Thursday, April 16, 2009

South Tirol Against Fascism

This is really obscure I know, but taking a look at the website I found the Plaid Cymru and the SNP's grouping in the European parliament, the EFA (which also includes the Greens) has extended it's membership. Among the new members are the Sued Tiroler Freiheit (South Tirol Freedom). South Tirol, of course was cut off for some reason from north Tirol following the First World War as a way of rewarding the Italians for coming in against Austria-Hungary.

The region has more power than our poxy Assembly does (and will for a while unless the leaders of Plaid and Labour get their act together and start campaigning for a Yes vote in the referendum). But people are keen for more power. My German isn't good enough to work out if the STF want actual independence, union with Austria or just more autonomy (grateful for any clarification by German speakers).

In any case, one thing struck me about their website and especially the YouTube video on the right hand side, 'Marsch gegen Faschismus' (March against Fascism). It's obvious that a monument built by Mussolini is upsetting people and they've organised what looks like a very effective rally against the Faschis Denkmal (Fascist Monument). Contrary also to Welsh Labour prejudice (and also some left wingers in Plaid) the traditional costume usually associated with being reactionary and fascistic by some has become a badge of anti-fascism, democracy and rights by the Southern Tirolers. Maybe we Welsh should worry less our Labourist hang-ups (the successful St David's Day parade being a case in point) and confirm our traditional costume a badge of identity and anti-fascism and like in the Tirolean case a badge of anti centralised British/Italian nation statism.

Freiheit fuer Sued Tirol!

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