Three arrested in Cardiff as Prosor creeps in through the back entrance

There was a distinct whiff of occupied Palestine in Cardiff Bay today as police declared an exclusion zone around the back entrance to the Senedd – then dealt violently with activists who entered it. The occasion was the visit of Israeli ambassador Ron Prosor, fervent apologist for Zionism and scourge of any normal sentient human being who takes exception to the racist state which employs him.

The arrested activists included Val Swain, whose brutal treatment by the South Wales Police after May’s pro-choice demo was followed by a prosecution which was thrown out of court due to the police ‘losing’ witness statements and CCTV footage of what happened at Fairwater police station.

As usual protesters were also subjected to rigorous surveillance with everybody active around the back entrance to the Senedd photographed – in contrast to the low-key policing of the main demo at the front of the Senedd where the media cameras were stationed. However, we also captured some of the action and the results can be seen here.

Prosor’s visit, and the political feeding frenzy brought about by Dafydd Elis-Thomas’ refusal to meet him, once again shattered any illusions that the assembly represents a progressive force in UK politics. Labour and Lib Dem politicians fell over themselves to berate their presiding officer, while Elis-Thomas’s own colleagues were distinctly reluctant to support him – not surprising perhaps when it was a Plaid AM, Mohammed Asghar, who invited Prosor in the first place.

Asghar’s defence for his action was that he needed to hear both sides of the story regarding Palestine. But he will hear no story from Prosor other than a robust defence of the apartheid wall, illegal settlements, the murder of US and UK volunteers, and the destruction of each and every attempt of the Palestinians to create a feasible homeland.

More likely the invitation was Asghar’s response to the climate of Islamophobia unleashed by the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. What better way for Plaid’s first Muslim AM to distance himself from radical Islam than to offer the olive branch to a confirmed Zionist?

Yet again the huge underlying divisions behind the ‘party of Wales’ have been exposed by this ill-judged manoeuvre. It is to the credit of Bethan Jenkins, Leanne Wood and Helen Mary Jones that they joined the protest at the front of the Senedd – but might they not ask themselves what exactly it is that unites them with colleagues who supposedly stand for the rights of small nations but cannot bring themselves to defend a people as ruthlessly oppressed as the Palestinians?

The truth, as we have already seen with the ailing St Athan project, is that Plaid are a fully paid-up part of the UK establishment, dedicated to preserving the institutions of UK imperialism and looking after imperialism’s most important ally in the Middle East, no matter how racist its policies. We call on all socialists in Plaid to join us in building a radical socialist forum in Cardiff which will provide a springboard for the creation of a genuinely socialist force in South Wales and beyond.

For a series of Permanent Revolution articles on the Palestine conflict, and online copy of our Palestine pamphlet, see our newly refurbished main site here.

This entry was posted in anti-racism, politics, socialism, Wales and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Three arrested in Cardiff as Prosor creeps in through the back entrance

  1. anarchol says:

    Three anarchists were arrested by police and held overnight. Two women and one man. all were arrested at the same time. The arrests seem to have been premeditated as other people were not arrested for what appeared to be exactly the same activity.

  2. permanentrevolution says:

    From the latest Stop The War newsletter:

    There is alarming evidence that Israel and the US are coming
    closer to an attack on Iran. Ten days ago, the Israeli Air
    Force conducted one of the biggest military exercises in its
    history, flying 100 warplanes 1,500kms over the
    Mediterranean – matching the distance from Israel to Iran’s
    nuclear facilities. Deputy Prime Minister Shaul Mofaz said
    earlier this month Israel had no choice but to attack Iran.
    Leading neocon John Bolton has been briefing the press
    making the case for an Israeli strike and a string of other
    Israeli officials and academics from Foreign Minister Tzipi
    Livin to Defence Analyst Shmuel Bar have been making
    similarly inflammatory statements.

    Bar says “The only thing that can stop Israel’s intent (to
    bomb) would be extremely robust steps on the part of the
    West – a blockade of Iranian refined oil, something that
    would indicate that steps were meant to force regime change.
    Since that is not on the cards, only bombing Iran will

    There are still divisions in the US on the question but the
    pressure from the remaining neocons and Israel is immense.

    Apart from the horrendous suffering it would create in Iran
    any bombing attack on Iran would send shockwaves across the
    Middle East, invite retaliation from Iran and lead to uproar
    on the streets from Cairo to . In the words of Mohammed El
    Baradei, chief of the International Atomic Agency it would
    create a fireball in the region.

    In these circumstances Stop the War is asking all its groups
    to take a number of steps. First, where possible organise
    meetings over the summer to discuss the situation over Iran.
    Second, circulate as widely as possible the fact sheet and
    take round the action pledge. Finally prepare and publicise
    protests should an attack take place.

    If an attack takes place after 5pm, we ask groups to hold
    local protests/sit downs outside town halls or other
    appropriate local centres. We will call a protest at Downing
    Street on the evening of the day of an attack or the day
    after if the attack takes place after 5pm.

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