Monday, 31 March 2014

What is Palestinians Land Day?

Land Day is held on the anniversary of March 30, 1978, when Palestinian villages and cities across the country witnessed mass demonstrations against the states plans to expropriate 2,000 hectares of land in Israel's Galilee region. In  coordination with the military, some 4,000 police officers were  dispatched  to quell the unrest. At the end of the day, six Palestinian citizens of Israel were killed  by state security forces.
The Day of the land - or Land Day marked the first mass mobilization of Palestinians within Israel against internal colonialism and  land theft. It's commemoration is a reaffirmation that the Palestinians who remained in the area on which Israel was declared in 1948, are an inseperable part of the Palestinian people and their struggle.
It commemorates the Palestinians sense of belonging to a people, to a cause and a country, to stand united against racial oppression and rules of apartheid,and the discriminatory practices of the Israeli government, giving continual potency to the Palestinians cause. Land Day continues  to be poignantly relevant, amid news  of plans for forced evictions of Bedouin in the Negev/Nagab, demolitions of Palestinian homes in the West Bank and the often lethal enforcement of a no-go-zone in Gaza.
As relevent as ever as Israel pushes to confiscate land, expand their colonies, and  continue to build their illegal settlements.

Palestinian  planting olive Trees on Land Day

'if the olive trees knew  the hands that planted them, thir oil would become tears.'

- Mahmoud Darwish


Saturday, 29 March 2014

Hooray! Same Sex marriages legalised in England and Wales: BUT

Gay rights campaigners  and advocates up and down the country have been celebrating as marriage laws have finally changed. It is being seen as a nationally symbolic day.But marriage for many remains an economic institution, based around social structures, legal systems, workplaces, welfare  and families. Marriage at the end of the day is the legal and religious sanctioning of interpersonal relationships, so is foremost about equality.
The diversity of humanity's love should be embraced and celebrated . Personally relationships should be built on love alone not based  on church or state authority, I personally regret the state validitating an earlier relationship, but all institutions are better, I guess when they are made equal. So any law that achieves a form of balance is one that I can support.
Hope it stops the hate that is still inflicted though, on people, from all walks of life. After all Trangender people are still dismissed, become targets for violence  on the ground of their gender identity and expression. Gay people are also still subject to harrasment and bullying to wildly disproportionate degrees. Intolerance can run deep.... based on stigmas of fear, see also how the mentally ill are marginalised, people from different ethnic backgrounds etc etc.
So though I welcome todays news I still strive  for a world based on equality, a more radical blueprint against the institutions of patriarchy, for all to share. Marriage should exist as a social ritual for those interested, but not as an arrangement with any currency beyond any other social arrangement, and in the end no sense of coersion or social obligation to enter into it at all.
Down with all walls, paths of liberation for all.

Tom Robinson Band - (Sing if you're)  Glad to be Gay

Friday, 28 March 2014


Atos Healthcare the foul company  responsible for carrying out 'fit for work' tests on disability benefit claimants is quitting its contract. Ministers have made it clear that Atos will not receive any  compensation from the taxpayer and had made a 'substantial' financial settlement to the Department for Work and Pensions in order to terminate its £500 million contract early. I say good riddance to bad rubbish.
There game is up, a company that has made money  from the misery of the disabled and the vulnerable. Profit before people was their mantra, conductors of humiliations process.Unfit for purpose and criminally incompetent.
Atos have become a lightning rod for widespread public and political rage and fury.
Atos  is a disgrace, of the 600,000 people who have appealed against decisions made by the government to support the Atos  decision to cut  their benefits, 60% were successful.
Many of this number - have been terminally ill, leading to tragic deaths, as a result of people  being stripped of benefis and found fit for work.
Atos are villains, but there partners in crime is this coalition government and its cruel austerity policies designed to pay for the  banks' crisis.
Time for us to keep up the pressure on this government, they are the real culprits- they must be made to admit that they got it wrong and be held for account, and make sure  that private comanies are taken out of  the benefit system in there entirety. Will the replacement for Atos, be the same shit as before.Possibly.
One thing is certain, the countless victims of Atos and the Con-dem's policies are in need of an apology.


Thursday, 27 March 2014

Tony Benn - Last Will and Testament

Tony Benn.

A man of truth and integrity. Never to be forgotten.

Sleep in peace, freedom and Power.


" I would be very pleased when I die if somebody put on a stone: Tony Benn. He encouraged us. I think encouragement is the most important thing you can  do when you are alive. I have encouraged people a lot in my life. Encouragement is a collective relationship which is very fruitful. "


David Cameron, Prime Minister

We would like for you to honour Tony Benn's wish and let all the people who he encouraged and respected him have somewhere to reflect and remember him and his legacy.

(your name)

Wednesday, 26 March 2014

The Citizen's Arrest of War Criminal Tony Blair - Heathcote Williams

BLIAR - is now apparently worth £75,000,000. Was it worth it ? All these deaths in Iran and Afghanistan, does all this money salvage his conscience. Or is he simply a war criminal with too much blood on his hands. Who best served  the two flames in the human heart: the flame of anger against injustice, and the flame of hope you can build a better world. Tony Benn or Tony Bliar?
After the death  of Tony Benn, at the age of 88,the world seems a little darker.

Here's aother
fine poem from Heathcotte Williams.

The Citizen's Arrest  of War Criminal Tony Blair = Heatchcotte Williams.

It's  time for Tony to face charges,
It's time for a citizen's Arrest
There's an empty sock in the Hague
Dying to have him as a guest.

There's  a million bosies buried in Iraq
Whose ghosts cry out in despair,
'There were no mass weapons of mass destruction
So wgere's  @The People versus Tony Blair?'

There were no weapons about to hit London
Wiyhin the space of three quarters of an hour,
Tony was lying to Parliament and ghis country-
For Iraq never toppefd the twin towers.

He and Campbell were comnned by the neo cons
They were impressed by American power
into lettting themselves be drawn into war crimes
With Iraq bwing bombed for hour after hour.

A million were bombed  to smithereens
killed by shells tipped with uranium-
Causing borth defects to pregnant women
Lasting from generation to generation.

As a lawyer you're aware that aggressive warfare
Under the Nuremburg protocals,
Constitutes the ultimate crimde in international law
Your avoiding justice makes people emotional.

To add iinsult to injurt you've profited, Tony.
And you swn about in a private jet,
It's made you popular among the corrupt,
You're part of the International Set.

But the International Criminal Court
is keeping  you're seat in the dockwarm,
And anyone carrying out a successful arrest
Promises to go down a storm.


Tony Blair - Richard Hamilton

Monday, 24 March 2014

Who Controls the Drones in my Sky?

The above  gives details  of what promises to be an interesting and exciting event at the Small World Theatre here  in Cardigan, West Wales, starting at 7.00 pm next Saturday.
The evening's performance and debate should proff an interesting follow up to all ho attended a meeting on the subject back last December  in the Theatr Mwladan, and  will tie people in  to later activity in the year such as the 'Drape the Drones' event in September.
This is an issue that has long polarised my local community. Over the years people protesting outside Parc Aberporth against the testing of drones here.
Drones, unmanned surveillance and weapons equipped aerial devices) are being tested in Ceredigion. Small World Theatre posed the question ' Who Controls the sky?'
The event above will be an opportunity for the community to creatively disxcuss this controversial subject and share different views.
It is known that Watchkeeper that has been tested here in West Wales since 2012, using the Israeli  built Hermes 450,  a drone that is expected to now  take a sgnificant role in any future military campaigns. Having clocked uo pver 500 hours of flying time above us in West Wales. It is also significant to report, that they have also been field tested in attacks on Gaza, that have left many Palestinians dead?  Though not necessarily illegal they have  used in breach of what is considered international law.

More details here:-

National Theatre Wales

nice banner that was displayed by Bristol Palestine Solidarity Campaign at their own 'Fly Kites not Drones event in Bristol at the weekend, that sums up my view on the subject quite well.

Saturday, 22 March 2014

Lee Scratch Perry says no to Fracking.

Why does it fall to normal  people to provide  the burden of proof that fracking is safe, when for example, all the major British nature agencies have done studies and are against it and we see only an endless flood  of horror stories from every part of the world where this is happening? The word 'regulation' is utterly meaningless to the British public, especially  when big business is involved.
It  is the energy companies who should be  falling over themselves to demonstrate how safe fracking is. They aren't though, and they try to marginalise anyone who rails against it. Public  consultation  is being  bypassed and drilling , and drilling exploration plans being approved via the backdoor.
Fracking isn't a long term solution to our energy problems but it will leave  us with long term EXTREME environmental problems and the energy companies can't prove otherwise.
If anyone can save the world from destroying  itself, it will be the creative minds, the thinkers, the artists and the avant-garde trailblazer that will ultimately bring down the matrix of untruth and set mankind on a lesser destructive and more spiritual path.

Thursday, 20 March 2014


Happy Spring Equinox
a time of  balance and reassessment.

Early this morning,
the birds sang ,in the garden,
as buds blossomed from the earth,

Still believing in magic,
I rose from my bed of dreams,
followed strands bursting with something
as the wind blew drops of rain,
onto firm roots,the seeds of time,
old anthems and memories were
                                 also renewed.

In these moments of reflection,
and translucent waves,
gave me a chance,
to hold on and breathe.

Steams of pressure,
still choose the direction,
that we may flow,and grow
each in search of different pulses,
another world perhaps?

So Follow threads,
things that change,
as cycles turn, and shift
keep on talking, keep on sharing,
follow reason, that shelters and protects.                                   

Wednesday, 19 March 2014

BDS Cultural actions that only take a couple of minutes to do

With thanks to activist Tal Shapiro

There's a lot to do but each step takes a minute, so please spare about 10 minutes of your time and add your voice to these wonderful initiatves.

1. Send an email to NBC to cease and desist  rebranding of Israel's illegal excavations in occupied Jerusalem

( Click select this recipient at the bottom and fill out the form)

2. Tell Neil Young to respect Palestinian rights by signing these petitions,

and LIKING the Neil Young, Tell me  Why you Would Play for Apartheid Israel page

3. Sign  the PACBI petition  to The Rolling Stones

4. Sign the  petition to expel Israel from FIFA World Cup and UEFA EUROPE

5.  Tell Justin Timberlake to cancel his concert in apartheid Israel

6. Tell Justin Bieber that a second gig in Israel is unacceptable

7. Tell Lady Gaga that a third gig in apartheid is appaling

8. Tell the PIXIES: Hey Pixies, Apartheid Israel is a Debaser of Palestinian  Rights
by liking this page

9. Tell DJ Afrojack that playing for the beneficiaries of apartheid IS a political act

and sign the petition

10. Tell The Prodigy to Stand up to Israel's Apartheid by LIKING the page

you can  also let them  know your thoughts directly on the comment section of their official facebook concert annoncement

11. Get the Byron Writers Festival to honour BDS

12. Tell Natacha Atlas that 'dialogue' can't be done at the barrel of a gun

13. Tell Beyonce to cancel her apartheid gig




Tuesday, 18 March 2014

Women of the Working Class ( animated short film to mark the 30th anniversary 0f 1984/85 Miner's Strike)

An animated short film made by young women  from the youth panel at Experience Barnsley Museum to mark the 30th anniversary  of the 1984/85 Miners Strike. The young people re-wrote verses of the song ' Women of the Working Class' that the Women Against Pit Closures used as their anthem on the picket lines. They then recorded their version with some of the original women.

The animated film is part of an exhibition Coal Not Dole:Women Against Pit Closures, held at Experience Barnsley Museum in Barnsley Toen Hall from 3 March to 1 June 2014.

More information here:-

As many mining families faced increasing hardship, the Women from traditional working class backgrounds, found new roles to take on, finding themselves at the heart of the struggle. They set up Soup kitchens in pit village communities, raising money,organisng demonstrations, speaking at rallies, standing shoulder to shoulder with the miners, as well as raising and supporing their families becomming committed political ctivists  in their own right. Proudly providing backbones of solidarity, many   joined the picket lines, risking arrest or injury as miners clashed with Thatcher's boys in blue.
Thatcher had naively thought  that the women  would get the men back to work,  but in fact it had the opposite effect, it galvanised them with a strong will and determination, turned them into a mighty force.  
For all the great hardships that were suffered many positive resulted in the outcome of the strike. It provided new opportuities for them to flourish.
For many the impact of  the strike on their lives would change their worlds forever. Finding inner confidences that would carry them with strength.
These  are the unsong heroines of the bitter 1984/85 battle to save Britains pits from closure. We should not forget them.

Click on picture below to enlarge


Monday, 17 March 2014

I'd Rather Be Dancing (Rachel Corrie's Song). By Jim Page

Today I remember Rachel Corrie, as I do every year, with the Jim Page song ' I'd rather be dancing' based on  letters she wrote  home before the Israeli army crushed her to death on Gaza on 15/3/03. She was a 23 year old American Peace activist  who was killed  by an American built Caterpillar bulldozer, when she was protecting the home of Samir Nasrali's a Palestinian doctors' home from  being demolished, for many people  she is considered to be a hero and martyr. She had the courage to resist.
To this day the Gaza strip is still besieged. Violations of international law continue, as the Israeli government continues to disregard human rights.


You know I was always the one
I could never stand idly by
and watch while the bullets  beat up the waeker ones
I had  to do something to try
and I never gave up on people
that we could  be better somehow
morality's compass, you gave it to me
I still follow it now.

Wel. I couldn't stop thinking about it
I couldn't get it out of my mind
the pictures, the stories, the plight of the people
in occupied Palestine
how my government makes me complicit
with the political aid  that they send
so I packed up my bags and I headed to Rafa
to work with the ISM *

and I'd rather be dancing, dancing and falling in love
but if I can just watch from a distance  then what am I made of

mama these people are so goot to me
they treat me like one  of their own
they feed me and see to my needs
and let me sleep in their home
papa their lives are so hard
the gun shots night
the road blocks, the strip searches, the humiliations
papa it just isn't right

I feel my privilege around me
It's there in my American face
I could wave my passport around like a flag
and I would be safe in this place
for these child soldiers of Israel
they look like the boys back home
and if it wasn't for American money
they'd have to leave these people alone

and I'd rather be dancing dancing to Pat Benator
but somebody has to do something about it and here we are

the tractors are coming today
they're like tanks with bulldozer blades
the name on the side says Caterpillar
that means they're American made
well I am American  too
and I'll  be where everybody can see
so if they want  to run over these houses today
they're gonna have to run over me

it's dangerous taking a stand
but its dangerous running away
sometimes you have to face  up to the danger
there is just no other way
for there are such beautiful  dreams
I have seen the eyes of a child
and I can make a difference
then I think my life is worthwhile

and I'd rather be dancing, but instead i'm saying goodbye
but we'll meet again when its over, don't cry

and I'd rather be dancing, and surely we'd all rather be
and one day we'll dance in a world that's peaceful and free.

* International Solidarity Movement

Sunday, 16 March 2014

Dare to be a Daniel (for Tony Benn 3/4/25 -14/3/14)

Dare to be a Daniel, was the title chosen by Tony Benn for his early memoir, the first lines of the following poem are from an old salvation Army hymn that had been sung to him by his parents. I try to keep faith, dare to be different. 

Dare to be a Daniel,
Dare to stand alone,
Dare to have a purpose firm,
And dare to let it know.

Dare to stand with the voiceless,
the occupied daily denied,
stand shoulder to shoulder,
with  devoted  words of meaning,
committed breaths carrying no fear.

Seed the earth with love,
persistent grains of freedoms cry,
move forward with language of hope,
in blazing movements of united flow.

Seek out the hallmarks of truth and justice,
drink from the vessels of life,
keep faith as our changeless songs hum out,
in fearless cry, together we right their wrongs.

On the breeze, our voices lift,
for tomorrows bright sun to shine again,
leave footprints by rivers' waves of friendliness,
in flows of solidarity and stealth.

Dare to dream, forever speak your truth
be strident in your belief and strength
do not let paths of injustice, halter voice
dare to be Daniel, for the many not the few.

Friday, 14 March 2014

Tony Benn ( 3/3/25 - 14/3/14) - An inspirational Breath :- R.I.P

Another one bites the dust, so soon after Bob Crow, it feels like a real kick from the darkness. Tony Benn, was one  of the first people to politically inspire me, with his honest outlook, passionate zeal and integrity, who gave up his aristocratic title to walk  as a  principled man of deeds, a true man of the people, a champion of brothers and sisters everywhere, the powerless, who stood up for the Palestinians freedom, from the river to the sea, a man who I have been privileged to meet, his greatest hits on constant replay on my stereo, in faltering times he allowed  me to keep faith. Taught me the value of solidarity.
He spoke out about the greedy among us, the multinationals, against wars for profit, in Afghanistan and Iraq.A champion of the abolition of the monarchy, and any strike that was going, he stood shoulder to shoulder with us all,  with unfaltering belief and abiding determination that power and the powerful should be held to account.
We must continue his deeds, set about  building a genuine alternative to capitalism that does not get bogged down in sectarian bullshit, carry  on the torch of his beliefs in a better world and his determination to end the sorrow of war.A world where politics is not the language of brute force  but an articulated vision of the possible - of justice, progress and peace and equality.
His last written volume was called ' Free at Last' and now he is, but his breath of devotion will run forever.He died peacefully, at his home in West London, so so long comrade. R.I.P

" There in every human heart from the beginning of time there have been two flames burning , the flame of anger against injustice and the flame of hope that you can build a better world. And those two flames are burning in our hearts today, in the hearts and minds of millions of people."

- Tony Benn

Tony Benn on BBC's refusal to brodcast Gaza appeal

Tony Benn on Tony Bliars war Crimes.

Lowkey featuring Tony Benn - One World

Thursday, 13 March 2014

My Lai Conversation - Eugene McCarthy (29/3/16 -10/12/05)

Today marks the 46th anniversary of the My Lai massacre,the mass murder of hundreds of unarmed South Vietnamese civilians at the hands of U.S soldiers from Charli company, 11th Infantry Brigade.They went through the village  of My Lai nercilessly killing old men, women, children and infants. There wre reports of gang rapes as well as large  groups mowed down by machine gun fire. It did not help if families huddled in their huts or whether they came out with  their arms up in surrender, they too were killed. In total 504 villagers were murdered. After attempts at a cover up, the news got out.
 The incident marked a turning point in the Vietnam War sparking worldwide outrage  at the atrocities committed by the American troops.
Eugene McCarthy had served as a civilian in the War Department in 1944 and later was to become a Senator in Minnesota. In 1968 he campaigned for the Democratic nomination for president in 1968 as a peace candidate.

My Lai Conversation

How old are you, small Vietnamese boy?
Sixfingers. Six years.
Why did you carry water to the wounded soldier, now dead?
Your father.
Your father was the enemy of the free world.
You are also now are enemy of free world.
Who told you to carry water to your father?
Your mother!
Your mother is also enemy of free world.
You go into ditch with your mother.
American politician has said,
"It is better to kill you as a boy in the elephant grass of Vietnam
Than to have to kill you as a man in the  rye grass in the U.S.A."
You understand,
It is easier to die
Where you know the names of the birds, the trees and the grass
Than in a strange country.
You will be number 128 in the body count for today.
High body count will make the Commander-in Chief
of the free world much encouraged.
Good-bye, small six-year old Vietnamese boy, enemy of free

( Some lucky villagers like these two children below, survived the massacre)

Wednesday, 12 March 2014

Jack Kerouac (12/3/22 -21/10/69) - On Tears / 211th Chorus

" Ah life is a gate, a way, a path to Paradise anyway, why not live for fun  and joy and love  or some sort of a girl by a fireside, why not go to your desire and LAUGH"

Practice kindness all day to everybody and you'll realise you're already in heaven now. " 

" Live travel, adventure, bless and don't be sorry. "

- Jack Kerouac

Jack Kerouac was an American  author, poet and painter. Alongside William S. Burroughs and Allen Ginsburg is considered a pioneer of the Beat Generation. A creator of spontaneous Bop prosity I owe him an enormous debt.
He wrote some of the most beautiful words I've ever read, as well as taking part in adventures I can only dream about.
Born Jean-Louis Kerouac, on March 12 1922 in working class Lowell, Massachusetts, he was of French-Canadian descent. The youngest of three children, he was heartbroken when his older brother Gerard died of rheumatic fever at the age of nine.
He grew up learning English as a second language. After a spell in the Navy,(discharged for having a schizoid personality) he became a merchant seaman, then decided on the life of an itinerant wanderer, a lifestyle that gave him inspiration for his later novels.
His works were of an autobiographical nature,  reflecting a deep social disillusionment influenced by drugs, alcohol, mysticism and biting humor. I like his work a lot.
Sadly he died of internal bleeding at the young age of 47, as a consequence of long term alcohol abuse. His stature as a great writer nevertheless continues to grow.
Had he lived today would have been his 92nd birthday, so Happy birthday Jack kerouac, we will never know another quite like him.

On Tears

Tears is the break of my brow,
The money tempestuous
Sitting down in dark railyards
When to see my mother's face
Recalling from the waking vision
I wept to understand
The trap mortality
And personal blood  of earth
Which saw me in - Father, father
Why hast thou forsaken me?
Mortality & unpleasure
Roam this city-
Unhappiness my middle name
I want to be saved.
Sunk- can't be
Won't be
Never was made-
So retch!

211th Chorus

The wheel of the quivering meat
Turns in the void expelling human beings,
Pigs, turtles, frogs, insects, rats, roan
Racinghorses, poxy bucolic pigtics,
Horrible unameable lice of vultures,
Murderous attacking dog-armies
Of Africa, Rhinos roaming in the
Vast boars and huge gigantic bull
Elephant, rams, eagles, condors,
Pones and Porcupines and Pills-
All the endless conception of living
Gnashing everywhere in Consciouness
Throughout the ten directions of space
Occupying all the quarters in &out,
To huge Galazy Lightyear Bowell
Illuminating the sky of one Mind-

I wish I was free
of that slaving meat wheel
and safe in heaven dead.

"There was nowhere to go but everywhere, so just keep rolling under the stars."
- Jack Kerouac

Kerouac interviewed in French
with English subtitles.

Kerouac reading from On the Road.

Tuesday, 11 March 2014

Bob Crow (13/6/61 - 11/3/14) R.I.P Comrade in Arms

Sad to hear the news  earlier that Bob Crow, the General Secretary of the National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers (RMT) had passed away in the early hours of this morning. He will be greatly missed, strong passionate voices like his are needed now more than ever. He will be remembered for a long time because he stood  up for others, working tirelessly for his union, committed too to the many whose voices are simply ignored. A man for all people, he realised that together as one we can release the chains, in his own words " if  we all spit together, we can drown the bastards."
A friend of  progressive causes across the globe, an anti fascist, who fought for the underdog and for what he believed,proudly standing with the Palestinian people, challenging Israels policies, speaking also over the years at the Trade Union Congress for peace and justice for all,
An effective leader, of enormous integrity, bravery and vision. His defence  of standards in public transport was about much more than the interests of his own members, it was for the general society and our shared responsibilities.
His struggle was ours, for a better society. His work unfortunately unfinished, so we must carry on his deeds.
The enemies of the working class  knew his value, in their consistent campaign of vilification, led by the Daily Mail. Only yesterday he gave a frank and quite candid interview with Radio 4, with his last breaths he never flinched an inch.
So thank you Comrade Bob Crow, my thoughts go out  to his family and friends and all those he worked so hard to represent.
The struggle continues.

Sunday, 9 March 2014

William S. Burroughs on Dreams

Excerpts from a lecture by William S. Burroughs on public discource, recored at the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics on August 11, 1980. The complete 90 minute sound file can  be downloaded here.
(Other topics discussed include nuclear weapons, disarmament, aliens, function of the artist, writing, cut-up method, mind-altering drugs, reincarnation, and economics.)

Timelapse photography by Martin Setvak
Selected clips are from the2008 and 2007 galleries.Music by Biosphere ( 'As the Sun kissed the Horizon' and ' Poa Alpina' from 'Substrata,' Origo Sound 1997).

Beautiful day over here, not sure what to do watch a game of Rugby Wales Verses England (wonder if you can guess who I will be supporting) or go outside spend sometime in the garden. Either way I will keep on dreaming.

Saturday, 8 March 2014

Ingeborg Bachmann (25/6/26 -17/10/74) Every Day

Ingeborg Bachmann was an Austrian Poet and short story writer. She wrote a doctoral thesis on philosophy at  Heidgegger. She was awarded the Buchner Prize in 1964. Her work focused on themes of personal borders, the establishment of the time, and the philosophy of language. 
I decdicate this post in solidarity to my sisters everywhere on International Womens Day remembering all the struggles and sacrifices they have made. Heddwch/peace.

Every Day

War is no longer declared
but continued. The unheard-of thing
in the every-day. The hero
keeps away from the fighters. The weak man
has moved up to the battle zones.
The uniform of the day is patience,
its decoration the humble star
of hope worn over the heart.

It is awarded
when nothing goes on,
when the drumbeat subsides,
when the enemy has grown invisible
and the shadow of everlasting arms
covers the sky.

It is awarded
for desertion of the flag,
for courage in the face of the friend,
for the betrayal of unworthy secrets
and for the non-observance
of every order.

Thursday, 6 March 2014

Egypt denies entry of 62 women peace activists en route to Gaza for International Women's Day

More than 40 women from the U.S based anti-war group Code Pink on there way to Gaza as part of a delegation for International Womens day are staging a sit in insidde  Cairo International Airport after being refused entry into the country since Tuesday, airport officials in Egypt have said today. They were travelling to witness the hardships facing the 1.7 million residents og Gaza, and to deliver  humanitarian aid and call attention  for a long term strategy to achieve peace and justice for Palestinians. Standing in solidarity  with the terrible life that women, children and old people have to endure daily in Gaza.
Some of the activists  have been deported, they include women from many different countries,  including Northern Ireland  Nobel Peace Prize winner Mairead Maguire, American human rights campaigner Medea Benjamin, and Northern Ireland human rights advocate Anne Patterson.
 Ms Benjamin, who travelled alone, was assaulted  by Egyptian security officials deported to Istanbul, Turkey, on March 4 and was hospitalised overnight in Istanbul until her flight to the US midday on March 5," according to a press release by CODEPINK.
It is widely being seen as a backward step in Egypst support of the Palestinian cause  and the Gazan people in particular.
Link to CODEPINKS website here:-


Wednesday, 5 March 2014

Fly Kites Not Drones

March is kite flying weather, support the people of Afganistan, Palestine, Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia by flying a kite. Kite flying has become synonomous with Afghanistan as a well loved pursuit which was banned under the Taliban, now Afghans are more used to the presence of UK armed surveillance drones flying above. Having to live under the mental pressure and physical destruction which British drones (currently operated from RAF Waddington, Lincoln) now reap.
A campaign launched  by Voices for Creative Non-Violence UK in solidarity with the Afghanistan Peace Volunteers  who want  to end the use of drones. In commemoration of the Afghan New Year 21-23 March.
More information here:-

Oh and if you haven't signed the following please do.

Who Controls my sky?

Small World Theatre which is local to me, has got through to the final shortlist of 3.
With your help it can go all the way?

Drones are currently being tested in my local area. Unmanned Surveillance and weapons equipped aerial devices, although the drones may not be armed when tested  there have been worrying accidents. Small World Theatre would like the opportunity for my community to creatively discuss this controversial subject and share different views.

Is this a vital multi billion pound industry for Wales?

Is West Wales part of a programme that assists surveillance and remote killing?

Small World is an artist led organisation, who with the National Theatre Wales is helping explore the impact of the use of drines locally, nationally and internationally.

In a personal capacity as a member of Cardigan Pembrokeshire Amnesty International Group we have been campaigning against them for a number of years.We have constantly condemned there use, which are used to assist surveillance and remote killing.
It's a worlwide issue though and effects us all, so please vote for them here :-

if you would prefer to text

here's a number

thanks, heddwch/peace

029 2009 1507

I also support the following local initiative here in West Wales

Drape the Drones in Aberporth September 21st 

see poster with details here:-

There is also a facebook page which you can find here:-

Monday, 3 March 2014

30th Anniversary of the Miners Strike : Their brave struggle not forgotten.

30 years ago on March 1, 1984, the state owned National Coal Board under American Ian MacGregor aided and abetted, by the then Conservative Government under Margaret Thatcher announced  that it planned to close 20 coal pits with the loss of over 20,000 jobs. This decision was to go and pit Mrs Thatchers government against the NUM and its then president, Arthur Scargill.
The year-long strike  that followed would change the political, economic and social history of Britain forever. The courage and determination of  the striking miners, their families and communities would charge and inspire the political consciousness of hundreds of thousands of people, as it did for me, aged 16 and a half at the start of the strike.
It would see the full force of  the state  out to try and break and tear apart  communities with  the use of road-blocks, beatings, snatch squads, phone taps and the erosion of civil liberties.

Miners on picket lines were brutalised and attacked by baton-wielding police in full riot gear. For me at the time this was to be a year of great awakenings, seeing their fight, I started to see connections with other peoples struggles. The plight of the poor and unemployed, Nicuaragua and Apartheid South Africa, people being daily attacked by Margaret Thatchers rabid Government. I decided  to take sides with with those who decided to take on the right wing policies of Thatchers government.
The rights and wrongs of whether the miners should have had a national ballot has been widely discussed, but like many others at the time I believed that once the miners were out, it was our duty to support and work for them. Within weeks of the strike starting 80%  of miners supported the strike, standing against what they saw as the unjustifiable attacks on their right to existance and resistance.

Later at Orgreave it became apparent, of the true intentions of Thatchers government, with the full collusion of the police ,it was noticed that they had no intention of finding reconciliation or settlement to this industrial dispute. The sole intention was an ideological one, to mortally wound the National Union of Mineworkers, to defeat it with military force and with naked violence ,by any means necessary.
Despite increasing hardships the miners fought on with determination and bravery. During the course of the strike over 6,000 were arrested, with over 20,000 miners being injured in acts of state violence.
Throughout the strike I would witness, how the right wing media tried to vilify and undermine. The media being used to lie, and used as a weapon to crush the miners resiliance, the media  also enabling to misrepresent, and divide the movement.The propoganda part of Thatchers assault, was being pushed out  everyday. At her so called enemy within.
Psychological  pressure was  also used, with the police encouraged to wave wads of cash at pickets, designed to undermine and demoralise, the use of scabs increased, bussing them through picket lines in a determined effort to break the will of the striking miners.

Throuhout the country, groups emerged, either as individuals or part of miners support groups, raising money and awareness, standing in solidarity. Disparate groups found common ground,  from the Unemployed, the Peace Movement, students, other Trade Unions, all standing firmly behind the miners in their great struggle. The women from the mining communities in particular acted as bulmarks of strength, organising welfare and support, collecting food and money and giving much needed moral energy. Lesbian and Gay support groupss also  played a vital role and consequently the NUM led the pride demonstration in London  in 1985. It was an energising time, new friends were made, the camerardie that emerged was simply amazing.
Sadly eventually some miners started drifting back there will broken,  but it should be noted  that 63% of the miners stayed out  to the bitter end, and finally they were defeated, there can be no denying this unfortunate fact.

Sadly they were also let down  by the Labour Party,  especially  their spineless leader Neil Kinnock, who refused to attend picket lines or events supporting the miners, in effect helping Thatchers dirty war of attrition. Other Trade Union leaders let them down to, unfortunately.
30 years later I remember the courage and sacrifice made during this bitter struggle and the spirit   of revolt they unleashed, and those who remained defiant to  the end, and acknowledge the miners who were arrested and locked up on trumped up charges.The communities that never fully recovered from the financial blow of the strike. Those  who fought for the survival of a humane society here in Wales and across Britain, and a vile government who used the state in almost all its entirety to defeat the miners and to teach the whole working class a lesson. Passions remain unwaned, and I feel the miners strike has left us with a legacy that we should be proud of, of a people and community standing together in solidarity in the face of adversity.
30 years on solidarity is needed  more than ever, as we remember the miners struggle, and continue our own for jobs, social justice and welfare. in our opposition to the current Con Dem coalition Government, who are carrying on where Thatcher left off.
The fight continues.

Test Department and the South Wales Striking Miners
- Comrades in Arms