03 Feb 2015
February 3, 2015

Gallantry medals and killing


A Royal Marine is reported today as having killed at least 173 people. One of my oldest friends was a Royal Marines Commando sniper and a few years ago I got the chance to chat to a few in Afghanistan. Snipers are unusual in that it’s quite specifically their task to kill – which they sometimes.. read more →

On Defence, the SNP often say they’ll inherit a share of the UK’s defence equipment and will also take on the Scottish regiments. Of course, there’s no relationship between those UK assets that have a Scottish dimension and the potential components of a coherent Scottish Defence Force. And, naturally, there are many Scots in parts.. read more →

The Head of the Royal Navy today has some stern words to say today about how Scottish independence would damage UK maritime security.  Here are a few quick and perhaps rather obvious points in response. First, what happens to UK and Scottish maritime security should Scots vote for independence would depend on extensive political negotiations.. read more →

06 Mar 2014
March 6, 2014

My Interview with Russia Today RT

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I followed up on my previous two posts with an interview for Russia Today, yesterday. ‘Russia has a legitimate interest in Ukraine crisis’ This is strange how the EU has overwhelmingly encouraged events to topple an elected government in the Ukraine in spite of the fact that it will clearly antagonize Russia, Scottish MP Eric.. read more →

05 Mar 2014
March 5, 2014

Crimea and Sevastopol


A couple of days ago I suggested that most folk in Falkirk, and indeed the UK, were sceptical, to put it mildly, of the present Western government line on the Ukraine. I’ve spoken to a lot of other people since then, and there’s now no doubt about that trend in my mind. It’s not the.. read more →

18 Aug 2013
August 18, 2013

Shaker Aamer

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Shaker Aamer’s story is well-known.  I’ve spoken about it in parliament, as have many others, in parliament and elsewhere, at much greater length and volume. There are some things about the Shaker Aamer story, as it’s publicly presented at least, that I’m sceptical about.  He will certainly have been aware that he was taking an.. read more →

05 Jun 2013
June 5, 2013

The Bounty Hunters


The United States ‘Rewards for Justice Programme’ has announced a $7m bounty for information leading to the capture of Nigeria’s Boko Haram terrorist group leader Abubakar Shekau.  This is somewhat below the $25m offered for Al Qaeda leader Ayan al Zawahiri, and a few others at the $10m dollar mark, but it’s a lot of cash… read more →

Following Ed Miliband’s speech in Manchester this week, Labour’s official position is that the UK’s participation in the US-led invasion of Iraq was a mistake.  Some people are finding this hard to take  – our position until last week was expressed by many MPs as; “if I were presented with the same information now I’d.. read more →

18 Aug 2010
August 18, 2010

Labour and Defence


I’ve written a piece for Labour Uncut today on Labour’s travails on Defence and Foreign Affairs.  In it, I argue that Labour’s leadership candidates should commit themselves to a Defence review which includes Trident.  I’ve had a few emails and Tweets already which argue that Labour shouldn’t revisit Trident as we had a vote in.. read more →

14 Aug 2010
August 14, 2010



Having spent the last wee while in a cave with no internet access (obviously not true) it’s time, I think, to end my blogging silence (note to world media). I’m sitting here writing a Defence and Foreign Policy piece for Sion Simon’s brilliant politics website Labour Uncut but, having read today’s stuff about the Tories.. read more →