14th November 2020: Dear unionists and Remainers, this post concerns you. According to Kirsty Hughes,1 a former director of the Scottish Centre on Europe Relations, the European Union is unlikely to allow the UK to re-accede while there is uncertainty regarding the constitutional status of the Celtic nations, and this certainty cannot be obtained without offering their peoples the chance to vote on their independence – the chance which the UK government has already decided to refuse.2 Moreover, the European Union is less likely to allow the British nations to re-accede as a single unit, which would dramatically shift the EU's political culture and balance of power, than as a family of sovereign and independent nations. If you wish to be English or British Europeans, then you must relent of the hatred that many of you have shown us, and be Celtic self-determinationists first.

There is a third reason also why this concerns you. If you defend the European Union as a family of equals, as a voluntary union of sovereign states, as the expression of humanism’s righteous contempt, as Rob Riemen would have it,3 for fascism, then you must surely condemn the British union that seeks to make the Celtic nations subject to English rule by force. And if you perpetuate the lie that Britain is a nation, if you use the word ‘Britain,’ as Gwynfor Evans predicts,4 to justify England's cultural stranglehold over the Celtic nations, if you vilify the independence movements as wishing to destroy a nation, if you deny that the UK is a union of nations, albeit neither voluntary nor equal, then you perpetuate the lie also that the EU is unprecedented and unfamiliar, a threat to the sovereignty of this British nation. The myth of Brexit as a nation’s uprising against foreign tyrants and internal traitors is a monster that you have helped to create. You have a duty to help us destroy it.

1 Adrian Zorzut, ‘EU open to Scotland joining bloc but “very reluctant” to let rest of UK back in.’ The New European, 8th July 2020.

2 Andrew Learmonth, ‘Conservative minister says SNP “have to accept” there’ll be no new independence referendum.’ The National, 11th November 2020.

3 Rob Riemen, To Fight Against This Age: On Fascism and Humanism. London: Norton, 2018. See also Simon Chater, ‘“Brexit and Fascism: heed the warning signs while you still can, Mr Mangnall” – a constituent writes to his MP.’ West Country By-Lines, 26th October 2020.

4 Gwynfor Evans, Land of My Fathers: Two Thousand Years of Welsh History. Swansea: John Penry, 1974. p. 316 ff.

Image of the Scottish Parliament from Wikimedia Commons by Mary and Angus Hogg

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I am the author of three short story collections. Reasoning and For His Warriors, originally published by Gwasg y Bwthyn, Caernarfon, with Welsh Books Council support, now join Prayer at the End in revised editions at Cockatrice Books. My anthology of fiction, Dangerous Asylums: Stories from Denbigh Mental Hospital Told by Leading Welsh Writers, including work by Gee and David Williams, Glenda Beagan, Carys Bray, Simon Thirsk and others, was published by the North Wales Mental Health Research Project, October 2016. I was a contributor with Nigel Jarrett, Rachel Trezise, Tristan Hughes and others to Brush with Fate, an anthology of Welsh fiction translated by Hala Salah Eldin. I am a member by election of the Welsh Academy.

I am the translator of Going South: The Stories of Richard Hughes Williams (Cockatrice, 2015), Hallowe’en in the Cwm: The Stories of Glasynys (Cockatrice, 2017), and A Book of Three Birds, the seventeenth-century classic by Morgan Llwyd (Cockatrice, 2017). In addition, I have translated fiction by D. Gwenallt Jones, Angharad Tomos, and Manon Steffan Ros.