They say an image speaks a thousand words and the image to the right does just that.  But are the words acceptable, are they accurate and are they words that reflect the changing Scotland?
Somehow we doubt it – this is the unacceptable face of fundamental Scottish Unionism.

It’s all too easy to react to images such as this, and the use of the 'K' in Klan is further evidence of an attempt at depicting many ordinary Scots as racists in the same mould as the Ku Klux Klan (KKK).

But we all must resist the temptation to react to such provocation.

The image above, by Scotland on Sunday, is a bastardised image of a photograph by Ian Rutherford for a book by Professor Tom Devine.  It is an affront to free speech.

So, who will be the first Scottish journalist to condemn the superimposition of a swastika over the saltire and will this shocking use of Nazi imagery receive the widespread condemnation it deserves?

Let’s wait and see.

Read G.A Ponsonby's take - Political Porn


# bringiton 2013-04-06 23:28
British nationalism...Good.
Scottish nationalism...Racist fascism.
I wouldn't be surprised if some of the Labour party dinosaurs had a hand in this.
# Dougthedug 2013-04-06 23:32
The image above, by Scotland on Sunday, is a bastardised image of a photograph by Ian Rutherford for a book by Professor Tom Devine.

Unless they got permission from the copyright holder to use this image, altered or otherwise, then the SOS is in breach of copyright by using it.
# Old Smokey 2013-04-07 00:29
I think your absolutely right, all photographs and illustrations are copyright, unless the owner has expressly allowed free usage. Somehow I dont think Ian Rutherford will be happy to have his photograph altered in this way and would hope that he would take SOS to court over breach of copyright. Ive also read the article on the online edition and its a disgrace. The author is a lecturer at St Andrews Uni. I would hope that the Uni start considering his future and if they want to be associated with such a smear campaign
# Will C 2013-04-06 23:54
It is now 12.45 am and I have been commenting on other sites, (including SoS Facebook page), on this disgusting image since approximately 10. 30 pm. I am now going to bed for the good of my own health. I shall make further comment on here tomorrow.
# Alan 2013-04-06 23:55
# Yesitis 2013-04-07 00:00
I wonder just how low the unionist MSM will be allowed to stoop before something is done to level the playing field?

Who, or what, is going to level the playing field?
# BRL 2013-04-07 00:00
It's all becoming just too predictable. And it looks like SoS could be in trouble if what Dougthedug says is true. By the way, who would the copyright holder of this image be?
# Elmer Fudd 2013-04-07 01:30
Its owned by The Scotsman themselves.
# Alanmc 2013-04-07 12:11
Copyright (unless specifically signed over) always resides with the photographer. The Scotsman may well be able to sell the image but this doesn't mean they own the copyright. I would be very surprised if the photographer signed away his rights to what is a very strong image.
# rabb 2013-04-07 00:05
A disgusting and shameful use of our national flag.

Scottish journalism died today. I will no longer purchase my daily paper.

The MSM has failed our people and deserve everything that's coming to them.

I'm done with them!

My anger at this grotesque image will be directed solely at ensuring I convert even more people to the independence movement.
# Yesitis 2013-04-07 00:19
It seems the Scottish MSM has now stooped to trolling the nation.
# .Scot 2013-04-07 00:21
May the Scotsman rest in pieces?
# millie 2013-04-07 00:25
I don’t usually link to Scotsman articles but ….

The final two paragraphs are very disturbing to me, in particular the final one.
# KOF 2013-04-07 00:53
Check out the Gavin Bowd article on page 17.
# KOF 2013-04-07 01:09
Damn! Forgot to add the link. Doh!

# oldnat 2013-04-07 01:03
You can go and ask Gavin Bowd whether the SoS distorted his words by going to the Mitchell Library, Glasgow on 20th April.
Don't assume the SoS honestly reported what he said!
# Elmer Fudd 2013-04-07 01:14
Ian Rutherford is a Scotsman employee so it could be that they already have copyright. Although whether Ian himself - and the subjects in the photo - are happy about this appalling misuse of the image ... is another story entirely.
# Old Smokey 2013-04-07 01:32
Ian Rutherford may be a Scotsman photographer (although there is a canadian Photographer with the same name) I think Prof Tom Devine will not be best pleased to know that the photograph used for the cover of his book 'The Scottish Nation 1700 to 2007' has been used in such a disgraceful way
# Roll_On_2011 2013-04-07 01:34
The Cambridge Spies:

“ Maclean, Burgess, Philby and Blunt were British members of a KGB spy ring that penetrated the intelligence system of the UK and passed vital information to the Soviets during World War Two and the early stages of the Cold War.

Philby was also a journalist but joined SIS (also known as MI6) in 1940. Just before the war ended, he was appointed head of SIS's anti-Soviet section. Thus the man charged with running operations against the Soviets was a KGB agent. “

From the same melting pot as many of the elite who are currently flushing the UK down the sewers.
# Breeks 2013-04-07 05:06
Hard day for 'THE' Unionist; the genuine and sincere British Nationalist who believes in the Union; that rarest of Unionist, the one quested to find the holy grail, the positive reason which justifies the Union's existence.

I expect he'll find a quiet time today to quietly weep in private.
# Hugo 2013-04-07 05:36
Here we go again.

An old smear revived.
# Marian 2013-04-07 07:11
Just when you thought the "NO" campaign couldn't stoop any lower, they do this.
# maisiedotts 2013-04-07 10:49
Quoting Marian:
Just when you thought the "NO" campaign couldn't stoop any lower, they do this.

They were already in the gutter, now they are in the sewers.
# Fourfolksache 2013-04-07 07:24
# cynicalHighlander 2013-04-07 07:38
Only get this Quote:
Error establishing a database connection
# Ped 2013-04-07 08:13
Quoting Fourfolksache:
Please sign

Signed and passing on to social networking sites. Thanks for the link.
# proudscot 2013-04-07 07:24
Disgusting image - shame on you Scotland On Sunday! I never thought any of the anti-independence press could sink so low as to publish anything so vile. I hope Alex Salmond asks whether any of the three unionist stooges will join him in condemning this. It will also be interesting to see whether Alistair Darling will condemn this behaviour by the SoS.
# Diabloandco 2013-04-07 07:41
That is utterly shocking.

I cannot believe that any intelligent outlet would behave in such an atrocious manner.

I think we may now witness the complete demise of this so called newspaper.
# From The Suburbs 2013-04-07 07:42
Sunday Herald reports that Ian Taylor wealthy Tory donor and head of Vitol oil traders gave Bitter Together £500,000 as part of their £2 million war chest.

David Cameron invited Ian Taylor, the boss of the oil company Vitol,to a No 10 dinner weeks after it emerged that a secret “Libyan oil cell” run from the Foreign Office had brokered a lucrative deal for Vitol to supply oil to rebel forces in the north African country.

When the controversy blew up in September (2011) , No 10 had to fend off accusations that Vitol, which has close links to the international development minister, Alan Duncan, was given preferential treatment.

Under Electoral commission rules moneys donated to SNP can only be used for the specified purpose.
# greenbean 2013-04-07 07:44
This photo appears to have been pulled. They now have one of Sir Oswald Mosley. So protests do sometimes work, though in this case only after causing immense outrage.
# Old Smokey 2013-04-07 09:26
No it hasnt, it was always showing Oswald Mosley on the online version of the paper. But on Scotland on Sunday's facebok page, which is a copy of the print version, it still shows the disgusting picture

Everyon commenting (306 so far) totally disgusted, apart from the unionist trol 'grahamski' and some plank called 'Rod Walker'
# ds12 2013-04-07 07:46
The Scotsman may own the image but what about those in the image. Are their views not being misrepresented ? surely they would have a case to take this further.
# Guig 2013-04-07 08:04
Quoting ds12:
The Scotsman may own the image but what about those in the image. Are their views not being misrepresented ? surely they would have a case to take this further.

If they've signed a model release then they have no come back other than expressing their disappointment.
# 1820 2013-04-08 06:59
Quoting Guig:
Quoting ds12:
The Scotsman may own the image but what about those in the image. Are their views not being misrepresented ? surely they would have a case to take this further.

If they've signed a model release then they have no come back other than expressing their disappointment.

A model release in this case wouldn't be required as the individuals are not readily identifiable.

I've stopped buying newspapers (and the Scotsman was one I would regularly buy) some years back, looks like I'm missing nothing, I'm happy not to be contributing to their continued existence.

Some big companies (Scotrail for one) provide complimentary copies of the Scotsman/SOS. Perhaps complaints to these companies may make them think twice about continuing to do so?
# Independista 2013-04-07 08:02
In Johnston Press’s shiny Annual Results presentation they talk glibly of “Substantial Strategic Progress”. It seems reducing their debt from £376m to £352m is success!
Even by their own highly optimistic figures at reducing debt, they wont break even before 2023.
What was once a proud radical Scottish institution has been brought to its knees.
They are the architects of their own demise and don’t deserve to survive
# G. P. Walrus 2013-04-07 08:45
The presentation that Independista links to, shows who Johnson Presses main advertisers are. I suggest folks write to their head offices to complain about the replacement of the saltire with a swastika and ask whether they are happy to associate their products and services with the assertion that Scots are Nazis.
# heraldnomore 2013-04-07 08:54
And don't forget the spat with google, which sees Newsnet and others top the rankings with the hootsmon relegated to the dregs pages. Advertisers ain't stupid.
# Guinphy 2013-04-07 09:23
I suppose I shouldn't be shocked by this given the constant vitriol from the unionists' camp but I am. Utterly. This goes so far beyond the realms of what is acceptable that it seems hard to believe anyone would publish this. I just feel so sad that this is the level these people would stoop to. Surely, even dyed in the wool unionists would be offended by this.
# Coolbeans 2013-04-07 09:48
They're plumbing the depths, striking at the very heart of our proud nation by defiling our most important symbol. They are trying to invoke a reaction, something they would be able to newsflash around the world. I think Alex Salmond is a master tactitian and will know when the right time comes to advance. In the meantime we must "hold" :-)
None of the lies printed in any newsrag will ever define Scottish people. Nor will it ever confine Scottish people, we will move on and leave it all behind us. I believe that and we will do it with our heads held high, as we should.
# Dundonian West 2013-04-07 09:55
Shocking,gutter politics Scottish Unionism.
Shameful in the extreme.
A disgraceful image to all decent thinking people and minorities in Scotland.
# taimoshan 2013-04-07 10:10
How dare this lying unionist rag abuse our ancient national flag in this way?
Shame on them and their proprietors and the British state!
# williemacewan 2013-04-07 10:15
From The Suburbs,

You touch upon a contentious subject - the funding for the referendum campaign. If money from England is allowed to fuel a campaign in a Scottish referendum why shouldn't money from anywhere else in the world be similarly utilised.
# Abulhaq 2013-04-07 10:40
Not very subtle. Is this the best Unionism can confect? Like some adolescent fit of pique. Can't argue with it, so insult it and call it fascist.Scotland on Sunday, like the BritState, deserves to sink into oblivion.
# Abulhaq 2013-04-07 12:47
Thanx4posting....did have me perplexed though...
# Will C 2013-04-07 10:44
Late last night I articulated my feelings on this disgusting desecration of our national flag on SoS's Facebook page. Some hours later and after a somewhat fitful sleep, I am still struggling to express the depth of my anger at this defiling of the Saltire. Suffice to say that I think this disgusting image may be a defining moment in the struggle for Scottish self determination and that I will never buy a Scotsman publication again.
# From The Suburbs 2013-04-07 11:05
It gets worse for the largest donor to Bitter together campaign
According to Vitol – paid a Serbian war criminal $1m to enforce a business deal in 2001, broke Iraqi sanctions in 2007 and is being questioned over recent oil shipments to Iran. Vitol subsequently paid David Cameron’s Tory party £550,000.
Knightsbridge-based Vitol, has often been mired in controversy. Yet as well as contracting known killers and breaking sanctions the company’s boss was part of David Cameron’s Leadership Group and has donated hundreds of thousands of pounds to his party.

Ian Taylor doesn’t live or ever went to school in Scotland and doesn’t have a vote in the referendum , remember his friend David Cameron said the 2014 vote was for people IN Scotland and gave that as a reason for ducking out a debate with Alex Salmond.
# Soloman 2013-04-07 11:57
I was banned from Better Together's Facebook page for telling them not to allow Their Darling leader anywhere near the donated money ( Due to his track record ) and also posting up an old Independent article about the 'Black Gold' if you don't mind I would like to post on facebook, what you have above re Vitol?
# maisiedotts 2013-04-07 11:09
Pictures as well as articles can be complained about via Press Complaints Commission website
# s_ellinson 2013-04-07 11:16
There is a degree of hysteria apparent here. As soon as we see a swastika, knees jerk and the hyperbole switch is thrown to "maximum". This is not the death of anything - it's an historical article about the way in which fascists have sought to exploit nationalism and has a mild reflection on the fact that the right will continue to do so. The guff that some commenters have spouted has to be seen to be believed -

"Scottish journalism died today. I will no longer purchase my daily paper."


"Shocking,gutter politics Scottish Unionism.
Shameful in the extreme."
# maisiedotts 2013-04-07 12:46
Hysteria? No, righteous indignation perhaps and after all Scotsman has a target audience who may be deeply offended ...... on this occasion many have been and will take whatever action they feel appropriate. Try reading Mark 18:9 "If thine eye offends thee pluck it out etc" you don't continue to buy something you don't like do you?
# Gordon Hay 2013-04-07 11:28
Since the article is written by the author of the book, I expect SoS to use the "views not necessarily those of the management" get-out.
# neoloon 2013-04-07 11:51
We can only hope that referendum neutrals will see this picture,this disgraceful slur on Scotland's flag,and vote accordingly.
# bipod 2013-04-07 11:57
I am sure we all remember the huge fuss that was caused when Alex Salmond called a BBC rep a gauleiter or when the union was compared to an abusive relationship. I wonder if we can expect Ruth Davidson to condemn this piece from the SoS? After all, wasn't she demanding that Alex Salmond toe all of the nasty nationalists back in line so we can have a reasonable debate at the last FMQs.
# Radge 2013-04-07 12:11
I sincerely hope Birlinn did not invest too heavily in the book the SoS 'article' was meant to be about. If it is written with the same academic and intellectual rigour as the article, it isn't going to sell many copies.
# Ericmac 2013-04-07 12:18
Only people living in Scotland.... Not ANYWHERE else, should be allowed to contribute to the campaigns.

If they don't get a vote, then they should not be allowed to interfere.

Alternatively, open it wide and we can ask the Scottish organisations in US, Canada et al for support against this hegemonic union.
# mloclam 2013-04-07 12:19
Holocaust rememberance day begins tonight, by the way.
# CharlieObrien 2013-04-07 12:23
Is the "Newspaper" SoS,really worthy of being called a newspaper? my answer is no of course not. It is and has been for a long time a political voice for the "Fleet Street" elite (owners that is)the actual article is beneath contempt.There is very little chance of any of the so called press in Scotland condemning them as it would be like one brother (in arms) condemning another brother.Just saddens me that it will get publicity,and I suspect excuses from certain types,and probably some will endorse and condone the paper and the article.Such a shame.
# Mad Jock McMad 2013-04-07 12:41
The original image replicates the famous image of the US Marines putting the Stars and Stripes a top of Mount Suribachi on Iwo Jima along with all the aspirational hopes and sense of overcoming repression which it engenders.

I looked at the image and simply shook my head. If this is the best friends of 'Bitter Together' can manage with 16 months to go and the gap down to 10%, well they are 'F'd.

If anyone thinks the University of St Andrews will do squat diddly you are forgetting which side they currently see their bread buttered - lots of English undergrad students at £6,000 a pop.

The Scotsman picture not only traduces the people of Scotland but the US Marine Corps and the people of the USA.
# call me dave 2013-04-07 12:42
It's the kind of thing that we have come to expect. It's annoying to see that newspapers stir up controversy and scare stories to frighten folk to think in a certain way. I bought my tin hat and ear defenders last week as it's going to get worse before its better, not worth writing home to your mother about. She'll see it for what it is just like us!

Try this as a diversion another labour internal shambles.

Labour in 'meltdown' over selection row

LABOUR's bid to find a candidate to replace disgraced MP Eric Joyce is in "meltdown" after senior figures in the local Falkirk party turned on each other.
# Will C 2013-04-07 12:45
Offending article seems to have been removed from SoS Facebook page after many, many critical posts.
# Kinghob 2013-04-07 14:33
Quoting Will C:
Offending article seems to have been removed from SoS Facebook page after many, many critical posts.

Well, the scotsman has discovered the validity of the comments which were 98% against this low mean spirited derogatory and misleading picture, dunno about the article but then I would say that the quality will be lacking with such a crude picture there to wrongly associate the Scots, Scotland the SNP with nazism........

The comments are different when they are from people with names rather than the usual morons with nicknames unique to the scotsman public forum.
# ScotFree1320 2013-04-07 16:11
SS may have removed the picture from their timeline but it's still on the facebook system and probably always will be.

Here's the direct link to the image:
# Lucas 2013-04-07 13:27
The Unionist press has finally jumped the shark, they must know that the game is up:
# MacSenex 2013-04-07 19:58
I've been buying the Scotsman for the last 42 years from the time I was Student in Edinburgh. I shall buy it no more.

It may be a big ask but should those journalists of an independence persuasion who write for Johnston Press notbe considering their position?
# NkosiEcosse 2013-04-08 12:56
Another link to shady dealings of the bitter together main donor:
# Radge 2013-05-09 20:52
Peterkin had another go at kicking off this stooshie again in SoS on 5 May with some comical claims about Gavin Bowd seeking security advice and protection. Unfortunately for Bowd's book sales, the contrived Calman stooshie meant it was utterly ignored. More details here:

You must be logged-in in order to post a comment.


Donate to Newsnet Scotland


Latest Comments