has the power to get rid of who? Some seem to be employed by Holyrood. Others by Westminster. Nicola Sturgeon no doubt will be taking advice from Gov lawyers. Whatever the case it’s the last thing that she needs. Some of these top Civil Servants have been heavily involved in dealing with not just Brexit, but with Independence and now the Coronavirus of course.

      • Petra, I try to deal with known facts not mad rumours that others postulate.

        In the trial the Chief Superintendent ( who was in charge of the case ) has been reported as saying she was offered a copy of the Scotgov report that covered the judicial review at the start of the police investigation. She said she refused it as it may influence their investigation. A reasonable conclusion is that the investigation has been carried out and a report is available. Now it is correct that this report was not made public while the trial was outstanding. That is obviously now not the case.

        Mc Cann was implicated in the trial as plotting against Salmond and holding on to information given to him by Women H until required in the future if needed to use against Salmond. Unlike the alphabet sisters he has no legal anonymity. I would like to hear a case being made why this gentleman should not be immediately suspended by the SNP pending further investigation.

        • I wasn’t really talking about the Scotgov report that covered the judicial review. A few people mentioned, yesterday, that an investigation will now have to be carried out with regard to what was revealed during the case, leading to the outcome of the case.

          I don’t know who the ”victims” or witnesses are, but from what I can make out one was an SNP MP with others being Civil Servants or aides to Civil Servants and so on. Each and every last one of them will no doubt have their lawyers ready and waiting. Each ”case” may have to be dealt with by a different ”body” and as I said already Nicola Sturgeon will be taking legal advice at this time. Nicola Sturgeon would have to be crazy to just jump right in there and start suspending and sacking people one day after the culmination of this case, imo.

          And you’ll have heard no doubt that the MET are now looking into further allegations against Alex Salmond.

          • Mc Cann has always been quick off the mark in suspending other SNP members who have been thought to have acted inappropriately. Why should it not apply to him? I don’t think you made a case for Mc Cann not being suspended

          • I didn’t say that he shouldn’t be suspended, but more than anything Mr McCann isn’t Ms Sturgeon, the FM of Scotland, and can you imagine if Nicola Sturgeon had to jump the gun, before she has taken legal advice, and then got herself into hot water? More damnation from the MSM. She’s also up to her neck in trying to deal with the coronavirus right now.

            No rush. Their day will come sooner than later.

          • No Mc Cann is not Sturgeon. Nor does Nicola have to do everything. His boss is the Chief Executive – no reason he can’t get on with it.

  42. Ot. It is a strange lockdown when flights are still coming in from England Ireland and further afield. Maybe I should disguise my camper van with wings? Nope stopped being a wings man many moons ago when I had the honour of being barred for supporting the Snp. The first minister and ironically the previous First Minister. Why texting this morning. Out with my wee border collie for our regular walk.

  43. BBC Scotland ‘isolating’ itself today. Couldn’t even muster a crew to deliver the 90 seconds News Where You are’ on BBC England’s 3 1/4 hours of London Propaganda today.
    They’d maybe have to report on the Salmond acquittal?
    Have Macwhirter, Clegg, Hutcheon, Carrell, Daisley, or Gordon uncovered the identity of the Glasgow based journalist who featured in the Bute House sex romp anecdote featured in the Salmond witch hunt yet?

    No resignations or sackings yet?

  44. Interesting to view Ciaran Jenkins’ piece on Salmond from yesterday, heavy on the innuendo this story will run and run, heads will roll, SNP will disintegrate, Independence will wither, blah….
    Clearly intended to reinforce the false narrative England has been fed for years, the manipulators must be frustrated it is getting so little traction in Scotland beyond the conspiracy theorists.
    Dirty games have been afoot all right, but I suggest eyes should be cast a little further south for what is behind all this rather than allow the divide and conquer tactics to work.

  45. Sigh of relief? I see that the Met are now investigating allegations made by women in England. You couldn’t make this up or so I thought. No respite at all for poor Alex and his wife. Damnable!

  46. Let’s just acknowledge that this whole episode is the Brits working from the inside to destroy the movement for Scotland’s independence. It will go on day after day and it will fail. So far as possible genuine elements within the SNP will endeavour to minimise the impact on efficient working but it will never be possible to eradicate it completely – even when independence has been achieved. The SNP is like any other body, it has to function despite being under constant attack by parasites. Wasting time worrying about the parasites is counter productive. It has to get on with the task of functioning effectively despite them. And that is what we will do.

    • Arthur if the parasites have identified themselves then they should be got rid of. Why let them remain undermining the SNP and independence.

      • Cubby, I understand your frustration but we have to proceed with care. First and above all else it is wise for us to be calm and not be fazed by what will be an ongoing situation. The Brits want us to flap and go around cutting off heads – as if. As the original post from the Dug has made clear we must always follow the basic principle of innocent until proven guilty. That will protect the integrity of our movement and our whole concept of creating a better society. And we can afford to do that because the impact of the Brit approach of lying incessantly is that nobody with active brain cells believes them any longer. That is not to say that where there is irrefutable evidence of wrongdoing, for example the chump who said he/they would hang on to evidence about Alex for future use, that people should not be suspended subject to invesrigation. But it will be most fruitful if we proceed with care.

        • Arthur, I have no problem with proceeding with care but it would be foolish in the extreme to ignore the evidence that came out in court. Not only foolish but unacceptable if we want a better Scotland for the SNP to continue to harbour in its ranks people who were found in a court of law to be not telling the truth and to have been colluding to send Salmond to prison for a long time.

          I am not an SNP member but I am not happy for my taxes to continue to pay large salaries for people who have behaved in this way. SNP members will have to decide if they are happy for such people to remain in their ranks.

      • 👍 Well said Arthur.
        Those ranged against Indy are relying on stirring the pot by prodding nerves, and they’ve had an awful lot of practice…
        A time for cool heads…

  47. Alex Salmond cheated on his wife and he cheated on us as SNP members and taxpayers while he entertained at Bute House. He has been found not guilty and Not proven to the charges brought. That is good. However we should be aware of those in another place who for the past 6 months has told the Snp what to do ( many are not even SNP paid up member, so Fo as some may say). They attacked the SNP during a UK General Election but claim to be Scotland’s friend. Many are ex SSP or anarchists out for a fight and are supported by the Tory and labour trolls. Will AS return as 1st Minister? No. Time is against him. I hope he isn’t used by the extremists to promote their own aims rather than Scotland’s which he has dedicated his life too.

    • Hamish, I am not Salmonds wife so I will let her judge this – I suggest you do the same and keep out of their marriage. I am not in the SNP so I will let SNP members judge that. I am however a taxpayer so how did Salmond cheat on taxpayers.

  48. You do know what a Pyrrhic victory is, don’t you, Paul?

    Everyone knows the real Eck now. And it ain’t pretty.

    • You do know what an acquital on all charges is, don’t you Eck?

      What is not pretty is people who ignore a trial verdict and post what they wanted to post anyway no matter the verdict.

  49. Coronavirus – possible hundreds if not thousands of Scots may die by the end of the year. Let that sink in. What do some believe is more important? Resign First Minister of Scotland says the calls from France, Bath England. They have the finger on the pulse ( no pun intended). They are no friends of Scotland or it’s people.

  50. It should be remembered by all independence supporters that our enemy the Britnat media were in attendance at every day of the court proceedings. They know it ALL.

    They will have passed on all the info to their colleagues the Britnat politicians. At a suitable time (post virus) in the future they will use this information whether or not Salmond does anything.

    The alphabet sisters and the others involved have now placed the Yes movement and in particular the SNP at a major disadvantage – do they care – I very much doubt it. If they cared they would not have conspired against Salmond. If they cared they would be resigning right now. If McCann cared he would have already resigned.

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