Saturday, 30 June 2007

Our Purpose

I like this quote from Cleckanndra's Blog :

My/our job is to challenge everything which stops politicians putting the people who gave them power before their own self-interest. The clearer we can see what politicians do (and discuss that in the blogosphere/pubs/everywhere) the more accountable they will be to us - Y Werin.

Friday, 29 June 2007

Unhelpful Blogging

Trawling the blogs it is evident that there are a number of bloggers who are making what I consider to be unhelpful remarks regarding the dialectical inclinations of Plaid Cymru members and the way in which the party defines its dialectical position. In my opinion the issue is not whether Plaid is a leftist party or a rightist party, or even whether it is in the centre of the political spectrum. The issue and priority always was and always will be the path to independence. When independence for Wales has been achieved Plaid's role will be over, and this is the time when the party should decide its political complexion, or whether or not it should disband. Any other talk is divisive and does nothing to further the cause of independence. In fact it is unhelpful as it distracts those who associate themselves with 'left' or 'right' wing politics from the main aim and primary function of the party. In my view, these concepts constitute the politics of the past century and a new era of consensus politics is dawning in Wales. Politically speaking, Wales leads the way, and there are many in Westminster who quite obviously hold to the antidiluvian thinking which divides one from the other and perpetuates the political status quo.

The Gentrification of Wales

Every society has its turn-coats. There are a number of factors which conspire to turn an individual away from his native soil, his community and his roots, and migrate to another region, identifying himself with another set of values which are essentially foreign to his upbringing. There are those who are prepared to sell their country down the river, and who pursue ambition to the detriment of their own native kin. We will not name names but we may look back into both recent and past history to find examples of this perfidy. We have all come across those who are prepared to give up their culture, their language and doubtlessly their very soul, and adopt the values of a different breed, possibly in a bid to improve their status in life or for monetary gain.

We do not judge them or begrudge them but we know them for what they are. They have, wittingly or unwittingly, contributed to the gentrification of Wales. We see this phenomenon most starkly in the eastern counties of the nation. In my youth I noticed that Monmouthshire was included with England in many maps and atlases, and there were towns and villages in the border counties which had Welsh names (Clun for example), and isolated areas where Welsh was spoken. There was a steady erosion of Welsh native culture which spread slowly from the east resulting in an Anglicisation of the population, and had it not been for the Welsh Bible and the stubborn clinging to the language and native traditions it would have conquered Wales from end to end. This danger was highlighted fifty years ago in the writings of Islwyn Ffowc Elis. In his book “Wythnos Yn Ghymru Fydd” he warned of the inexorable creeping Anglicisation of Wales, and how Wales might be destined to become merely a western province of England, and suffer a fate worse than death!

As we have recently observed, in the programmes on television presented by Huw Edwards on the London Welsh, these absconding Welsh men and women have made their huge contribution to the capital of the union, the centre of power, and we also note the fact of their gentrification and adoption of values quite alien to those of their native land. We see them today, with their titles and their medals and their chains of office, making pronouncements on the land of their birth, attempting to perpetuate the illusion that we British are the builders of Empire and natural born rulers of the world. The reality is of course that, at least here in Wales, we are now in the act of restoration, working together towards a renewal of timeless values and a proud and ancient heritage, and are remaking a nation which once was, and will be, known to many as


Thursday, 28 June 2007

07/07/07 - a Critical Day for Wales

I am not blogging today. Instead I would like to direct you to the following site:

It is well-worth reading and I am fully in agreement with Adam's seven points.


That Loyal! The Labour Dilemma

The members of the Labour Party in Wales are facing a dilemma, and it concerns loyalty. Should they give their loyalty to Wales or to the Union of Great Britain and Northern Ireland? If Wales is a nation, which most of us agree is so, is Britain also a nation, or is this a contradiction? Do they give their loyalty and trust to Rhodri Morgan, Chief Minister of the Welsh Assembly, or to Gordon Brown, Prime Minister of Great Britain? It must be highly confusing to them. Are they Welsh first and Labourites second - Welsh first and British second? They are certainly not Socialists. New Labour has very little relation to Socialism. These days it has more in common with the Conservative Party. In their efforts to grab the centre ground of politics they have given up their principles, so that it is Plaid which is to the left of Labour. Many Welsh Labour members are in favour of greater devolution for Wales, whereas many of the Welsh Labour M.P.s in Westminster are frantically pulling on the brakes. Rhodri is doing his best to sell a Plaid/Labour coalition to his members, while his colleagues in London are actively campaigning against it, with Lord Neil Kinnock at their head. It is a real dilemma for them. What can they do?

I have a suggestion which I would like to float.

My suggestion is that the Welsh Labour members vote to sever their links with the Labour Party UK and form a Social Democratic Party of Wales. By doing this they will move to the left, and regain the socialist principles that were abandoned by New Labour. They will be free to pursue the progressive policies which the people of Wales are demanding, without the guilt of subscribing to the policies of New Labour. They will adapt the policies of Keir Hardie and Aneurin Bevan to conform to the exigencies of the present age, the 21st Century, and in company with Plaid Cymru, they will present a radical programme of reform to the people of Wales.

Wednesday, 27 June 2007

If you can't stand the heat...............

.......... get out of the kitchen!

There will always be those who, when it comes to the crunch, fall away and disappear back into the wilderness, or think they can fare better somewhere else than where the action is. Wales needs staunch citizens, those who will follow the red dragon flag to the bitter end, and tread the path of glory, wherever it leads. These are the dependable souls, who put their beloved country before their own interests and opinions and who value the cause of freedom above anything else. These are the brave people that Wales needs, in its long and intricate climb to independence. Wales needs those who can stand and be counted, and who will rally to the noble cause which Plaid embodies. The really dedicated and committed supporters will not fall at the first hurdle, or the second, or the third but will press on regardless and see things through to the end.
Inevitably, there will be those who cannot stand the pace, who will disagree with decisions taken and turn away. But if they saw the stark choices clearly, and weighed up the possibilities carefully, and with honesty and with due regard and respect for the greater good, they would come to realise that loyalty to one's party and country is the guiding force behind all their motivations. History is littered with the remains of lost causes, but there are those who will always be there when the going gets tough, who will pick up the banner and carry it on to victory. These are the people Wales needs and depends on, those who are loyal and reliable and who can be trusted.
Rainbow warriors may well be disappointed with the outcome of the deliberations at the Senedd and may believe that all is lost. This is not necessarily so, as these matters cannot be predicted, and it remains to be seen whether or not the right decision was made. A similar situation arose in Ireland in 1921, yet look at Ireland today, a free and independent republic taking its place on the world's stage, a prosperous and confident land and an economic success. With wise and steady government, and some assistance from Europe, its rise has been nothing short of phenomenal. There are rainbows in Ireland too, but of a more attractive and consistent variety.
In my opinion for what it is worth our leaders have chosen wisely. Neither choice was ultimately palatable, but one has to work with facts and base decision on reality, not on preference. Time will tell, but intuitively I for one feel that the best deal has been accomplished and we will see Cymru Fydd come into being as our gift to our children, a nation reborn.

The One Wales Agreement

A Plea for Unity - (also see new pic below)

Plaid Cymru will now join Labour in a coalition.
Plaid Cymru has now indisputedly come of age. It has gained stature as a serious and concerned political party, and as the only Party of Wales, the party which puts Welsh interests first.
It has taken on the role as the conscience of the people, and is well on the road to success. It is donning the mantle of power and testing the waters of bi-partisan government.
I would urge all rainbow warriors to back Plaid in its new venture in creating the conditions for nationhood.

Tuesday, 26 June 2007

The Price of Power (See new pic, below)

The price of remaining in power for Labour at the National Assembly is to join with Plaid Cymru in a coalition government. Despite the contemptuous remarks of certain sections of Labour with regard to Plaid's abilities in government, Plaid is likely to go ahead with its uncertain alliance with Labour and take its chances on the road to a referendum on a new constitution for Wales. The timing of this referendum will be critical, and those who wish for a successful outcome will need to keep their ears very close to the ground to judge the prevailing opinion of the electorate. If the referendum were held today it would be touch and go, in my view, as to whether it would succeed. Yet I see an inexorable movement among the populace towards greater devolution for Wales, as more people see the indifference of a British government, and the effectiveness of the Welsh Assembly in formulating policies and enacting laws within the boundaries of the nation.

In fact both parties, Plaid and Labour are in unison with regard to their progressive stance towards government. Both parties have their roots in socialistic principles and community values and concerns. The failing of Labour has been its lack of connection with the grass roots and its high-handed style of bureaucratic government, as well as its withdrawal of public services and mismanagement of financial resources. This is now Plaid's opportunity to redress the imbalance and to listen to and address the pressing needs of the elderly, the young and the sick in society. An old adage says :"if you can't beat them, join them", and this may prove to be the best way forward. This path is long and winding but, whichever way it leads, we will follow it, in our efforts to build a better Wales and to bring dignity and freedom to our nation and its people.

Inedible and Unpalatable

The negotiations between Plaid and Labour are very slow and tortuous, and any decision has been postponed to Wednesday.
It is obvious that many Labour members see Plaid's proposals as inedible and unpalatable, and are opposed to any suggestion of an early referendum, leading to full independence for Wales.
The other proposals concerning social and economic policies appear to be going well, and most Labour and Plaid members are in favour of these progressive issues.
The sticking point will be the path to full devolution, a Welsh parliament and home rule.
Plaid Cymru will never compromise on this, and if this fundamental requirement is not acceptable the talks are at an end and the Rainbow option is back on stream.
The latest news is that the programme for a referendum has been accepted by most Labour negotiators and will be forwarded to their general assembly for approval.

Sunday, 24 June 2007

Swings and Roundabouts

Well, dyna fe, here we go again! A public survey favours a Rainbow coalition, with Rhodri Morgan as First Minister - an impossibility! It is quite obvious that the people of Wales are turning away from Labour, and are in favour of change and a new dawn for Wales.
It is all in the hands of Plaid now. Whichever way Plaid decides to vote not one of the political pundits can judge the wisdom of the decision or predict the outcome of opting for one grouping or the other. Plaid has always said it would go with what the people want. It is all in the lap of the gods.
As Labour enters a 'new era' in Westminster Labour sees its star declining in Wales. It is up to Plaid to seize its chance to take the lead as Labour falters, and claim its inheritance as the only party of Wales. Steering its course through unchartered waters will be difficult enough but it will bring with it energy with new and exciting potential, and will be the greatest adventure since its inception. The question is whether Plaid sees its best interests (which are the best interests of Wales) served by joining Labour in an uncertain coalition, or joining the other parties in opposition to Labour and risking the consequences of this action. What is certain is that Wales is changing, and is entering a new phase in its evolution as a nation among nations.

The Great Welsh Political Party Migration

Is it too much to ask for the Welsh political parties to migrate permanently to Wales and adapt their policies to conform to the needs of the Welsh people and not to the requirements of the Union? After all, they are debating the laws and procedures of Wales in the Welsh Assembly, and legislating for the Welsh people. The three relevant main political parties are the Liberals, the Conservatives and Labour. Can they not proclaim themselves, along with Plaid, as parties of Wales, and not the parties of Great Britain, and cease from looking over their shoulders to London for direction?
Until they are willing to do this they are still political clones of the parent parties in London, and quite different from Plaid Cymru, which is a home-grown movement dedicated to home rule. They are still locked in the time-warp of their political past, when Britain had an Empire and ruled the waves. Their thinking is often dominated by the conditions which arose with the Industrial Revolution and the class struggle. If they could break out of this mould and become truly Welsh parties, concerned with the building of a nation and with restoring the confidence of its people, they might achieve greater credibility and support from those they represent. They would also be playing a part in the creation of a new dawn for Wales.
At this time there is only one Party of Wales. Is it possible that some day there could be four?

Friday, 22 June 2007


Whichever way one jumps there are dangers, but nothing ventured, nothing gained!
There are bound to be some who will be disappointed whatever the result.
Many Labour members will be discomforted if a Plaid/Labour coalition emerges. Plaid members who support the All Wales Accord will rue the lost opportunities presented by a united opposition to Labour. Incidentally, has anyone noticed that the the views of Plaid members are split by a North/South divide? This is not to say that the Party is divided; in unity lies strength, and in a true democracy all views are respected.
An All Wales Accord would be unthinkable to many Plaid supporters who vehemently oppose an accommodation with the Tories, with their class divisions and capitalist leanings. Rhodri Morgan favours a coalition with Plaid and this will distance his party even more from Peter Hain and Gordon Brown and the Welsh Labour M.P.'s in the Westminster Parliament. Wales needs effective government. The choice is between the Red/Green coalition, the Rainbow coalition and the Red/Yellow coalition. The issues are highly complex, and yet they provide an opportunity for the representatives of Wales to act together in the best interests of the people of Wales, no matter what the political complexion.

Wednesday, 20 June 2007

Thought for the Day

Watching a programme on television on the Railways of Wales this evening, which included the severe cutbacks on services by Dr Beeching years ago and the severe congestion of today on Welsh roads, it struck me that what is needed is more investment in public transport services to relieve the strain, along with a policy of renationalisation of the railways. Extending this further, the power companies have been accused of hitting customers with substantial back-charges for gas and electricity, and it would seem to me that the power companies should also be nationalised by the Assembly so that there is a single provider for these services. Another point is that these companies compete with one another to persuade consumers to switch from one company to another by tempting the consumer to save money.
In my view, capitalism is alien to the Welsh culture. The problem with capitalism is that the primary purpose of companies is to profit shareholders and company executives to the detriment of the consumer. The profits accrued are then creamed off and siphoned into the pockets of shareholders and excessive company salaries, and the consumer in Wales loses out once again. Furthermore these big companies are based in England and the revenue is diverted over the border. Another interesting thing is that whenever I have contacted Swalec I was answered by voices which have a broad Scottish accent. Should the emphasis in Welsh society be transferred from competition to co-operation?

What do you think?

The Symbols of the Nation

Symbols of the Nation

Some would not consider national symbols to be of much importance.

They are, however, an outward display of a nation’s identity and pride in nationhood. That is why we see the red dragon flag of Wales flying proudly in the towns and villages of Wales. It is why we see car stickers with Welsh motifs along the roads of Wales. Symbols denote that Wales is not the western province of England which Islwyn Ffowc Elis feared it would become. It is a nation among nations well on the way to full independence, the kind of independence that Ireland has achieved.

So let the flag fly in every place to proclaim our nationhood, and let the flags of Glyndwr and Llywelyn fly too, in the places where they performed their feats in their vain attempts to free Wales from the English yoke. Let monuments be constructed and placed at the battle sites, and let these places be shrines to freedom. Let Dydd Gwyl Ddewi Sant be celebrated as a national holiday, and let us make it a day of festivity and rejoicing. Let special stamps be printed for the occasion, and a coin be minted when independence is finally proclaimed.

Let us plant leeks in our gardens and daffodils in our parks. It is good news to hear that a national traditional folk theatre will open in Dolgellau, and that a Welsh national newspaper named “Y Byd” will be on the streets next March. These are minor events along the road to world recognition but they are significant. The foundation stones of the nation are already in place. We only await the consensus of the people, and the establishment of the nation-state with full self-governing powers in a Welsh Parliament. For other nations, Ireland, Italy, Hungary and others the nation-state was once a dream, and now it is a reality. This is history in the making.

By working together, whatever our leanings and political persuasions, we can help to bring about change, to create a better Wales and a brighter future, and make a real difference to the social and economic conditions in the communities throughout the country. Let us not use the thinking of the past and the politics of the last century, with its divisions and its bureaucratic and centrist governance, but seek a new approach and a real connection and partnership between the people and those who represent them. Let us unite and work in concert and in harmony to create a better Wales, forever to be named “Cymru”, so that the Land of our Fathers will be the Land of our Children.

Alan in Dyfed

Tuesday, 19 June 2007

Dydd Gwyl Ddewi Sant

Another Affrontery - and you can help to right it.

Mae'r Swyddfa Post yng Nghymru'n gwerthu bloc o stampiau gyda'r teitl 'Celebrating England' - Pan holais i, yr ateb a gefais oedd 'Oh well we're all English really!' Dywedodd y fenyw bod y stampiau i ddathlu Dydd Gwyl Sior, 'our patron saint', a honodd eu bod nhw'n gwneud yr un peth am Gymru a'r Alban 'as we're all a big happy family together'. Doedd dim stampiau i ddathlu Dydd Gwyl Ddewi, dim ond stampiau arbennig 'I do like to be beside the seaside'. Y rhif i ffonio i gwyno yn Gymraeg yw 0845 746 8469.
The Post Offices in Wales are selling a block of stamps entitled 'Celebrating England' . Upon enquiry, it seems these are to celebrate St George's Day. When asked about St David's Day stamps, the response was negative: the only stamps issued on 1st March were 'I do like to be beside the seaside'.
The number to phone to complain in English is 0845 774 0704.

Sunday, 17 June 2007

A Question of Allegiance

Allegiance implies responsibility as well as commitment. For many years the people of Wales in general gave their allegiance wholeheartedly to Labour, the political party which grew out of, and thrived in, the conditions of the great majority of Welsh people, who toiled for their mine-owning masters in the valleys and in the slate industry of the North. Apart from that, the egalitarian culture of the nation based on the co-operative and communal nature of society readily lent itself to the socialist movement as it gained more adherents at the beginning of the last century. Thus, Wales rapidly assumed the colour of the dragon and a donkey with a red rosette would have found its way to Westminster.

There was, however, an underlying resentment over the fact that Wales was controlled and dominated by England, while the English regarded Wales as a thorn in its side. The English attitude to the people of Wales had been droll at the least, and was expressed in quite derogatory terms, as in the saying “Taffy was a Welshman, Taffy was a thief….”
As a result Welsh society, which by now suffered from an inferiority complex, drew in upon itself and subconsciously expressed its defiance in song and religion, and a strongly-held attachment to the language. The time had come for the people of Wales to express their separate identity and for nationalistic tendencies to arise and become an integral part of the political spectrum.

This is the situation at the beginning of the 21st century. Plaid Cymru has matured politically and is a force to be reckoned with. People are even considering switching their allegiances, just as they switch from one power supplier to another. United we stand. Without this unity we fall. Allowing for the fact that there are many views and opinions we cannot create a party for each. Plaid is the umbrella for all progressive views. Leaving politics aside, the aim is the creation of a better Wales, which benefits the people as a whole, and keeps Wales together as a nation. Plaid remains the only party which steadfastly works for freedom and home rule. Let us restore to Wales that sense of community and egalitarianism, and revive our distinctive culture in all areas of Wales, eradicating the worst of the foreign influences and incursions. Let y dddraig goch be flown in every place to show our intentions are serious. We need to step up the profile, and keep it at the forefront of public attention.

Alan in Dyfed

gwe: plaid national exec unanimous

gwe: plaid national exec unanimous

Saturday, 16 June 2007

After Independence, Princedom or Republic

Princedom or Republic?

Would you like to see, after independence, a Prince or a President in Wales?

As I see it, this is of little importance. Countries such as Spain have restored the monarchy and others, such as Greece and Egypt, have overthrown theirs, but in fact it is the people who are the guardians of the nation and in a true democracy, which the UK is not, it is the people who decide their elected leaders. A tywysog or a taoiseach is one who leads, whether or not he is associated with royalty, and Wales, or Cymru, needs an elected leader who exhibits certain qualities, and who is statesmanlike. I see a statesman as someone who displays dignity, honesty and integrity, as well as intelligence and wisdom. There have been people in the past as well as the present who, in my opinion, have had these qualities, and those who come to mind include such people as Conor Cruise O’Brien, David Lloyd George, Dag Hammersjold, Gwynfor Evans, Nelson Mandela, the Dalai Lama and Lee Kwan Yew.

It is said that the people get the leader they deserve. From this, we understand that the people elect their leader and make their decision based on their own independent evaluation of the leader and his virtues. If they find later that the leader is flawed they have only themselves to blame. If the leader oppresses and tyrannises the people, as in the case of Stalin, it is up to them to rise up and overthrow him, or in a more tolerant society he faces impeachment. A leader who is truly a statesman has risen a little above politics, yet he displays the traits of modesty and humility and equanimity. When we elect our representatives, or put them up as candidates in any election, whether it be for the European Parliament, the National Assembly or the local or county council, we need to keep in mind these criteria in order that we have the best possible leadership and representation.

There is an old and wise saying, which is as follows :

“The lord looks down on the servant ;

The servant looks up at the lord ;

The lord and servant converse together.”

We are talking about the third sentence, “the lord and servant converse together”, where there is a meeting point between the elector and the elected, and an understanding that nobody is in any way superior to anyone else in this world. This is the reality but few are aware of it. To put it another way :”we are all one in the eyes of God”.

Alan in Dyfed

Thursday, 14 June 2007

What is Democracy?

In Wales we still experimenting with democracy, and in the recent National Assembly elections our version of democracy has produced an uncertain result. Can we say that the views of everybody are represented?

Somebody said : “ Democracy is the rule of the majority, for the majority, by the majority… but who wants to be ruled by the majority?”

If you are one of the majority…..maybe there is no problem for you. But what about if you are one of the minority, possibly one of those who lost the election?

We have had autocracy, theocracy, oligarchy and democracy, at various times and in various places.

Is democracy the answer to equitable and ethical government? The President of the United States would say so, and he would like to impose American-style democracy on every nation in the world, as a cure for the world’s political ills. Indonesia claimed to be democratic under Suharto, and the government chose and approved the opposition candidates. The Philippines is ruled by an elitist oligarchy, intent on staying in power, yet it is vaunted as a democracy. Democracy comes in a number of guises.

The Democrats in America were in the minority – just, but the country is still dominated by the majority – the Republicans. In fact it remains split down the middle. Many have diametrically opposing views, but only one side calls the shots. Can any country be democratic if the majority party is elected, and the minority is not also in power? Is this truly democratic? In a multi-party ‘democracy’, the majority party may be in power by gaining only one third of the votes, as in Wales today. It would seem that any opposition to or criticism of American policy (the policy of the majority) is considered unpatriotic. This harks back to McCarthyism, and even now in some quarters "liberal" is considered a dirty word.

It took 400 years for democracy to evolve in the United Kingdom, and we have observed that true democracy does not exist without all the people being represented. Three candidates stand for election to a constituency, one wins, and the votes cast for the others are discounted. Can this be in any sense truly democratic?

Democracy is claimed to be the best form of government we have, but is it suited to every nation and every circumstance? Can it work in a country which has had no tradition of democracy? A country benefits from the quality of its leadership, not necessarily from its form of government. An example of this is Singapore under Lee Kwan Yew.

An answer might be a gerontocracy - a Council of Elders, perhaps, where the nation is guided by a group of wise men and woman who are chosen for their altruistic service and integrity.These people may be chosen by a consensus of the people. Do you feel that you are truly represented, and do you agree with what is being done in your name? If you do, you are obviously part of the majority. If not, what?

Wednesday, 13 June 2007

The Road to Freedom

The road to freedom is long and winding. Sometimes it doubles back on itself but when guided by common sense and purpose it leads forward towards the re-establishment of a nation of people bound by a common culture and heritage, with its language and many of its traditions intact. Throughout the history of the last millenium there has been a relatively successful policy of 'divide and rule' followed by successive rulers of the British Isles. Those who have dared to oppose or flaunt the power of the state, and formerly the kings and queens, have been dragged along in chains, imprisoned, tortured and executed, and their lands seized and expropriated. We can recall Caradog, William Wallace, Prince Llywelyn, Padraig Pearce and others, whose names are still remembered by those with an insight into injustice and a concern for human rights and dignity.

Now, at the beginning of the new millenium, we sense that change is in the air, and that the down-trodden Celtic nations of the British Isles are experiencing an awakening and a resurgence. The visions of Saunders Lewis and Gwynfor Evans are about to be realised in the land they loved and cherished. The community of Wales is turning away from the socialist and bureaucratic policies of traditional, and particularly 'new' Labour, and sees in Plaid a party that selflessly espouses the real and pressing needs of the people of Wales. The Party of Wales is the only democratic and truly radical alternative to the political clones from over the border.
But we must not discount the shades of political opinion which range throughout the country, from the so-called right to the so-called left. Plaid must represent and embrace, and absorb, them all.

In my view, there is no reason why the Green Party, or even the Liberal and Conservative parties in Wales should not join in the push for independence. It does not have to be one party's prerogative. They may be persuaded or convinced to accept a move towards independence as it does not threaten their survival, but only the survival of the Union. If they could accept the breakup of the Union, and the formation of four nation-states within Europe, the aim of independence will be realised, and Plaid's mission accomplished. All roads lead to Rome.

Alan in Dyfed.
Porth Tywyn

Saturday, 2 June 2007

Our Tywysog - the Prince of Wales

Formerly Wales was ruled by princes. We hear of Prince Madoc, Prince Llywelyn, Prince Rhys, Prince Gruffydd, and the legendary Prince Seithennin. We hear of Hywell Dda and his law-making.
The Prince Wales has today is not Welsh; his blood and his genes are German, Scots and English, though he takes his duties seriously enough and, though considered eccentric by many, he has excellent ideas in regard to such matters as conservation, the environment, self-sufficency, sustainability and tasteful architecture. He was a friend of Sir Richard St. Barbe-Baker, the "Man of the Trees", who had notions about re-afforesting the Sahara desert.
In a sense it is interesting that the position of Prince of Wales was created by the monarchy because it shows that Wales was considered to be an entity apart, just as Scotland is. Yet the forces of the union have always tried to draw Wales into an uncertain alliance, which was given the title "Great Britain". Whether the name "Great" signifies the fact that Britain was a sea-faring nation, a colonising nation or a group of united peoples I have no idea, but what is clear is that England has attempted to dominate its neighbours and assume the role of a central power, naming itself Britain.
Ireland struggled for 400 years to free itself from the yoke of domination, and the interesting thing is that the Union flag cannot be seen flying alongside the Irish tricolour anywhere in the land. One can see the Stars and Stripes there as well as the flag of Europe, but no Union Jack.
After all, there are 60 million Irish descendants living in the United States. Apart from the Famine, disaffection with British rule and the iniquities of religious intolerance led people to emigrate to seek a better life, to America, to Australia and to Patagonia.
Our adopted Prince is now to make Wales his home, or one of them, and has purchased a property and land in Dyfed, near Llan ym Ddyfri (or what the English call Llandovery). The princes of England can do no more harm to Wales, now that their divine right to rule has long expired, and we should extend the hand of welcome. Hospitality has always been one of the prime virtues of the people of Wales. Yet the prince may be made aware of the fact that Wales, or Cymru, is a nation not to be ignored or relegated to being a peripheral part of Britain. We do not wish to be associated with perfidious Albion.

Alan in Dyfed

Friday, 1 June 2007

Welsh Independence - the British

The British ("Welsh")

The word "British" refers to the people who inhabited this island at the time of the Roman invasions. Following the departure of the Romans from Britain, the people were forced to defend themselves against invaders from across the North Sea, known as Angles,Saxons and Jutes. The Celtic Britons were slowly pushed to the northern and western extremities of the island of Britain, Cumbria, Wales and Cornwall. They were called Welsh (or "foreigners") by the Teutonic invaders, who settled in the area known as England. The Britons themselves referred to themselves as "Cymry" and the name lives on in Cumbria and Cymru, the official name for Wales.

Many of the Cornish migrated to Brittany, where they became colonised by the French. Wales and Cornwall (Welsh of the horn) were colonised by the English. However they both retained their language (Welsh and Breton) and their national culture. There were several notable insurrections against colonisation, one under the leadership of Owain Glyndwr, who set up a separate parliament in Machynlleth. Other insurrections were led by Prince Llywelyn, Prince Rhys ap Gruffydd and Prince Gruffydd ap Rhys.

Following the devolution in government at the end of the last century, Wales is now ready to assert its nationhood and separate identity, and to take its rightful place among the nations of Europe. It has taken several centuries to throw off the yoke of control from London, but now it is within reach, and there is an atmosphere of resurgence in the nation. There are resistances, from the elements of the population who have become "anglicised", and those who are staunch in their belief in the union, and from those who have no interest in their heritage, language and culture. The march towards independence, though fraught with obstacles, is inexorable and, led by Plaid Cymru and other Welsh zealots, it leads towards a new and exciting future for the nation. The watchword is "Ymlaen" / forward! Cymru am byth!

Alan S. Jones