Compare if you will the Ireland of 1798 to that of 1920. Or the India of 1857 with 1947. The rebellions on the earlier dates (1798 & 1857) were doomed to fail, taking on a British Empire at the peak of its power. The latter dates (1920 & 1947) were the culminations of successfully orchestrated struggles, using concerted colony-wide campaigns of obstruction and resistance to disable Britain’s ability to rule each region.
Both colonies were ultimately successful at gaining independence, although by very different means. Both of Ireland’s rebellions were violent. In contrast, after the suppression of the 1857 rebellion, Indians realised they could not leave the Empire by force of arms and eventually adopted Gandhi’s policy of non-violent resistance.
In contrast, the successful twentieth century rebellions were both begun while Britain was engaged in fights for its very existence.
This is again the case today.
Britain is now undergoing the worst financial disaster in its history. Its self-appointed political super-class has managed to mire the pseudo-state in unprecedented and almost unimaginable levels of debt. Its banking system is falling apart at the seams with a run expected on sterling, hyperinflation a possibility, and talk of the IMF intervening.
Make no mistake, Britain is on the ropes.
If there ever was a right time for Scotland to walk out of this Union, this is surely it.
The question is this: is Alex Salmond is up to the task of leading her out?
Because if Whitehall tries to delay, prevent, annul, or nobble Scotland’s independence referendum - as it almost certainly will - there may well be a groundswell of popular democratic outrage, but if the moment is not seized, the opportunity will be missed altogether.
We all know Alex loves a curry, but is he up to being Scotland’s Gandhi?