1 April 2014 - Best of April Fools
Exclusive: UN draws up peacekeeping plans in event of Scottish Yes vote
Cahal Milmo (The Independent)
The United Nations is drawing up plans for a peacekeeping mission to monitor cross-border tensions in the event of a Yes vote for Scottish independence, The Independent can reveal.
Senior UN officials in New York and Geneva are understood to have begun exploring a “last resort” intervention following the refusal of the main Westminster parties to share the pound with an independent Scotland and polls showing rising support for separation north of the border.
Sources within the UN said they were concerned that souring relations between London and Edinburgh in the wake of a victory for SNP leader Alex Salmond could encourage “hotheads” on either side of the border to stoke tensions and seek confrontation.
One scenario being taken seriously is pre-arranged “face-offs”, modelled on the film Braveheart, between rival militias who it is feared could travel to towns such as Gretna Green and Berwick-upon-Tweed for weekend showdowns.
There are also concerns that the days leading up to independence will provoke a sudden exodus of economic migrants either from England to Scotland or vice versa depending on which country is perceived to have the highest chance of future prosperity.
Staff (Times Higher Education)
Students could be asked to wear gowns and mortarboards on campus in plans by education secretary Michael Gove to “restore rigour” to higher education, the Times Higher Education has learned.
According to a leaked memo seen by THE, the minister is looking at introducing the strict dress code across all universities over concerns over the “scruffy” clothes worn on campus.
The new sartorial standards are believed to be the first in a series of measures being considered by Mr Gove if he succeeds in his bid to bring the sector under his department after next year’s general election.
It is hoped the new dress code will usher in “a return to the golden age of higher education – the 19th century”, the memo says.
Bruce Roberts (The Guardian)
Scottish nationalist leaders will attempt this week to give the trailing yes campaign a boost by revealing a series of measures aimed at showing what an independent country would look like.
Seeking to capitalise on the arguments this week about "bullying" England and keeping the pound, they will unveil an ambitious scheme to scrap the current – English inspired – road signage system. M for motorway will be replaced with a new S – for Scotland and the A trunk roads will become N roads – for Nationalist in honour of the new country. Blue will be the predominant backing colour.
The scale of the scheme is enormous: Scotland has 2,174 miles of road, including the 273-mile long A9 stretching from Edinburgh to John O'Groats – known as the "spine of Scotland".
Paolo Frils (The Mirror)
Dictator Kim Jong-un has BANNED One Direction from entering North Korea - unless they get their hair cut.
The tyrant has demanded the boys opt for the short-back-and-sides hairdo he models if they want to play in his secretive state.
And to challenge 1D’s position as the world’s number one boyband, the despot will launch an X Factor-style competition show to find his own band - dubbed Un Direction.
The move comes after male students in North Korea were last week ordered to get the same haircut as 31-year-old Jong-Un.
A source in the capital Pyongyang said: “ Our leader’s haircut is very particular, if you will.
"It might not be a voluminous as Harry Styles’ famous curls but Jong-Un doesn’t want his men to look like Marilyn Monroe.
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"1 April 2014 - Best of April Fools", La Clé des Langues [en ligne], Lyon, ENS de LYON/DGESCO (ISSN 2107-7029), janvier 2014. Consulté le 21/09/2023. URL: https://cle.ens-lyon.fr/anglais/key-story/archives-revue-de-presse-2014/1-april-2014-best-of-april-fools