Letter: How green was that valley?

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I was puzzled by Martha Gellhorn's BBC report on her return to Newbridge 13 years after the miners' strike - it was lyrical but economical with the facts. Tim Minogue's tribute (27 July) supplies an explanation; apparently she has never had time for "all that objectivity shit".

No mention of flying pickets then, or secondary picketing, of rent- a-mob or intimidation of scabs; just ragged, starving wretches pulverised by brutal armies of fascist police. Nothing about overmanning and huge subsidies to produce an uneconomic and pollutant fuel. Instead, we have a lament for the passing of close-knit (ie claustrophobic) communities and a nostalgic celebration of dirt, drabness, disease, early death and the occasional pit disaster, when brute strength and ignorance were enough to guarantee a young man a short life of local employment - which of course never was true, as Welsh communities around the world testify.

M J Knight

Slough, Berkshire

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