WE learn of a pilot scheme in the north of Scotland, whereby police officers cherry-picked which crime they deemed was worthy of further investigation. And now this scheme, which was proved to be a great success, is going to be rolled out throughout Scotland. 

Let’s get to the real reason why this ill-judged scheme was even thought of by the police hierarchy: all the cut-backs in police funding, and the ill-thought idea that Police Scotland would work. Police Scotland was the brainchild of the SNP but what was thought to be a cost-cutting exercise at the time has failed. 

Police officers are leaving in their droves and not being replaced.What officers there are left are chasing their tails to deal with crime; by thinking up this scheme this gives the illusion that all is well in our police force, which is untrue – and, to taxpayers, unacceptable. 

This is the start of the demise of our once-proud police force that was hailed throughout the world
Policing is necessary to maintain law and order; it is not a service that abdicates its duties due to lack of personnel and funding. 

Let’s see again a visible force properly funded and not another failing due to the SNP, one to be added to the failing NHS, the failing of our schools, the ferry fiasco, and our ‘A’-class roads destroyed by potholes and patching. 

The SNP always blame the UK government for lack of funding and about having to go cap in hand to get extra money.  What I don’t understand is how can we survive under the SNP if we were to be independent. 
Neil Stewart, Balfron.


Read more: SPF warns Police Scotland ‘becoming a reactive service’

Scottish police have been broken by politicians like NHS

We must have a complete overhaul of Police Scotland


Argyll’s 'heartless' rates decision
I SOMETIMES wonder what planet Guy Stenhouse inhabits. In his usual anti-Scottish Government rant, ‘Three cheers for Argyll & Bute Council not bowing to the SNP’s freeze’ (March 9), he says of  the council tax freeze, “There was no need for it, no logical case for it and no public clamour for it”.
He claims that the proposed 10% rates increase in Argyll and Bute is a good idea as the council is being honest by hiking local rates, which “is in the interests of the people they serve”.

He rightly states that Argyll and Bute Council is not controlled by any one party but fails to mention that the opposition group, in a similar situation, put forward a balanced budget accepting the Scottish Government’s increased funding, which was dismissed out of hand.

I attended a ‘Food Rally’ in Inveraray – an event to gather donations of money and food for the increasing number of people in our community who have to make daily decisions on whether to heat their homes or feed themselves and their families. 

There are people who go to bed at nightfall to save electricity on heating and lighting. One very elderly lady says she keeps her curtains open at night, letting in light from the street lamps, so that when she gets up to go to the toilet, she doesn’t need to switch on the lights.

I doubt if Guy Stenhouse has ever had to make decisions such as these, because if he had, he would not be offering “three cheers” for the council’s heartless policy, which is certainly not “in the interests of the people they serve”.
David Hay, Minard, Argyll and Bute.

Unleashing the SNP’s dogs of war
THE SNP, has in its DNA, a trait that anyone daring to question any action they make is attacked. It has been shown time and time and time again over the years to be standard policy to dealing with criticism. 

For example, during the torturous passage of the SNP’s disastrous Gender Bill in Holyrood, anyone voicing reservations, let alone outright hostility, was immediately set upon by the SNP’s orchestrated dogs of war and labelled a transphobe or bigot.

These attacks lingered for a spell, incredibly even after a vicious double rapist had been sent to a women’s prison, before the Bill, at great expense to all of us, was laughed out of every court where the matter was raised.

No-one, it seems, can ask perfectly reasonable questions about the actions of the First Minister with regard to what on the surface looks like very large donations of Scottish taxpayers’ money to a UN agency whose credibility was being questioned at the highest level. 

If you do question, as with the GR Bill,  there appears to be orchestrated attacks using key words – most likely Spad-generated – like ‘’Islamophobia’’ instead of transphobia and the now standard ‘’far right.’’
Does no-one in the SNP realise that if honest and unspun answers were given to legitimate questions in the first place, none of this kind of furore would even arise?
Alexander McKay, Edinburgh.

No longer a safe pair of hands?
MR Yousaf’s heart may have been in the right place when he awarded humanitarian aid to Gaza but his inability to manage the fall-out properly makes me despair of the party's reputation as a safe pair of hands.
S. Taylor, Glasgow.

The Herald: Humza YousafHumza Yousaf

So where is the paper trail?
ALARM bells are ringing. I refer to your front-page article, ‘SNP says Tory MP should be dropped after smear’ (March 11). The newspaper article at the centre of this storm is not “Islamophobic”, it is factual.

There was no extra money, it had to be “borrowed” from elsewhere and indeed, UNICEF was the preferred recipient, not UNWRA. 

Not only that, but the sums considered were £100,000 to £200,000 – yet £250,000 was actually given. The fact that Mr Yousaf’s parents-in-law were “released” the day after the donation was announced may be co-incidental but the timing is not ideal from Mr Yousaf’s point of view.

He has been asked serious questions. If the SNP have learned from history it will have a proper paper trail and detailed documents to back Mr Yousaf up. The solution is simple: show them.
Dr Gerald Edwards, Glasgow.

Vexed question of Nato and Scotland
I DON’T wish to run a dialogue with John Jamieson courtesy of the letters page, but on March 8 I answered this following remark by Mr Jamieson, printed on March 7: “Can we get this clear once and for all: if an independent Scotland expressed any idea of leaving Nato it would be leaned on so heavily by the other Nato states that we would have to retire to a darkened room for a few weeks to recover.”

Mr Jamieson appears to be saying that unscrupulous forces might retain Scotland in Nato regardless of the wishes of the Scots. It’s certainly what the headline writer thought he was saying.

I wrote that an emerging state is not initially in any alliances and an independent Scotland might or might not apply to join Nato. The newborn state cannot leave any outfit it hasn’t joined. I was discussing all possible options about where to park the nukes when they are not on operational station.

The President of the Russian Federation has shifted gear in recent days. He used to instruct sidekicks and Quislings to make nuclear threats on his behalf. President Macron’s advocacy of western soldiers entering the fray has rattled him so much that he is now uttering nuclear threats himself. So perhaps peacetime plans have run out of time. It’s happening much quicker than independence.
Tim Cox, Bern, Switzerland.

Nuclear alert
FOR the first time in my life one of your letter writers has turned me into a quivering wreck.

Ian Cope (letters, March 9) writes that he will accept nuclear weapons in Scotland if they are “totally controlled by the Scottish Government.”A government that has proved itself to be utterly inept at controlling anything it touches, he now wants to hand Trident missiles to. Please let me know when it’s safe to come out from under my bed.
Gregor Mckenzie, East Kilbride.

No substitute for originality
LISTENING  to Rachel Reeves on Sunday, talking about the Labour Party’s fiscal policy, I was reminded of lyrics from the Who’s ‘Won’t Get Fooled Again’. The parting on the left is now the parting on the right. Meet the new boss, same as the old boss. 
Roy Gardiner, Kilmarnock.

Key word omitted
THANK you for printing our letter ‘Many Scots Jews are proud to stand up for peace in Palestine (March 11). But the printed version contained an error that we must correct: it left out the word Palestine from the name of our group – ‘Liberal Jews for Justice in Israel/Palestine’. 

This accidental omission is symbolic of a larger problem: a perception that Jewish people are concerned only with Israel. In fact, we chose that name because to use either name alone would have implied accepting that only Jews, or only Palestinians, have a right to the whole are of historic Palestine. To the contrary, we emphasise at every turn that the claims of both peoples must be acknowledged. Peace will only be achieved with justice and equality for all in the whole of Israel/Palestine.

Sue Bard, Gica Loening, Maurice Naftalin, Edinburgh.