Secrets of The Scottish Referendum

‘What if, with its electoral mandate, the Scottish Parliament decided to demand that Trident be removed from Scotland? Refusal… could lead to independence, with the SNP committed to withdrawal of Trident from the Clyde’. Bernadette Meaden in ‘The Universe’ 8.8.1999

The coming referendum on Scottish independence has implications both for the continuance of the United Kingdom and for its defence. There’s a conundrum here, for when the Scottish Parliament was set up, it was widely hailed as pre-empting moves to independence! So what is the background to this situation? There is a shroud of mystery about the origins of the Parliament and I intend to shed light on them to see whether it was truly inspired by the will of the people.

If you do a ‘google search’ for Canon Kenyon Wright of the Scottish Episcopal Church, he is referred as Chairman of the Executive of the Scottish Constitutional Convention during the 1990’s, all of which obscures the fact that he devised the scheme that resulted in the setting up of the Scottish Parliament. So – a clergyman setting up a political institution. How did he accomplish it? What motivated him? These questions are relevant now because once Scotland becomes an independent nation, it can demand the withdrawal of Trident. This begs the question as to whether this is the hidden objective behind the setting-up of the Scottish Parliament? If so, it is important that we find out, because as stated, the rest of Britain is being denied any say in the coming referendum. So there is an urgency in discovering about why and how the Scottish Parliament was set up. What in particular do we know about the activities of Canon Wright?

I first became aware of his activities in 1985 when he was General Secretary of Scotland’s ‘ecumenical’ body, Scottish Churches Council – SCC. He politicised this organisation, so that it acted as a lobby for a whole spectrum of socialist politics, both national and international. In particular he set up a campaign for unilateral nuclear disarmament and the removal of ‘Trident’ from Scottish waters.. His strategy was to include representatives of Scotland’s two main churches, the Church of Scotland and the Catholic Church, in a ‘Peace Team’.. which then put pressure on the Government. Later in 1986 he set up a scheme for enlisting the Catholic Church into the SCC, effectively making it a more powerful lobby for his aims. When success was achieved, it brought both halves of Scotland’s historic ‘religious divide’ together, giving his ecumenical body better impact, He then took control of a movement for the establishment of a Scottish Parliament, citing the support of the above ‘churches’! Within months he had, as Executive of the Scottish Constitutional Convention, prepared plans for the launch of the Scottish Parliament. If we look for ‘the legitimacy’ for such a body, all Wright could do was refer to the ‘churches’ whose support he relied on to take on this role. So on one level, we could challenge the legitimacy of this ‘devolved’ Parliament, in that it was religious in origin, and not truly democratic. But if we dig deeper, we could find it even more suspect. For throughout this time, Canon Wright held office in a Soviet ‘front’. Indeed by 1990 he was appointed secretary of the entire organisation comprising over 800 members throughout the world. The front was ‘Christian Peace Conference’ CPC and was run from Moscow. It included the Russian Orthodox Church along with Protestant clergy in the West sympathetic to Soviet aims.. All this is documented from the ‘publicity material’ of CPC.

You may say that as the Labour Government put the question of having a Parliament to the Scottish Parliament in a referendum, and as it won a ‘yes’ vote, there is a clear mandate for this institution. But that is to overlook the fact that the evidence on Wright’s pro-Soviet activities was denied the Scottish voters at this critical turning-point.

Previously I had contributed such evidence to an article in ‘The Salisbury Review’ in September 1987, which documented Wright’s links with Russia and how he was deploying a political role. The author, Dr Roger Watson, concluded that ‘the evidence from the Scottish situation is of a highly complex operation, executed by exponents of materialism within the churches, but controlled and initiated by the International Department of the Central Committee of the Soviet Communist Party”. I subsequently sent copies of this article to members of the Church of Scotland whom I knew to be critical of Kenyon Wright’s activities. This influential grouping would, I thought, bring pressure to bear on those in their Church who were supporting his objectives, and given its own political role in Scotland.

By September 1990 the Scottish Constitutional Convention, was about to publish its plans for a Scottish Parliament. It was at that precise moment than an announcement came in a Church of Scotland journal, to the effect that CPC was closing down, with Canon Wright as its secretary. What prompted that announcement? According to an article in ‘Soviet Analyst’: ‘A report in the Church of Scotland’s journal ‘Life and Work’ in September 1990 announced that Christian Peace Conference was about to close, and – significantly, that it had established ‘an Interim Working Committee, with Canon Kenyon Wright, former General Secretary of the Scottish Churches Council, as its Co-ordinating Secretary’. The report went on to lament CPC’s ‘failures and mistakes’, quoting Canon Wright himself – its ‘former’ chief UK luminary – as asserting that the organisation had been too closely identified ‘with a particular form of socialism in Europe’. The article decried the ‘mistakes’ and failures of CPC in respect of its support in the past for the Soviet Union. ‘The true significance of this report arose from the following details. First, it preceded the publication of plans for a Scottish Parliament, by just a few weeks. In November 1990, the Scottish Convention – the body that Wright had set up to prepare the way for the Parliament – was to publish its plans for the Parliament’s foundation. These were supported by the Labour Party in opposition, but the Conservative Government of the day regarded them as politically divisive. All that was needed was evidence that their primary architect had Soviet links, and they would have been shipwrecked. Such evidence lay in the background, in the form of a 1987 article by Dr Roger Watson entitled ‘Subversive Theology’ in Salisbury Review, which, after revealing Wright’s links with CPC and his pro-Soviet activities, concluded that: “the evidence from the Scottish situation is of a highly complex operation, executed by exponents of materialism within the churches, but controlled and initiated by the International Department of the Central Committee of the Soviet Communist Party”. The article provided incontestable evidence, and thus could have been used to discredit Wright and the programme he was steering for a Scottish Parliament. Anyway, hence the appearance of the ‘Life and Work’ article in September 1990. By announcing the demise of Christian Peace Conference, and appointing Wright to preside over it, what the article did was to draw a line under his ‘former’ activities (the ‘Break with the Past’ technique). From then onwards, in theory, Wright could agitate for a Scottish Parliament, without fear of further damaging exposés such as that in ‘The Salisbury Review’. The very serious implication here is that the article announcing the closure of Christian Peace Conference must have originated, according to this analysis, in Moscow. And if that is true, then clearly Moscow had an interest in the establishment of the Scottish Parliament and the other regional assemblies which are intended to fragment the United Kingdom… And Wright’s steadfast role in spearheading political opposition to Trident must surely have been one underlying motive, among several’ (Christopher Story writing in the Spring 2004 ‘Soviet Analyst’ – emphasis added, IFC).

The situation in Britain today is akin to that of a ‘vassal-state’. We are losing rights and privileges through our membership of the E.U. So it is not far to the next logical step, total loss of decision-making power, and on the issue of Trident, that is increasingly imminent.

Iain Colquhoun

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