“Lladd y Gwryw Gormesol er mwyn y Gymru Chwyldroadol”

Darn gan Elliw Jones sy’n dwyn ysbrydoliaeth o’r chwyldro yn Rojava, gan alw am newid syfrdanol i’n mudiadau yng Nghymru. // Piece by Elliw Jones drawing inspiration from the Rojava revolution and calling for foundational changes to our movements in Wales. English below.

Lladd y Gwryw Gormesol er mwyn y Gymru Chwyldroadol

Ceir offerynnau o fewn y Mudiad Rhyddid Cwrdaidd gyda’r posibilrwydd o roi diwedd ar atgynhyrchu gormes yn ein grwpiau.

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Sut mae modd inni strwythuro ein grwpiau, gan ymladd dros gymdeithas gyfartal, heb barhau â’r systemau gormesol rydyn ni ein hunain yn gynhyrch ohonynt? Mae byw mewn byd goruchafiaethol gwyn, hynod unigolyddol a phatriarchaidd yn golygu, hyd yn oed wrth i ni alw ein hunain yn ffeministiaid, yn wrth-hiliol ac yn gynghreiriaid i bawb sy’n dioddef rhaib cyfalafiaeth, bod byw a bod y pethau yma yn fater arall yn llwyr.

Ar ôl degawd a mwy o ymwneud â mudiadau cymdeithasol yng Nghymru, gwrth-lymder, gwrth-ffasgaeth, mudiad yr iaith Gymraeg, gwrth-filitariaeth ac ati – y thema sy’n codi dro ar ôl tro yw bod pobl yn ei chael hi’n anodd iawn osgoi bod yr hyn yr ydym wedi cael ein meithrin i fod yn y byd hwn. Heb sylweddoli hynny, mae ymddygiad rhywiaethol, dosbarthaidd ac ablaidd yn rhemp – a dyma fy union brofiadau.

Ar ôl dechrau anobeithio am y ffordd y mae pobl yn trin eu gilydd, des i ar draws syniadau Abdullah Ocalan. Nid yn unig y mae ei syniadau o Gydffederaliaeth Ddemocrataidd yn cynnig llwybr i annibyniaeth radical rhag cyfalafiaeth a’r wladwriaeth, ond gallai’r teclynau a ddatblygwyd gan y Mudiad Rhyddid Cwrdaidd ein hachub, hyd yn oed, rhag y gelyn mwyaf peryglus yn y chwyldro yng Nghymru – ni ein hunain.

Jineolojî – gwyddoniaeth menywod a bywyd (a jin yn golygu y ddau beth- menywod a bywyd) yw cysyniad Öcalan o ddull o wyddoniaeth, yn wahanol i’r dull gwyddonol positifaidd traddodiadol. Mae Öcalan yn cynnig mai crefyddau monotheistig, cyfalafiaeth a’r genedl-wladwriaeth yw tri gwreiddyn gormes menywod.

Mae rhyddfreinio menywod mor ganolog i’r Mudiad Rhyddid Cwrdaidd oherwydd, yn ôl theori Öcalan, dyma’r gormes gwreiddiol, yr un cyntaf a adeiladwyd arni gan bob un arall, a rhaid mynd i’r afael ag ef yn ein hunain yn gyntaf, os ydym am gyflawni chwyldro;

“Yn ystod y cyfnod Neolithig crëwyd trefn gymdeithasol gymunedol gyflawn, a elwir yn “sosialaeth gyntefig “, o amgylch menywod … Y drefn hirhoedlog hwn a luniodd ymwybyddiaeth gymdeithasol gyfunol dynoliaeth; a’n dyhead diddiwedd yw adennill ac anfarwoli’r drefn gymdeithasol hon o gydraddoldeb a rhyddid a arweiniodd at ein cysyniadu o baradwys.” Abdullah Öcalan

Defnyddir offer a strwythurau democratiaeth uniongyrchol yn y Mudiad Rhyddid Cwrdaidd i ymladd patriarchaeth yn ein hunain a “lladd y gwryw gormesol (ynom ni)”. Mae’r rhain yn gyfres soffistigedig o ddulliau i symud tuag at pracsis chwyldroadol go iawn, a byddaf yn amlinellu ychydig o’r dulliau hyn yn yr erthygl hon.

Y mecanwaith cyntaf yw strwythurau benywaidd cyfochrog. Er mwyn sicrhau nad yw strwythurau tra-arglwyddiaethol patriarchaidd yn cael eu hefelychu yn y Mudiad Rhyddid Cwrdaidd nac mewn cymdeithas yn gyffredinol – ar gyfer pob “strwythur” cymysg mae strwythur menywod cyfochrog wedi’i gyfansoddi o’r holl ferched sy’n cymryd rhan yn y strwythur cymysg. Yma mae gan ferched le i drafod a dwyn y dynion i gyfrif a dod benben a rhywiaeth ac ymddygiad patriarchaidd yn ein mudiadau. Mae gan y strwythurau menywod hyn y pŵer i roi feto ar benderfyniadau a wneir yn y strwythur cymysg.

Mae hyn yn berthnasol i’r strwythurau milwrol, i strwythurau ymgyrchu fel Fundiad y Menywod yn y diaspora yn Ewrop, a hefyd yn strwythurau hunan-weinyddiaeth y cymdeithasau yn Bakur a Rojava. O redeg ysgol i gasglu’r sbwriel neu benderfynu sut mae diwydiant lleol yn cael ei redeg, mae gan strwythurau y hunan-weinyddiaeth fudiad menywod cyfochrog, i gadw golwg ar ei gonestrwydd chwyldroadol.

Yr ail offeryn a ddefnyddir yn y mudiad cymysg a benywaidd yw Tekmîl. Dyma’r broses o feirniadaeth adeiladol a hunanfeirniadaeth. Gall derbyn beirniadaeth fod yn anodd iawn, yn enwedig i ni a fagwyd yn yr oes neoliberal hon o unigolyddiaeth, ond mae’n hanfodol i unrhyw mudiad iach ddelio â’n gwrthdaro ac i’n helpu i ddatblygu’n bobl a chwyldroadwyr gwell (gallai deimlo’n chwithig i ddefnyddio’r gair chwyldroadol ond gyda’r blaned yn llosgi a chyflwr presennol y byd dwi ddim yn meddwl y gallwn ni falu awyr am yr hyn rydyn ni ei eisiau).

Yn y Mudiad Rhyddid Cwrdaidd, mae beirniadaeth yn rhodd sy’n dangos bod eich cymrodor wir yn poeni amdanoch chi a’ch datblygiad. Clywais stori am grŵp o ymladdwyr yn y mynyddoedd yng Nghwrdistan na fyddai’n beirniadu ei gilydd. Dywedodd eu rheolwr wrthyn nhw:

“Naill ai rydych chi i gyd yn berffaith – neu dydych chi ddim yn gymrodyr da iawn os na allwch chi feirniadu’ch gilydd.”

Mae Tekmîl yn troi’r cysyniad o feirniadu o fod yn ymosodiad ar yr unigolyn i fod yn weithred o gymrodoriaeth a chyfeillgarwch. Wedi dweud hyn, nid yw mor syml â bwrw eich bol gyda rhywun sydd wedi eich cythruddo mewn Tekmil. Mae’n gelfyddyd: nid dinistrio rhywun yw’r nod, ond eu helpu’n fedrus i adeiladu eu hunain.

Er enghraifft, ni fyddai rhywun yn casglu camgymeriadau pobl yn eu meddwl i’w cywilyddio’n gyhoeddus mewn Tekmîll; yn ddelfrydol dylech ddweud wrth y person pan fyddwch chi’n ei ystyried yn fwyaf agored i’r awgrym, ac yn fwyaf parod i dderbyn y feirniadaeth.

Pwrpas dod a fater i Tekmil fyddai i eraill ddysgu ohono, ac efallai os ydych chi’n teimlo nad yw’r feirniadaeth wedi’i hystyried, ac os oedd angen mwy o anogaeth arnyn nhw i ddod o hyd i ateb i’r peth rydych chi am eu beirniadu yn ei gylch.

Nodwedd bwysig arall yw na allwch “amddiffyn eich hun” wrth gael eich beirniadu – byddai gwneud hynny yn gwadu realiti’r person arall, a’r hyn sy’n bwysig yw nad yw pobl yn ystyried y feirniadaeth mewn modd amddiffynnol, ond yn gwrando a dysgu o’r feirniadaeth a’i gweld, mewn gwirionedd, fel anrheg.

Nid cyfaddefiad mohoni chwaith. Os ydych chi’n hunan-feirniadu, mae angen i chi a’ch cymrodyr ymalfalu am atebion i’ch problemau a’r patrymau dinistriol yn eich cymeriad. Dylai beirniadaeth fod yn seiliedig ar atebion. Does dim i’w hennill o ymddiheuro, dim ond fel bod modd ichi y barhau â’r ymddygiad hwn. Mae yna elfennau celfydd ehangach i’r dull gwerthuso hwn, ond dyma’r syniad bras.

Y trydydd dull yw’r system o gwotâu cynrychioliadol a chyd-gadeiryddion. Rhaid bod gan bob strwythur gwota o ferched yn cymryd rhan i’w wneud yn strwythur dilys, ac yn ychwanegol at hyn rhaid cael cyd-gadeirydd gwrywaidd a benywaidd mewn unrhyw strwythur penodol. Mewn ardaloedd o amrywiaeth ethnig, mae’r cwotâu hyn a’r system cyd-gadeiryddion hefyd yn cynnwys cwotâu i gynrychioli’r lleiafrifoedd hyn. Mae pwyslais hefyd ar geisio dod i gonsensws (anffurfiol) lle bynnag y bo modd, gan ei bod yn hawdd diystyru lleiafrifoedd yn y ffurf “bleidleisio” draddodiadol o wneud penderfyniadau, a gwthio i’r neilltu eu barn ynghylch iaith neu unrhyw beth arall o ganlyniad.

Mae croestoriadaeth wedi bod yn offeryn sydd wedi ein helpu i allu deall gorthrymderau ein gilydd yn well – mae’r taclau o’r Mudiad Rhyddid Cwrdaidd yn ein hannog i ddelio’n systemataidd a chyson â’r gorthrymderau sy’n bla ar ein mudiadau cymdeithasol. Mae cyfalafiaeth yn ein defnyddio fel cwndid i gario ei wenwyn i’n bywydau bob dydd, gan niweidio ein perthnasoedd a’n rhannu oddi wrth ein gilydd. Yn ôl y Mudiad Rhyddid Cwrdaidd, mae 99% o’r frwydr yn erbyn y system o fewn ein hunain – i ddeall yr holl ffyrdd y mae cyfalafiaeth a rhyddfrydiaeth wedi ein llenwi ag ideolegau dinistriol, ac i’w chwynnu.

Mae’r syniadau hyn wedi cynnig gobaith i mi o safbwynt dyfodol y frwydr dros gyfiawnder a rhyddid yng Nghymru, a gobeithiaf bod y syniadau hyn yn ein cymell i ystyried yr angen am newid ar draws y mudiad rhyddid a’r chwith.

Ymysg yr holl mudiadau cymdeithasol rydw i wedi bod yn rhan ohonyn nhw, mae patriarchaeth yn rhemp. O gael ei ddominyddu i dawelwch mewn cyfarfodydd, i gael dynion yn cracio jôcs a chwerthin pan mae menyw yn ceisio cyflwyno gweithdy ar groestoriadaeth. O ganolfannau cymdeithasol radical yn gwrthod delio â digwyddiadau o drais rhywiol yn eu lleoliadau, i grwpiau Sosialaidd sy’n goddef ysglyfaethwyr rhywiol. O weithdai yn defnyddio menywod ar gyfer yr holl waith atgynhyrchu cymdeithasol anweledig, tra bod y dynion yn cael gwneud y gwaith gweladwy, diddorol a chyhoeddus. O fod Mamau yn cael eu heithrio o bopeth oherwydd diffyg ymrwymiad gan eraill, i gael dynion hŷn yn gyson yn eich trin fel darn o gig, yn ymddwyn yn nawddoglyd neu eich anwybyddu pan fyddwch chi’n rhyngweithio â nhw yn y mudiad. Ni all hyn barhau. Os ydym am adeiladu mudiadau chwyldroadol o ddifrif rhaid cymryd camau radical i fynd i’r afael a hyn.

Ar ôl 800 mlynedd o wladychu, mae strwythurau patriarchaeth yng Nghymru wedi cael gafael arnom yn dynn. Rwy’n teimlo bod “‘cymhleth y taeog” o ganlyniad i’r cymhathu a’r gwladychu hwn wedi ein gyrru hyd yn oed ymhellach i ffwrdd o’r “sosialaeth gyntefig” a fyddai’r gymdeithas naturiol i ni i gyd. Gellid dadlau bod deddfau Hywel Dda yn llawer mwy blaengar; go brin bod Cymru erioed yn “Wladwriaeth Genedl” ond yn gymunedau a oedd yn rhannu’r un iaith a diwylliant. Rwy’n teimlo bod gwladychu yn cyflymu patriarchaeth, ecsbloetio a gormes, ac os ydym ni yng Nghymru yn gweld annibyniaeth Cymru o fewn patrwm ehangach o frwydr ddad-wladychol, mae’n rhaid i ni ymdrechu i ddadwladychu ein hunain a’n cymrodyr – yn enwedig o ystyried, yn ogystal â chael ein gwladychu, mae rhai Cymru wedi bod yn wladychwyr brwd ac wedi cydweithredu ac elwa o’r Ymerodraeth Brydeinig gwaedlyd.

Mae gan y dulliau pracsis hyn y potensial i fod yn ddewis amgen i’r “diwylliant galw allan” y cyfryngau cymdeithasol – er mwyn mynd i’r afael â mater atgynhyrchu gormes yn ein sefydliadau a’n mudiadau. Nid ymgais yn unig mohoni i chwynnu ymddygiadau gormesol yw hyn. Os nad yw grŵp yn cynrychioli’r gymuned mew modd digonol, ni fydd y mudiad yn ei ystyried yn grŵp cyfreithlon – mae dannedd i’r dull hwn. Un enghraifft yw grŵp ecolegol a ffurfiwyd mewn dinas Cwrdaidd yn nhalaith Twrci – nid oedd digon o fenywod yn y grŵp felly nes bod gan y grŵp gynrychiolaeth fwy cyfartal, ni fydd yn cael ei ystyried yn gyfreithlon.

Mae gennym gymaint i’w ddysgu o’r Mudiad Rhyddid Cwrdaidd a’r Chwyldro yn Rojava. Mae ein dulliau hyd yma wedi ein methu, ac mae’n bryd inni ystyried ffurfiau newydd o drefnu.


Killing the dominant Male for a Revolutionary Wales

The Kurdish Freedom Movement’s tools to end the reproduction of oppression in our groups.

How do we structure our groups, fighting for an equal society without perpetuating the oppressive systems of which we ourselves are products? Living in a highly individualistic, patriarchal and white supremacist world means that even as we call ourselves feminists, anti-racists and allies to all those who suffer the brunt of capitalism, living this is an other matter completely.

After over a decade involved in social movements in Wales, anti-austerity, anti-fascism, the Welsh language movement, anti-militarism etc – the recurring theme is that people find it really difficult to avoid being what they were brought up to be in this world. Without realising, sexist, classist and abelist behaviour is rampant – and these are just from my experiences.

Having started to feel hopeless about the way people treat each other I came across the ideas of Abdullah Ocalan. Not only are his ideas of Democratic Confederalism a roadmap to radical independence from capitalism and the state, but the tools developed by the Kurdish Freedom Movement could even save us from the most dangerous enemy in the Welsh revolution – ourselves.

Jineolojî – the science of women and life (jin meaning woman and life) is Öcalan’s conception of a form of science opposed to the traditional positivist scientific method. Öcalan identifies monotheistic religions, capitalism and the nation state as three roots of women’s oppression.

Women’s emancipation is so central to the Kurdish Freedom Movement because, according to Öcalan’s theory, it is the first oppression that all others were built upon, and it must be addressed within ourselves first if we are to achieve revolution;

“During the Neolithic period a complete communal social order, so called “primitive socialism”, was created around woman… It is this long-lasting order that shaped humanity’s collective social consciousness; and it is our endless yearning to regain and immortalise this social order of equality and freedom that led to our construct of paradise”. Abdullah Öcalan

The tools and structures of direct democracy in the Kurdish Freedom Movement are used to fight patriarchy within ourselves and “kill the dominant male (in us)”. These are a sophisticated series of methods to move towards a real revolutionary praxis and I will outline a few of these methods in this article.

The first mechanism is the parallel women’s structures. To make sure patriarchal structures of domination are not replicated in the Kurdish Freedom Movement and in society in general – for every mixed “structure” there is a parallel women’s structure made of all the women that participate in the mixed structure. Here women have the space to discuss and hold the men to account and call out sexism and patriarchal behaviour. These women only structures even have the power to veto decisions taken in the mixed structure.

This applies from the military structures, to campaign structures like the Women’s Movement in Europe and also in the self administration structures of the societies in Bakur and Rojava. From running a school to collecting the rubbish or deciding how local industry is run, the structures of self administration have a parallel women’s movement to keep its revolutionary integrity in check.

The second tool that is used both in the mixed and Women’s movement is Tekmîl. This is the process of constructive criticism and self criticism. Accepting criticism can be very difficult, especially for us brought up in this neoliberal age of individualism, but it is essential for any healthy movement to deal with our conflict and to help us develop into better people and revolutionaries (it might feel jarring to use the word revolutionary but with the planet burning and the current state of the world I don’t think we can mince words any more about what we want).

In the Kurdish Freedom movement, a criticism is a gift that shows that your comrade really cares about you and your development. I heard a story from a friend about a group of fighters in the mountains in Kurdistan that wouldn’t criticize each other. Their commander told them:

“Either you’re all perfect – or you’re not very good comrades if you can’t criticize each other.”

Tekmîl turns the concept of criticising from being an attack on the individual to being an act of comradeship and friendship. Having said this, it’s not as simple as just having it out with someone who’s annoyed you in a Tekmil. It’s an art, the aim is not to destroy someone, but to skillfully help them build themselves up.

For example, one wouldn’t store up people’s mistakes in their mind to shame them publicly at a Tekmîll, ideally you should tell the person when you deem it most appropriate, when the person would be most receptive to the criticism. The purpose of bringing it to Tekmil would be for others to learn from it, and perhaps if you feel the criticism hasn’t been taken on board and if they needed more encouragement to find a solution to the thing you want to criticise them about.

Another important feature is that when being criticised, you can’t “defend yourself” – doing so somewhat denies the other person’s reality and what’s important is that people are not thinking about being defensive – but really listening and learning from the criticism and seeing it as a gift.

Neither is it like a confession. If you self criticize, you and your comrades need to come up with solutions to your problem. Criticism should be solution-based. It’s no good doing it to apologise just so that you can carry on with this behaviour. I won’t be able to express the nuances of this method of evaluation here, but this is the rough idea.

The third method is the system of representative quotas and of co-chairs. All structures must have a quota of women participating to make it a valid structure, and in addition to this there must be a male and female co-chair in any given structure. In areas of ethnic diversity, these quotas and the co-chair system also contain quotas to represent these minorities. There is also an emphasis on trying to reach an (informal) consensus wherever possible, since minorities in the traditional “voting” form of decision making can easily be outvoted and their opinions regarding language or anything else marginalised as a result.

Intersectionality has been a tool that has helped us to be able to understand one another’s oppressions better – the tools from the Kurdish Freedom Movement guide us to strategically and systematically deal with the oppressions that plague our social movements. Capitalism uses us as a conduit to carry its poison into our everyday lives, damaging our relationships and dividing us from one another. According to the Kurdish Freedom Movement, 99% of the fight against the system is within ourselves – to understand all the ways that capitalism and liberalism have filled us with destructive ideologies, and to root those out.
These ideas have given me hope for the future of the struggle in Wales for justice and freedom, I hope that these ideas provoke us to consider the need for change across the Welsh left  and national liberation movement.

Across all the social movements I have been involved in, patriarchy is rife. From being dominated into silence at meetings to having men crack jokes and giggle when a woman was trying to deliver a workshop on intersectionality. From radical social centres refusing to deal with occurrences of sexual violence in their spaces to Socialist groups tolerating sexual predators. From collectives using women for all the invisible social reproduction work while the men get to do the visible, interesting and public facing work. From Mothers being excluded from everything because of a lack of commitment from others to constantly having older men objectify, patronise or ignore you when you interact with them in the movement – this can’t go on.

After 800 years of colonisation, the structures of patriarchy in Wales have taken a stranglehold. I feel like “cymhleth y taeog” (the peasant complex) as a result of this assimilation and colonisation has driven us even further away from the “primitive socialism” that would be the natural society for us all. Hywel Dda’s laws were arguably much more progressive; Wales was hardly ever a “Nation State” but communities that shared the same language and culture. I feel that colonisation accelerates patriarchy, exploitation and oppression, and if we in Wales see Welsh independence within the paradigm of a de-colonial struggle, we have to struggle to decolonise ourselves and our collectives – especially given that as well as being colonised, some Welsh people have been enthusiastic colonisers and collaborated and benefited from the murderous British Empire.

These methods of praxis have the potential to be an alternative to the toxic “call out culture” of social media, to really get to grips with the issue of the reproduction of oppression in our organisations and movements. This is not just the nurturing out of oppressive behaviours. If a group does not represent the community adequately, it will not be considered a legitimate group by the movement – this method has teeth. One example is of an ecological group formed in a Kurdish city within the Turkish state – there were not enough women in the group so until the group has more equal representation, it would not be considered legitimate.
We have so much to learn from the Kurdish Freedom Movement and the Revolution in Rojava. Our methods thus far have failed us and it’s time for us to consider new forms of organising.

Rhwystrwch y Rali Hiliol, Caerdydd, 13/01/2018

Stop the Racist Rally, Cardiff, 13/01/2018

English below

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!

LukeN

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!

“Why we shut down the UK’s largest coal mine – a call to action”

https://reclaimthepower.org.uk/news/canaries-shut-mine/

Anerchiad gan brotestwyr a gauodd gloddfa brig Ffos-y-Fran ym mis Ebrill. Cawsant eu deddfrydu i dalu dirwy o £10,000 – gallwch eu cefnogi yn ariannol fan hyn. Cafwyd gweithredoedd tebyg yn ac mae mwy ar y gweill yng ngweddill yr ynys.

“Mond trwy weithredu uniongyrchol parhaol, a thrwy gwrthwynebu pob math o ddifrod, awdurdod a gormes cawn ddechrau greu y byd dymunwn weld.” Protestwyr Ffos-y-Fran.

 

 

Rhai eglurhadau / Some Clarifications

Scroll down to read the following in English.


Hoffa anarchwaethus amlygu rhai pwyntiau a wnaethwn yn ein herthygl “Ffasgiaid Prydeinig yn ceisio bachu Cymreictod“.

Goruchafwyr gwyn a Goruchafiaeth wen

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)[1]. 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)[2]. 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).[3] 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!




anarchwaethus would like to clarify certain points made in the article “British fascists try to appropriate Welsh symbols”.

White supremacists and white supremacy

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). [3] 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.[4] (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

[1][2] Cyfieithiad anarchwaethus – gwelwch y Saesneg uchod am y dyfyniadau gwreiddiol.

[3] 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.”

[4] 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.

British fascists try to appropriate Welsh symbols

I ddarllen yr erthygl wreiddiol yn Gymraeg, ewch i “Ffasgiaid Prydeinig yn ceisio bachu Cymreictod“.

The following is an English translation of the original article “Ffasgiaid Prydeinig yn ceisio bachu Cymreictod“. See also some clarifications.


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.[1]

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.[2][3]

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.

From daffodills to... swastika. Shitbags.
The VFF: From daffodills to… swastika. Shitbags.

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.[4] 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”??].[5]

NF Wales in Merthyr, 2015, dragging Welsh symbols through the dirt
NF Wales, 2015, dragging Welsh symbols through the dirt

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.[6]

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.”[7][8]

Alex Davies and the "London Forum". On the left, with the Butchers Apron, on the right, with Baner Glyndŵr.
Alex Davies and the “London Forum”. On the left, with the Butchers Apron, on the right, with Baner Glyndŵr.

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).[9] 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.)

Britishness

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.[10] 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).[11] 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.[12] 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.[13][14][15] 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.

Welsh Pride NOT White Pride: Antifascist banner from the protest in Swansea, 2014

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.[16] 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!).[17][18] 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.)[19][20]

croesgeltaidd
The appropriation of the Celtic cross by white supremacists. (left) Llywelyn’s Battle Standard, (right) Racist shitbags flag. “Wylit, wylit, Lywelyn / Wylit waed pe gwelit hyn” [“Weep, weep, Llywelyn / You would weep blood if you saw this.”] [21]

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![22] 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.

english
“Defending” England… in North Wales

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”(!).[23][24]

(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.[25] 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.[26] 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.[27] If anything, this appropriation by British fascists of Welsh symbolism only seems to further provoke and anger Welsh Republicans against them.[28]

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.

Anti-British Anti-Fascism

As discussed in this article, the spirit of these all these fascists is Britishness, Brit-Welshness if not downright Englishness.[29] There is in fact no example in our history (so far) of a native Welsh and Welsh-speaking fascism.[30]

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.[31] 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.[32] 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.[33][34] 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.

I’r gad!

cymruynerbynffasgiaeth

Antifascist Links

Notes

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.

1 For some fragments of the anti-BUF history in Wales online, see “Fighting fascism is a great Welsh tradition“, this summary of a chapter from “Miner’s Against Fascism”, or this lovely memory of “Sally” Harrington.

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.