Bill Ramsay, convenor of SNP CND, explains the thinking behind a conference this Sunday exploring a road map for Trident removal, and a plan for once its gone
THIS Sunday, 4 November, SNP CND host a conference, really a scoping exercise, to start to outline what Scotland Without Trident will look like, from both a domestic and international perspective.
However equally important is the need to start to give serious consideration to Trident removal. It would be a mistake to take it as read that all it takes is a few crowd pleasing lines in some speeches from prominent independent supporting politicians to, in my own favourite scrap line, see the last sub sail away down the Clyde.
Fortunately some of the initial spadework on Trident removal has already been overtaken by the likes of the late John Ainslie of Scottish CND. His peer reviewed work on the more technical issues that underpin Scottish CND’s campaigning work is key.
No one individual is likely to fill the gap John’s sad departure created. However it is the duty of all in the Scottish anti-Nuclear movement, including the political parties that believe Trident should go, to step up to the plate and ensure the work, particularly the research work, overtaken by John, continues.
The raison d’être of the Scottish National Party is to see Scottish statehood re-established. However for the SNP the removal of nuclear weapons from Scottish soil has been much more than one of many social democratic policy aspirations; removal of nuclear weapons runs in its veins.
Blood and Soil nationalism has never been the way of the Scottish National Party, however the removal of nuclear weapons from Scotland is as near to blood and soil nationalism the modern civic nationalist SNP gets.
It follows then that a Road Map for Trident Removal should be the very backbone, the spine indeed, on which every other aspect of SNP Defence and Foreign Policy is fleshed out.
All aspects of SNP defence and foreign policy should be stress tested against the following proposition: does this aspect of policy or that aspect of policy hinder removing Trident from Scotland or help remove Trident from Scotland?
Fortunately for us, John’s legacy, particularly his work “Disarming Trident”, which, it should be noted, was thoroughly peer reviewed, along with the advent of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons, provides us with firm foundations from which to build.
Hopefully, amongst other things at our event on this Sunday, we will be able to scope out the initial spadework necessary to see the Road Map for Trident Removal take shape.
Scotland after Trident: A Defence and Security Strategy for an Independent Scotland Unpacked, takes place at the Albert Halls, Stirling, 11am to 4pm, Sunday 4 November. The event is welcome to all, to get tickets and for full details visit the Eventbrite page.
Picture courtesy of Defence Images
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