Radical political analysis, commentary and discussion in Wales
Dadansoddiad a thrafodaeth radicalaidd o wleidyddiaeth yng Nghymru
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Where next for Occupy? Reclaim the land!

'Red Pitchforks have appeared in rural areas of Brittany as representing rural protestThe emergence of the Occupy movement in Swansea and Cardiff has brought Wales into the global Occupy movement and activists are to be commended for their actions of highlighting the deep social injustice in Wales.

However Occupy is an essentially urban movement and the next stage in Wales for this movement should be for it to link up with this years upcoming rural struggles.

Rural struggles should not be underestimated, Wales has a proud history of revolt in the countryside: most famously the Rebecca riots of the 19th century saw widespread violence and proerty damage against toll house, but there are many more. More recently, the first popular defeat of the Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government was inflicted by people of the nearby Forest of Dean who quickly mobilised against the planned privatisation of forestry, forcing a u-turn by Cameron and Clegg.

This June to coincide with the Royal Jubilee a new rural campaign will be launched across Wales. Exposing how corporations who run renewable energy companies are acting like robber barons, using Crown Land which does not require planning permission to impose wind farms on communities which do not want them.

The way in which wind farms have been forced onto communities has led to some bitter ironies, such as in Mynydd y Betws, where Carmarthen County Council has used the enclosure act of 1845 to seize the historic Stryveland for Cambrian Renewable Energy Limited (CREL). Despite the name, CREL is wholly owned by the 'Electricity Supply Board' (ESB), Ireland’s main electricity utility company.

There is no problem with sound ecological technologies, wind or solar when it is service of the community and is community based but when it market driven and corporate with foreign companies calling the shots then that is something different - and must be opposed. The average wind turbine takes a ton of refined neodymium which is currently polluting lakes in inner Mongolia with toxic and reactive tailings. This is one of the uncalculating social costs rather than market costs of a not very efficient technology.

More thought must be put into the question of economic development, as new technologies (green or otherwise) are ruthlessly used by corporations to expropriate land and exploit people. We should ask; Who is the economic development for? We should campaign for people centered economic development that creates jobs. Community shared ownership of new technologies, rejecting  the capitalist development that accelerates inequality and working for socialism built from the community upwards. There is an alternative to capitalist development – we need to re-discover it again. That was the way China built its successful economic base with the Township and Village Enterprises that were created in Mao’s time and which formed the basis of China’s economic growth. Though these have now become private property following capitalist restoration in China (mostly taken by a local bureaucrat) in the Deng Xiao Ping years.

Radicals who care about the environment should join this campaign and expose the corporate greenwashing of the wind farm industry. A week of actions will take place on 1st to 7th June against crown estates in Wales and windmill robber barons. Events will include a national republican flag rally, a march into the mountains to Lys Dymper wind farm, Cilfaesty wind farm Radnorshire, Llanllwni Bryn Llywelyn wind farm, Mynydd y Betws wind farm, Afan Forest and other Coed Morgannwg wind farms. Join the people of the mountains (Pobl Y Mynyddoedd) in the great unrest of 2012.