The Anguilla-born co-author of a book that highlights the involvement of the opposition People's Action Movement (PAM) in the attempted overthrow of the lawfully-elected Labour Government of then Premier Sir Robert L. Bradshaw on 10th June 1967, was one of two Anguillians recognised by the Anguilla-Nevis-St. Kitts Associations Reunion (ANSAR).
ANSAR comprises several national groups of Anguillians, Nevisians and Kittitians living around the world including London, Leeds, Manchester, Birmingham and Slough, England; Cardiff in Wales; Europe; Toronto and Montreal, Canada; Washington, D.C. New York, Miami and Atlanta in the United States.
Mr. Nathaniel (Nat) Hodge, MBE, who co-authored the books with Colville Petty, was among 8 nationals of Anguilla, Nevis and St. Kitts honored by the organisation at the Long Island Marriott and Conference Center in New York.
Mr. Hodge has many years of service in the field of journalism in St. Kitts, where he was at one time, the Editor of the Democrat newspaper, official mouthpiece of the People's Action Movement (PAM).
On his return to Anguilla, Nat Hodge served as News Editor and later Director of Information and Broadcasting in the Anguilla Public Service.
During his appointment he served as Press Accreditation Officer for the Royal Visit of Queen Elizabeth The Second and the Duke of Edinburgh. Later he was appointed a Member of the British Empire (MBE). On his retirement from the Public Service, he began publishing The Anguillian, a weekly newspaper now serving that island.
The other awardees were Anguillian, Dr. Oluwakemi M. Linda Banks; Nevisians Gloria L. Anslyn, Edmund Anthony Sadio and Eliza Osbourne Allan and Kittitians, Dr. Spencer Armory, Elston Nero, Clarice Cotton and Bruce Skerritt
The awardees were recognised for having "rendered immeasurable contribution, service and credit to the cause of country and humanity by their personal efforts, commitment, dedication and achievements."
ANSAR 2006 was hosted by the Kittitian-American Benevolent Association
(KABA) under the "Revising the Past; Capturing the Moment; Advancing into the future."
ANSAR serves as a forum to renew and strengthen old friendships, foster the development of contacts and networking and provides opportunities to participate in workshops, seminars and panel discussions.
Some 600 nationals from Anguilla, Nevis and St. Kitts attended the events.
St. Kitts and Nevis' Ambassador to the United States and Permanent Representative to the Organisation of American States (OAS), His Excellency Dr. Izben Williams, represented St. Kitts and Nevis' Prime Minister, Hon.
Dr. Denzil L. Douglas. The Nevisian-born diplomat praised ANSAR and the Kittitian-American Benevolent Association for organising the events and function and encouraged the nationals to keep the passion and love for their homelands close to their hearts and to work towards further progress for the islands.
Kittitian physician and motivational speaker, Dr. Allan Somersall, who resides in Toronto, Canada in delivering the feature address, advised the nationals of the small Caribbean islands to "Live one day at a time and focus on the positive as you seize the present moment to squeeze out all the possibilities and go for the gold."
Nat Hodge and his co-author, Colville Petty, in their books and other written articles on the Anguilla Revolution and the attempt to overthrow Bradshaw on June 10th 1967, reported that the armed attack was the brainchild of Ronald Webster and a prominent Kittitian politician.
According to their publication: "It (June 10th 1967) had two principal objectives which were interrelated: Firstly, the defence of the Anguilla Revolution. Secondly, the overthrow of Robert Bradshaw's government and its replacement by one sympathetic to Anguilla's cause.
Ronald Webster was fearful of an invasion from St. Kitts and reasoned that the best way of preventing it was to attack St Kitts before St Kitts attacked Anguilla. On the other hand, the sole objective of the prominent Kittitian politician was the removal of Premier Bradshaw. To this end, he thought it expedient to use the "armed might" and revolutionary fervour of the Anguillian people to assist him. It was not difficult for him and Webster to join forces because both of them had goals, which, they envisaged, could be accomplished by defeating their common enemy: Bradshaw.
Detailed plans for the attack were worked out in Anguilla, St Kitts and St Thomas, Virgin Islands. They were fine tuned in Anguilla. To quote Clarence
Rogers: "[The prominent Kittitian politician] discussed the details . . .
~~Adz:Right~~with me again in Anguilla around 7th June. He came by mother's house, in East End, between 6:30 pm and 7:00 pm, where he sat on her bed and drew a plan showing where the men should land and the places to attack."
Whilst in Anguilla, the prominent Kittitian politician also discussed the plans with Joshua Gumbs who claimed: "At about 10 o'clock one morning in early June 1967 [he] passed by Lewis Haskins machine shop, in Corito, where I was doing repair work on some engines and asked me to captain the boat which was to take the men to carry out the attack on St Kitts." Joshua declined. In his words: "I said Doc, I am very sorry. What we did, we did it [the Revolution] for Anguilla. If the Kittitians want the Government out they must do it themselves. I am sure that the Kittitians wouldn't want us up there to shed their blood."
The plans included capturing Bradshaw and his deputy, Paul Southwell, and taking them to Anguilla; the announcement by Ruby Gumbs, over radio station ZIZ in St Kitts, that the new Premier was the prominent Kittitian politician; the demolition of the Defence Force Camp; the capture of the Police Headquarters; the destruction of the Power Station; the blowing up of the fuel depot and the capture of the Revenue Cutter used by the Police.
~~Adz:Left~~As part of their preparations for the attack, several of our men underwent shooting exercises at Junks Hole Bay. United States mercenaries conducted the exercises. According to Ruby Gumbs the prominent Kittitian politician
remarked: "If the boys continued to shoot the way they were doing at Junks Hole, with the help of the PAMites in St. Kitts, they can overthrow the Government in St. Kitts."