THE British state bows to no-one in ring-fencing the myths and lies of empire at the heart of the Britain’s education systems. Yet we’re often disdainful of the ways in which other countries bend historical narratives to present a rose-tinted view of themselves.

And so it was encouraging to learn that the Scottish Government may have become wise to the artifices of Britain’s state propaganda machine, with newly released declassified correspondence detailing the concerns of Scottish officials about the contents of a children’s book for the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.

Unionist newspapers have sought to portray these as infantile “grievances” that depict the Scottish Government as petty-minded. I mean, what harm could there be in celebrating England’s 1966 World Cup triumph? Or in characterising the British monarchy as a benign force for good in the life of the nation? And who could possibly mind about the Scottish independence referendum and Brexit being simplified and decaffeinated for consumption by little children?

Eventually, a decision was taken to withdraw the book from circulation in Scotland. It was sent only to teachers who had specifically asked for a copy. Officials from the Scottish Government’s Curriculum Qualifications and Gaelic Division – who are tasked with applying a measure of quality control in what pupils are taught – not surprisingly sought prior sight of it.

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A Freedom of Information request reveals that an entire chapter was devoted to the Queen reportedly expressing her concern about the independence debate. The prime minister at the time, David Cameron, deliberately breaking the protocol of never divulging the contents of private conversations with the Queen, claimed Elizabeth hoped voters would “think very carefully” about the prospect of an independent Scotland.

Quite why a reported conversation – never since confirmed as fact and presented without any context –commanded a chapter of its own in a children’s book about Her Majesty’s 70 years on the throne is of itself highly questionable.

This though is entirely consistent with the subtle and insidious way in which the state implants false narratives and ideas about modern Britain in the minds of its citizens at a time when they are at their most impressionable and ductile.

Later, these ideas are reinforced and irrigated by the state’s

multi-million-pound broadcasting arm and the massed ranks of the British media industry. These are collectively owned by a handful of aristocrats and billionaires emotionally and financially invested in ensuring that the false narrative of British history is preserved and maintained.

Thus, the citizens of this country are never told about why a minor branch of the German aristocracy was shoehorned into the royal line and how, later, they adopted the Windsor surname to deflect too much scrutiny while the country was at war with Germany. The British royal family has about as much pedigree as Baron and Baroness Bomburst of Vulgaria in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.

By a careful and orchestrated programme of revisionism and outright manipulation, the British people will be urged to look the other way when occasionally, questions arise about the stupefying wealth of this family, their sprawling property portfolio and the means by which the UK establishment endorses them by garlanding them with non-existent military honours.

This family sat at the apex of the British Empire and now uses the Commonwealth as the world’s largest all-inclusive holiday portfolio. And unless you study selected texts at a handful of universities offering Modern British History, you will never know quite how the brutal and repressive the British Empire was and how it was built on the mass slaughter of indigenous peoples and centuries of looting of their natural resources and assets.

AND if anyone is of a mind to ask awkward questions, then the BBC and the right-wing press will quickly close ranks to shut it down. It’s why the BBC spent tens of millions of pounds celebrating the Platinum Jubilee, just as it did all of the Queen’s other jubilees.

On BBC iPlayer throughout the year, the number of programmes devoted to affirming the UK royal family runs easily into double figures. No detail or caprice of this family is considered too mundane for our edification. There are documentaries about the Queen’s art collection, the Queen’s gardens, the Queen’s castles and palaces. There’s royal cooking, the royal soldiers, the royal servants and the royal dugs.

Occasionally, something salacious or distasteful escapes from this narrative, but it’s soon chased down and recaptured before being put back in its box with a minimum of fuss and a slick PR machine.

The Nazi tendencies of some of the Windsors prior to the outbreak of the Second World War are dismissed as nothing more than the fantasies of the slightly deranged King Edward and that dodgy American temptress Mrs Simpson.

There can be no inquiry about the extent to which such sympathies were more widely shared among the Windsors … apart from some rogue family photographs of Nazi salutes and fancy-dress costumes.

It’s never been more vital that the Scottish Government, which has fully devolved control over education, maintains and intensifies its scrutiny of how history is taught in our schools.

Of course, we need to teach our children about the industrial revolution and the great human conflagrations that shaped the life of Scotland and the UK.

But at a time when searching questions are being asked about inequality and the model of wealth distribution, it’s important to teach them too that the causes of this are multi-generational and rooted in the industrial and agrarian revolutions of the 18th and 19th centuries.

And how the present-day upheavals in the Middle East and starvation in Africa were caused, in part, by the capitalist adventures of the British ruling class.

The Scottish Government has a moral responsibility to ensure that the false narratives of the British state – propagated by a remorseless and multi-layered information executive – are challenged and neutralised by teaching the facts to our children.

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The intensity of the Scottish Government’s probing of the platinum jubilee booklet for schools should be replicated throughout the curriculum.

A suspicion persists, though, that a circle of influential SNP politicians are content with the highly selective historical narratives of the British state to proceed unhindered.

This is evident in the current process by which the SNP are moving stealthily to an Atlanticist position on foreign affairs under the direction of Washington and London. This enjoins us to endorse American Superman fantasies and the beneficent and benign character of Nato and the British armed forces.

It will be interesting to see how much of this conversation is permitted to feature in the SNP’s annual conference in October.