That BBC Scotland is a shamelessly unprincipled propaganda arm of the British state is something we have come to take for granted. It is right, however futile, that it should be roundly condemned for its treatment of Michelle Thomson.
To whatever extent recriminations against the SNP may be justified, it is likely that they will be counterproductive in terms of the independence project. So some caution is advisable.
It can readily be argued, with the benefit of hindsight, that the party should have been more supportive of Thomson. But surely the same could be said of most of the Yes movement. Given that Thomson was certainly being targeted by the BBC and the rest of the British establishment because of her association with the cause of restoring Scotland’s independence, it was incumbent on all who support that cause to come to her defence.
If there is a lesson here for the SNP, then there is also something for the wider Yes movement to learn. We must be more ready to demonstrate solidarity in the face of attacks such as that on Michelle Thomson.
We must not be intimidated by the power of the British state’s propaganda machine. We must be prepared to take risks in the name of a worthy cause. And we must be prepared to stand by those who challenge established power on our behalf.
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