The Saltire and the Union Spotlight

The Saltire and the Union

Mandy McAuley explores the issues around Scottish independence, travelling to Scotland to comprehend the consequences for Northern Ireland.

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June. Also we have the Clipper round-the-world yacht race at the


end of June. In the next few months, we have events all the time.


Thank you very much. The square is well worth checking out so maybe we


will see you here some time. Time now for a look at what the


Time now for a look at what the weather has planned for the next


few days. Here's Barra Best. Winds are quite high at the moment


and they will stay high overnight and into tomorrow. Generally it is


a largely dry night, but there will be some damp weather continuing to


be blown in from the north. Temperatures will stay at around


five or six degrees. No frost to worry about. It will be a cold


start tomorrow. But nothing will change. It will stay cloudy and we


hold on to the winds. Very little in the way of brighter weather


first thing, but maybe the odd glimmer. For the north coast, here,


we hold on to some patchy rain. That continues through the day. The


picture across Ireland is the sunny spells are at their best in


Scotland and central England. May be some brightness through the rest


of the coast. Some pictures tomorrow between nine and 10


degrees. -- temperatures. For us, our temperatures are between eight


and nine degrees. In the south-east we may get the odd 10 degrees. Not


too bad. A few degrees above average. Although there will be a


lot of cloud, it will be bright at time. We will see some doubt


whether from the north coast. On Thursday we introduce another front.


It is going to bring some rain. Temperatures will be up to nine or


10 degrees. Improving as we did to 10 degrees. Improving as we did to


the end of the week but by the weekend the temperatures begin to


fall again. That's it for now. You can also


keep up to date with the news online and follow this programme on


Facebook and Twitter. From BBC Two politicians, one unionist and


Apology for the loss of subtitles for 87 seconds


one republican Our future, our resources, and our success, should


be in our own hands. I passionately believe we are stronger together,


rather than breaking apart. Frankly, I'm sad we are even having this


debate. Peter Robinson and I have a castle in Belfast. I'm sure we


would be prepared to make it available for peace discussions


between the British government and Scotland! To many uenss here it's


no laughing matter am some fear the fight for Scottish independence


will achieve what republican terrorism has not. I see those


proposals as a bigger threat to the union of the United Kingdom than


the IRA is at present. Scottish nationalists say that is an


Australian UN fair analogy. Terrible comment to make. Misjudged.


Comparing the SNP a political party, totterries acts of mindless


thuggery. The Scottish referendum could herald the biggest shake-up


to the United Kingdom in three centuries. The implications for


Northern Ireland are potentially huge. Could Scottish independence


re-start the conflict in Northern Ireland, as some claim? If the


Scottish nationalists were to succeed, it could possibly re-


ignite the difficulties that we have just managed to overcome.


Tonight, on Spotlight, we are in Scotland. We have brought with us


two politicians, one unionist and one republican some unionists fear


that Scottish independence could destroy the union. We ask, what it


could mean for Northern Ireland and its position within the United


Our journey bins at a Burns Night supper in County Londonderry. This


celebration in Tobermore Orange Hall, is one of the biggest social


events in the local Calder. Since the plantation of the early 1600s,


Ulster Scots have had deep religious, social and cultural ties


with their fellow Scots, 20 miles across the Irish Sea. For many in


the unionist community, those links are as strong today. Here there is


great affection for the people of Scotland, who are regarded as


kinsfolk. They have come to toast the haggis and to celebrate their


Scottish culture through poetry, music and dance. I'll cut you up...


Alex Salmond's talk of Scottish independence and the possible


break-up of the union draw as raw and deeply emotional response here.


I think it's disgraceful because we've come through two world wars


and the nation all fought together. You look at how many people have


lost their relatives in wars and that, he is going to succeed where


the Germans failed by breaking up the union. If cot land do break


away from the UK it will let the English and Welsh people see that


the people that's with him, the people that want to be there will


only strengthen what they have. It would let England see who their


friends are and where their loyalties lie. If Scotland was to


get their independence, Wales could follow suit.we would have the


scenario of a united Ireland, does the North need to be in the United


Kingdom? I think it would be drastic for Northern Ireland.


People here clearly cherish their relationship with Scotland. One man,


who has fought to uphold that relationship around the globe, is


Ulster unionist Lord Laird. From Artnagarvan in County Tyrone, he is


passionate about everything Scottish. The former Head of the


Ulster Scots Agency, he is the most high-profile proponent of Ulster


Scots as a language. We decided to take Lord Laird on a trip to find


out more about Scottish independence and what the outcome


of the referendum could mean for Northern Ireland. Accompanying him,


Barry McEldulff person, a republican from Tyrone. The Sinn


Fein MLA is passionate about the gaelic tradition and is well-known


as a champion of the GAA and the Irish language. John Laird set out


on his journey on the very clear views on the way forward for


Scotland. I would be opposed to independence. I'm opposed to any


form of nationalism. I think nationalism is narrow and small.


It's lacks self confidence. Barry McEldulff began the trip with very


different, but firmly held opinions on Scottish independence. Well,


Sinn Fein genuinely believes in the concept of national self


determination for Ireland, principally, and, of course, for


Scotland. It would be wrong of us to be prescriptive to the Scottish


Scotland is potentially on the cusp of momentous change. There is an


enormous sense of expectation here, as people prepare for months of


debate and ultimately a decision which could strike at the very


heart of the UK's constitution and reverberate across British finance,


industry and the military. The Robert the Bruce monument at


Bannockburn, which commemorates a great Scottish victory over the


English. Today, Scottish nationalists want to hold their


referendum in 2014, the 700th anniversary of that battle.


Scottish victory here was overwhelming. There was almost


annihilation of the English noblt elite. They were actually the main


victims of the Scottish pikemen. It took a very large number of years


after 1314 for English forces, as it were, to restore their


credibility. I don't think that the romantic or historical significance


of 1314 will play all that great a part. It will certainly give a kind


of lustre. The Scottish people are not daft. They will be looking very


carefully indeed at all the arguments. The arguments will be


essentially based on politics, aspirational attitudes in Scotland


and, above all, of course, the likely future of the economy.


Barry McEldulff there are clear parallels with the famous Irish


victory over the English in County Tyrone. For me this is like the


battle of the Yellowford at Benburb in 1598 when Huw O'Neill vanquished


English forces at Yellowford? I like history. I love history and


the past, I don't want to live in. It you could pick up stuff out of


history and Tuesday for your own use. With respect to Irish


Republican and Scottish nationalist you can pick these things. The


unionists can pick the same thing and interpret it another way. You


pick them when it suits you. Peace. I will be the umpire here. This


might surprise your listeners and viewers in Ireland. In the 19th


century Bruce and Wallace were regarded by the unionists as heroes.


The argument was that both of them in their different wayes had


preserved the independence the of Scotland. A very interesting point.


Can you see how you interpret history to suit yourselves. You are


a walking contradiction yourself. The papers are reporting a surge


for support in independence, 20 points up, they say, on previous


polls. One small survey. It's headline news. We have two-and-a-


half years until the poll. A lot of people will come to common sense,


who will pay for all sorts of things. If Scotland gets


independence. 51% would not frighten me at all. It's


interesting in that we are in the middle of an economic recession.


51% are, you know, stating their position for independence. Earlier


this month, the Scottish National Party leader said his goal is


political independence. The Queen, would remain Head of State. Alex


Salmond wants to ask the Scottish people one question. Do you agree


that Scotland should be an independent country? Even the


wording of the question on the ballot paper has caused a huge row.


David Cameron says the SNP is posing a loaded and coercive


question. David Cameron is insisting on a "straight-forward


yes or no question on independence". If Scottish people do vote for


independence, what will the impact be on Northern Ireland? The more I


heard of this word "independence" I have a notion in my head that


Tyrone could pull it off. Who would be the Head of State. We took our


politicians to meet constitutional expert, Christine Bell, originally


from Northern Ireland, now based here at Edinburgh University.


Christine has reassuring news for John Laird. The Good Friday


agreement safeguards Northern Ireland's position within the union,


irrespective of the outcome of a Scottish referendum. I think in


terms of the immediate constitutional status of Northern


Ireland, if we are looking at constitutional... You know, would


you Northern Ireland be propelled into a united Ireland. It doesn't


affect that at all. The Belfast Agreement anticipated it. Unlike


the Scot land Act, the Northern Ireland Act makes provision for a


referendum. It's clear that the conditions for a ref aren't there


at the minute. Behind the headline figures, recent polls indicate a


definite increase in support for independence. That support is still


a long way from being a majority. What is more significant is the


rise in the number of English people who want a Parliament of


their own. Have you learnt anything new? One thing that struck me today.


There is a rising sense of Englishness, a sense of England on


the part of English people. You know, I wonder, from a union point


of view, you know, is that, is that auguring, sort of, a psychological


break-up? In that a notion of Britishness is dissipating and


Scottishness and Englishness is on the rise? I'm not a player in this


referendum. I'm a spectator because I'm going to allow the Scottish


people to determine their own affairs. You're a player. You want


to get actively involved in this campaign. I think you might learn


from spectating this. OK. It could be the Republic of Ireland crease


ceasing to be a republic and coming back into the UK. Can we agree to


disagree? We can always agree to disagree. Dinner in Edinburgh for


our two politicians, some people from Northern Ireland, who now live


and work here. We wanted to know what they think about Scottish


independence and what it means for Northern Ireland. Lord Laird is


immediately challenged on what Scottish independence could mean


for the future of Ulster unionism. I'm sick, sore and tired of every


morning getting up having to say, how do we defend the union today. I


do not wish to be a unionist. I wish to be a politician. But I'm


forced to be a unionist because I perceive people working against us.


I perceive we have no other way... We don't have an existence, we


don't have an existence unless we can keep Northern Ireland as part


of the United Kingdom. That is the way we analyse things today.


Scotland is outside that. Scotland is outside that, how do you feel?


Hold on. My big fear about skos Scottish nationalism and Scottish


independence is that it might go down what I regard as Irish


Nationalism. The one thing I learnt is that it's a melting pot. It's a


big melting pot. I'm not clear in my own mind exactly how to handle,


accept that we will help to fight the nationalists in some shape,


sense or form. Pauline Goldsmith is an actress, originally from Belfast.


She comes from a background. She has lived in Scotland for 16 years


and says Irish and Scottish nationalism are very different.


Independence in Scotland its very diverse. Its international looking


it's not based on one religion. It's very mixed. Fundamentally, it


has at its heart social justice and equality. That, I think, is what


attracts people to independence who are not necessarily nationalists.


Business man, Paul Nelson, is from a unionist background in Lisburn.


He describes himself as an Ulster Scot. He settled in Glasgow 25


years ago. I do think the Scottish independence will do more to damage


the United Kingdom that that the -- than the IRA ever did is correct.


There is no union after. That the IRA's objective in that respect


would have gone. However, there would still be, presumably, a union


between Northern Ireland and England? I think it puts it under


tremendous pressure. Northern Ireland is an irrelevance for


England. Journalist and author, Neil Mackay, is from a mixed


religious background in Antrim. think Euniceism will find itself in


a very difficult bind. Let's say in the hypothetical world that


Scotland went independence, what is unionism? There is no union. What


is going to happen to the DUP and the UUP? How do you define your


ideological territory? What territory do you sit on? The union


is not just with Scotland it is the rest of the United Kingdom. What it


if the arch English person goes, we don't care if we lose Scotland.


What about that much more problematic country? Our two


politicians meet Humza Yousaf a rising star in the SNP. One of the


faiszs of the referendum campaign, he has already been tipped as a


future leader of his party. He describes himself as a Scottish


Pakistani and says his party's brand of nationalism is all


inclusive. What are you going to get through independence in terms


of freedom and new law that is you can't get right now? What our


independence is about is about independence to grow jobs. To


create jobs. It's the independence to grow the economy. Independence


not to send our sons and daughters to fight in illegal wars. It is the


independence to create a welfare system that is just and that it


doesn't punish the disabled. Who is going to pay for all this? We more


than pay our own way. What are the implications of Scottish


independence to your mind for example the north of Ireland. Do


you think there are consequences or knock-on affects for us in terms of


the future? That is a fair question to ask. There will be implications


for the whole of the rest of the UK. Possibly wider as well. The English


people want an English Parliament. Want an English representation.


That has gone up massively and swelled in the last couple of


months. It is their sporting ties that lead to some animated debate.


I'm a glory hunter at heart, apart from Celtic football club, who I


have supported all my life. know what the definition of an


atheist is? What is that? Someone who goes from a Rangers Celtic


match to watch the football. I wanted to ask Humza Yousaf what he


made of the Ulster unionist leader's warning that the battle


for Scottish independence could do more damage to the union than the


IRA? I think it's a terrible comment to make. For the last 77 to


compare a political party to the terrorist acts of mindless thuggery.


It was felt that Scottish independence could re-ignite the


conflict in Northern Ireland? is a very inflammatory statement to


make. What is his reaction to Peter Robinson's call to unionists to


campaign against Scottish independence? I would almost pay


for their bus fare and train fare to come over. Every time unionists


from Westminster or from outside of Scotland tries to interfere in the


democratic will of the Scottish people, it backfires immensely.


fears that they would not win a referendum on full independence


have led them to offer the public the possibility of an extra


question on the ballot paper. An option known as devolution max.


That would increase the Scottish Parliament's powers, but falls just


short of complete independence. It's a measure that finds support


among many Scottish politicianes who want to stay inside the union.


Politicians like former First Minister heny McLeish. I'm not


looking for a compromise, bau better alternative which keeps


Scotland within the union. Hopefully, a different union. It


allows Scottish -- Scotland to have more financial powers. Devo max?


It's home rule within the union. If you want to keep the union, be more


sensitive to what parts of the union want. Alex Salmond wants --


once painted a picture of Ireland Scotland and Iceland as arc of


prosperity. Ireland and Iceland are now bust. Where does that leave


Scotland? Could it stand on it is own financially. We put that


question to Bill Jamieson? Executive edit Orthor of the


Scotsman. There is a set of facts as the nationalists see. It in


other words a Scotland that was accumulating North Sea oil reserves


would be a very viable country and would not have any problem raising


money on the international money markets. Another truth is, that an


independent Scotland would not be able to survive. It wouldn't have a


terrorism A rating. Could an independent Scotland maintain its


current commitments to welfare spending and social benefits, and


the unionists say, no, it cannot be depon. After much debate our dinner


guests greed that ultimately money will decide Scotland's future. Paul


Nelson does 90% of his trade in England and Wales. Is there


business confidence in the notion of Scottish independence across


business, would you say? Across business, I think, it's pretty


solidly against Scottish independence. There are a few big


main the hitters. To develop develop money we need open borders


and less borders. We don't need more. Pauline Goldsmith gold says


Scots must not allow the Republic of Ireland's experience frighten


them away from independence. idea is that we would have more


control and accountability of our politicians and our banks and the


society we have if we had independence. If the union did


break up, who would decide who gets what and how much? How do you


untangle oil. In a divorce, who gets the art and the gold? Who gets


the cat? It it -- it is bigger than a cat, it's North Sea oil.


visiting is causing a stir. Some of our interest in the Scots is


mirrored by their interest in us. On day three, our two politicians


are being filmed by a BBC Scotland Newsnight crew. I'm from a Scottish


background myself. I do not like the idea of Scots going into


something that could end up in a narrow sectarian, narrow little


state. Not dissimilar to that of the Irish Republic. Our two


politicians are invited on to Call Kaye, one of Scotland's biggest


radio talk shows. Let me know your thoughts this morning. Should we,


in Scotland, care what impact independence should it ever come to


pass, have on our neighbours, in Northern Ireland. The problem you


have with nationalism. I have to speak about Irish Nationalism is


that to prove itself it had to be different from everybody else.


Therefore, polished up symbols and things and ideas which would be


anathema to us from a non- nationalist viewpoint. Lord Laird


ends up bearing the brunt of most of the callers anger, all deeply


irritated by his former leader's suggestion that independence could


re-ignite the conflict in Northern Ireland. These are just


scaremongering stories that are being put around to try and


frighten people into backing off from what is every nation's destiny,


the right to control its own borders, to control its own


economics, to do everything that is good for its own people and then to


turn its attention to the world. have Stephen in Ayrshire. Morning.


Good morning. I have listened with great interest. I have to say the


unionist gentleman, from Ireland, he really has not got a grasp on


the reality. Why should everything be controlled by London? He says he


fears that Scotland would become rather narrow in the nationalism.


The reality is we are a European nation. We are European now.


terms of Ireland, are you excited by the fact that this debate is


going on in Scotland? Are you hopeful that it might kind of re-


ignite a different kind of fire, a nationalist fire in Ireland?


would be keen not to express a partisan opinion on the internal


debate within Scotland. It is, apparently, having an unsettling


effect on unionism. Remember, I'm somebody that is opposed to the


union. I suppose, it's interesting when John, John Laird would say


things like, "I'm a unionist" if Scotland achieved its independence,


who would the union be with? At the end of the day, it's a disappearing


union. You got some stick on Call Kaye. Did you see her facial


expresses when they were ringing in, "what planet does he live on?".


What they were doing was listening carefully to what I said and taking


in every word as if it was a gem or a pearl. Yeah, yeah. I think that


is very interesting. It's a very important point. I was glad to meet


Kaye, she is a big personality in broadcasting in Scotland.


didn't know her surname. Her surname was Adams. You thautd --


thought thats with a Scottish name. Easy to remember. Alphabetically it


was always top of the ballot paper. For Scots the question of


independence is a battle between head and heart. The long tradition


of Scottish regularments in the British Army, pitted against modern


fears of nuclear bases in Scotland. The desire to march into a new


progress if future, lined up against the security of the past.


All very difficult issues, but for Scottish Conservatives, the kaisz


for the union is overwhelming. think there is a very strong


argument both for the head and the heart for Scotland to remain part


of the United Kingdom. If you look at Scottish soldiers wearing a


Mandy McAuley uncovers the big talking points in the Scottish independence debate. She travels to Scotland with a unionist and a republican - and asks what the consequences for Northern Ireland could be.

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