A journalist at the Herald and Sunday Herald has offered an apology to a pro-independence blogger after labelling him an “Ultra-nationalist”.
Iain Macwhirter had called Wings Over Scotland blogger Stuart Campbell an ‘Ultra nationalist’ in a tweet which linked to an article on the blogger’s website.
The tweet read: “Ultra-nationalist blogger Stuart Campbell has given his first full account of his arrest last year for harassment and malicious communication. Worth a read.”
The journalist’s tweet linked to an article published on the Wings Over Scotland website that highlighted the experiences of the blogger after a complaint was made to the police in England.
However, questioned by Campbell on the term “Utra-Nationalist”, the journalist replied: “By “Ultranationalist” I meant Mr Campbell is a fervent supporter of the SNP, NOT that he is a fascist. Sorry for that. But really, his account of his arrest over hate speak is well worth studying, whatever your political views”
The explanation that ‘Ultra-nationalist’ meant supporter of the SNP brought more critisicism from supporters of Nicola Sturgeon’s party.
One said: “It does seem odd that, in these days of Trump, Brexit, a UKIP, driven anti-immigration, isolationist, xenophobic UK, the only thing that’ll get you branded “ultranationalist” is supporting the most pro-EU, outward looking party the UK has.”
Another added: “Iain, this demonstrates the pernicious nature of Britnat propaganda that even an excellent journalist such as yourself can be suckered into using such terminology. Thanks for the correction and for raising the issue, but be aware in future of the poisonous influence of the MSM.”
The exchange follows barbed attacks on the Wings Over Scotland blogger by Herald colleagues of Macwhirter. One recently branded Campbell an “alt-nat” who, along with others, “parrot core Kremlin talking points.”.
The Herald publicly backed the pro-Union Better Together campaign during the 2014 Indyref campaign. Its sister paper, The Sunday Herald, gave its support to the pro-Independence Yes Scotland.