The Spy in the Kirk; ENEMY OF COMMUNISM: Rev Robert Scott Was Involved in the Cold War in Czechoslovakia

Article excerpt

Byline: Peter Day

HIS stirring sermons and steadfast faith saw him rise to become the most powerful figure in the Church of Scotland.

But now official files released after 50 years have shown that the Very Reverend Robert Scott was also acting as a secret agent for Britain in the fight against Communism.

National Archive papers reveal the father of three had the ear of Tory Prime Minister Anthony Eden's government during the Cold War.

The documents show the Scot - the Moderator of the General Assembly in 1956-57 - was a 'trusted contact' of an underground network, valued for his 'anti-Communist sermons'.

The newly-released papers also reveal how he was implicated in a Foreign Office plot to stop Church of Scotland money being donated behind the Iron Curtain.

Although the full extent of Rev Scott's involvement remains a secret, the files reveal he was an associate of the Information Research Department (IRD) - a secret Government unit which distributed anti-Communist propaganda in Eastern Europe.

The papers state that the preacher, who came from a long line of Church of Scotland ministers, was 'an IRD contact and well known for his strongly anti-Communist sermons'.

Rev Scott's undercover efforts came at a time when anti-Communist suspicion was at its height in Britain and America. …