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Have your say on the News Messageboard

'Book' this restaurant

Nov 1 2003

Western Mail Reporter, The Western Mail

 

SIR - With reference to the letter, "An accomplice in terror?" (October 8), I want peace with justice in Palestine and Israel and so does Dafydd Viney.

During the present uprising, which started September 2000, the Israeli military have killed three Palestinians to every one Israeli who has been killed. The Israeli military have used helicopter gunships, tanks and the latest rifles. Thirty per cent of those killed by the Israelis have been children; a further 30% have been health workers, particularly ambulance workers and firemen trying to save the homes of ordinary people. Most Palestinians who have died were innocent bystanders.

The armaments that killed them are made in Britain or the USA. If any of your readers or their relatives are working in the armament industry, they are accomplices in terror.

If David Raybould or any of your readers are opposed to terror, and concerned about ordinary Israelis and Palestinians, write to your MP. Call for an arms embargo on Israel; demand a UN peace-keeping force. If you care about justice and peace, go to Palestine and stand with the brave Israeli peace activists who defend Palestinian farmers from the Israeli military.

BEATRICE SMITH

Palestine Solidarity Campaign Cymru, Cardiff Branch, Llanbradach, Caerphilly

SIR - Movie star Arnold Schwarzenegger is now Governor of California.

Movie star Ronald Reagan was elected governor there in 1967 and went on later to win the 1981 election and become President of America, and with his movie-star wife Nancy Davis they moved into the White House.

Wouldn't it be great if one day we saw American-born, Oscar-winning movie star Michael Douglas standing for Governor of California and later as president and winning both? If he was as popular as a president as he is a film star, he would be a winner.

What a happy thought as, if it did happen, we would have our own Welsh-born Catherine Zeta Jones as the First Lady. She was the first Welsh-born actress to win an Oscar, so she would have another first, but what a first.

TREVOR DREW

Spitzkop, Llantwit Major

Sir - So, according to your correspondent Rhodri Owen, the opening ceremony to the 2003 Rugby World Cup was "pretty good, but no better than our Shirl".

Is this the same Shirl who was invited to sing at the 1999 opening ceremony, was presumably paid good money and, allegedly, decided that miming her contribution was good enough?

I understand further that the opening concert of the new Millennium Centre is to be graced by Elaine Page, Jose Carreras and - wait for it - Charlotte Church.

This will, of course, be the same Elaine Page who, according to The Western Mail's own reporter, sang so flat at the most recent Faenol Festival in North Wales, that she should have been selling pancakes; and the same Jose Carreras who, notwithstanding a glittering career as a world-class tenor, appears to have developed the kind of wobble that suggests that his best days are long past; and the same Miss Church, who having made millions from a voice that was never much more than a freak of nature, can now point most recently to a failed film, a pop album that was none too successful, occasional press coverage of family rows, and the odd mile walk in the company of Ian Botham.

Is this seriously the best list of performers that Bryn Terfel could come up with? Is the opening of a highly expensive and very high-profile Millennium Centre worth better than this? There must be dozens of young, Welsh, properly-trained singers he could have called on.

Why not look, for example, at the two most recent winners of the biennial Young Welsh Singer Competition, Elizabeth Donovan and Joanne Thomas? If that competition means anything, it is surely that these young people, and many more like them, really are the best Wales can offer.

Or am I being naive? Perhaps that opening ceremony is, in fact, only intended to publicise and celebrate anything other than Wales' best.

R GRAY

Ebbw Vale

Sir - Your newspaper reported that research by an eminent genealogist shows the inhabitants of Cymru are related to the Basques of Spain and not the later European peoples who arrived from the Middle East.

I hope that this is an opportunity for historical discussion, and not the recycling of stereotypes.

I would like to ask through your newspaper if the following points could be answered by an acknowledged expert in the field of ancient history:

Firstly, if we Britons living in Cymru are related to the Basques, does that suggest that we are of pre-Celtic descent?

Secondly, there is no folklore surviving that suggests an antipathy to the Celts in our part of the world. Does this suggest that the Celts did not have the tradition of slaughter associated with the Germanic peoples and that the original inhabitants of Briton were assimilated by the Celts?

There is often irony in life. Is it feasible that we Britons are a pre-Celtic people who were spared the sword and who now preserve a culture that was handed down to us?

It would be interesting to hear an educated view of our origins.

DEREK PRICE

Coed y Graig, Ystrad Mynach

SIR - I read last week of the good meals obtainable at the restaurant in the National Library in Aberystwyth.

I have been on holiday in New Quay this week, so duly visited the said restaurant for lunch.

May I say that it was excellent. I had the best cawl I have tasted for years, a cherry and kirsch yoghurt made at a farm in North Wales and toffee waffle made, I believe, in a local factory - and all of it was delicious! With coffee it cost me £3.50!

My summer holiday was in Brittany and nowhere was the food so good or so reasonably priced.

Do we, I wonder, appreciate the excellent cuisine to be found in our own country?

TM DAY

Glanyrafon Gardens, Sketty, Swansea

Sir - It is the market which distinguishes a town from any other.

From Llandeilo, we are able to shop at either Swansea or Carmarthen. If each has the same stores, then which venue will attract us? (Swansea has a market too).

Being severely disabled, I find the open, airy ambience of Carmarthen market is preferable to hot shops and difficult-to-enter cafes.

In a wheelchair at Carmarthen market, I was able to purchase a hand-dressed Welsh-lady tea cosy, a bara brith and some Carmarthen ham to give to Spanish friends.

Then my husband and I enjoyed a ham sandwich and a cup of tea. A disabled toilet was easily accessible. And the car park was not too far away, nor was it on a slope.

These days some councillors appear to be earning so much and to enjoy such good expenses that they have forgotten what it is like for people on a small income and with restricted mobility.

Perhaps an experiment of a whole day in Carmarthen town in a wheelchair would bring the difficulties home to the doubtful.

How is it so easy for councillors to destroy an historical working market for just another department store?

DAPHNE G DAVIES

Llandeilo, Carmarthenshire

 
 

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