In any case, he decided to give a speech on the evils of nationalism.
The world is becoming an increasingly turbulent and divided place. We’ve seen Brexit, President Trump elected in the United States and the rise of right-wing populist and narrow nationalist parties around the world.... The last thing we need now is to pit different parts of our country or sections of our society against each other — or to further fuel division or seek separation.There are two problems with this. The first is that he decided to give this speech in Scotland, a nation whose elective offices have been recently dominated by an organization called The Scottish National Party.
The second problem is that Khan himself is a living symbol of an even more divisive, even more narrow mode of 'pitting different parts of our country or sections of our society against one another.' If this is the right standard for judgment, identity politics fares even worse than nationalism, which at least is willing to take any kind of Scot as long as they're Scottish. Drawing the division at the level of the nation at least avoids drawing divisions below that level.
Nor is it clear that it is the right standard in any case, as even supra-nationalist divisions can end up being destructively divisive. Communists were not usually guilty of nationalism -- Ho Chi Minh and a few others excepted -- because they wanted to dispose of all nations in favor of a global government. They still ended up dividing members of nations against one another. Indeed, if strife is the proper measure, it was the singers of the Internationale who had more blood on their hands than anyone.