May 4 2013

Election nightmare for BNP

The BNP’s election campaign turned out to be a disaster yesterday as their share of the vote was seriously cut down across the East Midlands and the country as a whole. Newcomers, the British Democrats, failed to make any impact and the English Democrats did very badly as well. UKIP’s populist right wing politics seems to have eclipsed the far right, perhaps for good.

Here’s how the BNP share of the vote looked in the wards in which they stood at the last elections in 2009 compared with the current results.

  • Derbyshire:                 2009: 19.2%    2013: 5.5%
  • Leicestershire:            2009: 14.3%   2013: 8.4%
  • Lincolnshire:              2009: 11.1%    2013: 4.3%
  • Northamptonshire:   2009: 13.2%   2013: 4.7%
  • Nottinghamshire:      2009: 10.9%   2013: 2.4%

In other words the BNP has done extremely badly, a view shared by their last remaining councillor, Cathy Duffy, who flounced out of the count in Leicestershire before her (poor) result was even announced.

Another welcome result at these elections was the booting out of Graham Partner, elected as BNP Councillor for Coalville in 2009 and being rejected by the electorate as a British Democrats candidate this year. We won’t be sad to see him go.

Whilst the further collapse of the BNP is to be welcomed, the rise of UKIP poses new questions and challenges for those who oppose anti-migrant racism and right wing populism. This analysis by the Independent Working Class Association is not a bad place to start in understanding the relationship between UKIP and the BNP and stating the challenges facing those who seek to oppose their right wing populism with a genuine working class politics.

 


Apr 22 2013

Boneheads battered in Brighton!

After months of baiting anti-fascists, the gobshites of the far right were weeping into their pillows last night after they were run out of Brighton yet again. Despite hyping the event as a big one and fantasising about what they were going to do to the ‘reds’ they only mustered 150 flag-waving morons at their march to nowhere. The following report is from a local anti-fascist who was there to send them packing:

We knew the fash were worried on Saturday night when Jeff Marsh started tweeting that the Casuals “owned Worthing”. If they were really such big men why didn’t they come down into Brighton where anti-fascists had been leafleting and band after band at the Punx Picnic was calling the punters out to oppose the fascists? The man was clearly close to losing his bottle and going where he wanted which was home with a nice cup of Horlicks. We could sleep easy knowing that our enemies were bricking it.

Casuals United and NWI "totally own" a secluded corner protected by cops

Casuals United and NWI “totally own” a secluded corner protected by cops

We woke up to a lovely sunny day and slowly wandered down towards the pier where a mob of black clad antis were avoiding the kettle and forming quite a sizeable crowd. The word was that fash were being allowed to walk through town to the demo which turned out not to be a particularly clever policing decision as several groups of them were set upon before they’d even got to the march in a sign of things to come. Soon there was a massive surge up St James street because some fascists had been spotted in a betting shop. The group of 3 far right punters were soon surrounded by hundreds of anti-fascists and were only saved by running for their lives out of the back door and a horse charge by the plod.

The miserable gaggle of wankers were walled in on the seafront for their own protection whilst thousands of Brighton people from all walks of life turned out to tell them to fuck off. Meanwhile odd groups of those who were clearly out intent on getting at the reds wandered in the maze of the Lanes but kept getting turned over by the better organised and more up for it anti-fascists who were given confidence boost after confidence boost by opposition whose hearts clearly weren’t in it.

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In the end the fash didn’t even manage to stagger the whole length of their 250m pig pen before they were turned back for their own safety. They huddled looking miserable while being pelted with missiles and wishing they could go home. Sensing that their job was done anti-fascists went on a victory march through the centre of town having well and truly beaten the fascists of the streets.

Word came through that some isolated fascists were trying to cause mischief down near the pier so we went to investigate only to see a pitiful mob of beer bellied has beens who’d finally drunk enough to get the courage to kick off. They were quickly surrounded by anti-fascists and only saved by scores of riot cops wading in to keep the sides apart. Apparently they were Combined Ex-Forces but I don’t think any of these lads would’ve passed any physical tests! They were marched off in a kettle surrounded by jeering anti-fascists and looked pathetic.

The funniest moment of the day came as we were moving away into the side streets as we came across a fascist so paralytic he could barely stand who eventually got it together enough to run off. It was then that people recognised his obviously terrified mate was none other than Diddyman Shane  Calvert. The poor old Nazi looked like he was about to cry as he scurried away behind police lines to shouts of “Come back Diddyman you paedo!” Seems like the mighty infidels are having a few recruitment problems these days and it’s no surprise. The NWI love to give it large on the internet but they shouldn’t really leave home without their mums for protection!

It was time to retire to the pub for refreshments after a day’s work well done. It was clear that the “hard men” of the far right had been totally humiliated. The normally full of shit @CasualsUnitedNT was lost for words for hours during what was meant to be their most exciting day of the year and Jeff Marsh hasn’t re-emerged from hiding to cover his arse yet. They are talking about coming back next year with more people but they already tried that this year and it didn’t work out too well for them. The fact is dregs of the EDL simply can’t get it together any more and they have learnt the hard way. They may be making big speeches about no surrender but I am sure that they won’t really want a rerun.

Check out the write up from the Anti-Fascist Network as well.

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Mar 25 2013

Oppose the March for England

If you only go to one anti-fascist mobilisation this year, stopping the March for England in Brighton should be it. The fascists have been salivating about this one for months, whipping themselves up into a far right frenzy about their right to impose their homophobic and racist abuse on the people of Brighton. They are out for revenge against the ‘reds’ who comprehensively humiliated their hate-fest last year and are pulling out all the stops to do it, even inviting the most openly Nazi groups, like the Friends of Golden Dawn.

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Anti-fascists from the East Midlands will be going down and we’d like to encourage you to join them.

Here’s the official callout from Stop MFE:

Last year thousands of people lined the streets of Brighton to drown out March for England’s message of hate. Let’s do it again. Racists and fascists have no place in our diverse city.

March for what?

March for England (MfE) is not an innocent celebration of traditional culture. March for England is a right wing, Islamophobic, racist and homophobic organisation that helped found the English Defence League (EDL) and is supported by EDL members. The fascist credentials of their annual outing to Brighton on Sunday 21st April has never been clearer. Neo-Nazis, Friends of Golden Dawn, supporters of the swastika waving Greek fascist party, have stated they will be attending March for England.

Islamophobia and English fascists

MfE and the EDL are just two of a growing number of English fascist groups that are violently lslamophobic. They state they are against so-called “Islamic extremists’ but this is the mantra of a growing anti-Muslim movement with European fascism that quickly turns into a wholesale assault on Muslim people, all migrants and any way of life that they think is not “English” enough.

Brighton: anti-fascism begins at home

The current economic crisis and the demonisation of migrants has created the political climate for fascist ideas and organisations to grow. Groups such as the MfE, EDL and BNP groups scapegoat those most affected by war and economic hardship, they discriminate according to their ideas of race and nation, they spread fear and hate of those people they believe are different to them, they attempt to intimidate community groups. When the people of Brighton made their collective stand against Mfe and EDL, they helped turn the tide against new fascism in Britain. Since we took to the streets to show our opposition to the rise of a new fascism, the EDL have been halted in Bristol, Walthamstow and Norwich.

We’ll do it again. Fascism grows if we let it.

See you there.

For updates contact:

stopmfe@ymail.com

and follow:

https://twitter.com/stopmfe


Mar 3 2013

Poor East Mids turnout for Manchester

So, in an an attempt to unite the shite about 400 paralytic munters descended on Manchester city centre yesterday. The turnout was pretty pathetic compared to the 1200 who mustered for the last EDL demo in the city but an improvement on the 30 scag addicts who ranted to anyone who would listen in Cambridge last weekend.

"1000 patriots" according to the EDL

“1000 patriots” according to the EDL

The 400 lager-sodden muppets achieved nothing. Manchester police escorted them straight from the train stations to their designated pub, they were frog-marched surrounded by coppers into an area fenced off with 10 foot barriers and then were escorted back to their trains when the speeches were over. They were outnumbered by a lively anti-fascist crowd who got to march through the city centre to the demo site. The Facebook chatter about small groups of EDL out to stalk anti-fascists turned out to be more infidel bullshit. We only saw one group of fascists dare to show up near the UAF stall and they were swiftly chased off.

There was no sign of the supposed coup by the North West Infidels who reckoned they were going to take back the EDL from softy liberals who only hate Muslims not Jews as well. Amusingly though there was a punch up between two different fascist factions at Victoria station which resulted in 5 of them being nicked.

We only spotted about a dozen faces from East Midlands Infidels, or whatever they’re calling themselves this month, confirming our suspicions that only alcoholics and social misfits are left. They used to take several coaches to a national demo but now only a handful with no other social life can be arsed to come. They looked well on their way to alcohol-induced coma as they staggered around Manchester, clutching their Strongbow to their chests and wondering where it all went wrong in their lives.

Manchester showed that even when they pull all the stops out the EDL can’t really pose a threat any more. It is a dying movement that only the most head-banging believers still think is capable of going anywhere. All that the turnout showed is that the death is going to be long and boring.


Feb 23 2013

Fascists leak their own details

It has come to anti-fascists’ attention that fascist losers, the New British Union, have posted the details of all their national and regional officers on their website. You can find a complete list here.

The NBU is based on Oswald Mosley’s British Union of Fascists who supported Hitler during WWII. Mosley’s blackshirts were comprehensively beaten off the streets by the anti-fascist 43 Group of Jewish ex-servicemen in the aftermath of the war.

A number of officers in the East Midlands are listed:

Derbyshire: Jennifer Page –  jenniferpunk141198@rocketmail.com

Leicestershire: Jenna Hines – Jleomur1@hotmail.co.uk

Northamptonshire: Terence Steele – terryksteele@aol.com

Nottinghamshire: Stephen Dean – diggied1@gmx.com


Feb 18 2013

Nottingham BNP are desperate

Anyone want to give them a call? 070213


Feb 3 2013

Freedom Bookshop firebombed

We were saddened to hear that Freedom Bookshop in London has been firebombed. The long-standing anarchist bookshop was attacked on Friday morning, with the fire causing extensive damage to electrics and stock. Fortunately, nobody was in the building at the time, so there were no injuries.

A solidarity cleanup was organised and the shop will be open again tomorrow (Monday) morning, “not quite as usual, but reasonably close.”

Police are investigating the incident and nobody has so far claimed responsibility, but as explained in this interview on YouTube, suspicion has fallen on the far-right. The bookshop has a long history of supporting anti-fascism and was attacked by Combat 18 in 1993.

If this was a fascist attack, it is something of a step-up from the pork product-based approach which seems to have dominated their tactical thinking in recent years. It is also notable that whoever was responsible was not in police custody within hours, suggesting a degree of competence few of today’s master race have achieved.

Hopefully this is an isolated incident rather than the beginning of a new trend. We, and no doubt anti-fascists across the UK, will be monitoring the situation closely.

If you’d like help Freedom out financially, cheques or postal orders made payable to Freedom Press can be sent to Freedom Press, 84b Whitechapel High Street, London E1 7QX. You can also help by ordering books through the Freedom Press website and then emailing subs@freedompress.org.uk to let them know that your purchase was a donation.


Jan 4 2013

2012: Lessons for anti-fascists

Taking the piss out of the fascists is as easy as shooting fish in a barrel and because they are so good at making of mess of what they do it often seems that there isn’t much for anti-fascists to do. However, thanks to the support of the popular media and political discourse for increasingly authoritarian and reactionary politics on immigration, the “undeserving” poor and ethnic and cultural minorities, fertile ground for far right recruitment has been created. It only takes the far right to stop screwing up for a little while for them to find something that works and take off with it. For example:

Thurnby Lodge

The chameleon-like ability of the far right to infiltrate local politics with their own brand of fascist politics is one of the major threats that they pose. The biggest success for the EDL and the BNP in the East Midlands this year was the Thurnby Lodge protests in Leicester against the takeover of a disused scout hut by a local Muslim group.

Nick Griffin is parachuted in to Thurnby Lodge

Nick Griffin is parachuted in to Thurnby Lodge

The BNP and EDL exploited existing community tensions and a well-founded distrust of the local council to spin a dispute over community resources into an anti-Muslim crusade. At times, hundreds of local residents were involved in nightly pickets of a community centre where the As Salaam group had their prayer meetings. The crowds were addressed by BNP leader, Nick Griffin, on one occasion, although some residents distanced themselves from far right groups in public. The far right helped the process along by making up a story about Christians being forced to cover up a cross whilst Muslim prayers were being held. The story was discovered to have been made up but not before additional hysteria had been whipped up.

The pickets have now been going on for many months under the leadership of EDL activist Chris Hopewell, who has been photographed shaking hands with Leicester’s mayor. Members of As Salaam have complained of intimidation by protestors at the nightly pickets and in response the police have started imposing S.14 restrictions on numbers present at and the location of protests. They have also arrested several people they suspect of being organisers of unauthorised protests, including BNP members. A pigs head has been left at the doors of the community centre in an attempt to insult the Muslim group in response to the crackdown and now 4 people have been arrested for religiously-aggravated public order offences.

While the state crackdown will almost certainly drive a wedge between the extreme racist hardcore and most local residents, the fact that the far right have been subverting this campaign for so long (and doubtless recruiting and spreading their poisonous ideas) is a failure for anti-fascists. These kind of successes are the sort of thing we should be nipping in the bud, not by accusing everyone involved of being a racist, but by separating the legitimate concerns from divisive and paranoid ones.

Anti-immigration protests

Whilst not explicitly far right in nature, Dean Everitt’s anti-immigration demo in Boston was relatively successful and left some of the far right supporters who turned up eager for more. Again, the issue is one where many local people have legitimate concerns – the latest census results showed that Boston has seen a higher level of immigration than anywhere else over the last decade and local resources are clearly stretched. The issue undoubtedly plays on racist fears as well though. Given that Everitt himself is a supporter of far right groups and many of the people who were invited were from the EDL and BNP, it is fair to say the far right has some influence on this movement.

There has been talk of a future anti-immigration demo in Spalding in the new year. We need to make sure we continue to expose the involvement of the far right in this movement.

Racist attacks

As the organised far right fragments it can be predicted that there will be more incidents of fascists acting on their own, without any restrictions imposed by a larger organisation. Indeed, the number of racist attacks, particularly against Muslims, appears to be on the rise. Lincolnshire police have reported a sharp rise in racist incidents as have schools in Derbyshire. There have also been some high profile attacks on Muslims in Leicester, Northants, Lincoln and Bingham, often involving people with links to far right organisations.

Many people wrongly think that the police will deal with these isolated incidents. In reality, Notts police were criticised for their extremely racist stop and search profiling and Leicestershire cops were were highlighted for the racist way in which they policed the EDL demo in February.

Anti-fascism will only succeed if the wider struggle against racial and religious divisions within society is also strong. There is no point in beating off organised fascism while the seeds of its rebirth are being sown all around us.

Anti-fascism

2012 saw a long-awaited resurgence of confidence in street-level anti-fascism. This was in no small part due to an increased militancy of UAF in tackling the EDL but also thanks to the growth of the decentralised Anti-Fascist Network. Anti-fascists had a number of victories over the fading EDL, most notably in Walthamstow where they blocked the EDL’s march and the fascists had to be kettled for their own safety.

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That said, there is still a lot of poor analysis in the broader anti-fascist movement which tends to see fascism as one element of “extremism”, a label which is as likely to include people fighting for freedom as fascists. This can lead to our movement being appropriated by populist politicians for their own ends. If anti-fascism is not also against our authoritarian, racist state then it doesn’t deserve the name.

There is also a tendency towards anti-working class prejudice in some quarters, with the EDL and co being mocked as thick simply because they don’t express themselves in a suitably Guardian-reading manner. Anti-fascism should be a grassroots movement welcoming of all those who are sick of the divisions in our communities not an elitist sneering club.

Locally, anti-fascists had a relatively low profile although a successful benefit gig for anti-fascist prisoners was held in Nottingham, the Lincoln Underground Collective hosted a discussion on anti-fascism and Leicester anti-fascists took action against a coach company used by the EDL. It is harder to mobilise against the fascists when they are weak and don’t seem to pose much of a threat but that is exactly what we need to do to if we really want to stamp them out. If we can’t beat them when they are weak we will have no chance by the time they are strong again.

There is a lot to be done so support your local anti-fascist group and help build the Anti-Fascist Network.

¡No pasarán!


Jan 2 2013

2012: Not the year of the infidel!

We’ve had an interesting first year here monitoring fascists across the East Midlands. In many ways it’s been a dreadful year for the far right with the EDL and BNP in dire straits and none of the smaller groups looking capable of “uniting the right” either. There have been many enjoyable fascist misadventures, failures and outright catastrophes making 2012 a year they’ll want to forget. The far right will be trying to start 2013 on a more positive note and it is up to anti-fascists to make sure they don’t even leave the starting blocks.

EDL

The EDL started 2012 with a demo in Leicester against a “two-tier justice system” that is prejudiced against whites apparently. Funnily enough, their claims that the Crown Prosecution Service is a left-wing conspiracy to let Muslims off fell to shreds on closer inspection. On the day, an estimated 400 turned up to trudge around the deserted streets in the snow. Although they can only dream of getting those numbers now, at the time it was their lowest turnout for years and EDL activists were overheard complaining that “We can’t organise shit anymore”.

The dwindling numbers have meant that only hardcore lunatics and racists are left in the flagging street movement. We exposed EDL members advocating nuclear war and genocide (Lee Tams, Leicester EDL), calling all Muslims “stinky dirty goat shagging bastards” (Ian Humphries, Leicester EDL), stringing up George Galloway by his bollocks and smashing his head in with a nailed baseball bat (Mark Dunn, Leicester EDL), calling Abu Hamza a “paki” who deserves waterboarding (Andy Catchpole, Hinckley EDL), threatening to “wipe out” an independent media site (Jay Clarke, Nottingham EDL), calling Leicester a town full of Pakis (Jack Stevens and Richard Carroll, Nottingham EDL) and making jokes about leaving dead pigs in a swimming pool running Muslim swimming sessions (Keith Finch & Ed Coates, Leicester EDL). We exposed nasty pieces of work like Newark EDL organiser Chris Conroy, a violent racist misogynist, EDL poster boy Glen Warren and Northants EDL’s love of Nazism.

One of the most tragic figures we’ve come across is Nottingham’s Tony Curtis, formerly big buddies with the EDL leadership and a regular speaker at demonstrations (although not known for accuracy or truthfulness),  he was unceremoniously booted out in September after a misguided attempt to “unite the right” backfired. Curtis had been getting cosy with Bill Baker’s New Patriot Alliance but then decided they were racists. When he was then kicked out of the EDL as well he was left in the wilderness with only his Facebook “plastic patriot” friends for company. How the mighty have fallen!

Local EDLers managed to rack up an impressive number of convictions for racist attacks and violence in 2012. Two Derby EDL fans were sent to prison for their part in a racist attack on a taxi driver, a Northants EDL member was remanded for racist abuse, a Lincoln EDL member was banned from football games for 3 years after involvement in violence at Lincoln City games and being photographed giving a Nazi salute, two Bulwell EDL supporters were jailed for racially abusing an Asian family and Leicester EDL activist, James Elliot was convicted of drunkenly assaulting an anti-fascist.

The EDL spent the year desperate to find a cause that would get some traction with followers who were rapidly abandoning them. They tried to latch onto the manufactured phenomenon of Muslim grooming gangs in a bid to “save” (white) girls, but failed to ditch their own misogyny and casual sexism, making us think they were only in it for the racism. They made a late bid to “defend the gays” against a phantom army of Muslim homophobes, without ever questioning their own homophobia. Most recently they have been attempting to insinuate themselves into anti-immigration protests in Boston and the Fens, evidently having given up on “peacefully protesting Islamic extremism” and going for a more old school racist vibe. None of these efforts has done much to save their failing organisation.

At the end of 2012, the EDL is in a desperate position. Their leader is on remand in the nonce wing, looking at some considerable jail time for charges of mortgage fraud, assault and travelling with false documents, the numbers at their demos have dwindled to a tiny handful and Kev Carroll, who is flailing at the helm for now, has been doing a good job of alienating the few remaining activists who have stayed loyal. Only a miracle will bring back their former strength.

BNP

The BNP began the year still reeling from the mass exodus of activists caused by Nick Griffin’s chronic mismanagement, abuse of finances and absolute dictator leadership style. More major splits have occurred since then, most recently Andrew Brons and his supporters leaving, but it does look as though the worst may be over for the severely battered BNP ship. All the more reason to give them a hard time in 2013.

Derbyshire BNP’s Blackshirt Buggy

Locally, the BNP began the year with a hilarious personality clash in Derbyshire between rival factions of the Heanor group. Councillor Lewis Allsebrook threw his toys out of the pram, leaving the party whilst using various blogs that no one reads to slag off Heanor’s other BNP councillor, Cliff Roper, and his hapless Mrs, Emma. Ironically, not long before Roper had resigned the party whip in protest against Griffin whilst Allsebrook remained loyal, but Roper is still clinging in there in true opportunistic fascist fashion. The infighting didn’t do the Heanor Hitlers much good, resulting in them losing both their seats in the local elections.

Perhaps even more of a joker than those two was the Dictator of Derbyshire, Paul Hilliard. Clearly seeing himself as a bit of a player in nationalist politics, Hilliard spent the year engaging in activities he clearly saw as statesmanlike. He tidied up the atrocious fashion sense of his comrades by getting them all kitted out in black shirts, admitting a admiration for Mussolini’s fascist foot soldiers, and invested in the local answer to the BNP’s Lie Lorry, the Blackshirt Buggy. But funniest of all, he started a Facebook group called “Nationalists Must Unite as One to Achieve Victory” in yet another thwarted attempt to unite the right. Infighting between rival fascist groups and factions within the BNP has been rife on his page leading to some very Stalinist purging of his rivals by Hilliard. One of his main beefs seems to be any suspected support for the Jews, which he smothers with paranoid conspiracy theories.

Even Hilliard doesn’t win the crown for most crazed local activist. Nottingham’s organiser, Bob Brindley, must surely win that title with his barmy Twitter feed barking out paranoid rants and racist nonsense. Brindley seems to hate everyone who isn’t white, but has a particular hatred of anti-racist campaigner Doreen Lawrence and Nelson Mandela. He is quite keen on Jimmy Savile though. Brindley sometimes attempts a lone leafletting session in Nottingham city centre but has been chased out of town by locals.

With this bunch of lunatics as his local organisers, it’s no surprise that East Midlands organiser, Geoff Dickens, had a hard time pressing the dwindling band of pensioners that still turn up to BNP meetings for more cash for Griffin this year. Even his spine-chilling ghost stories about cultural Marxism haven’t been enough to keep the party going.

As a result, the BNP have faced the mass defection of former stronghold, North-West Leicestershire, to the English Democrats, as well as Wellingborough organiser and author of the Northants Patriot, Rob Walker, in the same direction. Indeed, there has been an extremely high drop-out rate of former activists and organisers within the local party over the past few years. They have not contested many elections in the region this year, but did badly in Towcester, Sileby and Corby.

Like the EDL, the BNP have had their share of censure for racism. Lincoln BNP candidate, Dean Lowther, was investigated by the police after racist and fascist posts from his Facebook site came to light. Former BNP councillor for Coalville, Graham Partner, was censured “in the strongest possible terms” by Leicestershire County Council after writing a racist leaflet. And Lincolnshire’s BNP’s “Reverend” Robert West had a hissy fit when the Church of England banned its clergy from joining racist organisations such as the BNP.

Like the EDL, the BNP have been eager to latch onto what they think will be populist causes in order to recruit and spread their fascist ideas. They expressed crocodile tears over child abuse, but only when Muslims were the perpetrators and suddenly became animal welfare advocates when locals expressed their anger over a halal slaughterhouse in Skegness (whilst munching on factory farmed sausages).

2012 was another bad year for the BNP, without a doubt, and locally they are relying on the dregs of the barrel to keep the party running. However, with the demise of the EDL there are a lot of new far right activists looking for a home whose energy the BNP could leech off. There are signs that the party is getting more confident again, and will be looking to revive itself in the new year. It is our job to turn them back.

Small parties and groups

Divisions on the far right have multiplied during 2012 which has seen yet more splits from the BNP form, defections to the English Democrats and the emergence of the English Volunteer Force and New Patriot Alliance from the corpse of the EDL. Not many of them have managed to do anything though!

Derbyshire Infidels: Scary as fuck!

The English Democrats earned themselves a reputation of being a half-fascist party when it emerged that almost 50% of their candidates in the May local elections had been members of the BNP. In the end they did moderately well in Daventry getting 20% of the vote in the Long Buckby ward, and far right rosette collector, Kevin Sills, got 14% of the vote in Desborough town council elections in July. The party has generally done well in Northants this year even though David Wickam only got 1.2% in the Corby by-election.

That’s far better than they’ve managed in Lincolnshire in the shaky grasp of all-round buffoon and neo-Nazi supporter, Elliott Fountain. Fountain did desperately badly in two local elections and despite talking up his candidacy for the Lincolnshire Police & Crime Commissioner post up to a few weeks before the election he was mysteriously withdrawn from the ballot after we exposed his links to far right groups, racist comments and love of class A drugs. He also treated us to some cracking far right infighting with anti-immigration protest organiser and fellow Boston bigot, Dean Everitt.

Veteran Nazis, the National Front, raised their heads out of their perpetual slumber on a couple of occasions during the year. Tim Knowles, who managed to fuck up getting himself elected unopposed a few years back, stood again in the Amber Valley local elections and came last with 99 votes. Then the NF tried to jump on the Skegness anti-halal slaughterhouse bandwagon by holding a poorly attended demo there in September featuring a mugs gallery of past-it fascists. They weren’t too pleased about us releasing the details of their re-direction point the night before. The Front have essentially no local backing in the East Midlands and it looks likely to stay that way.

As the EDL falls apart all manner of pompous little groups have been setting themselves up, each vying for the crown of being “the next EDL”. We’ve got bad news for them – there ain’t going to be one. The EDL’s one-trick pony was dragged as far as it could be and everyone got bored. It’s over lads!

2012 saw the emergence of the English Volunteer Force, run by a former EDL and BNP activist and trying to emulate a loyalist group responsible for murdering hundreds of Catholic civilians in Ireland. The organisation has miniscule support across the East Midlands and is yet to do anything although its front man does like posing with his pants on his head. We also saw the birth of our favourite pointless group, Leicester’s 212 Poison, who like to meet up for a drink and fantasise about beating up Muslims before going home to their mam.

Still hanging around like a bad smell are the infidels, teenage boys who are frustrated by the fact that the EDL isn’t racist enough and like tattooing the 14 words onto each others’ arses. Not to forget Leicester Casuals United who like to lie about how they’re going to kick off at UAF meetings and run the “muzzies” out of Leicester not to mention making up stories about poppy sellers being attacked. We did enjoy them slating the EDL though!

Our conclusion

Year of the infidels? Pffft!

The far right is floundering, riven by infighting and held back by the incompetence of its leaders. It will take a long time for them to regroup and do anything of consequence again and we will see them trying to start that process over the next few months. But make no mistake, the rise of the EDL and BNP drew thousands of people towards reactionary politics. The organisations may be collapsing but racist and divisive attitudes remain for many of those whom they blighted and those people could get behind a more successful fascist organisation in the future. There is a lot of work ahead for anti-fascists.


Aug 25 2012

EDL: “the influence they have on people’s thinking is unbelievable”

Because the region’s far right isn’t doing anything interesting right now, I thought it would be useful to highlight this recent post by Exposing the English Defence League. It features the words of former EDL member, Steve Littlejohn, about his disillusionment with the organisation and reveals some insights into the cynical strategies they’ve employed.

Littlejohn says that the EDL manipulate their followers into hatred:

EDL post stuff giving you a negative view about Muslims and if you around people who think the same it becomes normal and believable until you hate with a passion

“[I]t’s dangerous stuff” he says “The influence they have on people’s thinking is unbelievable and it takes just one really fucked up individual worse than me and you’ve got another Norway episode.”

He claims the leadership aimed this hateful ideology at “football hooligans and really aggressive people” because they knew they “were goin to face violent opposition” but “as it got publicity they didn’t want us kind and tried to get over this peaceful protest shite”.

Littlejohn is critical of EDL leader, Tommy Robinson, who he said was manipulating the group’s propaganda to be “all about boosting Tommy up to be a messiah”. This was important in attracting a certain kind of follower:

[T]here’s so many people in it that need leading and their the people that would fire bomb a mosque to feel like their hardcore

The cost of this blind devotion to hatred to ordinary members is serious:

You,l b surprised how many fellas lost their mrs to EDL it’s powerful stuff you see them as a little street group but it’s dangerous stuff

Indeed, Steve himself left “because it was a case of leave or lose my family plus towards the end I’d lost faith in it all and started to see the bigger picture.”

We hope that Steve and many other followers get out of the fucked up little cult that is the English Defence League and can rehabilitate themselves.