There is no rational argument against Welsh independence. There never was – not when 25% of the population were being slaughtered during the 350-year Wars of Independence against the murderous Anglo-Norman invaders; not when cruel repressive laws crushed Welsh society, spirit and culture after the illegal annexation by England; not in the era of empire when the UK ruled half the planet and the few crumbs and baubles from the global ransacking that inevitably fell Wales’ way were paid for with never-ending interest by systemic impoverishment, inequality and dispossession; not in the industrial revolution which stole the natural resources of Wales for the enrichment of a few robber barons while desecrating the environment and initiating the carbon economy that is now devastating the planet; and not in the UK’s brief post-WW2 era of mildly progressive social democracy, so tenuous and out of character it was all too easily snuffed out by unchecked, dog-eat-dog turbo-capitalism as Britain’s bone-marrow brutishness reasserted itself. But today, more than ever, the case for Welsh independence has become utterly irrefutable. Those with the stupidity, wickedness, stubbornness or blind prejudice to still insist that it is right for Wales to be run by the wise, benevolent, talented geniuses of Westminster have had their anti-Welsh message blown to smithereens. Here, merely two words will suffice: Boris Johnson.
Or rather, Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson, born New York 1964, a loathsome, charmless megalomaniac and staggeringly incompetent serial liar, philanderer, bully, con-man, bullshitter and far-right fool, the UK’s prime minister as selected by 160,000 Tory activists. For anybody otherwise engaged photoshopping the Instagram image, policing the Facebook ‘friend’ tally or walking under a double-decker bus while gripped by screen-gaze, here is some news you might have missed: a dangerous demagogue has seized power in what amounts to a coup, meaning Wales is under the heel of a smirking hooray-henry anglo-american crypto-fascist unfit for any office and his frightening Faragist cabinet of flatterers, crawlers, ignoramuses, bigots and psychopaths.
This type of government is always likely to come about in the British state; a state founded by extreme violence and landgrab; a state built by warmongering, robbery and slavery; a state soaked in the blood of the 170 countries it has invaded; a state predicated on the hereditary principle, deference, nepotism, might-is-right, class division, grovelling to the powerful and bullying the powerless; a state which harbours, launders and lives off the vast criminality of supranational finance; a state without a bill of rights, a constitution or democratic legitimacy; an artificial, unnatural state sustained by an overwhelming propaganda onslaught that provokes, misleads, disinforms and brainwashes from cradle to grave; a supremacist, authoritarian, centralising state of subjects not citizens; a dangerous, deluded, malignant rogue state controlled by the unelected, the unaccountable and the unpardonable.
Do I hear any defenders of the atrocious status-quo? Are there any who advocate Wales’ continued shackling in perpetuity to this patently failed, dysfunctional and rotten laughing stock called Britain? Does anyone seriously believe that this is the best Wales can do and all we deserve?
Incredibly, there are such people in Wales, and they come from across the political spectrum. Labour, the Liberal Democrats and the Greens, despite having anti-imperialism, anti-colonialism and the self-determination of all peoples as core founding values, have long had a peculiar blind spot when it comes to Wales. When pressed to give one reason why Wales should not join the world’s family of 193 independent countries, what passes for the British centre/left can never come up with an answer and are always reduced to assertions like “I’m against nationalism, it’s parochial, insular and divisive, I’m an internationalist” – a slimy, hypocritical, duplicitous and nonsensical posture designed to dress up their nasty opposition to Welsh actualisation as some kind of deeply-held, carefully-considered conviction. Deliberately and outrageously putting the noble and peaceful independence movement of a small nation-in-waiting in the same bracket as some of the notoriously xenophobic and racist, expansionist, imperialist superpower nations that have spread misery and suffering throughout history – nations such as the UK – is an affront to logic. An independent Wales would be a threat to no other nation, an independent Wales would not be defined by ethnicity or religion but by affiliation and affinity, and in any case calling for independence is not ‘nationalism’, it is a struggle to be free. Nationalism can only be enacted by nations, and that’s why the only nationalisms to be concerned about are the really worrying belligerent nationalisms exuding from some of the already existing nations – nations, for instance, like the UK. Likewise, the pious, glib claims to superior ‘internationalist’ credentials are delusional since – duh – it is impossible to be international without first being national.
If they’re against nationalism does this mean they oppose the very idea of nation states, or just new ones? If it’s the abolition of all nation states they want, does this include the UK? If it’s a world government they want, will they mind being ruled by China? If independent status is so terrible, does this mean they think that the 62 former UK colonies that have won their independence over the last century were being ‘insular’ and ‘narrow’, that Ireland should have stuck to famines and India to the Raj? If independence is such a mistake, how come not one of those former British possessions would choose to revert to London rule? If independence is so objectionable, how come the British body politic, right, left and centre, cheered and encouraged the recent formation of newly-independent nations in Belarus, Georgia, Moldova, Ukraine, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Croatia, Slovenia, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Kosovo, Macedonia and Montenegro? Why were they never labelled ‘parochial’ for wanting to be free from control by Moscow or Belgrade? If the current accidental arrangement of nation states, largely determined by the imperialist powers, is a never to be altered, God-given final settlement after millennia of perpetual flux, does that mean these ‘internationalists’ also oppose independence for – to pick just a few of the world’s countless independence movements – Palestine, Tibet, Inner Mongolia, Chechnya, Yakutia, Kurdistan, South Yemen, Kashmir, Hong Kong, Native Americans, Aboriginal Australians, Maoris, the Basques, Brittany, Corsica, Sardinia, Bavaria, Galicia, Catalonia and Scotland? Or is it just Wales that is deemed uniquely incapable of running its own affairs and is it just Wales that should be grateful for not existing? The fake internationalists, closet imperialists and idiotic collaborators are invariably rendered speechless when cornered by my interrogations. They need to be open-minded enough to recognise that their elemental distaste for the very idea of Wales is an implanted, Pavlovian, knee-jerk phobia. Then perhaps they will cease defending the indefensible and siding with history’s bastards.
There is nothing intrinsically rightwing, leftwing or centrist about being in favour of Welsh independence – it is only necessary to be someone of goodwill and intelligence who wants the best for Wales. There is no reason why even Welsh Tories or small ‘c’ conservatives should not embrace the cause, and there actually are plenty of Welsh rightwingers of all complexions who are at least cultural or sentimental nationalists. The arrival of Johnson in Downing Street must be concentrating the minds of those Welsh Tories who don’t want to be permanently stranded in the camp of the thuggish far-right unionist zealots of UKIP/Brexit who want Wales eradicated. The sobering reality of Johnson is definitely beginning to shift attitudes within the ranks of Welsh Labour, where the ‘Labour for an Independent Wales’ group is gathering traction and some AMs and even the First Minister have been making much more emollient noises about the subject and gently back-tracking from Labour’s long-time preposterous policy position that Wales must never be independent because, umm, Wales must never be independent. And maybe Johnson’s power-grab and the stark realisation of Welsh helplessness and humiliation in the grip of such a tyrant is also beginning to rouse the people of Wales from their long sleepwalk towards oblivion, as shown recently by increasing support for independence in opinion polls, particularly among the young, and the 8,000-strong independence rally in Caernarfon.
Wales has a binary choice: continue with the arrangements decided by a few English aristocrats 500 years ago and settle for an eternity as an irrelevant 4% of the appalling, discredited British state; or get up off our knees, seize the future and embark on a thrilling adventure as one of the world’s independent nations. There is no third option. The time is fast approaching when we may be forced to make that choice.