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Gordon Brown risks US wrath and future business

The situation regarding the Lockerbie bomber has dominated the headlines over the last few weeks and while the Scottish executive was effectively "hung out to dry" by the UK authorities it now appears that Gordon Brown may have had a more hands-on approach in the early days. Amid signs that US consumers and US businesses are to boycott Scotland and potentially England, now that Gordon Brown has been brought into the mix, there are concerns about future business.

It is easy to forget that the US is a major trading partner of the UK and any potential fallout, no matter how long it may last, has the potential to slow down any recovery in the UK economy as a whole. The situation in Scotland is even worse because of the size of the economy and the larger impact that a US boycott would have in areas such as whiskey. Even though historically threats of boycott have often passed over with very little impact, there is a feeling that the US government, US consumers and US businesses are extremely angry about the Lockerbie bomber being sent home to Libya.

It will take diplomacy of the highest quality to resurrect UK and Scottish relationships with the US government, at least in the short term, something which was certainly not considered when the decision to free Lockerbie bomber was made.

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