Mar 182017
 

REFERENDA FOR ALL!

As you know by now, the SNP wants another referendum on Scottish independence, to be held towards the end of 2018, when the terms of Brexit will be known but before its implementation, in the hope that a Yes vote might keep Scotland in the EU without the need to apply for membership.

Within hours of SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon asking for her referendum Sinn Féin called for a referendum on re-unifying Ireland. Boosted by the increase in the party’s vote in the recent elections and playing on the fact that there is disquiet on both sides of the border, and in both northern communities, about the possibility of a ‘hard border’ being imposed once the UK leaves the EU.

UK prime minster Theresa May has refused to grant a Scottish referendum, making a vague promise of allowing a vote when the Brexit negotiations are complete and ‘the facts are known’ . . . or perhaps she’ll drag it out in the hope that the SNP loses its majority in the 2021 Scottish elections.

Here in Wales, in response to the SNP’s request Carwyn Jones nailed his colours to the mast of British nationalism by stating that we’re all better off in the UK. Last month declaring that after Brexit the UK could become a ‘mini-EU’. (Does he write this stuff himself?)

Plaid Cymru leader Leanne Wood has called for a ‘debate’ on independence if Scotland votes to leave the UK. Many others, especially on social media, are calling for a Welsh referendum.

click to enlarge

My reading of the situation is as follows.

Ms Sturgeon believes that Brexit is the issue to swing things her party’s way, and she may be right, for as we know Scotland voted 62% in favour of remaining in the EU. But will that translate into Yes votes in an independence referendum?

A lot is being made of those in Scotland who voted for independence in September 2014 and for Brexit in June 2016, with Unionists pretending to believe that this group will vote No to independence in a second referendum. Look, I have wanted independence for Wales all my life – and I voted for Brexit. Like 80% of Scots who voted for independence and Brexit my priority is to break the English connection; whether we’re in or out of the EU is almost irrelevant. So stop talking nonsense.

Sinn Féin has nothing to lose because a No vote to reunification would be expected due to there still being a Unionist majority. The party can count on its own supporters voting Yes, and nationalists joining them, but what if enough Unionists are so worried by Brexit that they’ll agree to a united Ireland rather than be outside the EU? There could be enough to be decisive; but whatever happens, Sinn Féin has nothing to lose.

Mrs May is the real gambler in this situation for any number of reasons, here are three. What would the UK Government do if a referendum organised by the SNP in defiance of Westminster returned a Yes vote and the SNP government in Holyrood declared independence? Second, Mrs May is increasingly being compared with Mrs Thatcher, but seeing as Mrs Thatcher’s legacy is toxic in Scotland this is turning Scots towards independence. Third, her own party, plus Ukip bawling in the wings, will demand a tough Brexit, telling them Europeans where to stick it, so delaying the Scottish referendum may be no advantage.

And here’s a final consideration that could screw up the Unionist position entirely. There is increasing acceptance within the EU that it needs to reform, to become less bureaucratic and more more democratic, and to crack down on corruption rather than on whistle-blowers. What if, as a farewell present, the EU, while negotiating Britain’s exit, simultaneously began reforming itself, so as to make it more alluring to Scottish and Northern Irish voters. For we all know how devious Johnny Foreigner can be.

But of course we are concerned with Wales. If Scotland goes independent, and if Ireland becomes one again – two big ifs – then there will be calls for a referendum in Wales. But there are important differences between Wales and the other two. For example, Scotland and Northern Ireland both voted, by substantial majorities, to remain in the EU, whereas Wales voted to leave.

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FOCUSING ON WALES

Let us assume that Brexit goes through to satisfy the BritLanders, that Scotland then votes for independence, and that the Irish throw themselves into each other’s arms, or at least, enough of them want a united Ireland to leave the UK as nothing more than Englandandwales. It goes without saying that in such a situation the calls for a Welsh referendum on independence will become louder.

While the position of most Plaid Cymru members can be guessed at, perhaps of greater importance is the position of the other political parties in Wales, especially the Labour Party. If Lord Kinnock is still with us in 2020 – and let us pray that the Grim Reaper ignores him (as we have learnt to) for a few more years – then I can see him leading the fight against Welsh independence. But what of Carwyn Jones and his gang, possibly more representative of today’s Labour voters than Kinnock?

Even with Scotland and Northern Ireland gone, I cannot see ‘Welsh’ Labour supporting the call for a referendum. The party is just too Brit in its outlook on everything, and so hostile to expressions of Welsh identity such as the Welsh language, as we’ve seen in Llangennech and elsewhere. Most recently in Labour’s refusal to back Dr Dai Lloyd’s modest attempt to protect Welsh place names.

On the plus side, the Labour Party in Wales is losing credibility and haemorrhaging support at a rate that is beginning to alarm the rats left on board, who are now turning on each other, with deselections reported from across the land ahead of May’s council elections.

We can guarantee the Conservative and Ukip positions on Welsh independence, and so without Labour Plaid Cymru could be a lone voice. Which will mean that in order to have any hope of winning an independence referendum the Yes campaign – little more perhaps than Plaid Cymru by another name – will need to remove party politics from the debate and appeal to the people on a different level entirely. Basically, raw patriotism.

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WILL AN APPEAL TO PATRIOTISM WORK?

No doubt some reading this will disagree with me and suggest that a Yes campaign could appeal to voters on the grounds that Wales would be better off in the EU, and so if independence is the only way to reach the land of milk and honey then they should vote Yes. The flaw there being that the ‘better off in the EU’ argument was used last year, and Welsh voters rejected it.

No, it would have to be done on the the most basic level, something like, ‘With Scotland and Northern Ireland gone it’s just England and Wales now, so do you want Wales to become part of England?’

And instead of discussing exports of salt marsh lamb to France, or Trixie Grant-Grabber and her friends at the Gurnos LGBT Muesli Knitters Co-operative losing their EU funding, it would be more sensible to use arguments that will resonate with far more people. One that comes to mind is the survival of our national football team. Because it’s not just the BritNats who want to see a UK football team; national associations around the world question why Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland have national teams when they are not independent countries.

With Scotland independent and Ireland one again maintaining a national football team for Wales will become very difficult, after a No to independence vote it will be virtually impossible. How long before our national rugby team goes the same way? (Yes it’s scaremongering. What do you think the other side will be doing?)

An appeal to patriotism, painting a picture of Englandandwales morphing into England with the loss of our national sporting teams and other badges of our identity, might get 51% of the Welsh vote on a good day after a particularly rousing speech by Carwyn Jones. But 51% of the Welsh vote will not be enough to gain independence due to the strangers in our midst, and I’m not talking here about EU migrants.

At the most recent census in 2011 we learnt that 20.8% of the population of Wales was born in England. The percentage of the population born in Wales was just 72.7%. The figures may be skewed by Welsh mothers having babies in hospitals just over the border, but the effect of our lack of maternity facilities is more than offset by children born to English parents in Wales who do not identify with Wales in any meaningful way.

Perhaps a more telling figure from the census would be that for identification, shown in the table below. There we see that only 65.8% of people living in Wales at the time of the census regarded themselves as Welsh.

click to enlarge

Now it could be that some of these strangers among us would vote for Welsh independence . . . but it wouldn’t be many. They will vote much as the non-French 20% of the population voted in the Quebéc independence referendum of October 1995, overwhelmingly against independence, and enough to secure a hairs-breadth victory of 50.58% to 49.42%.

Which means that given the figures we know, and taking into account other factors, such as the English element in the population being more heavily represented in the older age groups, and therefore more likely to vote, the Yes campaign would need to secure the votes of almost all the ‘Welsh only’ identifiers to win a referendum. Ain’t gonna happen.

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WHAT’S THE ALTERNATIVE?

As I hope I’ve made clear, asking for an independence referendum in the next few years will be a mistake. Partly because it cannot be won, but more importantly because a Yes vote of less than 25% could be so demoralising that some people might give up and resign themselves to assimilation into England.

It would make more sense to accept the improved devolution settlement that London is almost certain to offer to soften the blow of us being left alone with our centuries-old abuser. (Yes, London might want a referendum, but if nobody in Wales is asking for it . . . )

The extra devolution we’ll be given will be as flawed and useless as the devolution we’ve known since 1999 unless Labour loses its pre-eminent position in Welsh politics. But to fully capitalise on Labour’s eclipse either Plaid Cymru must re-invent itself as a nationalist party, or be replaced by a nationalist party.

We must grab as much as we can, we must squeeze every last concession out of the London regime, demand anything that can benefit Wales. And don’t be afraid to take to the streets and in other ways show that you aren’t going to be messed around with. I say that not because I’m trying to incite violence but because we have a corrupt and useless political class that will sell us down the river again and again if given a chance.

Once we’ve secured the best deal we can get Wales needs to be ‘stabilised’, by which I mean investment and economic growth needs to spread more evenly around the country, we need to curb colonisation, we need a strategy for the Valleys that goes beyond commuter communities for Cardiff, we need to provide a real economy for our rural and coastal areas instead of being grateful for zip wires and granny farming, we must invest in infrastructure, education and training.

We need to behave as if we were already independent to prepare our people for independence.

We are in the position of being unable to win an independence referendum in the next few years because Plaid Cymru has failed Wales. Plaid Cymru’s dithering and obsession with single-issue politics over the past 40 years has served England’s interests better than it has served ours. 

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  143 Responses to “Welsh Independence Referendum”

  1.  

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  2.  

    Quick fire comments
    Agree that Plaid has missed this boat – the take-over by the National Left in the ’80s produced this result, predictably. Narrowed Plaid’s base too far.
    Agree that we need the best form of devolution. Statehood ie we hold an elected Constitutional Convention and end up with something like Dominion Status (on offer 110 years ago). Not independence, not sure if we run Defence, but a heck of an advance on where we are now.
    You hid your most telling point, in a way. You mention “a referendum organised by the SNP in defiance of Westminster”. To my mind this is key, vital, central, essential…. you get the point.
    Which is that you get nowhere with Brits by only taking what they agree to give. You have to confront them. I don’t mean with guns or terrorism – though it worked for Ireland. I simply want Wales to assert itself, on anything, on any level really. Wales may not have the legal power to elect a Convention – but DO IT ANYWAY
    I’m in North Carolina, who got independence before the US did – they claim!. Yes they fought Cornwallis, but what they did mostly was to meet as a Parliament (which did exist legally) but then also meet in defiance of London (the NC Governor in the 1770s). There were confrontations. Non-violent but dramatic and they created confidence and got things moving. By confrontation. Nobody died.
    Come on Leanne…….no, the image just won’t come. What a disappoint the existing Plaid has been. Loads of people in North Carolina have Welsh names – is that where all the Welsh fire-eaters went?
    Keep trying, though.

  3.  

    A very timely piece Jac. I think that an appeal to ‘raw patriotism’ would deliver support for the idea of Wales amongst those who express their Welshness through the very safe means of their football or rubgy allegiances. It’s not something that appeals to me, (I haven’t a clue what the appeal of watching two groups of grown men running around chasing a ball is) but it is a reflection of where a sizeable proportion of the population are at.

    As such it’s the perfect place to start, as already people are focussing on who they are as a people, even though it would cause some slight pain if they were asked to consider their nationality in a slightly wider way. For most people, it’s quite likely that it’s the only part of the Welsh identity they actually understand, not because they are thick, or stupid, (though of course there will be some) but because, by and large, they haven’t had any contact with their own history, (and even a truly ‘left-wing’ version of it would create a lot of nationalsits!).

    Even if someone want’s to start accessing their own history in Wales, it’s hardly a straight forward excercise, as many of the less academic books, (and even many of the more academic) are no longer in print, and the teaching of history from a Welsh perspective is still probably not taught as well in our schools as it could be. And where are the popular televison histories? Where are the documentaries about Dic Penderyn, Rebecca, The Chartist cause in Wales? For that matter, where are the programmes that could be made about more modern, recent history, such as the stuff going on in the 60s, 70s, and 80s?

    Where are the popular television programmes about Wales’ economy? Especially the ‘invisible’ economy of our water and energy exports, both electric and oil? I know that some might baulk at the idea of selling water to the needy, but if it’s acceptable one community or canton in Switzerland to sell the water they possess to other communites and cantons, then why not Wales selling water to England. Even supplying on a cost basis would bring in millions. Ditto for energy exports.

    A strategy such as that would of course take time, and I agree with you, a kind of ‘devo-max’ would be a far better option for Wales in the short to medium term.

    In that period a party dedicated to making Wales a better place, (one that listens and acts, as opposed to one that just talks!) could make great strides in creating the idea that Wales can make it alone, simply by demonstrating that it’s actually possible. There is an awful tendency for groups and organisations to set themselves up and then go cap in hand to government, whether in Cardiff Bay or Westminster rather than finding the means of doing things without that kind of funding that basically undernines so many of them from operating in an effective manner. So much that is bad in present day Wales is down to WAG policies, so I can’t imagine a WAG funded organisation is going to say so much as boo to government, as that would be biting the hand that feeds – and there is a long list of potentially good organisations in Wales whose downfall can be directly traced to having accepted state funding.

    I think that grants for inital captial expenditure are just about acceptable, but funding for day to day activies, (bills, wages etc) need to come from the community, or from things like crowd funding. That leaves then leaves them free to criticise government policy, and would reduce the tendency of all the paid positions going to the chinless wonders that seem to currently flock around such organisations. Any paid positiosn should go to local, (i.e. have lived there for at least 5 years) people who have a proven connection to their area, and who are a known quantity. It might seem that this is getting a bit far away from the topic of discussion, but we do need to be able to rebuild a sense of community, a sense of Welshness that belongs to the people themselves.

    I also quite agree with you about the strangers in our midst. Some, of course, as you have acknowledged, have made some very positive and important contributions to Wales, but the majority are at best apathetic and indifferent to Wales, and at worst actively hostile.

    I think it would be far more likely that EU migrants, were they able to vote on this issue, (as well as migrants/refugees from outside of the EU) would be very supportive of Welsh independence as they have a far better understanding of what it means, as many of them are either fleeing oppression because they belong to an ethnic group who are trying to create a space for themselves, such as the Kurds, or who come from countries who came into being at some point during the 20th Century, and so have a better understanding of what it is to have their own country.

    Yes, we do need to behave as if we were independent in order to prepare for independence, so perhaps it’s a case of asking people to start to stretch their expression of their Welshness just a little beyond the safe area of sporting allegiances, and simply and persitently challenging notions that Wales can’t make it on its own simply by asking , “Why not?”

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      Sibrydionmawr, your comment has reminded me to ask something that someone asked me the other day that I was unable to answer ie. where does Plaid’s funding come from? I’m sure that most of the readers of Jac’s blog know this, but I’m in the dark. Could someone enlighten me please?

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        If you click HERE you’ll get the info.

        The reality is that their funding is made up of what’s called ‘Public Funding’, grants, loans and membership fees.

        In fact on paper they don’t appear to be solvent. I remember a time when they had a donation from some union (I can’t remember which one). There is also a tale that they made a pilgrimage to Libya in 1976 (on Prof. Phil Williams’ suggestion). Apparently they got £25,00 from Gaddafi – but they say they can’t find any trace of that in their books.

        In my opinion they should have stuck closer to Gaddafi, he may have taught them something about freedom & independence. Libya at the time also had the best health & education system in the whole of Africa (you never hear that on mainstream western propaganda media though), as Castro had the best health and education system in the world. However Plaid’s fear of someone discovering what they were up to probably sent them scurrying behind the sofa again!

  4.  

    For me, it’s too complicated and complex an issue to make a definitive comment on at this stage. There are also too many variables that can’t be predicted. What you’ve written is probably a fair reflection on the situation. THAT alone makes me feel even more depressed about our possible future.

    The one thing you didn’t factor in is the relentless increase in the number of foreigners from the other side of Clawdd Offa that descend on us daily. If that trend continues, then waiting for a chance to act at an opportune time in the future becomes an increasingly hopeless probability.

    It’ll be interesting to see what comments you harvest from this latest blog post of yours Jac.

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      The number of Anglo +similar arrivals as an annual %age of native residents must be reaching the level of EU nationals arriving in UK ( England). Now that EU migrant figure caused one hell of a rumpus yet the figure for those crossing Clawdd Offa is treated as a cold fact and nothing to “worry about”. Yet the truth of the matter is that many of the immigrants arriving in UK do so cos they desparately want to be English, yet none ( or very few) of the English arriving in Wales have any intention of respecting or adopting any part of Welsh identity.

  5.  

    No General likes to fight a war on two fronts. England is fighting a war on 6 Fronts if not more:
    1: EU
    2: Scottish Independence (loss of oil revenues and scottish whiskey exports = permanent austerity)
    3: Reopening of N Ireland troubles (possible unification)
    4: Negotiating trade deals with the rest of the world that will take up to a decade. 80% of UK GDP is Services, a fall back to WTO trading will severely hit the service sector.
    5: The potential loss of Gibraltar – Spain will demand joint rule (like they have in Andorra with France) as a minimum to vote through any Brexit deal
    6: The loss of passporting rights to the City which should see around 10-20% of financial sector activity move abroad resulting in a loss of tax revenue combine this with a loss of scottish oil and whiskey exports is going to seriously deplete the Chancellors coffers.
    7: The world is owed a recession, they usually happen every 7-8 years and we have not had one since 2008, what will happen to all of the above if global recession hits winter 2017 early 2018? The current amazing growth Brexiters site as a sign that the UK economy is sound is CREDIT FUELED GROWTH, what happens when you’ve maxed out the credit card! The UK is the only economy in Europe to have had growth and zero wage growth since 2008 if this was France there’d be a revolution on the streets. But this is the UK so everyone sits back and accepts it.The UK of Great Britain and NI was the Worlds 5th Largest Economy with a GDP per Capita that ranked it 25th in the World ( I believe Ireland ranks higher) its now post Brexit the 6th Largest Economy in the World. Where do you think it will rank once its resolved all of the above issues? What will happen to Barnet Consequentials and the state of your public services as funding is consistently reduced, Wales has an ageing population. If Ford and Airbus and the Japanese companies leave after Brexit the only economic activity in the country will be the Public Sector, Third Sector and Admiral.
    8: Any potential curb ball – trade war between the US and EU, US and China? middle east blowing up? etc
    9: Death of the Queen – australia, canada etc begin moves to remove the next king as their head of state

    England happily granted independence to most of her colonies after World War II not out of benign benevolence but because she was BANKRUPT. If she wasn’t, she would have fought tooth and nail to keep all of her possessions. BREXIT will bankrupt England at that stage I am sure WILL HAPPILY GRANT INDEPENDENCE TO ANYONE except the scots they desperately need their oil. They’d happily get rid of NI and Wales in a heart beat.

    In a hypothetical post Independence world who is going to fund the unionist political parties when the tax base is so low? And political apathy so high? UKIP is a dead horse, Arron Banks has abandoned them, they relied on their EU seats to fund the party that cash cow is gone, they now have to rely on the Welsh Assembly besides May having Ukippized her party (coopted UKIP’s message) most of UKIPs support has gone back to the Conservatives. Labour, Conservatives and Lib Dems will oppose independence from an ideological perspective but also from that very basic financial need – who will fund us? It’s the same reason the Scottish Labour Party does not want complete independence from London, they don’t have the financial resources from membership to keep the lights on.

    Population dynamics could potentially render Independence a complete non starter. Plaid Cymru if they were ever serious about Independence should have had statisticians run the numbers on this. So for example if the pattern of voting remains the same (ie 16 – 18 yr olds vote 60%+ for Independence and the old die off) Scottish Independence will be achieved by 2050 on natural selection alone. Plaid should have a number – a year based on voting patterns and current immigration rates as to when Wales should essentially just give up and become a region of England. And they should be promoting that figure assiduously so for example according to our estimates based on current immigration patterns by 2030 we will be a region of England as they will be too many English people in this Country. We have essentially been ethnically cleansed out of our own country.That could be a bit of a hamdinger! But then again the Aglo Welsh might not see it that way as they are 3rd 4th generation English Immigrants. Its like China telling Taiwan you are Chinese and part of the Chinese State and the Taiwanese saying As if! The Anglo Welsh might not respond to such a statistic with alarm, just a yeah whats wrong with that. We’re all anglo saxon! And at that point what do you do – partition the way Ireland did. Y Fro Cymru becoming the Republic of Cymru and Anglicised Wales becoming part of England and Wales. Is PARTITION potentially a viable ACT OF SELF PRESERVATION – that is a probability that has to be entertained. If the Irish had said we need to wait for folk in the northern provinces to see things our way they’d still be part of the UK and having endless discussions of Independence and being told very patronizingly that they are too poor to be Independent. They currently have better rates of GDP per Capita than the UK! And its a case of when you folk in NI are ready to join us, feel free to join us, but no just yet as we have just come out of a financial crisis! So it could be a republic of cymru saying to anglicised wales, when your ready to join us, join us until then we’re offski! But how does that legally work, what avenues are open? Who has done the legal, financial work on this? Who has war gamed the strategy? UDI does not come into the equation. What international networks of support can you rely on?

    •  

      An excellent post, lots of food for thought there!

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      I’m not sure you’re right to suggest that England would happily get rid of Wales. Here are just a few reasons why I say that.

      First, where are the nuclear subs going to go when Scotland becomes independent? Almost certainly Milford Haven.

      Second, millions of English tourists come to Wales every year and most of the money they spend makes its way back to England.

      Third, water.

      Fourth, the figures on Welsh ‘dependency’ are skewed by Welsh people paying taxes in England and other taxes that we are not allowed to collect.

      Fifth, simple prestige and image. With Scotland gone England/Britain looks much smaller, and insignificant compared to France and other countries. Take away Wales and England won’t be much bigger than Belgium and the Netherlands.

      •  

        Not disputing what you’re saying other than to say that the population of England is 53m and the population of Belgium and the Netherlands is 28m combined, so there is a significant difference in size there. France has a population of 66m, so though England on its own would be less significant, it’s not by that much, and not really that much of a change on the present situation.

        Not sure that the English, (well not the one’s we are talking about anyway) hold much store about what others think of their prestige and image, as that is (unfortunately) entirely self-generated, and in the absence of affirmation from elsewhere, solely backed up by their own grand view of themselves.

        Disagree with that, and you’re a traitor, didn’t you know?!

      •  

        Nuclear subs will never go to Milford. Too many practical and political difficulties.
        Carwyn suggested it because he thought he was doing his bit to preserve his beloved Union, and got laughed at.
        Falmouth would be my bet

    •  

      sign that the UK economy is sound is CREDIT FUELED GROWTHAll growth is credit fuelled.

      How do you think houses are bought.

      How do you think companies expand.

      How do you think governments finance themselves

  6.  

    The majority of the people in the valleys vote Labour as a defence against the Tories in Westminster. That shield no longer exists. Plaid Cymru need take up that cause, in the same way as the SNP has in Scotland. Time for an independence referendum in Wales. Do you want to be ruled from England by Tories, or home rule by Plaid in Wales? Labour have left the park. Simple honest message from Plaid that can win.

    •  

      We’ve just seen them pretty much throw one of their own under the bus for doing exactly that.

  7.  

    I happen to agree with you in supporting Brexit … but the constitutional position of the British state in the EU is far stronger than that of Wales, Scotland and NI in this British “Union”. There are significant protections in the EU to prevent the biggest states from imposing their will on smaller states. On some matters, unanimity is required. On others, there is Qualified Majority Voting. In the British “Union”, the Westminster parliament holds all the main levers controlling economic, fiscal and trade policies, as well as major constitutional change — and as we all know, at Westminster, the bloc of 533 English representatives trump the interests and wishes of the Welsh, Scots and Irish every time.

  8.  

    I also feel that time is a luxury we may not have. How long will it be before the % population of people living in Wales but born in England reaches 30, 40 or 50% What if NOW is all we have, or the next 5 or 10 years is the only window of opportunity? If we categorically knew we had 20 years before independence became an impossibility because, by then, we’d be a minority in our own country, how would we act in the meantime? Personally I’d be prepared to tramp the length-and-breadth of Wales personally begging every person I met to vote yes. If all those in favour of independence acted as though now is our only chance maybe we’d have a shot? If nothing else, the whole process and build-up to the referendum would act as some kind of purge, tearing the political status-quo inside out, exposing the bare bones of politics in Wales, forcing people to take responsibility for their vote and forcing very comfortable politicians into very uncomfortable positions? Or maybe it would tear the country apart which, to me, would still be preferable to being a part of Englandandwales.

  9.  

    Plaid Cymru held an internal enquiry into the results of its 2011 Cardiff Bay Election. I told that enquiry Plaid Cymru needed to learn two lessons from the SNP. One fight for independence. Two. Have nothing to do with the Labour Party. If there is low demand for independence it needs to be created. Daz washing powder did not exist at one time, demand for Daz was created by advertising. Create the demand for independence and destroy the Labour Party.

    •  

      The proposition for Wales joining the EU as an independent state (like Ireland, Slovenia or Estonia) is easier than that for Scotland, because…

      (a) There is no ‘currency’ issue. Wales would qualify to join the Euro, and it being only 70% as wealthy as Scotland or England, it would actually benefit from leaving the pound zone to join the Euro.
      (b) There is no ‘head of state’ issue. Unlike Scotland where the monarchy is shared with England, there is no natural loyalty or abode for to the English royals. A republic would be natural proposition like Ireland.

      To counter an independence campaign on these terms, the British state would have to invest in real Welsh infrastructure rather than ignore or run it as a charity. This would also be the pre-independence dividend. Also, the current stability and adoration of QE2 will be disappear upon her death. I see no public worship of Charles or William in England, let alone in Wales.

      A republic would be a popular proposition.

      There is also no ‘jobs from Trident’ or ‘Tartan financial sector’ issue, or Ulster like sectarianism in Wales, so in a way, if Plaid Cymru launched a proper independence campaign in Wales within the next twelvemonth, calling for a referendum it would be the right time to do it. It would also open up a ‘second front’ to assist our cousins in Scotland and Northern Ireland.

      At the ballot box, what’s left of the Labour party would be firmly placed on Theresa May’s knee, as for the Labour Party being British is more important than the well being of the Welsh people.

      Indy Reff Cymru is …

      (a) putting Labour to the sword,
      (b) putting the needs of Wales onto the political landscape,
      (c) Assist our Celtic cousins,
      (d) Nothing to lose and might get some devo-max promises as barter.
      (e) Deter further colonial settlement (dump/retire to Devon instead).

      Are you up for it?
      (Silly question, if you’re reading this you are, but has Plaid Cymru got the guts?)

  10.  

    I’m as skeptical as you that Welsh voters will ever wake up and put Wales first, but rather than constantly wasting energy throwing rocks at Plaid Cymru the answer is to create a well supported, grass roots non party campaign in every community in support of Welsh Independence that will eventually drag Plaid Cymru’s current lackluster leadership kicking and screaming to support the cause of welsh independence.

    As if by magic there’s already is one called YES CYMRU, look them up online if your interested, they’re small but growing and have quite a few active branches, there’s even a Welsh Labour for Independence Group – who knows if any of it’ll work, but sitting round complaining wont change anything that’s for certain.

    And lastly one tactic that should be deployed more often is the threat of the EnglandandWales entity, here’s what it’ll mean in a 5 min video posted this morning https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wNhSgMYc49A

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      I’m not sure that anything can be done with Plaid’s current leadership and representatives other than salvaging Adam Price, Rhun ap Iorwerth, Jonathan Edwards, Neil McEvoy and a few others while ditching the rest.

      As for Yes Cymru, it sounds a good idea, but I’ve always been worried that it might be too close to Plaid Cymru.

      •  

        That’s my point Plaid Cymru are irrelevant to this debate, if Welsh indy comes and as i said im highly skeptical it ever will, it’ll be from grassroots pressure outside political parties, not from the crachach and if you’re not sure about YES CYMRU, why not thing start your own group, the more the merrier.

      •  

        sometime during the last month I suggested that a crew of not necessarily like minded but seriously motivated people could join Plaid and lift it back onto its rails. Now critics might draw comparisons with Militant, Momentum etc etc but this “wedge” should distance itself from any attachments to Lefties, Righties, Brexiters, Remainers or any other badge that is a result of the Anglo Brit matrix which was put together to enable politics to be pidgeon-holed. Instead just be radical separatist body which would evolve its own composite of policies goals and objectives.

        There’s an awful lot of baggage to be dumped, things that have effectively derailed Plaid for decades. Get back to a clear focus on :

        – the economy – building, manufacturing & extractive industries and agriculture among others,
        – education – schools, colleges, universities and life long learning/retraining,
        – health and care – joined up thinking needed here to avoid the well publicised crises.
        – crime prevention, justice, law and order

        Tighter control of public spending would be a start to getting rid of all the frilly nonsense that grown under the umbrella of public spending. Pet projects are a curse in most countries but with our track record of patronage it is a national cancer given how scarce resources are pissed down the drain like money was not an issue.

      •  

        I can’t speak about YesCymru anywhere else, but in my experience here in Swansea it certainly isn’t too close to Plaid Cymru. In fact, when we were looking for speakers for a rally a Plaid AM made the point himself that keeping Plaid at a distance might be good for us as a cross/non-party movement. And he was as good as his word! Plaid were certainly not falling over themselves to help us (the one Plaid Ifanc speaker been done very much as an individual, as it were.) Keeping it separate from Plaid, from all other parties – not linking it to belonging to Europe, in fact seeing what advantages to the matter can be gained from Brexit – pushing sport as an example of Welsh patriotism – all these are what I’ve heard from Yes Cymru, both in the flesh round here and online. And that’s why I like the movement.

        •  

          Ok, I’m glad to hear that, but disappointed to read somewhere this morning that YesCymru is asking for a multi-option referendum. (I had thought of using this option in my post, but decided against because I’d only mention it to reject it.)

          There are good reasons why so many legislators and others are opposed to multi-option referenda, and this time it’s not self-interest. The problem is that multi-options can often confuse the issue rather than elucidate. In the case a multi-option referendum for Wales what would the choices be, and how many?

          Presumably full independence would be one option. Then perhaps a beefed-up form of devolution called Home Rule or federalism. Presumably, the status quo would be on the menu. With perhaps the final option being to do away with devolution and return to direct rule from London.

          If those were the options then Option 4 could be the most popular, even though more people had voted for Home Rule and independence combined. So where would that leave us? And what if ‘London’ decided on just three options, leaving out Home Rule? In that scenario I could see the useless form of devolution we suffer today coming out victorious.

          The only way a multi-option referendum can work is if one option gets 51% of the vote. And in the Welsh referendum we’re discussing, that is very unlikely to happen. Worse, with our masters deciding on the choices offered, and the wording of those options, we’re at a disadvantage before we start.

          •  

            I agree. But then has anyone tried to run a multi-option referendum like an STV election, where you rank the options and have your vote transferred to you second preference and so on as the least supported choices are eliminated one by one until a 50% + majority is achieved? I think it would work in theory, but wonder if it wouldn’t befuddle a UK voter used to straight choices?

          •  

            Yeah, its far as I can tell, t’s pretty accepted that such multiple option things take support away from independence. That’s why the establishment leap on the figures produced by such polls, interpreting them as they like.

            Oh, I hadn’t seen that. Reported in Golwg360 and Y Cymro, that the one? Thanks for that.

            Yeah, I agree. Referendums have to be clear and straightforward. She’s obviously saying “Wales needs a referendum to determine it’s future, and independence must be an option on that referendum” rather than “Wales needs a multiple option referendum rather than a yes/no referendum on independence” maybe because she doesn’t think a yes/no referendum is on the cards at the moment, but yeah, I agree.

            Not to say it’s not important, but I doubt this will turn into a hobby horse (certainly hope it won’t!) and I’m sure there’ll be more stuff I disagree with- but I’m now inclined to put my point of view about it out there though, for what little it’s worth. Ta.

    •  

      Diolch for sharing my video 🙂

      •  

        Fidio ardderchog SteCymru14.

        An excellent video – keep it up – we need lots more to help the uninformed understand the situation.

        •  

          An excellent video indeed – my partner was listening to it earlier and was impressed by it. This one might be getting out of date, but maybe still of interest/use https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fw5tyCUHYmg&t=4s

          •  

            The first one was excellent, this one is even better! Thanks Ianto!

            Jac you really ought to embed these videos permanently in a prominent place on your blog’s ‘front page’.

            I for one am sick of having to explain things like this to the uninitiated, and sometimes downright stupid contributors who insist that we can’t be independent because we’re
            1. Too small a nation (a very popular myth based on a lie)
            2. We are not rich enough or
            3. We could not survive without the support we receive from England (all bollocks of course).

  11.  

    Alot of nonsense on here to be honest. Not Jac’s post but some of the comments.

    The idea the Welsh would vote to join the Euro is fairly mad. Let alone the 20% of Wales who are English.

    I do expect it’ll recover its credibility as a currency within the next decade but come on, don’t try and say that there’s some kind of valleys majority for joining it. The idea you say to the valleys “independence to stop the Tories…but it also means the Euro”…come on mate, seriously. Need a better answer on currency.

    But once Scotland votes Yes it creates a new situation doesn’t it?

    At the end of the day Plaid is the only party calling for any kind of independence. What they have called for is actually spot on and similar to what Jac wants in his post. Contradictions eh! A Yes movement outside Plaid Cymru is essential, but I would imagine the much maligned Blaid would be the only party promoting them or giving them the time lf day. Know your enemy, yes, but know your allies too.

    Also agree with jac that England won’t “get rid” of Wales. There’s no shortcut like that so please stop it. Wales is useful to England for water, logistics, military bases and to some extent electricity. It’s also a prestige thing.

    •  

      You’ve put your finger on something I should have perhaps stressed more in my post, which is that too many of those now pushing Welsh independence are doing so for the wrong reason. We must promote independence because it’s the best option for Wales, not because it could keep us in the EU. If fact, linking independence with the EU – let alone the Euro! – could be counter-productive, so just focus on these islands and our relationship with an England that has lost Scotland and Ireland.

      •  

        I think the relationship between the independence movement in Wales and the EU should be the same as the independence movement in Ireland was with the US.

        Let’s assume that your loyalty to the Bank of England is not driven by British patriotism but by your observation of the EU funded freeloaders so evident in Wales when the United Kingdom called the shots at the European Commission and the Labour Party/British establishment ran the Welsh theifdom under faux devolution.

        Things have changed.
        Brexit will happen, certainly for Englandandwales.

        The most likely outcome is a hard Engxit, and the puff chested old empire types are going to have a rude awakening. Tariff barriers will be punitive, the value of the pound will plummet on the international markets, and the ‘austerity delay’ will kick in as wage cuts and slashing of public sector spending. This will include crippling the NHS and removal of agricultural support, inflation of food prices, and asset stripping of investment in industry.

        In that situation, the black market, illegal as well as illegal internet retail, and real economy business transactions will be in Euros. A Scottish pound will be buoyant being tied to the dollar by oil price. I propose that an independent Wales [i]could[/i] adopt the Euro. It may become credible, and possibly desirable.

        Of course, soon there will be lot’s of excise men in B&Bs in Aberdovey manning a gunboat flying a Union Jack in Cardigan bay stopping French fishing boats, or maybe Welsh ones selling prawns and beef, offshore for cash. The Spar in Tywyn will have a leg of New Zealand lamb, but to get a proper Welsh Sunday roast, you will have to get it off ration, under the counter.

        Meanwhile I’m sure Dafydd El will be an excellent revenue factor for Her Majesty, and Lord Carwyn will be running around trade union branches urging workers to accept pension cuts for the good of the realm. Kinnock junior has already mastered that art. My preference is sedition. Destroying the British state, for I am the enemy within. Why refuse help from a German banker?

        Don’t worry, Sophie, Nerys and Owens will have already moved udder from Brussels to Basingstoke.

      •  

        I suppose so, but we’re getting into the realms of political conviction. If politicians believe in Wales in Europe that should be acknowledged.

        What do Leanne, Rhun, Adam, jonny Eds and Mcevoy have in common? They all support the EU. I know Plaid Cymru members. It’s not a bolt on, it’s part of their nationalism. It is very similar in the SNP.

        But can they guarantee Wales would even be let in? Scotland will show the way here.

        If a succesful independent Scotland is in the EU it will be exemplar for Wales. Arguing that we should copy Scotland but without the EU part would be unconvincing in the extreme.

        It makes sense to follow some of Jac’s logic about gaining more powers and forcing concessions. That’s a demoralising and tricky path mind you.

  12.  

    After reading the for and whys regarding all issues regarding the break up of UK, I cannot believe there are so many people think that ANY part of the UK can stand alone. Independent means NO funding what so ever from uk government. If SNP think that Scotland has enough income to support them standing alone is fooling themselves, and that goes for NI and Wales. Wake up.

    •  

      You’re contradicting yourself, troll; if England subsidises Scotland, Wales and the Six Counties then obviously England could stand alone. You’ve had your say now go away.

    •  

      Read my previous comment on a previous blog post. Click HERE

      You poor misinformed and brainwashed person – it is you that needs to wake up to reality instead of the age-old propaganda that you’ve consumed blindly..

  13.  

    Highlighting the possibility or permanent Tory rule if/when Scotland goes. That is what you’d have to stress with the Valleys in particular – I think a lot of people vote to keep the Tories out and when the day comes that they are unable to do so then the usefulness of Labour will drop dramatically.

    Media. I know people say that is the key but I don’t think its an effective tool as people would imagine. For starters it’d take a while to get it to a competitive level – people who read the news already have their preferred outlet plus it’d have to cover all areas of the political spectrum – not just the ones which favour Welsh Independence – so really could be a bit unpredictable. There would also have to be some way to stop bigger media companies from buying them out.

    There’s one other element which binds the Union together: the Monarchy. I know what I’d suggest to counter that and really stick up an anti-establishment middle finger but I doubt people would like it. 🙂

    •  

      The threat of permanent Tory rule would have been a useful weapon until the last general election, when Scotland elected only one Tory MP but the Tories still had a clear majority. Northern Ireland will be more influential if it goes because Sinn Fein MPs don’t go to London and the Unionists usually vote with the Conservatives.

      Looking at it from a different perspective, there are currently 59 Scottish MPs. Independence removes them from the Commons so, given that 58 of them are non-Tory, this would mean that in future elections the Tories would be able to form a government with fewer MPs from Englandandwales.

  14.  

    Partition is the answer.

    We will become a minority, so the priority should be further provincial devolution within Wales and a formal creation of ‘Y Fro Gymraeg’ with a view to resettle this territory with patriots from Glamorgan, Gwent and Clwyd.

    We’ll do a swap… the goodlifers, gimmegrants and coffin dodgers can move to places like Fochriw and us lot down by yur can have their nice cottages with a sea view!

    Let’s face it, the likes of Flintshire, Powys and Monmouthshire are a lost cause. They’re much more English than the cities of England. Let them have the Marches. We’ll have our little Switzerland centred around Gwynedd and Ceredigion!

    •  

      No partition under any circumstances.

      •  

        Agree. Here’s a video produced by Cymuned at that time. Strangely it’s a song I learnt to sing it in primary school many years ago.
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ej4llHNIGl4
        Trouble is, when I left the school gates I had no one to talk to in that language.

        Half a century later, when I’m in Y Fro Gymraeg I keep meeting English people. When I do eventually meet a proper Cardi or Gog and they hear my “too Welsh for the BBC” type of accent they say oddwn i ddim yn gwybod dy fod yn deall Cymraeg!

        When I doorstep in Rhondda we won a 30% swing to Plaid Cymru, and every household I talked to identifies themselves as WELSH ONLY. The same can be said for every valley from the Gwendraeth to the Ebwy. That lone Welsh medium school of many years ago, is now seven, and the kids are queuing at the gates.

        They don’t have to ask permission to speak Welsh.
        Everyone there was BORN in the valley, it’s just a question of opportunity.
        Why cut these communities with partition of the counties?
        Maybe I should start door stepping in Llangennech ?

    •  

      I like that Y Fuwch Goch! It sounds exactly like what we were saying in Cymuned back in 2002. The only BIG problem is that Y Fro Gymraeg was shrinking alarmingly then, by now it may be past the point of no return.

      It’s an old idea born from Iwerddon. The Ghaeltacht is a word used to denote any primarily Irish-speaking region. In Ireland, the term Gaeltacht refers individually to any, or collectively to all, of the districts where the government recognises that the Irish language is the predominant vernacular, or language of the home, in our case ‘Y Fro Gymraeg’.

      Has it been or is it still a success? I’m not sure. Increasingly it seems to have become a bit of a statement rather than a tool to save the language and the communities it resides in. I always have that gnawing fear that it’s a bit too akin to a reservation.

      My continuing hope is in a drastic change to our (English borne) education system – that should be the primary focus of our attention. THAT is the key to our problem. Teach our children about our history, culture & language, whilst highlighting our struggles and the injustices against us as a nation over the centuries. The rest will automatically fall into place. I believe THAT is the answer and not the partition of our precious homeland.

      •  

        Yes indeed Gee, and that type of enclave/reservation means we’ll all dress up in feathered bonnets (or whatever now passes for Uncle Sioni and Anti Jen attire ) when there’s paying tourists around. By all means have Y Fro Gymraeg but only within a Cymru Rydd. To formalise it while under the rule of London and the Bay quisling set would only facilitate the long slow death so favoured by those destructive bastards.

        Mind you, a repatriation programme of goodlifers and other assorted hostiles would be a good idea. But don’t inflict them on Fochriw, FFS, the place has had enough bad times as it is without dumping that lot on the locality. No, straight over the border is best, into the less desirable corners of places like Bristol, Liverpool and Manchester which they have come to regard as being beneath their dignity. Let them go & reclaim their rightful homes.

  15.  

    As an Englishman, British who has Norman heritage if we go back far enough, I have chosen to live in Wales for the last 28 years, as has my wife who has English and Welsh heritage, we have brought up three children in Wales, one of whom was born here. All three could choose to play for Wales at sport if they had the sporting talent and probably would. My heritage is what it is and therefore part of my identity but in the great scheme of things I am not sure it has meant much with anyone I have engaged with over my lifetime of 63 years. I have lived and worked in Wales, England, Northern Ireland and Italy.

    I am completely content if the residents of Wales want a referendum and subsequently choose independence. Like you I am not greatly impressed with the competence of any of the political party leadership in Wales. However, a part from once standing for the local council since arriving In Wales and losing by 14 votes to an Independent. I personally have not sought high office, so my criticism has to be tempered a little.

    I find the scarier end of nationalism in any country a little disconcerting. I loved a visit to Hungary last year and could really understand their turmoil after studying their history but still felt some of the people’s angst a little difficult to have empathy with. When living in Northern Ireland I was largely supportive of the Nationalist aspiration but not the violent extreme especially as I had direct experience with Nationalist and Unionist families who had members killed or maimed, children and young people included. Likewise in Wales I am largely supportive of the Nationalist aspiration but was not impressed by fellow citizens burning down other people’s homes in the past. I genuinely feel it did not enhance the Nationalist cause and said much more about the individual psychology of the individuals involved. I also felt aggrieved that the police and security forces were less than competent.

    I am not suggesting that I am typical of anyone but I know of other people living in Wales with similar thoughts. I do worry about divisions in the country widening and some voices arguing strongly to keep people out, even a Welsh wall and a defence force modelled on the Swiss one. Of course over the years I have come across a few Welsh people hostile to me for being English and some others actively choosing to ignore me with indifference but that is true if you travel anywhere. I do not like some of the name calling that is used in this blog but accept that maybe part and parcel of a different sensibility. It is not very attractive to me and I suspect others.

    If those fellow citizens most keen, get their act together to persuade a majority of independence so be it. My only slight worry is purely selfish in that I do worry that the new Welsh state might not be willing to pay me as good state pension as the UK promises too! However, in the scheme of things this is a little marginal for many but life and death for some.

    The biggest surprise to me is why so many energetic and able citizens choose not to get involved in the Nationalist cause maybe like me they are not hostile just not that bothered whether we are part of the UK or an independent Welsh state.

    I accept people who are more engaged with their identity will come back strongly but I am not in denial of the colonial past and I am a keen student of Welsh history and all the indignities imposed by invading forces.

    I would encourage those wanting independence to campaign because on the street my observation is that many people are indifferent, though there is a significant Unionist legacy as well. You need to enthuse people like me because we form an open and supportive parcel of potential support.

    •  

      You say lots of marginally ‘nice’ things, but I detect that what you are really trying to project to the typical reader of this blog is that you’re a fence sitter (a safe place to hide). Someone who does not have the courage to say exactly what they really think & feel. Lot’s of nice fluffy things about independence, a polite rejection of physical resistance. I would remind you of some words of our national anthem “. . . . Ei gwrol ryfelwyr, gwladgarwyr tra mâd, Tros ryddid gollasant eu gwaed”.

      Now the acid test for you. Confirm in writing here; if you were in a position to vote in an independence referendum in Cymru tomorrow, would you tick the ‘Yes’ or the ‘No’ box on your ballot paper?

      •  

        OMG I’ve just had the “shed their blood” argument thrown at me elsewhere by a raving BritNat calling the SNP traitors to all those who died “fighting for the flag they want to destroy”. Not really productive in this day and age, and faced with a ‘fence sitter’ should you not be winning him over rather than antagonising him?

        Paul. My question to you is that having long ago centred you life and family in Wales, why do you not feel Welsh? Had there been such a thing as Welsh nationality, would you have signed up for it once you met the criteria, say seven years residence or whatever? Just interested in you POV. It’s important to understand where people are coming from before jumping down their throats.

    •  

      A Mr Paul Lucklock stood as a Labour council candidate in Vauxhall ward, Liverpool in the early 1980s. He joined Militant, but Mulhern and Taffe reckoned he was working for Maggie Thatchers intelligence agency. Trouble was, MI5s interest in Liverpool was more to do with the Irish community and safe houses for Provo’s.

      No matter, Lucklock went on a mission to compromise a Scotsman called Tommy Sheridan by stinging him into northern nightclubs and feeding dirt to the English papers. It’s interesting that he did eventually turn his hand to the British government “when living in Northern Ireland”.

      If it’s the same man, a welcome should be provided in an independent Wales. Just as soon as he’s awarded a customary hug from the Liverpool Fire Brigades Union for his betrayal, a kiss, Glasgow style, from the Gorbals for the Mersey Mata Haris, and a complementary lower leg massage courtesy of West Belfast.

      Scousers are not posh enough to be a proper spooks.

      They just get preference grants for an OU degree and some cash-in-hand consultancy jobs in the education sector. Gobshiteing though Chester Education Authority, running courses in community engagement in the third sector, having a nice semi-detached over the border in Wales does not qualify as someone to be ‘enthused’ by Welsh independence.

      Perhaps I’m mistaken, and thinking of the wrong Paul Lucklock?

      Don’t worry about your pension, Mr Lucklock. The trustees would have distributed your private investments globally to offset risk. It’s up to your friends in Whitehall to hand over any National Insurance Contributions you have made towards your state pension. An invoice for your keep will be sent from an independent Wales.

      •  

        Well, well, well. I think the truth about Mr Luckock should be taken to a wider audience.

        •  

          and what about the missing “l” in the man’s name ? Or is that a deliberate name change to cover his i/d ?. Needed something a touch more robust to cover those tracks. If he is a recycled semi-spook, tout,grass or whatever it’s a shame he had to bump into Brychan lurking in the shadows in darkest on line Wales !

          •  

            I’m sure Brychan is beavering away to get further information. (That was not a reference to Dr Felix Aubel.)

            •  

              The “l” is a typo in my previous comment.

              Mr Paul Luckock was among the 47 Labour councillors of Liverpool Militant disbarred by the crown on 12th March 1987. He represented Vauxhall ward. The targeted witchunt was assisted by betrayal in the form of information provided.

              Here’s a more current manifestation…
              http://www.paulluckock.co.uk

              Same bloke?

        •  

          I have previously reported I am very open about my background,mistakes and successes make me who I am. I have no reason to hide the past. Brychan’s wilder writing is what it is. I was a Liverpool Labour councillor for the Vauxnall Ward from 1983 to 1987 finally being disqualified and surcharged in 1987 for failing to set a rate in time as part of the City’s resistance to the Thatcher government. The £650,000 surcharge was paid by ordinary residents who made very modest payments monthly over many years, which was pretty humbling for us 47 councillors. In just the same way as ordinary citizens have supported Nationalists with legal costs etc in the past it is what ordinary people do to protect their brothers and sisters involved in political struggle.

          Over the years people have written about my part and many others in that specific struggle including Peter and Tony. I was never a paid up member of Militant but was content to described as sympathetic and was also content to make modest donations to the overall cause. I could them as old friends who were involved in a valid struggle, I have not had contact with either Tony or Peter for many years. If Peter or Tony felt I had any relationship with MI5 I would be amazed, as would Michael Crick who also wrote about me in dispatches and Neil Kinnock who became so incensed at one time even to leave me feeling physical violence was not far way, he had taken a drink or two.

          I was in Northern Ireland before Liverpool and can honestly say both Nationalists and Unionists were friendly and nobody suggested I was working for MI5. I met Tommy Sheridan a couple of times but had no involvement in his story at all as I am sure he and other colleagues will attest too. I doubt Tommy gave any thought to me at the time or subsequently.

          All my memories of Militant members was that they had little or no paranoia of MI5 because everyone involved was fully aware of what was going on from the top of government to the top of the Labour Party they only had to read it in the press.

          I would encourage the vanguard of the independence struggle to be likewise open and transparent you have nothing to hide.

          I am not a Scouser having been born in Hillingdon. Scousers were always very welcoming towards me but said my problem was I did not really have a sense of humour because I was not always self aware enough when they were “taking the piss”. They were and remain deeply loyal.

          Finding work and promotions was always challenging with my life story but I was able to earn a modest income in the world’s of education and social care, my employment is no secret to anyone. Anyone with any cursory detective work can find my back story including mountaineering, fell and road running, governing boards of schools, colleges, chair of Liverpool Polytechnic governors, member of Liverpool Health Authority etc etc.

          Like Jac as a young man I was actively involved in campaigns including very early morning starts to attend picket lines and protests. You might even have heard me speak at Point of Ayr and Bersham when people from Liverppol were standing in solidarity.I even hosted many striking miners during periods of raising funds for their families.It all feels a very different time ago.

          Sadly some of that passion on the streets has gone but it will need to be built with a diverse range of people who are internationalist like me but do not want to stop anyone wishing to work with others to obtain greater autonomy and self determination.

          I do not have overseas investments and very modest savings hence my rather tongue in cheek comment about a Welsh or UK state pension?

          Campaigners for independence will need to build multiple alliances because the Welsh political scene is diverse and complex.

          I am not your enemy, I am use to abuse but do not like it. Comrades in Liverpool will report I was always questioning of strategy and tactics to ensure we built the widest support and encouraged others who might understandably be risk adverse. Needless to say we made some wins but our strategy and tactics failed, though we are a very modest story of the resistance of citizens to overbearing government.

          My point is spending energy attacking my views is not likely to add much to your cause. If I am your enemy your cause is weak because there is a opposition out there which would definitely see me as less than friendly. Alliances need to be built with those detached and indifferent to the whole political process in small steps. My three adult children are more Welsh than me because all their lives have deeply influenced by their Welsh experience even in a largely anglicised area and having attended English medium schools. But like many young people today are not as “explicitly political” or engaged as their parents.

          My modest proposal is to build bridges not widen imagined divides. Deep division will not lead to independence. Effective and efficient growing devolution will build confidence, sadly the present leadership often highlight a lack of competence in making the basics of daily life work.

          Anyway I anticipate some vitriol but would be more interested in marches for independence or news that people were going to ensure independence candidates in every local government ward at the next election now that would be a political changing story.

      •  

        Brychan YOU are a STAR & a HERO!

        I’m quite good at picking up odd vibes from the occasional contributor, but you are in a different league when it comes to nailing them.

  16.  

    In respect of Scotland only, why is an independence referendum required ? SNP have a majority in Scottish parliament, they take the position of being “dragged out of the EU against their will”. So why not set a date for a UDI before the next general election (2020 at the latest), if the people of Scotland don’t want it then they can vote for other parties, not the SNP. Simple solution it seems to me, except that sturgeon and the SNP aren’t serious about independence, just substituting London domination for EU domination which they find easier to stomach. The EU block in some form or other could chose to fuck up the UK (England) and Brexit in one simple move by agreeing to accept an independent Scotland (or Wales) straight into the EU, but they won’t. As always our politicians and leaders are deceitful liars, I despair for the future of Wales and this island, I’ll probably be dead before it’s all played out.

    •  

      Oh I think Sturgeon and the SNP are VERY serious about independence. However I agree that their reason for a referendum at this point in time is misguided. They need to break away from London rule by the English, as we and the Irish do, but as I pointed out in an earlier comment I made, what they would be in danger of doing by their current action is to take their balls out of the hands of a baby and they’ll be putting them in the hands of a gorilla. A bit like moving jails. Being in the EU is neither independence nor proper freedom. In fact the agenda of the EU is to make one regional block of all the countries and eventually stripping them of all their identity and rights to rule themselves.

      I also fear that I will be dead before it all plays out. But at least it will rescue me from the heartbreak of the disappearance of my beloved Cymru, her history, culture, poetry, literature et al will just vanish forever. Can’t the people responsible for that feel any sadness for our predicament? I guess not, because the planned eventual rule will be by the Anglo Saxon cultured nations at the top of a world government.

      •  

        Yes the SNP are in dead earnest, they just take the softly softly approach to bring along as many Scots as possible. Every time May refuses a perfectly reasonable request, support for indy grows. We are a ‘thrawn’ people, thwart us and we’ll move heaven and earth to spite you! When May thought Sturgeon was bluffing she made a big big mistake!

        BG, I don’t quite go along with all you World Gov. Plot theories, which is not to say there is no truth in them at all. But the EU is useful and it exists and might be improved and is certainly better than wars. Surely the best approach is to promise a Welsh EU Referendum after independence, then it will then be up to the people (but can they be trusted? LOL!) Anyway that I believe is the Scottish government’s stance.

        •  

          So what do you make of letters like this then Marconatrix?

          Europe’s nations should be guided towards the super-state without their people understanding what is happening. This can be accomplished by successive steps, each disguised as having an economic purpose, but which will eventually and irreversibly lead to federation

          Written to an associate by no other than Jean Monnet the ‘founding father’ of the EU on April 30th 1952.

          “World Gov. Plot theories” I don’t think so. You can’t get clearer than that can you? Do some research on Agenda 21 and The Project for the New American Century (PNAC) and The New World Order.

          The EU is without doubt a Trojan Horse for the implementation of the long term plan for a World government. The process is called the totalitarian tip-toe. Inch by inch events are being guided into place. The EU was the biggest and most glaring and blatant example of this ‘tip-toe’ process.

          Even sources as unlikely as the Express give glimpses into the secret societies behind this dark agenda. Click HERE to read what they printed on Jan 19th 2017.

          Or perhaps you’re suggesting I’m dreaming up all this information?

          As for the EU preventing wars in Europe well that’s a really old chestnut. World War 1, 2 and the currently contrived and imminent WW3 were and are contrived and financed on BOTH sides by the elites and specifically the Rothchilds, who by no small coincidence are the private owners of ALL the centralised banks in the world today. No problem there then!

          If you can’t see it then you obviously don’t wish to see it – regardless of the mounting evidence that is unravelling before your eyes. “There are none as blind as those who do not wish to see”.

      •  

        I agree that the SNP are very serious about independence, and I am confident that they will achieve it within the next decade.

        The SNP know that Scotland needs friends in the international community in order to realize their goal of independence. In my view, that is a large part of the reason for their support for the EU — which is tactical and short-term. If I lived in Scotland, I would have opposed Brexit for that reason only. Arguably, Britain would never have allowed the Irish Free State to break away without powerful sympathy for Irish nationalism and support for self-determination in the United States.

        If Plaid are ever to make a serious bid for Welsh independence, they too should focus on the international dimension — to raise Wales’s profile as a distinct nation with aspirations to joining the community of nations.

    •  

      How do you know they won’t, Anon?

      The countries most likely to support Scottish direct entry to the EU are – Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Netherlands (the Wilderds phantom died last week), Slovakia, Slovenia and Croatia (they remember tanks), Sweden, Finland and Denmark (Scotland is a provisional member of the Nordic alliance). Belgium (won’t like to loose a direct debit).

      Not fussed – Portugal, Poland, Austria, Hungary, and Italy. France will need an extra ten minutes after injury time and expect access to prawns for lunch.

      The counties Ms May will urge to oppose Scottish direct entry to the EU are – Germany (play the Nazi history guilt card) and Spain due to Catalonia. I don’t expect May will manage to overcome the German logic and pragmatism. Leaving only a Spanish veto, which could be bought out by Nicola by giving Brits on the Costas an EU passport with a thistle on.

      Don’t put your house on the wrong horse.
      There are a few furlongs still to run.

      •  

        Spain will back Scotland to stick it to London over Gibraltar 😉

        •  

          Regaining Gibraltar would never make up for losing Catalunya and Euzkadi.

          •  

            Yes. But they wont say that.
            Bit too grubby and political, so a diplomatic dance will be necessary….

            “I don’t think it’s fair for me to crystal ball gaze about what position Spain may take” were the words of Gibraltar Chief Minister Fabian Picardo, just after this was announced…

            http://chronicle.gi/2017/03/spains-king-felipe-to-visit-uk-in-june/

            I think the words are “respect the integrity of the realm”. That translates as, fuck the voters of Gibraltar, fuck the voters of Catalunya and fuck the voters of Scotland.

            Maybe Betty Battenberg will be the first to know?

            •  

              Betty probably knows already, and with the form you been showing today I suspect you do as well !! Keep up the good work

              •  

                Ah! That one again!

                It is unlikely that the Castilian régime would block an independent Scotland from EU membership.

                From the legal/constitutional point of view, the comparisons between Scotland and Catalunya/Euskadi are bogus. Scotland can have a vote on independence within the laws of the state currently ruling it, and Spanish government officials have pointed out that if Scotland becomes independent by legal, consitituional means, then Madrid would have – as one of them said – “nothing to say”.

                (Interesting that the Spanish Foreign Minister doesn’t seem to know how EU accession works: there is no ‘queue’ to join (if that were the case, Sweden, Czechia and more than a dozen other states wouldn’t now be members because they applied after Turkey did); Scotland already meets nearly all the aquis communitaire because it has been a member de facto of the EU for 44 years; and almost all of the EU states would quite like the idea of shoving it right up Greater England).

                By contrast, the Castilian constitution expressly forbids any referendum aimed at sovereignty for its internal colonies; indeed, former senior members of the Catalan parliament are currently undergoing a show trial for conducting a consultative referendum a couple of years or so back.

                There are also practical – if not cynical – political and electoral considerations, especially while the Partido Popular is in power. Rajoy’s power base is in Galicia. Fisheries form a large part of the Galician economy. The Galician fishing boats operate extensively in what would then be Scotland’s territorial waters. Scotland being outside the EU (even if instead it went into the European Economic Area, which doesn’t include EU rules on fishing or agriculture) would mean those Galician vessels would lose the right to fish in Scotland’s waters. This would crash the Galician economy and give Rajoy the career chances of a Scottish Labour MP.

                So for these reasons among others, Madrid wouldn’t veto Scotland’s accession to the EU. It’s another BritNat scare.

                (If you don’t believe me, try reading Paul Kavanagh’s blog at https://weegingerdug.wordpress.com/. He lived in Spain for years and has rather more knowledge of the subject than some hack at the Grundiad.)

            •  

              That’s interesting – a hybrid, inbred family get-together. There’s a strange whiff in the air.

              So, the Rhesus negative blue bloods are preparing for a pow wow. I suppose you all know where Rh negative blood comes from according to some experts? The most mysterious blood in the world – with it’s origin causing a lot of head scratching. See also Annunaki in the ‘blue blood’ context – VERY interesting!

              •  

                Problem there is that a majority – if not all people are descended from some kind of Royal upper class individual at some point. In some cases more than once…

                •  

                  Really? How do you work that one out? Especially as they go out of their way to protect their bloodlines through inbreeding.

                  •  

                    Well unless we’re specifically talking about the Germanic Royals in the past 200 years an example would be a fair number of people in Gwynedd being descended from Owain Gwynedd.

                    Many Europeans are supposedly descended from Charlemagne who had 18 children… so if each of those had at at least two children and those children had at least two children… the average amount of generations per century in a family is 4-5 so thats some where like 60 generations between Charlemagne and the modern day.

                    Thats not taking into account war and disease of course, and lines which just pitter out. But still you’re easily looking at the high tens of millions. Thats just one guy. Owain Gwynedd and the Lord Rhys are more recent but the amount of offspring they had means there’s plenty of descendents… at least female line.

                    •  

                      None of them ruling or likely to. Not one of them a potential heir to any throne. Of course there are ‘bastard’ offspring, and diluted out escapee lines. What you’re talking about is totally different to what I’m pointing out.

                      The hybrid blue blood core is kept well in house for obvious reasons. Hence the degree of purposely induced inbreeding within these royal households.

      •  

        Brychan’s purported schedule of countries which might or might not veto a Scottish application to join the EU may conceivable require some slight amendments. Sturgeon’s approach to try and remove a potential Spanish veto, may be to sacrifice fishing rights to the Spanish fishing fleets. Like Jac has commented re: Gibraltar however, this is unlikely sway Spain to risk losing Catalonia and the Basque Country. Briefly, France is likely to veto (re:Corsica), ditto, Italy (re:it’s Northern Region and Sicily), and we all know that Belgium has, for years, resisted Wallonia wanting independence. I’m not so sure about some of the Eastern European states either, very few of which would wish to encourage further fragmentation.

  17.  

    Well it’s late and I’ve just got here, having been tied up wading through the flood of Scottish material over the w/e, so this is my immediate response to your article without so far having read any of the other reactions.

    Jac, time is definitely NOT on your side, so I doubt if your long drawn out strategy would work. It’s more a case of “If ’tis done then when ’tis done ’twere better it were done quickly” (McBeth, I think?)

    Firstly there’s the demographic shift you’ve drawn attention to, the inevitable slow anglicisation of Wales as long as it remains joined to England.

    But secondly, your vision that in an Englandandwales scenario you’d get *more* devolution could be completely wrong. Imagine the BritNat mindset after the humiliation in there eyes of losing Scotland (and maybe NI too). Can you really see them standing for any more such ‘nonsense’ from Wales? It’s not hard to predict their arguments. A devolved Wales would be an anomaly and hard to justify. Moreover, given the trauma of losing Scotland, ‘national’ institutions like the Assembly and so on would be seen as divisive, likely to encourage separatism and strife. Clearly something would have to be done before they grew too big for their boots …

    Maybe to sweeten the pill they would opt for a regional system of local government, such as existed in pre-devo Scotland. Counties grouped into regions with a few devolved powers but other functions taken from weakened shires. There’d be for example East Anglia, and there’d be West Anglia (the region formally known as ‘Wales’ — so quaint!) This way the Assembly, which never quite made the grade to Senedd, would live on as a sort of glorified county-council and the gravy train would continue, for a while at least. In short ‘Welsh’ Labour would be bought off as per usual. Over a decade or two Wales would in effect be dismantled and incorporated into England, as should have happened centuries ago they’d say. It’s all so logical and efficient, they’d argue. So cultural trappings would remain, just as they do here in Cornwall, the flags fly, the language is to be seen here and there, but officially it’s just another county-council.

    So I reckon if we’re gonna go then we must All Go Together.

    I don’t know how Wales might do this, or even if it is at all possible, but the only way I can see you getting indy is if you jump on the bandwagon with Ireland and Scotland and we all work together to break the back of the UK. We could even allow for a face-saving ‘federal’ arrangement for a decade or two, a sort of British Commonwealth (they’d like that!) to help them get over Imperial Withdrawal Syndrome, during which we’d be independent for all practical purposed but nominally under the Crown or whatever (cf. Sweden for most of the C19th).

    A long shot for Wales perhaps? But just think of the synergy such a common campaign could create, and the international support it might gain from decentralist movement all over. Plus the EU who would relish the chance to stick it to London.

    Beyond that all I can say is Pob Hwyl! And I only hope you can find a leader or leaders who are up for the challenge.

    •  

      Joining forces with the other Celtic Nations is a logical step towards Independence, it would also quite tidily, fulfil the alleged prophecy of Myrddin.

      •  

        Which one was that Myfanwy, can you quote it, it might be useful, inspiring or at least a bit of fun to cheer the troops. Btw was this the Myrddin who lived in what is now the Scottish Borders?

        •  

          Lots of Myrddins around, mate. Check out Caerfyrddin where there was a town full of them, one even had to live in a tree.

          Seriously though, don’t get too hung up on 1500 year old myths but focus instead on the modern reality. That myth was spun out of the grim realities of an earlier era where folk saw the arrival of assorted Germanic tribes and thought “we better sort these bastards out sharpish” not “ooh dear, what did the pre christian Celtic shaman say was going to happen “

          •  

            Here’s a photo I took a few years ago of a window at Stobo Kirk near Peebles.Stobo Myrddin

            •  

              Jac Noticed this earlier but got distracted on something else.

              Kentigern also turns up in Carmarthen county as Cyndeyrn of Llan gyndeyrn ( spelling may be slightly wrong ) a village targetted for drowning in 1963 until the locals ( not politicians ) cut up rough and chased several lots of busy body officials out of the valley. 5 years later Swansea council got its dam – Brianne was built in a more remote location and the rest is history. As a kid I walked the Upper Towy in about 1967 and although only very sparsely populated it was a lovely place, as you would expect being on the southern edge of Elenydd our remote and beautiful “spine of mid Wales now scarred by Wind farms and stupid bastards trying out assorted off road vehicles .

              Back to Myrddin. As you may recall from past scribblings I don’t dwell much on the interwoven mix of history, myth, legend and downright lies that get dug up to justify where we are and/or where we want to be. Myrddin plays an important role in this mix whether he was Arthur’s mentor or something else doesn’t matter. Whether Arthur existed doesn’t matter. Someone did and the story tellers called him Arthur. Like wise Myrddin may have existed in many different forms because every leader had a wise man alongside him acting in all sorts of advisory and spiritual capacities. So there may have been a few Myrddin’s up in “Y Gogledd pell” pre or post Cunedda and likewise given the state of flux that lasted for centuries there was most likely a few “down South” right down to Cernyw.

              As long as we don’t get tempted to call him Merlin all is well !

              •  

                Sorry, Dafis, didn’t see your post when I replied to this thread earlier.
                Back in the day, Myrddin was written ‘Merdin’ and when the legends were taken up by the French via the Bretons they weren’t too keen on the ‘merd-‘ and so made a slight adjustment 🙂

            •  

              Kentigern — A good British (proto-Welsh) name, the -tigern bit is the same as in Vortigern > Gwrtheyn, so if the campaign needs a mabsant 😉

    •  

      As dafis says, probably best to keep it in the modern context, but here are some references here:

      ‘Geoffrey of Monmouth’ prophesies of Myrrdin by Bernard Meehan

      Prophecy, politics and place in Medieval England by Victoria Flood pg 28

      https://books.google.dk/books?id=iZDgDQAAQBAJ&pg=PA52&lpg=PA52&dq=myrddin+prophecy+politics+and+place&source=bl&ots=mVZtRV8hN0&sig=Lu9Aj-aQoQNsLdAgUREfWmUlZ8Y&hl=da&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjK2drjzOfSAhWEDCwKHfnnCeMQ6AEIHDAA#v=onepage&q=myrddin%20prophecy%20politics%20and%20place&f=false

      Armes Prydein

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Armes_Prydein

      •  

        An interesting read that Myfanwy. It’s that kind of material that should form part of the history lessons in a ‘Cwricwlwm Cymraeg’.

  18.  

    Been thinking about this more and decided the multiple option referendum as proposed by ‘Yes Cymru’ isn’t a bad idea. Arguing that Wales should have no referendum at all when Scotland and Ireland do would be very odd for nationalists. Strikes me that you’d need 31 AMs to agree in order to hold one. So one of the unionist parties needs to agree?

  19.  

    Just as I thought welsh independence supporters we finally becoming organized to mount a serious challenge under a none aligned umbrella of YES CYMRU along comes a multi option referendum to ruin it – sadly you were right Jac, it looks like it’s be hobbled before it really got going.

    I apologise to anyone who joined or followed YES CYMRU on social media because of my recommendations, the only option for Wales post Brexit is full independence nothing else should even be discussed.

    Devolution won’t survive Brexit, the Wales Act has already given power back to the UK Government, post Brexit, farming, energy and more will go back to the UK Government to create a unified internal UK market to secure the UK international trade deal post Brexit and on top of that the civil service is in turmoil, Welsh interests ( fracturing, farming etc) aren’t even being mentioned let alone discussed by Whitehall – trust me on this I know.

    And then there’s the real spectre of Teresa May walking out of talks after the German elections with no deal, in that scenario Wales would be screwed because we’d be on emergency World Trade Organisation rules with no powers to challenge any trade or tariff decisions until the UK’s membership was agreed.

    I was skeptical Wales would ever get independence now I know Wales will forever be a region of England.

    •  

      Why so dramatic, when any decision to hold any referendum needs 31 AMs?

      People are ignoring a bloody massive elephant in the room, the composition of the Assembly.

      People here have enough of a problem with Plaid Cymru, so don’t expect Labour and Tory AMs to give us a referendum!

      Perhaps we think MPs will call one for us?

      I am skeptical the Tories will get rid of Welsh devolution. It’s too blatant and not in their interests. Their policy is to give Wales slow concessions which are set up to fail. Give em enough of a shit Wales Act and they’ll hang…

      Axing devolution would be out of character, over the top and require a referendum. It could risk civil disobedience, even if only from the 20% of people who vote for Plaid. You can’t exclude that many people from democracy without instability.

      Let’s keep a discussion based on reality. Far too many ‘OTT’ reactions on here.

      Agree with your point that powers could be returned to Westminster or frustrated in some way. Slow burn rather than big chop.

      •  

        Sorry you’re being incredibly naive and im being realistic not dramatic.

        Your 31 AM’s argument for a referendum is pie in sky, Wales will be screwed well before 2021 when we get to vote in an Assembly elections. How do i know, every senior Whitehall mandarin is preparing for a UK unilateral withdrawal of the EU either at the end of this year or early next year.

        May and her clown show government have no intention of negotiating, they never have, Wales has to campaign for full independence, nothing else will do, if YES CYMRU want to be part of it they have to keep their foot on welsh political necks, devolution is a distraction, its independence or bust.

        •  

          Don’t apologise!

          Of course it’s pie in the sky- that’s the whole point. There isn’t a choice, we need 31 AMs to pass a motion to hold a referendum. Maybe 40/45 if the Assembly expands in size. We need a unionist party.

          IF Yes Cymru’s proposal is to get a unionist party to approve a referendum, it is sound.

          The idea ‘Wales has to campaign for full independence’ is the starting point. So who is in government? What parties do you need to support a referendum? Despite the negativity on here you’ve got Plaid on board already. What about the others?

          Remember that even in Scotland they need the Greens for a majority.

          Perhaps there is a way of doing it without having agreement of a majority of AMs? Unofficial local referendums?

        •  

          OK. Devolution is a distraction, but it is still the legislative arena from which a referendum would be called/triggered.

          So how does that work?

          Ignore devolution altogether?

          You’ve got to realise at some point that to hold a referendum we need a nationalist government, or a joint nationalist/unionist government where the unionist component allows a referendum.

          Otherwise we’re just arguing on a blog.

    •  

      “… the only option for Wales post Brexit is full independence nothing else should even be discussed”
      Agree. If anyone is in any doubt whatsoever on this point then I recommend they look into the history of The Vow, the Smith Commission and how to put it bluntly the whole thing was sidelined and kicked into the long grass. At least it had the effect that nobody will believe anything the likes of Brown ever says again.

      https://weegingerdug.wordpress.com/2017/03/18/a-gas-giant-in-a-distant-galaxy/

    •  

      YesCymru (including Sandra Clubb) is, in my experience, campaigning for Welsh independence. Calling for a referendum to include independence is not campaigning for any option other than independence – (whether calling for a Yes/No referendum or any referendum at this time is a good thing or not are things which many people differ on, as shown not least by the original article).
      It’s not even arguing against a yes/no referendum – you can push for both, saying Yes/No would be better than multi-choice, but thinking either one would be better than nothing (whether that is true or not is debatable, but does not mean you are not committed to working for independence)

      Opinion is divided amongst people who want independence as to whether it would be right to hold a yes/no referendum at the moment, of course it will be divided over whether a multi-option referendum would be a good thing. I think it would be more counter-productive than a yes/no one, but calling for it rather than nothing does not mean you are not working towards independence.

      I don’t think it is the best thing to do, but suddenly dropping any desire to work with them on the matter would, for me, be (very much) an overreaction.

  20.  

    Even if a no vote was a foregone conclusion the first indy ref in Scotland boosted support for independence by around 20%. It also helped show the Labour party for what they truly are.

    If the same could be achieved here then, despite a no vote, the result would be totally worth it.

    •  

      Decent point. The reason some people want a multi option poll is so you can have independence debated without risking a “no” vote being interpreted as a mandate to remove powers/direct rule.

      Revising my opinion, my support depends on what the multi options are. Also, if multi option is a scheme to get unionists to support holding a referendum (we need 31!), I would go with that.

    •  

      I completely agree. A multi-option referendum would, in my view reduce votes for independence and not increase the debate about it enough to overcome the disadvantages of “losing” it. However, opinion is divided on the matter, and there was discussion about a multi-option referendum in Scotland – and the SNP weren’t completely opposed to that, if it meant a referendum. From Alex Salmond in 2009 for example –
      (Financial Times) – https://reformscotland.com/2009/12/snp-denied-support-for-referendum-financial-times/ “Salmond, Scotland’s first minister, said the SNP’s only demand was that the referendum should have an independence option – beyond that, he was “totally flexible”. He also seemed to want “Devo Max” as part of a multi choice referendum for Scotland, whilst Yes Scotland were against this. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/scotland/9369801/Alex-Salmond-Devo-max-instead-of-independence-is-very-attractive.html
      Scotland is Scotland and Wales is Wales of course. But calling for a multi option referendum does not mean you are against pushing only independence as seems to be being implied by some.

  21.  

    I hardly need nailing all my writing and blogs is out there under my name, I have NEVER said, written or done anything anonymously.
    Brychan, Big Gee and Jac I do not have a clue what your first or surname is, I certainly will not be doing any investigating, in the great scheme of things it is irrelevant. You are willing to engage in public discourse so that’s fine.

    I just prefer to say and do what I do under my own name. It is only caused me difficulties once, Sir Trevor Jones, the now deceased, Liberal Democrat politician, a formidable operator in Liverpool and further afield, and a man of some financial means undertook litigation against me for slander, I had pursued questions in a public Council meeting about some of his business activities which I judged to be near the edge of corruption and detrimental to some local citizens. I paid £500 in to court to stop the litigation as I certainly did not have the resources to defend myself in a full court case. It was a young man’s error, where my sense of injustice probably got the better of more circumspect rational questioning.

    The key thing is, where is the independence campaign going?It needs to be built but social media is a relatively small group of people talking to themselves. Without people standing as candidates and doing the hard work of meeting people who day to day think very little of the country’s status and persuading them greater devolution and independence will benefit their lives. The present councillors, AMs and MPs only become concerned when there are candidates challenging them, canvassing door to door, holding meetings, leading campaigns on local issues. I also think there has to be a national focus with regular independence marches. People gain confidence from seeing a reliable public presence. I would certainly march/walk on an independence march in Conwy County Borough Council particularly if it highlighted how ineffective our present governance arrangements are in delivering high quality infrastructure, housing, NHS and social care, education and attracting private and public investment.

    I have no sense in my own area how much support there is for independence, the Labour Party ( of which I am no longer a member since Tony Blairs election as leader) though I did suggest to them I might rejoin so that we had at least a contested ward election. They decided they would rather not contest an election than have me as a candidate or member of the party, I use to be the Constituency chairman! So I did reflect on standing as an Independent just so my fellow residents had to vote for the three council places up for grab in my ward but I have always been rather churlish about Independent councillors, though this is prejudice rather than a thought through argument. I also feel do we need anymore 63 year old men standing, I just wish I could persuade a youngster and support them with the election protocols. Locally the Liberal Democrats, UKIP and Plaid have largely departed the scene there is definitely no overt campaigning on anything. The most competent politician locally is definitely the Tory AM, Darren Millar, he is astute, active, available and is the only person prominent on campaigning on local issues. We disagree fiercely on some issues but he has never personally attacked me, so I am respectful of him though I abhor some of his party’s actions.

    To get a majority of AMs to vote for a referendum you either have to change a significant number of AMs or cause a significant number to worry about their status that they are willing to support a referendum.

    There is presently is no great feel about Independence, most young people I listen too voted for more devolution if they bothered to vote so if people are really bothered and energetic there are rich seams to mine because their is a large low level of dissatisfaction with the local Council, Welsh Government and UK Government. I just do not understand why people are not providing leadership now. I was in Frongoch this morning on a little bit of business and as I sat having my coffee in the local cafe I reflected on how different people’s sense of injustice was 100 years ago. We are begrudgingly accepting of so much today.

    •  

      Paul – I do not recommend an ‘independence march’ to the seat of government of Wales, at least not yet. The A470 is a five hour drive, let alone on foot. Even the most experienced fell runner would be lucky to make Dinas Mawddwy.

      Let’s assume that you are NOT an English good-life patronising retiree on the Costa del Conway, and your comments are genuine. Don’t be surprised if you garner scepticism on the streets of Llysfaen or Bodelwyddan, or even this blog.

      The political issues of your old stomping ground, the poor people of Toxteth (Liverpool) is very similar to the plight poor people of Fairwater (Cardiff) today. There’s a councillor fighting that battle (and to for Welsh independence) requiring your support canvassing door-to-door in the Welsh local elections….

      https://twitter.com/CardiffPlaid/status/842752476835209216

      A direct train departs Llandudno Junction at 0619. Let’s take you at your word, and welcome you aboard. There is evidently a similarity between poll tax evictions in Liverpool you fought all those years ago and the bedroom tax evictions by a (Labour) council today.

      I’m sure Neil would relish your support. In fact, a former Labour councillor (and former constituency chairman) in an inner city racially diverse city like Liverpool who did battle against Thatcher would be an asset to his campaign in Cardiff West. There are many strings to the bow of an independence struggle.

      •  

        A very reasonable challenge to my commitment.

        A Plaid led Conwy Council supported by Labour and “Free Independents” are carrying out bedroom tax evictions locally surely my energy and yours would be better used here and then the good people of Lysfean or Bodelwydden or even Abergele would be encouraged. An Independent Wales will not be Cardiff centric I truly hope or based on thinking one leader as most of the answers. A friend of mine with a significant disability and in a wheelchair just across the border in Denbighshire had the added indignity of having to watch his court case in an ante room on a video on the ground floor because there was no access for the disabled on the first floor courtroom. What is going on in Plaid in Conwy to mean these actions are occurring I see very little challenge from anyone including me. I am not ruling out campaigning in Cardiff but Plaid and others need encouragement locally to get their act together, this surely is the first priority to build where you are known and the opposition is significant. The task is longer term, people want to build trust but have to see you are truly committed to your local patch, I have lived here 28 years and people are still rightly sceptical?

        The historical and contemporary grievances of people living in Wales will only be resolved by us,in all our diversity, running and organising our country. Working through all the consequences in our own creative way that includes resolving the many disagreements and conflicts along the way.

        The most interesting reminder yesterday was from Mervyn King, the ex Bank of England head on Newsnight who said the biggest challenge to new independent states would be the money markets because they will lend us money to keep the country going and do the things we want to do but at a cost. This reminds me of my Liverpool days where the international banks were happy to lend us money much to the angst of the Tories because as they said Liverpool had significant assets but they did price our loans at high interest because as they said the costs of getting their money back was likely to be costly! Of course those loans took some paying back and Liverpool today is selling its assets including buildings and land to keep going under the present austerity because they continue to find borrowing money a challenge.

        As an Independent country we do not need to re-learn these experiences the important thing is we can decide on how we deal with the consequences?

        There are many small countries who make their way in the world in their own unique ways and the present direction of things in the UK is the inevitable decline of a British Empire whose death throes will be messy and risky for all involved. I am confident to the core that Wales will achieve independence eventually, I just wish I was a little younger.

        My appeal is for people to provide the analysis of the contemporary scene that resonates with more than those of us in the 20 or 25% who are persuaded. These include a majority of people whose political heritage maybe in the centre or even to the right. The argument in large part needs to be about people working with others for self determination and autonomy. So whether it is the fellow citizen wanting to be left in peace in their rented social housing home or the farmer wanting to sell his food at a fair price and conserve his land or the young person who wants to travel, work and live globally but still maintain friendships and family back home in Wales, we need to have the conversation now.

        What I want to see in my street is enthusiastic people with lots of youth encourage others to vote for referendum to be held but at present Plaid and other political parties are considered irrelevant. I was listening last week to two young people in their twenties earning a good living from two different multinational companies based in Wales,I was encouraging them to get involved with Welsh politics, they did not dismiss it completely but said we just want to enjoy life at the moment not tramp the streets or attend endless meetings.

        People turned out and voted for BREXIT because they felt unheard in the day to day issues of living. We need to persuade people that by taking control of the governance of our country we ourselves can at least work through the difficult consequences and agree a new set of priorities. This will include persuading the private investors and international money markets to provide funds but it will be on terms that we agree.

        I would also appeal to people not to spend too much energy or any energy on clandestine fantasties or conspiratorial activities just be out there as you are. I learn everyday more and more about the political process, this often involves unlearning from the past. The prime task of any political activist is to encourage others. This does not deny that politics is a tough business but by modelling that the “slings and arrows” only cause you to sharpen your own thought and action and find ways to move from self doubt.

        •  

          The bedroom tax is the reduction in elidgability for housing benefit effecting unemployed people or those on a low income. Someone in the Conwy Council area walks into the job centre, they get offered jobs like part time cleaner in a hotel in places like Craig-y-don, zero hours, or a set roster to run from May to September. The cash earned in the summer is offset against eligibility for benefits. The loss of benefit in touristy parts of Wales is not ‘bedroom tax’ but ‘seasonal tax because you’re a cheap labour Welshie”.

          The other option provided for indigenous Welsh people along the North Wales coast is when the careers advisor at the job centre lifts her finger towards the A55 in an easterly direction to point to a proper job.

          Drop the psychobabble, it might earn you a fee as a private consultant at Chester Education Department. It won’t work here. I would, however, like to know what your definition of “unlearning” is, being as you’ve now re-invented yourself as an “education consultant”. The only “unlearning” process I know of is dementia.

          Can you explain to me why in Liverpool, the ward you used to represent for socialism, now has row upon row of terraced houses, all now boarded up by the council. Homes which would be worth a million quid each if they were located in the part of London you were born. Yet, our masters in that very same city, London, tell us (via their Labour lackies in Cardiff Bay) that twenty thousand detached posh houses need be built around Bodelwyddan to solve a ‘housing crisis’. Homes far beyond the reach of the cleaner wielding a Dyson at that hotel in Craig-y-don I previously mentioned.

          •  

            I am in no dispute with you about one of the reasons, out of many, that people find themselves at risk of losing their home another even more common is when children leave home and the costs the bedroom tax cannot be met.

            I am not in dispute re your second point either but there are also young people in my community earning a good living working for companies here in North Wales and others that spend time earning a living in other parts of the world. I met many Welsh young men and women in Canada where my son worked for two and half years earning a good living and enjoying life. Some like my son will return others will stay longer and some will take residency. Just like people from all over the world coming to Wales earning a living and when we are an independent state will seek residency. My wife’s family heritage was in part Welsh speaking and deeply rooted in the Wrexham area they married into Dorset stonemasons who came to Wales to help build the non-conformist chapels and other buildings and then moved to Liverpool to build the Anglican Cathedral you can still see their distinctive stonemason marks to this day. It is what happens.

            As an Independent state of course we will have to work through all the consequences of how we enhance the talents and skills of our residents, maximise entrepreneurship, find investors etc but young people will still come and go. A large part of my working life was assisting young people to identify what they really wanted to do and then supporting them to achieve it. That often meant to meet there aspirations they had to try things out and live many miles from home, it’s not a threat to your national identity it’s just ensuring you live a life that’s meaningful to you.

            You are critical of me for alleged psychobabble. I did not check whether unlearning is in the dictionary but I meant in life you make many many painful mistakes if you engage with life, some of your learning is not always relevant and valuable today. Dementia is a disease of the brain. A great thing about North Wales is that there are people with dementia organising their own conferences and meet ups here and are very politically active in challenging the Health minister over his Dementia Strategy. I celebrate their achievements against great odds.

            In Vauxhall ward that I represented for four years we had bigger problems at the time with sorting out tenement blocks which housed thousands of people, the history books show, we did build many quality houses for rent much to the angst of Thatcher and Kinnock. I think I am honest in saying we never increased council house rents during my four years hence the problems with the money markets.The boarded and blighted houses in Liverpool you see today especially if you are a regular at Goodson or Anfield is because John Prescott, the Minister at the time, a lad from Prestatyn, decided with the Council to demolish large swathes of Victorian and inter war housing and build new. The Coalition Government arrived in 2010 and refused to invest in the plans, the legacy is what you see.

            Bodelwydden will have 1700 houses if it ever gets built, now there was real leadership there from my good friend Alice Jones a Plaid councillor, who with her husband before he sadly died fought tooth and nail with fellow councillors, officers, developers and Welsh Government. She faced real vitriol and hostility but perservered and obtained many planning conditions. The reasons no houses have yet been built is that the costs of doing so are substantial for the developers and the market certainly at present will not meet those costs. For example, she ensured a spine road had to be built and paid for by the developer from the St Asaph Business Park to Glan Clwyd Hospital before one house can be built because she did not want the people of the town’s lives blighted by years of construction. So once you see that road being built you will know the investors judge that the market feel able to take the risk and get a return. This condition and others may mean houses are never built.

            Many other sites are allocated for housing in this area some thankfully for affordable housing but it is unlikely at the present time that the market will enable any to be built see Gainsborough House, Abergele South East and Abergele Business Park.

            The key issue is as an Independent Wales we can decide with investors what the economic purpose is for this part of North Wales, the present Welsh Government, Denbighshire and Conwy Council are emphasising dormitory housing for commuters travelling east and west, retirement homes and tourism. As Alice, as a farmer would say we can only protect these historical agricultural fields if we pay our farmers a good price for the food they produce or pay for them to be conserved and green belt. I personally have certainly not thought through the consequences of how the new state would balance the needs of farmers and consumers in the food market. That’s the great thing about Independence it would be down to the people of Wales to sort it in the context of the global demands. We could not blame London or Brussels we would achieve our own successes and make our own mistakes.

            Alice is retiring as a councillor this May, I just hope whoever the candidates are they have the same passion, integrity and skill.

  22.  

    Yes Cymru, of which I am a member, I expect to campaign for an independent Wales and nothing less. If it is diverted in to supporting Devo-max or a Federal Britain and other unionist nonsense it might as well disband now.

    •  

      If you look at some quotes from the letter – http://yes.cymru/2017/03/20/welsh-referendum-appeal-carwyn-jones/
      “do we want to be part of an “England and Wales” state? or, do we want to see Wales as an independent nation?”
      “We have the right to be an independent nation; Westminster has no natural right to reign over us.”
      And from the story on the YesCymru Website –
      “YesCymru’s aim is to gain independence for Wales, in order to improve the way our country is governed.”

      I’ve never heard Sandra Club campaign for anything less than that – saying that a referendum must have independence as an option (and perhaps believing that a Yes/No campaign would not happen at the moment) is not campaigning for an option other than independence.

      It may not be the best way to go about increasing the desire for independence.
      Such a referendum might even have a risk of being counterproductive.

      And one could say both those things about a Yes/No referendum on independence.

      But calling for such a referendum is not campaigning for anything less than independence.

      And it is not as if this has suddenly become the only thing that everyone in YesCymru is campaigning for.

      This is not something a particular point I would campaign for, but I really think there is some overreaction here to this letter.

  23.  

    I must say a very interesting piece by Jac and some excellent comments to follow.

  24.  

    The fallout from Brexit continues, the Labour Party is imploding and Plaid Cymru should be using the momentum from all of this, to make a strong call for independence. It is not enough to appeal to 20 percent of the populace, there has to be a radical change, which is inclusive of people from all backgrounds in Wales. Perhaps Jac was right, that Plaid Cymru was infiltrated and compromised during the 80s (perhaps as part of Clockwork Orange/ Gladio) or maybe it was just sheer complacency. The Labour Party and Liberal Party,have been infiltrated with the likes of compromised MPs such as Tom Driberg, Clement Freud and Cyril Smith, so it wouldn’t be surprising. The big question is, can Plaid Cymru turn this around and get their act together fast, because things are moving quickly and we need a strong independent voice?

    •  

      I could be wrong, and Plaid Cymru is just the most incompetent and uninspiring national party on Earth.

    •  

      Talking of compromised politicians Myfanwy, I read very recently that the police investigation into George Thomas, who has been mentioned in passing on Jac’s blog before, has ceased. I was gobsmacked, I got the impression that there was quite a lot of evidence there and that the investigation by south Wales police had been extended to Leo Abse as well. And of course the Tories under Thatcher were full of compromised MPs but nobody seems to be taking an interest in even the likes of Matthew Parris who mentioned his activities with ‘willing boys’ in his autobiography…

      •  

        dr sally, you may well ask what on earth is going on when we suspect the lengths certain organisations go to protect the reputation of the “not so good” despite them having shifted off this life years ago. Leo Abse did a lot of work on legalising homosexuality way back in late 60’s. I once attended an event where he recalled it, couched very much in the context of having taken on the task as he had witnessed the “agonies” of several colleagues in the Commons and other people in other walks of life and wanted to do something about. At no time did he manifest any gay inclination himself although he was a renowned dandy and a bit camp. Maybe he had some very well developed mechanisms for covering up his preferences – I don’t know.

        However the rumour mill churned at frantic speeds when it came to George. Known for years for picking up all sorts and spending much time agonising about getting found out, and no doubt it cost him in blackmail and undermined his health. Makes you almost feel sorry for the old goat, but much has been said about his predatory style so living on the edge seemed to be a compulsion despite his concerns about his image and reputation.

        And that’s where all this secrecy and deceit leaves us. George and his kind spend entire careers pissing down on others. They don’t really give two hoots about their people, their communities just about building and protecting their reputations. No doubt he managed to do good with charitable works, but then so did Jimmy Saville and we know all about his motivations now long too late to shut any stable door.

      •  

        Yes drsallybaker, it’s interesting to consider, what exactly united the supposedly socialist George Thomas, with the far right Enoch Powell, but their correspondence show what friends they were. I wonder what they had in commen? They will try to cover it all up, as they always have done, they know it would bring down the establishment.

        https://mobile.twitter.com/ciabaudo/status/666740360039788548

  25.  

    Jac. you talk about taking to the streets, why not the mountains too as Mynydd y Gwair to take back our land from RWE and the Duke of Somerset or are you just all talk as most nationalists these days. Gethin,

    •  

      Mynydd y Gwair is lost. If you have any workable plan to stop the wind farm going up there then let’s hear it.

      •  

        Jac. if as you say Mynydd y Gwair is lost you might as well say Wales is lost, only a matter of time and as we used to say in prison ”not long now”. You, Ioan, Graziers, Ramblers and ‘Hawliau’ all consider it a lost cause, sold out by Plaid Cymru Tan 8 Traitors but myself and a few other ‘Adfywiadwyr’ are not so much bothered about Wind Farms but all the more bothered about ‘Beaufort’ and his ‘Somerset Field’. Now we may not remove him from our land but we campaign to Challenge the rights by Conquest of English Aristocrats to ownership of our land for their profit and to make that an issue not a soundbite as ‘Nats’ do regards Crown Estates. As for as Beauforts are concerned it is a matter of patriotic pride to take this bunch on as they were given Glyndwrs estates by Henry V and then did well out of the Tudors and later out of Land Enclosures in the 18/19th Centuries. Your reply is a cop out Jac, your certainly no Jac y Gof (Remember Mynydd Bach 1826) though you can turn that around over Easter by getting of your PC bum and join us in an Easter Rising campaign on Mynydd y Gwair to put up posters and maybe if in enough numbers blockade the construction road from Bolgoed to Gopa Hill, that is what I call resistance and fighting back – who needs a plan? See my blog Stryveland Cymru, hwyl! Gethin.

        •  

          I shall have my say on Mynydd y Gwair, and Plaid Cymru, in my next post. It’ll be interesting to see who turns out for you at Easter.

          What is my “PC bum”?

        •  

          Nothing more profound than who owns the land. Since Devolution as far as I am aware the Welsh Government has never reviewed land ownership. It will be a key issue in a new Independent state, how the land was acquired? We will have to work through the consequences but do not underestimate the significance of this historic grievance. Mass trespass has been used in the past to acquire land or restrict access to an unwanted use. The native Indians and their supporters have understood the significance in the States and made a stand to protect what they believe to be their land and not to be exploited by the oil barons.There is nothing to stop a new Independent state re-writing the law on property rights but expect a response.

          As always there is nothing wrong in providing leadership and seeking followers. Could Mynydd y Gwair be the start of something bigger, do not dismiss the sowing of seeds?

          •  

            JAC. Last nights BBC Question Time, Neither Audience or Leanne was really seeking a big push on ‘Independence’, methinks Leanne already looking for a Cop Out! Whatever, time to stop banging head against a brick wall, there will be no Welsh Independence Referendum and if there was it would be a ‘Car Crash’. So what to do that’s worth while full on with ‘Yr Hen Iaith’ and Cultural Nationalism (Did i really say that?) particularly in the rural west ‘Y Fro Cymraeg’ which needs a LLAIS TIROEDD CUNEDDA. Renewed radical ‘Ysbryd Cofiwn’ Campaign against Cerebral Colonialism and ‘Historical Amnesia’ starting in Schools along with a rethink on certain aspects of our history as the ‘Beibl Cymraeg’ a Tudor Monarchs early UK Constitution and much else. Establish an Economic Sovereighty Movement aka ‘Mudiad Gadarn’ after Hu Gadarn who would eat nothing he had not grown himself. Whatever, just forget all the distraction of yakking on about Political Independence unless your going to establish a Welsh Plaid Sofraniaeth as YES CYMRU is but a distraction. Myself, will make the Mynydd y Gwair struggle for Land and Liberty the last of it as IPF takes hold! no matter will be out this weekend with Placards, Posters and Stickers. Hwyl Gethin. PS: Idea of a ”Mass Trespass” I will take aboard, remember ‘Kinder Scout’. See blog ‘Stryveland Cymru’, be mindful Jac, if the Welsh had pulled up and surrendered as you suggest re Mynydd y Gwair, then no Gwenllian or Llywelyn Bren and maybe no Owain Glyndwr either. That they lost out ultimatly, no matter as they still inspires us today to continue the Mynydd y Gwair Campaigns in a struggle for sovereignty – Land and Liberty. Fight Not Flight! I’r Gad! Taro Nol!

            •  

              I would always want to encourage others, lots of different means to a shared end. In the 25% there are Jac’s “distinct Welsh People” and others, some without the language and different heritage but still active because of a sense of justice.You only need some of the Welsh media and a small portion of the 750,000 for a mass trespass.

              At some point all people who make up the “Global Tribe” reach a point and decide who owns the land is important. First Nation people are fighting throughout the globe for collective and individual ownership of the land, the struggle is never ending. Eventually those in temporary power have to address this historical grievance. Students of global history can identify many examples ie have a look at the slow but steady progress of the Inuit in Canada, some would argue “tokenism”, but they are fully engaged in the consequences of getting land back.

              If Mynydd y Gwair is a starting point so be it, nobody else is suggesting a piece of land requiring collective ownership, let me know of the date for a Mass Trespass?

          •  

            SIAN IS ON A SNOWDON CANCER AID WALK IN JUNE, SHE’S IN TRAINING AT MOMENT!!! HER DAUGHTER (AGE 48) DIED OF CANCER TWO YEARS BACK. MYSELF GOT THIS IPF LUNG DISORDER, HOW? MYSTIFYING? NOW MY ‘DIRECT ACTION ACTIVITIES’ ARE LIMITED. HOWEVER, MANAGED A MOTHERS DAY ACTION AT MYG ‘THE ROAD’ CONSTRUCTION SITE ON GOPA HILL- SEE FOTOS ON ‘STRYVELAND CYMRU’ BLOG. HWYL, GETHIN.

  26.  

    just read on golwg that Carwyn been out spouting all sorts of platitudes about Martin McG this morning, going on about building bridges etc etc. Well it’s time he sat down and dwelt long and hard on the Martin McG example. If a hardened militant can come in from the cold and play a key part in stabilising his country, one deeply divided by secterian and other issues, then why can’t an overweight barrister get his finger out and do something for his own country, or is he too wedded to the Anglo Brit supremacy model that Martin McG worked so hard to erode ?

    •  

      Whatever your views on Mcguiness And SF, you have to admire them for their political acumen and nous , If Plaid want an independent Wales, look to the Sinn Fein campaign book , Ie grassroots /community politics and campaigining from the streets up . There will be no change until this strategy is grasped and practised on the streets of the valleys and towns of south and north east Wales. and that;s the only way of countering UKIP. That’s the only way it will happen , plus the self education of Welsh people about their history, cos this suppine state apparatus under flabby Labour will not facilitate that.

    •  

      McGuiness wasn;t a hardened militant, he was a hardened mass murderer who personally killed more children than Myra Hindley.

      •  

        McGuinness was a man of his time, place and background. The IRA rarely targeted civilians, unlike the Loyalist killers who were often armed, funded and run by the British army, police and spooks.

        There will be no more comments on McGuinness, the Troubles or associated matters on this blog.

  27.  

    According to retrospective investigations, following acts of terrorism in the USA (in particular, Oklahoma) the yanks turned off the money pipe to the IRA. Faced with financial ruination and defeat, Adams and McGuiness resolved to sue for peace, as long as it was brokered by the USA. However, Major,and subsequently, Blair were completely outnegotiated and “snatched defeat from the jaws of victory”. The fruits of this defeat have continued to manifest themselves today. One condition was that every IRA terrorist was given a “get out of jail free” letter by Blair, and others were that an enquiry would be set up into Bloody Sunday, and that the killing of IRA members by British soldiers would be investigated (but not IRA atrocities). Perhaps Wales could get Trump’s mediators involved, there might soon be and independent Wales.

    •  

      I’m not sure why you’re linking events in Ireland with Wales. There is no connection and no relevance. Tread carefully.

      •  

        The connections being made with Ireland’s recent history of military events are irrelevant. However in the context of an independence referendum the Six Counties have a relevance, because of the recent call by Michelle O’Neill for an unification referendum.

        A lot of nonsense has been spoken in the last few days about Martin McGuinness by the ignorant, and those who have been bathed in media propaganda over the years.

        For the benefit of those people who are not familiar with past and to a lesser extent the current events in the Six Counties, which were blacked out for years by the media. Here’s an opportunity to learn a bit more about it and Martin McGuinness, who has been likened by some to the Irish version of Nelson Mandela.

    •  

      According to retrospective investigations, following acts of terrorism in the USA (in particular, Oklahoma) the yanks turned off the money pipe to the IRA.

      I have no idea where you get your information from, but it stinks, and has ‘mainstream media’ fingerprints all over it.

      I suggest you reinvestigate the Oaklahoma bombing farce. It had nothing to do with terrorism. It was one of the major false flag operations conducted by those behind the scenes in the US, who wanted to use that event as a pretext to finally pass Bill Clinton’s Anti-Terrorism bill, which would not have passed without something of that magnitude to spur it.

      Nothing to do with IRA funds drying up because of it. Incidentally it wasn’t the ‘Yanks’ per se that turned off the ‘money pipe’ – the money came from the Irish Americans who still had the truth about the reasons their grandparents went to America in the first place still ringing in their ears.

      RIP Martin McGuinness – a great leader. They only come around once in a while, in Cymru they only come around every few centuries.

      •  

        The campaign for a Referendum and Independence continues. A constant theme is the search for competent and inspiring leadership, “a driving force”. The actions of Plaid that drain confidence and energy. I will record part of a report in today’s Daily Post to highlight the challenge without further comment because none is needed, it is beyond satire.

        “Council Leader’s legacy praised as he announces resignation.

        The leader of Conwy Council is stepping down after nine years.

        Plaid Cymru leader Leanne Wood described Dilwyn Roberts in a statement as being “the driving force” behind many successful projects such as bringing big names like Tom Jones and Elton John to Eirias Park in Colwyn Bay, and for helping to steer the local authority through the past decade when local authorities faced unprecedented cuts in funding from the Welsh Government.

        He caused controversy earlier this year when it emerged he was threatened with being taken to court over not paying his council tax.”

    •  

      Nonsense. Both sides had people released from prison.

      It wasn’t about American money but US and EU helped broker the deal. Blair did play a pivotal role. Public had the final say.

  28.  

    Off on a total tangent (sorry Jac). A bit of a kerfuffle around Westminster this afternoon. Nasty business – I’m sorry to hear about the deaths & the injuries of innocent people – they are always the real victims.

    Now who was behind it I wonder? If it was a false flag set-up, to get us all frightened and anxious, in order to have an excuse to up the security ‘precautions’ another notch, and to monitor more conversations and implement more CCTV cameras we’ll soon find out.

    Wait for the announcement that a passport has been found, or papers in a vehicle or possibly a driving licence of an Arab, then we’ll know it was the government. The authorities would have you believe that ALL terrorists on missions carry their passports with them, and ALWAYS leave incriminating evidence in their crashed cars, or even burnt out cars sometimes! Or even at the scene of tall buildings that have suffered collisions with airliners.

    No doubt this (so called) “marauding” terrorist (who’s conveniently dead) will lead us to the Middle East, and the phoney war on terrorism.

  29.  

    People’s March for a Referendum and Independence.

    If the leadership of the movement for a Referendum and Indepennce decide to organise a People’s March I for one commit to walk the whole distance from Conwy to the Senedd. I am sure fellow citizens will put people up over night in solidarity and in support of the cause. The March however big or small will provide encouragement to many and grow confidence. Never deeply understood even with Adam Price’s historical analysis why the people of Wales have not taken to the streets more often, leadership has to be bold and audacious prepared to take calculated risks. We have nothing to fear.

  30.  

    Jac. Agree with you fully re Referendum and Plaid Cymru aka ‘Tan 8 Traitors’, ‘Devolution Dilletantes’ and not least Assembly Quislings all those diatribes aside. I think many in here and out there need to ask themselves what they really hope to get out of so called ‘Independence?’ If not Sovereignty, not least land sovereignty then sovereignty for ‘Yr Hen Iaith’ (Though 10 Million Quid to S4C should further make of them more so ‘Englands Client Tribe’ as most of ‘Y Crachach Newydd’) but most Nationalists put cart before the horse, much needed first and foremost is as Cofiwn persued constantly an Anti – Cerebral Colonialism campaign against ‘Historical Amnesia’ and so what are our kids being taught in School today and tomorrow particularly E.L. Schools. However, in these end of days I will focus on Mynydd y Gwair, no doubt not many will turn out ‘Millenials’ too busy on fb Bums and pointlessly twittering. How will this lot take on a future Investiture III where a few did get up and challenge the English Crown in the ‘sixties’ as we need to now, i repeat to Challenge for starters English Aristocrats ownership of our land and even River Bed making cowardly Swansea Council pay up £280.000 to put a foot bridge over the Tawe. By way the Retail Park there is owned by the Crown Estates, shafted again! I am motivated much by fact of upon leaving prison in 1969 I moved to Ireland just in time to be a little envolved in the Anti – Cheque Book Conquest campaign. This fires me up to take on the ‘Beaufort Bunch’ and it should really fire up Welsh Nationalism to commit to a ”Mass Trespass” march with us this Easter from Gopa Hill to ‘Somerset Field’, though with IPF I do not think I will get very far? but will make some kind of stand on Gopa Hill where Daniel Lewis Rebecca leader lived back in 1843? Gethin. PS: Personal Computer Bum!

    •  

      Thank God for that. I thought you were accusing me of political correctness, or being a supporter of Plaid Cymru.

      •  

        In addition will post you foto of newspapers on sale in Swansea with report on how Western Mail does compared to English newspapers and i think this will be same throughout the South. Thus with no Welsh Independance news reaching the ‘Welsh Masses’, via press and do they bother in sufficient numbers with TV and Radio News? No hope is there? Gethin.

Ok, you’ve read what I think, now what do you have to say?