GIVEN the comments of Frank Wood (Letters, Jul 4), perhaps the Alba Party should be renamed the Anti-Green Independence Party (AGIP), which would also give it implied license to unconditionally support new oil and gas exploration in the North Sea.

With regard to Frank’s wish for Humza Yousaf to adopt the “Scotland United policy”, the simplest, fastest and most reliable way for the independence movement to come together and maximise independence success would be for Alba to do what Ukip did previously (to favour the Conservative and Unionist Party) and step aside at the next General Election as an endorsement of the SNP’s independence-focused manifesto commitment. As Frank has himself pointed out, there are already voices within the SNP, such as Fergus Ewing, who express the concerns and ambitions of those who currently support Alba and by his own admission the new First Minister has already addressed some of those concerns.

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As someone who has long admired the political nous of Alex Salmond, I am certain he does not need me to point out the political reality that the Alba MP in East Lothian only took his seat at Westminster courtesy of the vote for the SNP and is likely to lose his seat even if the SNP were not to field a candidate at the next General Election.

The reason for this is that many who voted for the SNP the last time feel betrayed by Kenny MacAskill, who has persistently criticised the SNP, and by implication has questioned the judgement of those who voted for the party. Given this situation, those who supported the SNP previously could find it difficult to vote for Mr MacAskill and might decide to abstain, if not vote for another party, especially if they were not yet fully signed up to the cause of independence.

The end result would then likely be a “New Labour” victory greeted by the sneering smile and patronising words of Tony Blair acolyte Douglas Alexander.

Surely Frank and most Alba supporters would not wish to inflict such an awful outcome on the good folk of East Lothian, never mind the possible catastrophe of a significant setback in our progress to achieve self-determination for the people of Scotland.

Stan Grodynski
Longniddry, East Lothian

I WROTE to a Unionist Scottish paper this week giving my negative opinion of one of their columnists who was rejoicing in the delay of the Highly Protected Marine Areas. This was not because I am going off The National, but in a belief that the benighted readers of that paper might benefit from a differing view.

On Tuesday a letter in The National Conversation has appeared from Frank Wood which could well have been sent to that Unionist paper, denigrating all the green policies regarding the protection of the sea, the Deposit Return Scheme and gender policies which have run into various forms of opposition.

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Almost every policy of the Green Party must be unpopular because is against the natural self-centred ethos of contemporary civilisation. In the short time left to us we have to completely change our habits, a fact which seems to have got through to the young.

If the SNP and Alba do succeed in obtaining independence without the green principles, they will find themselves inheriting a waste land. What I hope is more likely is that the Green Party eventually becomes dominant and both achieves independence and protects our tenuous share of the planet’s resources.

Iain WD Forde

JUST so that the readers of The National are quite clear of why the Scottish Government axed the Deposit Return Scheme, I wonder if Mr Wood could explain the details and the reason the scheme (which I actually agree with) was axed.

Many thanks in anticipation.

Ken McCartney

I AM one of the many in Scotland who will have no truck with the royal family. It is an insult to democracy that this monarchy sham has been allowed to continue for so long. Public services like the NHS and our councils are starved of funds while the UK Treasury pay over-the-top amounts to one of the richest families in the world. All while the royal family avoid taxes and have exemptions from many pieces of legislation.

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They are not part of our society and certainly not wanted. However, rather than moan about it I propose a way to remove the monarchy from our political life. If Humza Yousaf can’t sack Lorna Slater, then why not give her a new position of Minister for the Monarchy – with her track record, the royal family will be history in no time!

Alex Beckett

NOBODY has the right to present the Honours of Scotland to an English monarch. These items belong to all of the people of Scotland and we should decide democratically how they are used. They are no-one’s birthright.

Ni Holmes
St Andrews