My snout, Edna Mopbucket's been on the phone again. "Ola Senor" she said. When I asked her the reason for this burst of Spanish she asked me, with some irritation "Don't you realise that today is the 70th anniversary of the ending of the Spanish Civil War". Edna has some Spanish blood, and for the next five minutes she lectured me about the disgraceful attack on the legitimate Republican Government of Spain in 1936 by the Franco-led rebels, and the role of Welsh volunteers who fought as part of the International Brigade alongside the Government, which was eventually defeated. She seemed very well informed, so I asked her what had brought this on. It seems that Plaid Cymru AM, Leanne Wood had fired the first shot of a little war of words that has broken out in Cardiff Bay. Leanne had dispatched an email to all AMs and their support staff asking them to reaffirm their opposition to fascism, and commit to a permanent memorial to the Welsh volunteers in the Senedd. As luck would have it, Senora Mopbucket was cleaning in the Plaid Cymru zone in the Assembly today, and couldn't resist a peep into one of the Plaid computers, and reading a fascinating exchange of emails that followed.
Leighton Andrews (Labour) - Leanne, forgive me, but 70 years ago weren't Plaid Cymru leaders supporting Franco? Regards, Leighton.
Helen Mary Jones (Plaid Cymru) - Cheap shot, Leighton. How long ago is it that you were a Lib Dem.
Leighton Andrews (Labour) - Ha Ha. I defer to Gwyn Alf Williams, a former Plaid Vice President, in 'When Was Wales' (Penguin) when he argued "During the 1930s, Plaid became even more of a right wing force. Its journal refused to resist Hitler or Mussolini, ignored or tolerated anti-Semitism and, in effect, came out in support of Franco. In 1941 Saunders Lewis' pamphlet "The Church and the World" explicitly rejected the war against Nazi Germany while in 1944 Ambrose Bebb condemned the plot to assassinate Hitler".
"Something of a 'coup de grace - one nil to Leighton" said I. Edna snapped back at me with something in Spanish ending with "Helen Mary won't take this lying down from a flip-flopping millionaire." And I hope she won't either. After all she is ex-Llanfair Caereinion High School, and we have to stick together.