Ar ddydd Sadwrn y 13eg o Ionawr am 10am mae’r asgell-dde eithafol yn bwriadu cynnal rali yng Nghaerdydd, tu allan i’r Senedd. Bydd gwrth-brotestwyr yn ymgynnull o 10 o’r gloch i wrthwynebu’r rali.
Bydd aelodau o UKIP yn ymuno gyda’r gyfundrefn “The People’s Charter” o blaid Brecsit. Mae’r People’s Charter yn gyfundrefn hiliol a Phrydeinig. Mae Luke Nash-Jones, arweinydd y grŵp ac un o’r siaradwyr yn Islamoffôb rhonc sy’n defnyddio iaith “alt-right” yr UDA. Gwaharddwyd un o’r siaradwyr UKIP, Gareth Bennet, rhag siarad yn y Senedd yn ddiweddar am sylwadau sarhaus yn erbyn pobl traws. Er gwaethaf eu gwleidyddiaeth gwrth-ddosbarth gweithiol dyma’r rali yn ceisio bachu symboliaeth Siartwyr Casnewydd – sarhad gwarthus ar hanes gweithwyr ein cenedl.
Nid oes croeso i’w Prydeindod rhagfarnllyd, ei hiliaeth a’i snobyddiaeth yng Nghaerdydd. Dewch i ni wneud hyn yn glir.
Cofiwch fod siawns y bydd ffasgiaid treisgar yn mynychu’r rali hiliol, a bod hi’n anodd rhagweld gweithredoedd yr heddlu. Byddwch yn ofalus ac ewch gyda ffrindiau. I’r strydoedd!
On Saturday the 13th of January at 10am the far-right “People’s Charter” are planning on holding a rally in Cardiff, outside the Welsh Assembly. Counter-protestors will be assembling from 10am to oppose the rally. Let’s make it clear that their racism and Islamophobia isn’t welcome here. Remember that there’s a chance violent fascists will attend the racist rally, and that it’s difficult to predict the police response. Keep your wits about you and go with friends. To the streets!
Er bod y bachiad hwn gan ffasgiaid goruchafol gwyn Prydeinig o symbolau Cymreig yn ddatblygiad diweddar, rhaid pwysleisio bod y perthynas rhwng Cymry gwyn, gan gynnwys Cenedlaetholwyr Cymreig gwyn, a goruchafiaeth wen systematig yn un hen iawn. Ymddiheurwn am beidio â phwysleisio hyn yn fwy cadarn yn yr erthygl.
Y gwahaniaeth rhwng y ddwy ffordd defnyddir y term “goruchafiaeth wen” sy’n bwysig fan hyn. Yn yr ystyr cyntaf, ideoleg wleidyddol “cydwybodol” yw goruchafiaeth wen, gan ddisgrifio grwpiau ac unigolion gwyn penodol sy’n weld eu hun yn oruchaf oblegid eu gwynder. Caiff bron pob ffasgydd a grybwyllwyd yn yr erthygl eu disgrifio, gan eu hun neu gan eraill, fel goruchafwyr gwyn (neu “genedlaetholwyr gwyn”) yn yr ystyr hon.
Yn yr ail ystyr, “system o ddominyddu” yw goruchafiaeth wen, yr “ecsploetiaeth o bobl du a phobl eraill nad yw’n groenwyn yng nghymdeithas” (bell hooks, Talking Back: Thinking Feminist, Thinking Black). Fan hyn mae’r term yn disgrifio (ac yn ymosod ar) perthynas cymdeithasol nad yw o reidrwydd yn gydwybodol. Fel pwysleisia Jessie Daniels: “Mae goruchafiaeth wen yn yr Unol Daleithiau yn egwyddor drefniadol canolog o fywyd cymdeithasol yn hytrach na fudiad cymdeithasol ynysig yn unig” (Cyber Racism: White Supremacy Online and the New Attack on Civil Rights). Mae goruchafiaeth wen systematig wrth gwrs yn hynod o berthnasol i fodolaeth goruchafwyr gwyn penodol, fel dengys Daniels ei hun.
Cymhlethdod ychwanegol yw bod goruchafwyr gwyn, yn yr ystyr cyntaf, bron wastod yn wrth-Semitaidd – mae gwrth-Semitiaeth yn rhan hanfodol o’u goruchafiaeth wen, lle bod y perthynas rhwng gwrth-Semitiaeth strwythurol a goruchafiaeth wen yn yr ail ystyr yn fwy cymhleth.
Pan ddefnyddiodd anarchwaethus goruchafiaeth a goruchafol wyn yn yr erthygl, defnyddia hi yn ystyr cyntaf y term, gyda’r eithriadau o’r 32ain a’r 34ain troednodyn. Dylswn ni wedi egluro hyn, neu ddefnyddio term arall megis cenedlaetholwyr gwyn, ac rydym yn flin am beidio. Gan ystyried yr hyn a ddadleuwn dylswn ni wedi bod yn gliriach ar y mater. Ymddiheurwn am hyn.
Yn gyffredinol, defnyddir ffasgiaeth, yng nghyd-destun gwrth-ffasgiaeth, mewn modd cul yn debyg i’r disgrifiad uchod o oruchafiaeth wen yn yr ystyr cyntaf. Er bod ffasgiaeth yn yr ystyr yma wrth gwrs yn gysylltiedig i ac yn rhan o ddominyddu systematig, gan gynnwys goruchafiaeth wen systematig a gwrth-Semitiaeth strwythurol, defnyddir hi yma i briodoli grwpiau, ideolegau a gwladwriaethau penodol ac yn y blaen, gyda nifer ohonynt yn hunan-ddisgrifio fel ffasgiaid.
Yn y modd cul hwn defnyddiodd anarchwaethus y term ffasgiaeth yn yr erthygl. Serch hyn hoffwn bwysleisio nad ydym yn credu taw dyma’r unig ffordd gellid neu ddylsid defnyddio’r term.
Goruchafwyr gwyn Prydeinig a goruchafiaeth wen Gymreig
Ffocws yr erthygl oedd y datblygiad diweddar hwn rhwng ffasgiaid Prydeinig a symboliaeth Cymreig. Gellid dim ond gwneud hyn trwy siarad am hiliaeth – olrheiniodd anarchwaethus y bachiad o symbolau Celtaidd gan oruchafwyr gwyn byd-eang (yn yr ystyr cyntaf). Gerllaw defnydd tocenistaidd o’r iaith Gymraeg a chipio symbolau Cymreig, bachwyd symbolau a hanesion Cenedlaetholdeb Cymreig gan rai ffasgiaid Prydeinig diweddar. Fan yma fe bwysleisiodd anarchwaethus nad yw Cenedlaetholdeb Cymreig erioed (hyd yn hyn) wedi cymryd ffurf ffasgaidd, goruchafol gwyn (eto, yn yr ystyr cyntaf). Yn debyg, ni chafodd Cymru erioed cyfundrefn ffasgaidd goruchafol gwyn cynhenid Cymreig a Chymraeg. Mae pob math o gyfundrefn, gan gynnwys testunau’r erthygl, wedi bod yn Prydeinllyd, os nad Seisnigaidd hyd y bywyn.
Dydi hyn ddim yn golygu nad yw Cymry gwyn (gan gynnwys Cenedlaetholwyr Cymreig gwyn) yn rhan complisit o oruchafiaeth wen systematig yn yr ail ystyr. Dydi hi ddim chwaith yn golygu bod Cymru yn wag o wrth-Semitiaeth strwythurol. Crybwyllwyd hyn yn yr erthygl (er nid trwy’r termau hyn). Dylswn ni wedi pwysleisio hyn fwy wrth ystyried ein dadl, ac ymddiheurwn am beidio gwneud hyn.
Mae anarchwaethus wedi ceisio pwysleisio’r pwyntiau hyn yn erthygl uniaith Gymraeg arall. Fel dywedai Charlotte Williams, mae yna dueddiad ymysg Cymry gwyn i anwybyddu hiliaeth yng Nghymru, fel petai e’n gorffen ger y ffin. Caiff hanes caethfeistri Cymreig, gwladychwyr Cymreig, terfysgoedd hiliol yn erbyn pobl nad oedd yn wyn ac Iddewon, cyfraniadau i’r prosiect Imperialaidd Prydeinig, mentrau gwladychol “annibynnol” megis Patagonia a hiliaeth pob dydd yng Nghymru ei dileu yn feunyddiol. Hyd yn oed pan ymosoda Genedlaetholdeb Cymreig ar Brydeindod a hanes yr ymerodraeth Brydeinig, mae ganddo dueddiad cyfleus i anghofio’r gorffennol hwn. Ond y gorffennol hwn ffurfia’r Gymru lle cawn fyw.
Mae’r perthynas rhwng Cymru a goruchafiaeth wen systematig yn rwystr sylweddol i unrhyw berson gwyn sy’n dymuno arddel Cymreictod radical heddiw – fel gwnaiff anarchwaethus. Fel dadleuwn cynt, ni chawn Gymru Rydd nes i ni ddymchwel dominyddiaeth systematig, gan gynnwys hiliaeth. Nid yw anarchwaethus yn honni deall sut ddaw’r fath dymchweliad.
Cenedlaetholdeb(au) Cymreig presennol a hanesyddol
Hoffa anarchwaethus pwysleisio bod ein perthynas i genedlaetholdeb Cymreig yn un o feirniadaeth gartrefol. Fel anarchiaid yn erbyn gwladwriaethau, ni dderbynnir ein safiad fel un cenedlaetholgar gan y rhan fwyaf o genedlaetholwyr Cymreig. (Yn debyg, ni dderbynnir ein safiad yn un anarchaidd gan rai anarchiaid oblegid ein hagwedd i’r “cwestiwn cenedlaethol”. Wastod ar y tu fas…) Gellid cymharu ein perthynas i “genedlaetholdeb Cymreig” i berthynas anarchydd frwydr-ddosbarth i “sosialaeth”, neu anarchydd gwrthryfelgar i’r Red Army Faction.
Nid amddiffyniad o genedlaetholdeb Cymreig hanesyddol oedd bwriad yr erthygl. Yn hytrach, lle drafodwn genedlaetholdeb Cymreig, roeddem yn mynnu nad ffasgaidd oedd ei ymddangosiadau cyfundrefnol cyn belled. Nid yw hyn yn cau allan posibilrwydd ffasgiaeth Gymreig ddi-Brydeinig yn y dyfodol, na chwaith yn golygu bod y fath bachiad o Gymreictod gan ffasgiaid Prydeinig heb wenwyn. Rhaid ymosod ar ffasgiaeth, pa bynnag baner y codant. Rhaid hefyd ymosod ar y bachiad hwn o symbolau Cymreig gan ffasgiaid Prydeinig. Fel gwrth-ffasgiaid Cymreig mae digon i wneud. Dewch i ni fynd ati!
We want to emphasise that whilst the appropriation by British white supremacist fascists of Welsh symbols is a recent development, the relation of white Welsh people, including white Welsh nationalists, to systematic white supremacy is not. We apologise for not emphasising this more strongly in the article.
The difference here lies between two ways in which the term “white supremacy” is used. The first sense is white supremacy as a “conscious” political ideology, describing certain white individuals and organisations who regard themselves as superior because of their whiteness. Almost all of the fascists mentioned in the article would describe themselves and be described as white-supremacists (or “white nationalists”) in this sense.
The second sense is white supremacy as a “system of domination”, the “exploitation of black people and other people of color in this society” (bell hooks, Talking Back: Thinking Feminist, Thinking Black). Here the term describes (and attacks) a social relationship which isn’t necessarily conscious. As Jessie Daniels puts it: “White supremacy in the United States is a central organizing principle of social life rather than merely an isolated social movement” (Cyber Racism White Supremacy Online and the New Attack on Civil Rights). The existence of particular, overt white supremacists is of course intimately related to this systematic white supremacy, as Daniels herself demonstrates.
An added complication is that white supremacists, in the first sense, are almost invariably anti-Semitic – anti-Semitism is an essential aspect of their white supremacism, whereas the relationship between white supremacy in the second sense and structural anti-Semitism is more complex.
When anarchwaethus used white supremacy and supremacist in the article, it was using it in the first sense of the term, with the exceptions of the 32nd and 34th footnote. We should have clarified this, or used a different term such as white nationalists, and we are sorry that we didn’t. Considering the points we were making we should have been more clear. We apologise for this.
Fascism, in the context of anti-fascism, is generally used in a narrow way similar to white-supremacist in the first sense described above. Whilst fascism in this sense is of course connected to and a part of systematic domination, including systematic white supremacy and structural anti-Semitism, it is again used here to refer to particular groups, ideologies, states etc., many of which self-describe themselves as fascist.
This narrow definition was how anarchwaethus was using the term fascism in the article. We would like to stress however that we don’t think this is the only way the term can or should be used.
British white supremacists and Welsh white supremacy
The article’s focus was this recent development between British fascists and Welsh symbolism. This can only be done by talking about racism – anarchwaethus traced the appropriation of Celtic symbols by white supremacists worldwide (in the first sense). Alongside tokenistic use of the Welsh language and taking Welsh symbols, some recent British fascists have appropriated Welsh Nationalist symbols and histories. anarchwaethus here stressed that Welsh Nationalism has never yet taken a fascist, white-supremacist form (again, in the first sense). Likewise, Wales has never yet had a native Welsh and Welsh speaking white-supremacist fascist organisation. All such organisations, including those that were the subject of the article, have on the contrary had Britishness, if not Englishness, at their core.
This does not mean however that white-Welsh people (including white Welsh nationalists) are not a complicit part of systematic white supremacy in the second sense. Nor does it mean that Wales is devoid of structural anti-Semitism. We pointed towards this in the article (albeit not using these terms).  We should have emphasised it more considering the point we were making, and we are sorry that we didn’t.
anarchwaethus has tried to emphasise these points in another article (written in Welsh). As Charlotte Williams puts it, there is a tendency amongst white Welsh people to simply ignore racism in Wales, as if it ends at the border. The history of Welsh slave owners, Welsh settlers, local race riots against people of colour and Jews, participation in the British Imperial project, “independent” colonial ventures such as the Gwladfa in Patagonia and everyday racism in Wales are daily erased. Even when Welsh Nationalism attacks Britishness and the legacy of the British Empire, it has a tendency to conveniently forget this past. But it is this past which forms the Wales in which we live.
This relation of systematic white supremacy to Wales is a significant barrier to any white person who wishes to assert a radical Welshness today – as anarchwaethus does. As we have previously argued, there is no Free Wales until systematic dominations, such as racism, are abolished. anarchwaethus does not claim to understand how this abolition will take place.
Existing and historic Welsh Nationalism(s)
anarchwaethus would like to emphasise that our relation to existing and historic Welsh nationalism is intimately critical. As anarchists against states, many Welsh nationalists would not accept our position as nationalist. (Likewise, our stance on the “national question” means that some anarchists would not accept our position as anarchist. Wastod ar y tu fas…) Our relation to “Welsh nationalism” might compare to a class-struggle anarchist’s relation to “socialism”, or an insurrectionary anarchist’s relation to the Red Army Faction.
We did not intend the article to be a defense of historic Welsh nationalism. Rather, where we discussed Welsh nationalism, it was to assert that its organisational manifestations cannot, so far, be described as fascist. This doesn’t rule out a future non-British Welsh fascism, nor does it mean that these appropriations of Welshness by British fascists aren’t toxic. Fascism, whatever banner it raises, must be attacked. This recent appropriation by British fascists of Welsh symbols must also be attacked. As Welsh antifascists there’s a lot to be done. Dewch i ni fynd ati!
Nodiadau / Notes
 Cyfieithiad anarchwaethus – gwelwch y Saesneg uchod am y dyfyniadau gwreiddiol.
 Yn y paragraff “Wrth gwrs, nid yw hyn yn golygu bod Cymru yn genedl radical o’i hanfod heb hiliaeth na gorthrymder, fel cred rhai Cymry gwyn naïf…” ac hefyd yn y troednodyn “Rhaid, wrth siarad am yr hanes hwn o ran enedlaetholdeb Cymreig, peidio ag anwybyddu hanesion hiliol yng Nghymru, yn enwedig rôl nifer o Gymry yn yr ymerodraeth Brydeinig.” / In the paragraph, “Of course, this does not mean that Wales is some essentially radical nation without racism or oppression, as some niaive white Welsh people believe…” and also in the footnote “We must, whilst talking about this history regarding Welsh nationalism, not ignore racist histories in Wales, in particular the role of many Welsh people in the British empire.”
 Serch hyn, ma ychydig o hanes o affinedd neu hyd yn oed uniad rhwng rhai gwerinaethwyr Cymreig asgell-chwith ac anarchiaid. Gwelwch, er enghraifft, hanesion Ian Bone neu Dafydd Ladd. / All the same, there is a sparse history of affinity and even convergence between some left-wing Welsh republicans and anarchists. See for example, the histories of Ian Bone or Dafydd Ladd.
Fascists are trying to take Welsh and Welsh-language symbols.
These are racist, white-supremacist and violent groups. They attack refugees and migrants. They are Islamophobic and anti-Semitic. They are anti-working-class and patriarchal. They are ableist. In short: shitbags. There is no welcome for them in Wales or anywhere else.
Fascism must be opposed, whatever banner it raises. This attempt to exploit and twist our Welsh symbols and language towards right-wing and British aims must also be opposed.
In this article, anarchwaethus discusses this recent development amongst British fascists of snatching Wales’ symbols and our stance as anti-fascists against Britishness.
New tendency – same old shitbags
The presence of fascists in Wales is hardly new. Moseley’s Blackshirts tried to hold meetings in South Wales in the 30s for example, where they were welcomed by bricks, bottles and fists.
What’s new is this tendency amongst British fascists to appropriate Welsh symbolism, including anti-British symbols. As far as we know, this couldn’t be imagined some twenty years ago. Back then, if these fascists spoke of Wales, Welshness or the Welsh-language, their rhetoric and position was aggressive and anti-Welsh. This has changed, though we emphasise that the change is only symbolic – skin-deep.
The Valleys’ Frontline Firm (a small group connected to the NF) has tried imitating the Welsh national football team’s badge for example. Except instead of “Gorau Chwarae Cyd Chwarae” [“The Best Playing – Playing Together”], they have a tiny little Swastika.
National Front Wales takes things one step further, flying a mishmash combination of yr Eryr Wen (old symbol of the Free Wales Army) and Baner Glyndŵr, anti-British symbols, alongside the Butchers Apron. (For context: this would be equivalent to flying the Union Jack, or a Unionist flag, alongside an IRA flag). Do they even notice the irony and contradiction? Who knows. On the National Front merchandise website, since 2014 you’ve been able to buy this “Welsh” flag alongside a “hang IRA Scum” flag and Nazi imitations. Druan ar Cayo. There’s also a page in Welsh on the NF Wales website, where they attack “mewnbudiaeth” [sic – “immi-world-tion”??].
Around ten years ago the British National Party started using the Welsh Dragon on its propaganda in Wales. Nick Griffin, ex-leader of the BNP, has moved to Llanerfyl in rural Wales – something (all too) common amongst rich Englishmen. But uncommon for such a Brit, he has (apparently) tried to learn Welsh, and has sent his children to Welsh school. (No shit – he was even spotted at the Eisteddfod some years ago!). Likewise, anarchwaethus has heard of one or two fascists in South Wales trying to learn Welsh in the last few years.
More recently, Alex Davies has tried to compare Saunders Lewis and the battle for the Welsh language to the battle for white supremacy (!). Davies is one of the main members of the younger violent group “National Action”. (The NA is famous for their “Hitler was right” banner and for being the first ever right-wing group to be banned by the British state. In 2016 they tried (and miserably failed) to attack anti-fascists protesting the “White Pride” demo in Swansea.) For almost an entire painful hour, Davies spoke at a secret “London Forum” meeting held in Cardiff, whilst attacking Jews, using racists slurs and praising the Nazis. To close, he explained that “what I’d like to say to British Nationalists and to white nationalists, national socialists [that is, Nazis], what we can do is we can take from the Welsh movement some examples.”
Lastly, UKIP has also started using some Welsh here and there. Like the BNP and others, their previous official stance was extremely anti-Welsh language, and like these other examples there’s no doubt that this change is only on the surface and that anti-Welsh language prejudice continues to run deep. (anarchwaethus isn’t sure whether UKIP can be simply defined as fascism in the same way as the above groups (another discussion). But without a doubt they are still full of racist shit – amongst other shit – and they must be opposed. Fair play to Cymdeithas for taking a stance against them recently.)
Despite appropriating Welsh symbols, or even anti-British symbols, Britishness is essential to all these fascists. None of them believe in a Free Wales in any sense – they oppose such nationalism. They want Wales to remain part of the British Union. Though on rare occasions they have mentioned or used the language, they do not worry or fight for it, nor do they identify with the struggles of our national past. Other than the Welsh nationalist symbols that they take, they do not have a single feature of Welsh nationalism(s) (the struggle for the language, anti-militarism or pacifism, self-rule, independence or freedom for Wales, international solidarity with other oppressed nations and so on). The opposite is true: they proudly bathe in their Britishness (a white Britishness of course). Little Wales within Great Britain is their empty Welshness.
There’s little to be shocked about here. They are following a familiar tradition of British-Welshness, which grips some Welsh symbols, and is happy to take pride in Welshness to an extent, so long as it’s within the British imperialist order. This is the shitty mythology of the Royal Welch Fusiliers, the lie of Rorke’s Drifft, Henry the VII, David Lloyd George and so on. The twist is that they do this through Baner Glyndŵr or Saunders Lewis!
“White Wales” or “Western England”?
The difference is that they connect this empty Welshness with obvious white supremacy. They imagine a little white Wales, whiter than the cities of England. Through miss-defining the Welsh as an essentially white “race”, Welshness becomes for them a symbol of white supremacy. For them, to be Welsh (or British) is to not be black, to not be Muslim or Jewish, to not be an immigrant from beyond the English channel.
This is of course total rwtsh – bullshit, historically and presently, which erases Welsh histories that aren’t white, migrant histories in Wales, the histories of Welsh-Jews, Muslims, Roma people and so on. Though actual Welsh nationalisms record is far from perfect, it wasn’t in terms of the “white race” that they defined Welshness. Rather, their main definition of Welshness was and is the linguistic element and/or opposition to Anglo-oppression – to be Welsh was to be in some relationship of belonging (whether you spoke it or not) with the native language and/or to not be English. As most of the English are white, race in this sense was neither important nor central to their definition of what it meant to be Welsh.
Though this appropriation of Welsh symbols by British fascists is a recent move, there is a longer history of appropriation by white supremacists in general of Celtic symbolism. This mis-association of the Celts with whiteness plays an important part in the British fascist imagination here today (despite the fact that the roots of modern Britishness lies in Anglo-Saxon and Norman domination, rather than in the old Britons!). This can be traced in turn to the racist Klu Klux Klan in the USA, who took pride in a mythology of “Celtic” (Scots-Presbytarian) alongside “Anglo-Saxon” roots. (Once again, the KKK’s use of the term “Anglo-Celtic” to mis-define whiteness is completely meaningless (and opposed) by Welsh nationalism.)
Hand in hand with this racist mythology, many white English people have chosen to move to Wales as they perceive it as a place “which is still white”. These well-off Brits have often risen in class, and choose to emigrate from English cities as a part of “white flight”. The obvious irony is that they moan about the death of their “culture” (by which they mean white “culture”) and “immigrants”, but are more than happy to move to Wales (or buy a second home here) and to Welsh-speaking areas, whilst flying their Union Jacks and insisting on not learning the language! anarchwaethus is not trying to say that all white English immigrants to Wales are “white flighters”, but there is definitely a proportion that are, and this is worth our attention. To an extent, much organised fascist activity in Wales can be connected to these types, and also to white English fascists who cross Offa’s Dyke for the occasional demo.
There’s no better summary of this than the fascists’ chant at the “White Pride” demo in Swansea, 2014. Whilst flying Baner Glyndŵr alongside the Union Jack, the crowd shouted: “this is England, not Pakistan”(!).
(Of course, it’s important to emphasise that there are non-Welsh anti-fascists in Wales, and that some travel from beyond Wales for anti-fascist protests here – fair play to them. Needless to say these protesters aren’t insisting that Wales is England.)
Welsh Nationalism and (anti)Fascism
After stripping Welsh symbols of their meaning these shitbags then go on to define Welsh nationalism as fascism. This is again total rwtsh. Whilst figures like Julian Cayo-Evans and particularly Saunders Lewis had their faults – and this article isn’t here to defend these faults – they cannot be defined as fascists. These figures were not representative of the whole Welsh nationalist movement besides (this was famously the contradictory case with Saunders and his own party, Plaid Genedlaethol Cymru, despite him being its leader). The Welsh nationalist movement has never been a fascist movement. As discussed already, the essence of Welsh nationalism was opposition to the British Union, Anglo-oppression and (to differing extents) the destruction of the Welsh language – clear anti-imperialist positions. Without a doubt, Saunders Lewis and to a lesser extent some others early in the movement had anti-Semitic positions, and at times an admiration of Hitler (it’s clearly these disgusting tendencies that attracted Alex Davies to him). We must attack this. We must also attack Lewis’ patriarchal bullshit and his opposition to class war, and he has been attacked on these things by other Welsh nationalists. But these positions do not differentiate him from many other individuals or parties at the time, whether this be the Tories, the Liberals or the Labour Party. There are some disgusting and reactionary individuals and tendencies, including anti-Semitism, to be found in nearly every movement. Neither anarchism nor even anti-fascism is an exception to this.
There is in reality some tradition of opposing fascism amongst Welsh nationalists. The English anarchist Ian Bone’s memories of fighting alongside Welsh Republicans against fascists in the 70s is a witness to this. It’s also possible to argue that a mixed attempt at anti-racism and solidarity with people of colour is a less central feature of Welsh nationalism. If anything, this appropriation by British fascists of Welsh symbolism only seems to further provoke and anger Welsh Republicans against them.
In defining Welsh nationalism as fascism, these fascists are once again following the British establishment. They have swallowed the lie of the British establishment during and after the second world war: the false accusation that all Welsh nationalists were Nazi-supporting fascists. (It is important to note that the British state also accused pacifists, Welsh communists like Niclas y Glais, the entire Italian community in Wales and many others the same.) They accept this lie, and see it as a good thing. Then, through taking Welsh nationalist symbols, they try to turn this lie into “truth” so as to fulfill the original accusation.
As discussed in this article, the spirit of these all these fascists is Britishness, Brit-Welshness if not downright Englishness. There is in fact no example in our history (so far) of a native Welsh and Welsh-speaking fascism.
Of course, this does not mean that Wales is some essentially radical nation without racism or oppression, as some niaive white Welsh people believe. The Brecshit vote in Wales and the growth in racist attacks following this is enough to cause worry without mentioning organised fascist groups. State racism and the violence of the border-system is a nightmare situation besides. The detention centres on this island and the new ones along Europe’s borders where G4S and others daily murder refugees cannot be forgotten. anarchwaethus above differentiates somewhat between fascist groups and the racism of UKIP and the state, but it must be admitted that these lines are blurred, now as much as ever. Mae’r nos yn hir.
Fascists have less of a street presence on these islands than in the rest of Europe. There is also comparatively less fascist activity in Wales than England. Whilst noting NF Wales’ infighting, the NA’s recent ban, the fall of the BNP and new groups’ (literal!) failure to appear, can’t it be claimed that anarchwaethus and anti-fascists give too much attention to unimportant groups? Our answer is firmly no. Firstly, whilst the above groups are small (especially in comparison to the EDL’s heyday), they are hardcore and more violent. Secondly, we must remember that the EDL and groups like Pegida in Germany’s sudden rise was relatively unexpected. We must smash fascism on every occasion so as to prevent such a growth. Thirdly, these fascist groups are connected, directly or indirectly, to racism and everyday shit on the street and to the racism and shit of the state. When fascism succeeds on the streets, racist confidence and prejudice against oppressed groups strengthens, and the whole political atmosphere is soured. To fight one we must also fight the other.
To close, anarchwaethus insists that we need an anti-British anti-fascism.
From a Welsh position, fascism in Wales continues to impose Britishness and Anglicisation, despite this symbolic change. Fascism also threatens the Welsh language with an alternative death, as Welsh is a dead language already when in the mouth of a fascist. Through attempting to take our symbols they deprive us of our traditions, killing any true life they have, just as Britishness has always done. The Welsh language must live: we must kill fascism.
From an anti-fascist position on these islands, we must attack Britishness in order to act effectively. Fascism does not exist in a vacuum – it has a home, language and culture. White Britishness is the dominating culture of fascism on these islands, and the English language runs through its veins. Through killing Britishness, we shall kill British fascism.
We must physically oppose fascism on the streets, and take from their hands the flags of Wales.
Thanks to Welsh Antifa, Disuj and Irish antifascist flags for inspiring the new baner.
Translation notes: Many Welsh words and meaning have no English equivelant. “Tramor” is used here as “across the sea” – that is foreign, but not including England or Scotland. “Seisnigeiddio” is used as “Anglicisation” – the meaning is fairly obvious, but has a linguistic emphasis (the erasure of the Welsh language (or other languages) by English). Likewise, the Welsh-language has seperate words for: the Welsh-language – “y Gymraeg”, Welsh – “Cymreig”, Welshness – “Cymreictod”, the Welsh people – “Cymry” and Wales – “Cymru”. We’ve tried to be clear here. Britishness is used in place of “Prydeindod”, from J. R. Jones’ work.
2 This surface change can be compared to the EDL’s misuse of LGBT rights towards Islamophobic ends. Here we have another skin deep, hypocritical and empty appropriation appropriation: whilst an EDL member flies an LGBT rainbow flag the fascist crowd shouts homophobic chants.
3 Above, anarchwaethus looks at the roots of this development in world-wide white supremacy’s appropriation of “Celticness”, but why has this change amongst British fascists and Welsh symbolism happened recently? anarchwaethus’ guess is, on the one hand, a lack of direct action on behalf of the present national movement in Wales and the Welsh language movement, and on the other hand, the related acceptance of elements of these movements into the main-stream establishment. That is, the present national and language movements’ lack of teeth, and these same movements’ past victories. When militant Welsh nashies were in their heyday, trying to bomb the Investiture of the Prince of Wales, or burning down rich English holiday homes, it wasn’t possible for British fascists to identify with their symbols. At the same time, now (following past struggles) that the Welsh language, and elements of Welsh nationalism (devolution, civic nationalism) are more “accepted” by British institutes and politics, it’s easier for British fascists to appropriate Welsh symbols. (The quieting of unrest in Northern Ireland is related to all of this.)
4 It would seem to be the “Wen” [“white”] part of the Eryr Wen symbol that appeals to them. See this picture and the video and the fascist tune “Violent Storm White Eagle of Snowdon” on youtube.
5 Also note the Welsh name (“Waredigaeth” [sic]) of NF Wales members’ crap band. Despite the name, it’s interesting to note that musical member’s of NF Wales like David Powell, Bryan Powell and Chris Lewis are attracted to American Bluegrass music, not Welsh traditional music. (See the notes on the KKK in this article.)
6 We should remember with shame that the Englishman and racist Brit Enoch Powell also learned the language, along with several other languages. (The Powells were of Welsh descent.) (See the part on British-Welshness and racist perceptions of the language later in this article.)
7 See the video “Alex Davies: ‘Saunders Lewis & Militant Welsh Nationalism” on youtube.
We get another interesting appropriation of Welsh symbolism by the NA here, where they combine our national anthem (in English (!) (it is only ever sung in Welsh, except on very rare bizarre occasions)) and Scottish symbolism in a Brit-fascist image. (Compare this with the British-Welsh establishments’ appropriations mentioned in this article.)
8 Alongside elements of Welshness, the group has also tried to appropriate anarchist symbolism and tactics, a tendency amongst some fascists across Europe and North America. Likewise, we see in the propaganda of the NA, NF Wales and others the fascist tradition of attempting to appropriate anti-capitalist and working class rhetoric (see, for example, this leaflet talking about the “White working class”). Whilst looking at this new development in terms of Welshness, we must remember that fascists are incredibly flexible and paradoxical when it comes to taking symbols (see the note on the “EDL LGBT division” above). Past fascists have even appropriated directly anti-fascist symbols!
9 In contrast to the above groups, UKIP isn’t trying to be a violent group or movement “on the street” (though they came close to calling for violence recently following Brecshit (very similarly to Trump’s campaign threats about supposed election rigging), and many of them praise such acts). They support the racist violence of the state and the police, but through the Parliamentary system, not through recruiting or entering the institution directly (in contrast to the NF). They are not trying to be a power outside of Westminster and civil society, and this is not a part of their electoral strategy either (this is in contrast to Mussolini and Moseley’s Blackshirts, Hitler’s Brownshirts or Franco’s military coup). But despite all of this, UKIP must be looked at in the wider context of fascist groups like the above, “non-political” everyday racism and shit on the street and the “mainstream” racism of the state and border-system, and the reactionary rhetoric of the main parties (including Corbyn’s Labour Party, now that he too is spewing anti-migrant shit). Without a doubt, there’s is a recognition amongst many UKIP member’s and fascist groups of a “division of labour” which reinforces each other, and many shitbags are members of fascist groups and UKIP. As Britain First put it, “UKIP in the ballot box, Britain First on the streets”. Last, it’s important to note that many of the same anti-fascist tactics, especially those used against electorally inclined fascists, are very useful against UKIP, including for example “no platform”.
(Of course, UKIP’s Britishness, like the above fascist groups, is rank).
10 Alex Davies’ “lecture” comes close to being an exception to this, with him talking about Tân yn Llyn. But it’s important to note that he doesn’t praise the anti-militarism or anti-imperialism of burning Penyberth, nor does he call for similar things. Rather, he emphasises how white-supremacist fascists can gain attention through direct action. It’s an objective lesson to be learned, so as to fulfill completely different aims – they don’t identify emotionally with the event as so many Welsh people do.
11 The only weak similarity between some British fascists and some Welsh Nationalists is rhetoric over a “distributist” economic system and the attempt at a “third position” “between” capitalism and communism (see the “Welsh DistributistMovement” bellow, and Alex Davies “lecture” on Saunders once again). Whilst anarchwaethus disagrees with distributism, it isn’t in itself a feature of fascism. Many in the Labour party and Tory party, alongside others from every corner of the political spectrum, have called for distributism and a stance between capitalism and communism.
12 This is a tradition as old as Edward I’s appropriation of the Arthur story so as to cement his rule of Wales.
13 The presence of Roma and Welsh-Roma people in Wales was essential to the continuation and richness of the Triple Harp’s unbroken tradition in Wales, our national instrument.
14 People of African descent have been part of the history of Wales since Roman Britain – that is, since the birth of the nation.
15 Daniel Williams emphasises Britishness’ role in erasing diversity within Welshness. Though he does this from a civic nationalist position, not an anarchist one (for anarchwaethus the problem is that state paperwork exists and defines our nationalities in the first place!), we strongly agree with this point.
16 This appropriation, and the perception of “Celtic” countries as “more white” is worth attention when considering that many 18th and 19th century racial theorists saw the “Celtic race” as the “lowest”, “worst” race within the white races internal hierarchy. (It must be emphasised that all the white races were seen as much “higher” than the others, such as Jews and people of African descent, and that this hierarchy was the most important difference). See, for example, the beliefs of John Beddoe or Madison Grant.
17 Defining the Celts as people within the “white race” is bullshit on several levels. The old Celts existed long before the white race came into being as a social reality and system of power (a development that came into play at the end of the Middle Ages). It’s likely that culture, rather than shared descent, was what connected the old Celts of these islands to the Celts of the continent. Today, though descent is not entirely unrelated, it’s in culturally and nationally that the term has any meaningful worth. anarchwaethus hopes to expand on this in the future.
18 See, for example, the surreal BNP puppet show explaining the history of Boudicca (“and Boudicca, was white” (!))! Despite what’s said, rather than Buddug her Latin name is used. Once again, it follows the footsteps of British institutional mythology – see Queen Victoria’s appropriation of Boudicca’s symbolism.
19 For these Scots descendants in the USA, previously planted on the front-line of colonisation in Northern Ireland, their use of the term Celtic did not mean Irish Catholics (and their emphasis was Scots rather than Gaelic). By their second-embodiment anti-Catholicism was an essential part of the KKK whilst they attacked more recent migrants to the USA from the rest of Europe. We can see here a connection between the KKK’s burning crosses (an appropriation of an old Scottish Clansman tradition, which also began during their second-embodiment), and the tradition of burning crosses at Lewes bonfire in England, an event with anti-Catholic and anti-Irish roots. (Similarly to the KKK, some in Lewes bonfire continue to blacken their faces, despite calls to stop from people of colour).
(Though he apologises for colonisation (he talks about “celebrating” Scottish settlers), ignoring for the most part co-operation between the state and the KKK and shaking hands (!) and giving platform to a KKK leader, Neil Oliver’s recent BBC documentary discussing this topic is interesting and important.)
20 We then see this kind of white supremacy “returning” home. Content warning for the next links – they deal with racist and disgusting events. *Content note: the following links deal with racist and disgusting events.* See for example the history of the fascist Alan Beshella, or more recent KKK symbolism by fascists in the Valleys.
21 This history of appropriating Celtic symbolism doesn’t end with the KKK. This history, and the history of the appropriation of the Celtic Cross towards fascist ends is a complicated one and deserves discussion in itself (it’s likely that the symbol belonged to several European cultures before the modern age besides). In the 30s, some German and French (despite their opposition to Breton nationalism!) fascists began appropriating elements of Celtic culture. Jacques Doriot appears to be amongst the first to use the Celtic Cross towards fascist ends. In this period some fascist factions (small and unsuccessful) appeared on the fringes of the nationalist movement in Ireland, such as Ailtirí na hAiséirghe (who also used the Celtic Cross), and also some Breton fascists (it’s not obvious that these used the Celtic Cross).
Whilst discussing such histories we must also remember anti-fascist traditions in the “Celtic nations”. It was heartwarming to see Irish Republicans joining against fascists in Liverpool, and heartwarming to see an Irish anti-fascist banner flying in the battle at Dover. Similarly, though reactionary elements are to be seen in some Breton nationalist factions today, we must also note the Breton anti-fascist factions (alongside the Breton anarchist tradition).
22 Needless to say anarchwaethus insists that it’s Britishness and Anglicisation that threatens the Welsh language, not immigrants from across the sea. Anglicisation threatens both the Welsh language and their minority languages.
23 This is a common chant on English fascist marches. It was clear, from interviews and their accents, that the majority of the fascist crowd that came to Swansea that day were Englishmen from up North.
24 Alongside appropriating Welsh symbols, “romanticising” Wales as a white area and defining Wales as England, it’s worth noting that (male) British fascists have chose to travel to the mountains of Wales to hold violent training camps. (In this they are once again following the British establishment!) In 2014, different fascists attended the Sigurd Legion training group in the Bannau Brycheiniog, and in 2016 Britain First held a training camp in Eryri. The two camps including practising knife fighting. Many have connected the murder of MP Jo Cox, which happened shortly after the training camp, to Britain First.
25 Likewise, many Welsh antifascists have travelled (in 1936 and on other occasions) and continue to travel across the world in antifascist solidarity.
26 For a thorough discussion of Plaid Genedlaethol Cymru and the false accusations of fascism, see Richard Wyn Jones’ book.
27 They see, as anarchwaethus sees, a common enemy in the British imperialist order, though this order oppresses us in very different ways. We must, whilst talking about this history regarding Welsh nationalism, not ignore racist histories in Wales, in particular the role of many Welsh people in the British empire.
28 See, for example, this letter and answer and also this post: “A left wing photographer then shouted at a local NF member who was holding the Wales NF flag aloft that he wasn’t happy we were flying the white eagle of Snowdon symbol and his dad was ex free Wales army. This red clown was told that the REAL nationalists of Wales now have this symbol! It belongs to the real Welsh patriots defending the white Welsh working class! “We have taken the symbol and its now ours!” shouted the patriot, much to the red idiots disapproval.”
29 These fascist activities appear to be somewhat stronger in those areas previous called “British-Wales”, such as the Eastern part of the Valleys.
30 The closest we get is the “Welsh Distributist Movement” in the 90s. Though a number of the above groups are small, this group was minuscule (5 members apparently!). But English, once again, was their language, and it’s clear that main member Wyn Davies had strong connections to British fascists in the NF.
31 We must also note the connections between racist attacks and homophobic and transphobic attacks following Brecshit. There have also been the cases of hatred towards Welsh speakers on the street, which is (mis)perceived as a “foreign” language – see this story and also this tweet).
32 Some have connected this to successful antifascist action on these islands. Though we must celebrate such traditions, anarchwaethus feels that there are structural reasons which mean that such fascism is less useful to the imperialist state and British white supremacy. It could be argued that the elite in stable Britain doesn’t “need” fascism as much.
33 We occasionally see fascists from across the sea on these islands, such as Zjednoczeni Emigranci – and we must of oppose their fascism too. (We also of course get anti-fascist groups from across the sea, such as the famous Dywizjon161.) We also see occasional attempts at a kind of Euro-fascism (the explicit co-operation of fascists from different European nations, e.e. Pegida), but this in no way lessens the centrality of Britishness.
34 Fascism also has content beyond the national, obviously. Through killing white supremacy, capitalism, patriarchy and so on, we will also kill fascism. But we must also look at white-supremacy, capitalism and patriarchy on these islands in their British context and content.
Cofnod blog yn siarad am Drychineb Aberfan, gan un o’r pentre. Mae’n adrodd parhad trawma y trychineb, iechyd meddyliol y pentre a’r Cymoedd, a’r cymhlethdod sydd ynghlwm â lleisio gormes wleidyddol y trasiedi.