I’m kicking off 2023 with thoughts on independence; more exactly, the kind of independence being offered by those who’ll be gathering in the Brangwyn Hall, Swansea, on the 28th of this month.
Ah! the Brangwyn Hall. I remember being slung out of there many years ago. It was a Labour Party do, with that son of Abersychan, Roy Jenkins, topping the bill. (Ere he and others left to form the SDP.)
Anyway, Woy had got to the bit in his peroration where he proclaimed to the assembly that he too was Welsh . . . at which point a young Jac jumped up and shouted ‘You’re no Welshman!’ (My outburst may have contained an expletive attributive.)
I was immediately attacked by some old crow sitting behind me, who laid into me with her umbrella! A possible headline from the Evening Post flashed through my mind – ‘Nationalist yob beaten to death by umbrella-wielding Labour granny’.
I was saved from this undignified and premature fate by the ‘stewards’ (i.e. Labour heavies) dragging me off towards the huge front doors. With a few reminders along the way that my contribution was not appreciated. (‘Troublemaker, ew are!’)
‘PROGRESSIVE’ MELIN DRAFOD
In this section I shall refer more than once to the briefly successful far Left takeover of YesCymru in 2020 and 2021.
I wrote about this extensively at the time and so, to catch up with what I wrote, type ‘YesCymru’ in the search box atop the sidebar.
The event later this month in the Brangwyn is organised by think tank Melin Drafod. And you don’t need to think too hard to realise what anyone attending is likely to hear.
All the speakers are on the Left. Or the far Left. Or the Woke Left. Call it what you will.
But ‘progressive’ is the label behind which they all hide nowadays. Such a nice word, harmless and unthreatening. Who among us could object to ‘progress‘?
Me. Because I recognise rebranded Marxism.
Helping me appreciate that the ‘progress’ demanded by those who’ll gather where a young Jac was assaulted by a Bolshie harridan is worrying.
But let Melin Drafod speak for itself:
‘Not independence for its own sake’. What is that trying to say – patriotism is not enough? Or is it a veiled threat to scupper any form of independence that doesn’t meet with the approval of the far Left?
There is so much to read into that section.
My views on ‘climate change’ are well known – it’s not happening. The myth is being kept alive by ‘environmentalists’ and others who’ve staked their reputations on it and can’t afford to backtrack, with supranational bodies thinking ‘global warming’ gives them the excuse to control human behaviour worldwide.
And does anyone seriously believe that racism is a ‘scourge’ in modern Wales? Who but the seriously unhinged could insult us by equating Wales in 2023 with Arkansas or the Transvaal a few decades back?
Only perhaps those with a vested interest in using the allegation of ‘racism’ to slander political opponents and to promote their own interests.
The latter might apply to Melin Drafod National Committee member Harriet Protheroe-Soltani, of the Wales Refugee Council. Like all third sector bodies, this one thrives by inventing or exaggerating a problem – and then demanding funding to tackle that problem.
Ms Protheroe-Soltani of Momentum was also employed by YesCymru when it fell briefly under the control of the far Left in 2020 / 2021.
Sam Coates is another member of the National Committee.
His Twitter account tells that he is a socialist first, then a Welshman. Which would appear to bear out that for these ‘progressives’ Wales comes second to their ideological priorities.
Significantly, perhaps, there’s no mention of independence.
And, again, it’s worth returning to the far Left takeover of YesCymru, for Coates wrote this essay in July 2021, and it’s revealing. (Available here in pdf format.) Not just about Coates but about the others who’ll be at the Brangwyn later this month.
He writes: ‘In 2017, I rocked up to the Hen Coleg yn Aberystwyth on a baking hot day to attend YesCymru’s AGM. It was a friendly room of about 50 people, mostly middle age, and mostly white.’
‘Mostly white’ – in a country that is 95% White! Would Coates and the comrades be happier if YesCymru was a majority non-White organisation, and therefore grotesquely unrepresentative of Wales?
As unrepresentative as those who’ll be at the Brangwyn Hall.
Referring to the rigged YesCymru elections of May 2021 that saw the far Left briefly take control, Coates writes: ‘Hundreds of members attended the online event, and used a voting tool used by many other political organisations to choose members of the new Central Committee’.
It would appear that when he wrote of those ‘hundreds’ voting Coates had forgotten that a few paragraphs earlier he’d talked of YesCymru having 18,000 members. Presenting us with the obvious question: why were just 2-3% of the members able / allowed to vote?
But let’s remember some of the tweets from ‘progressives’ celebrating victory!
Coates’ whole essay is an apology for an attempted far Left takeover; and it’s riddled with inaccuracies, misrepresentations and outright lies.
The other members of Melin Drafod’s National Committee seem to be Plaid Cymru members, and others who were involved in the near-destruction of YesCymru in 2021. I’m thinking of Llywelyn ap Gwilym, and Siôn Jobbins, Chair of YesCymru who eventually jumped ship.
Then we have Elin Hywel and Colin Nosworthy of Undod, the source of so much of the poison that almost finished off YesCymru.
And of course there are one or two on the National Committee from the Labour Party.
WHO’S COMING TO THE SUMMIT AND WHO’S NOT INVITED?
Let’s start by listing those political parties and organisations that are not invited by Melin Drafod (or whoever) to the portentously dubbed ‘Independence Summit’.
First off, there’s the party to which I belong, Gwlad. Then there’s Propel. There’s also the Sovereign Party / Plaid Sofren. So without going too far, we’ve already found three registered political parties, with councillors, made up of serious and experienced people, with all three parties committed to Welsh independence.
So why didn’t Melin Drafod invite them?
The listed speakers are advertised as follows . . .
‘Anthony Slaughter (Wales Green Party Leader), Adam Price MS (Plaid Cymru Leader), Cllr Rachel Garrick (Welsh Labour for Independence), Sam Coates (Undod), Gwern Evans (YesCymru), Luke Fletcher MS, Mirain Owen (Cymdeithas yr Iaith) and others’.
So let’s begin with Slaughter, and remind everyone that there is no Wales Green Party! There is only the Wales branch of the Green Party of England.
In 2018 Green Party members in Wales had the chance to create a separate Wales Green Party, they voted not to. The main reason for that was that most Green Party members in Wales are English.
Then, last year, the Green Party of England in Wales claimed to be in favour of Welsh independence! Plaid Cymru fell for it and was happy to enter some sort of agreement with them.
No individual, group, or party, sincere about Welsh independence, should even talk to a colonialist outfit that refuses to even recognise the existence of our country.
Plaid Cymru I’ll leave until last.
‘Welsh Labour for Independence’ (WLfI) is another piece of nonsense. Labour is a Unionist party. Any Labour member who wants independence is in the wrong party. Maybe some now realise that.
But is (WLfI) the same as Labour for an Independent Wales (LfIW)? Or, and this is the frightening bit – are there two of them!
During the struggle for YesCymru LfIW was prominent in undermining sensible committee members and replacing them with some real nutters. Working from the shadows was Rob Lloyd of Prestatyn, while out there on the Welshpool barricades was Benji Gwalchmai.
Where are they now? How I miss them!
We already know all we need to know about Sam Coates and Undod.
Luke Fletcher is a Plaid Cymru Senedd Member. With a beard.
YesCymru is represented by Gwern Gwynfil Evans. He was announced as YC’s first-ever full-time CEO in September. The piece I’ve linked to says he has ‘a business background’. Which is true; one of his companies was Dissolved in the very month he was appointed.
Yet he brings another Aberystwyth connection to the party. Which I’ll explore shortly.
So, finally, let’s give some thought to Plaid Cymru which, in most people’s eyes, is ‘the nationalist party’, and the leading voice for Welsh independence.
On the one hand, Plaid activists seem to be more at home at Gay Pride parades than at marches for independence; while the party is being eaten away from the inside by a combination of back-stabbing and sexual misbehaviour.
The party tries to keep things under wraps but news of the obsession with other people’s ‘bits’ inevitably reaches the public domain.
MS Rhys ab Owen was suspended a few months ago for unwanted sexual advances to a female. But he was only suspended after the party had sat on the case for some time in the hope the complainant would go away.
Last month, the party’s chief executive, Carl Harris, finally stepped down after it emerged he had made unwanted sexual advances to a young party worker.
When it’s like this at the top of the party – and I mean, the very top – then no one should be surprised that lower down the pecking order we find bizarre behaviour.
The image below (which I pixelated) is of someone who works for a Plaid Cymru MS showing what he proposes to do when he catches whoever is behind an anonymous ‘I know what you did!’ Twitter account accusing him of . . .
And, yes, that is a crowbar.
No wonder a former Plaid Cymru Police and Crime Commissioner recently called on party leader Adam Price to resign.
Plaid Cymru is a mess, however you look at it, and from top to bottom. To say it’s lost its way would be wrong . . . for that would suggest Plaid’s leadership in recent decades ever knew where it was going.
I think Plaid Cymru is now too far gone for the change of leadership Arfon Jones calls for to make any difference. My view is that Plaid should do the honest thing and merge with Labour.
They deserve each other.
RUM, REGGAE, AND ‘AN UNTAINTED, LEFT-WING, WELSH ALTERNATIVE’
I mentioned earlier that Aberystwyth businessman, Gwern Evans, is CEO of YesCymru. And he’s not the only one speaking at the Brangwyn bash from that lovely town where a dashing young blade spent a weekend in the police cells.
For Melin Drafod Chair, Dr Talat Chaudhri is mayor of the town. Also living in Aber’ is secretary Mererid Boswell, and former chair of YesCymru, Siôn Jobbins.
UPDATE: I am indebted to Jon Coles for telling us that Colin Nosworthy is a press officer for Aberystwyth University.
And there may be others with Aberystwyth connections. Not Sam Coates, obviously; not after his chastening experience of stumbling into a gathering of the Llanbadarn chapter of the Afrikaner Broederbond.
However you cut it, Aber’ will be over-represented at this Swansea gig. And then I came across something last week, which is intriguing, but needs an intro.
There is an intermittent column in the Cambrian News by a Gareth James.
This was the piece drawn to my attention, last November. It contained this line: ‘Like it or not, mid Wales is woke, for mid Wales is about sharing mid Wales with everyone’, plus a few passages that the source interpreted as threats against those who refused to accept Wokeness.
Then, a couple of weeks later, came this extraordinary piece calling for Dyfed Powys Police to be more ‘woke’, following what the writer interpreted as racial profiling that targets his sons. (Here in pdf format.)
You’ll also see, at the top of the article ‘The View from the Vaults’, these being the Weston Vaults pub in Aberystwyth. Now renamed Irie’s Rum Bar and Reggae Lounge.
Gareth James, the man in the picture, runs the bar. This piece from the Cambrian News last September makes that clear. What you see above is something of a resurrection, for Irie’s closed in March 2016, apparently for good.
The building that houses the Rum Bar is owned by Cyngor Ceredigion. Do councils normally buy pubs? This other Land Registry title document tells us that a lease was taken out (or taken over) in April 2015 by Irie’s (Aberystwyth) Ltd.
Aberystwyth is a fairly small town, so I’d be surprised if the ‘progressives’ of YesCymru, Melin Drafod, etc, don’t frequent a bar run by a man who wants Plod to be more Woke.
Another long, rambling piece, but when I read the final paragraph a light went on in my head – a new political party that is ‘an untainted, left-wing, Welsh alternative’.
Is Gareth James trying to tell us something?
Is this what Talat Chaudhri, Sam Coates and the rest have in mind? Is this what Melin Drafod is hoping comes out of the Brangwyn Hall meeting?
Whether it’s a new party or simply closer co-operation between existing far Left groups, this Independence Summit looks like another attempt by the far Left to take over the independence movement.
If so, then it becomes the duty of those of us with a broader view of Wales to challenge these people. For if it became accepted among the general public that these fanatics are the only ones wanting independence then Wales is finished.
Independence must promise, and deliver, the inclusivity the far Left always demands of others but never practices itself.
I have warned many times before, and I make no apologies for doing so again, that what these Green-Woke-Leftists want is independence for a small country whose politicians can then be bullied and blackmailed into implementing their fantasies.
This capture from the website of Labour for an Independent Wales reminds us that, for them, independence is simply the route to socialism.
It’ll be something like the Wales we know today: a country falling apart at the seams because weak politicians are dominated by lobbyists, pressure groups and third sector organisations. But it’ll be a hell of a lot worse!
There’ll be nothing in it for you and me, Dai. For our people; or for our Wales.
Blwyddyn Newydd Dda!
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