"I have long argued that the giving of offence, and even hate speech, should be a moral matter but not a matter for the criminal law. That is as true on the football pitch as on the streets. We should always challenge racism. We should also always challenge attacks on liberties in the guise of faux antiracism." Kenan Malik

More On ‘That Meeting’…The SWP and The EDL…

This article is addressed to both Socialist Workers Party (SWP) members and Norfolk Community Action Group (NCAG) supporters. It is a genuine attempt to find and establish some common ground on the issue of the English Defence League (EDL), which has become increasingly poignant in recent weeks in Norwich.

First of all, you should know I am a proud member of NCAG, and an anarchist. I fully support the earlier statement that was posted on the NCAG blog, and think that the accusations made by various local Trotskyites of NCAG being “EDL apologists” are both ridiculous and deeply offensive.

The purpose of this piece is not to create an uneasy alliance between the aforementioned acronyms or claim the argument ‘won’. Instead, what I intend to do is try and layout my opinions on the EDL, a view I know at least a few others in NCAG agree with.

I am doing this partly because I think that the EDL are becoming an increasingly present danger to our communities, and because I think that many of those in the SWP have not actually heard what I, and at least some others in NCAG, think about the EDL. Maybe, after this, there is some possibility for some cooperation, without compromising our integrities.

Going into this, I have no idea what other people in NCAG or Norwich Anarchists think about what I am going to say, and I would like to make it patently obvious that this is an opinion piece. Fortunately NCAG is not designed to stifle individual analysis and initiative so I have taken time to layout how I see the situation. So, on that note, here is what I would like to say about the EDL.

The EDL is a grassroots movement, that at times, is genuinely popular in many communities. The organisation identifies Islam as a major threat to what they perceive as English culture and this is the glue binding the formation. Undeniably the EDL consists largely of white working class men recruited from around football grounds up and down the country, even spawning off into other countries also, though with varying results.

While its correct that religious groups in this country treat workers, women and other groups like scum, and this should by no means be tolerated, I believe that the EDL are guilty of massively exaggerating the problem and, in doing so, have wrongly painted an entire community as a threat.

Lets make this clear, I understand the tactics deployed by the EDL to be not only redundant and ridiculous but ultimately wrong in addressing the problem. These actions only serve to distract us from the continual class war and consequently provide not only cover for the Tories to swing ever rightwards and attack working people but also provide a boot, or Adidas Samba, to any opposition.

I believe, that if we are being honest with ourselves, part of a successful anti EDL tactic includes acknowledging the task ahead and preparing our counter in accordance with this, being aware that things may not exist solely in polite discussion. This means preparing adequate security for meetings and not being caught unawares.

Now quite how anyone could suggest that myself, or anyone involved with NCAG has any sympathy with the EDL is beyond my comprehension. Especially when affiliates have operated openly with SWP and Counterfire members on projects, while never having thrown their lot in with the EDL.

As long as the EDL’s membership remain the unwitting dupes of fascists, class traitors and petty criminals, then we will have to oppose them. But the thing is, it is their leaders who are the class traitors and the racists. This is often a point made against the various Trotskyite organisations. The members are just normal people who are pissed off and disenfranchised with the status quo. They are workers, who are treated likes shit by the bosses, the police, the council and the entire totalising domination of the ruling class. Make no mistake these people belong to a genuine grassroots movement, and NCAG, while admittingly filled with some middle class student types, also consists mainly of your stereotypical ‘worker’. While its true that NCAG is vehemently anti-racist and the EDL has many racist connotations and links, there is also a lot that both groups have in common. To not recognise this would only be down to negligence and a purposeful aim of further distancing ourselves from the EDL. At this point I, unfortunately, think it is necessary to state that the white working class is not the enemy.

If the EDL supporters dropped the racism in their organisation, which many speak out against- not to mention the ‘disagreement’ in Bristol between the EDL and the Combat 18 old guard- then they would immediately start to cause real trouble for the “powers that be”.

So, we need to appeal to the EDL members, we need to get them to our side (when I say our side I mean NCAG’s, but I am assuming that the SWP lot can see what I am getting at). This is to say that we need a dual strategy, one of hindering any street presence and of propaganda.

So, Trotskyites, can you see why we prefer members of the EDL to your good selves?

Well no, of course you can not, because I have not attempted to explain why it is that we do not like your organisation, or front groups for that matter. I am not going to do that, because all that will do is nothing more than start another fruitless argument. I do, however, hope that on this issue you may come to understand where this article is coming from.

We are not going to ignore the fascists and nor are we going to simply scream at them and then return home for a celebratory mug of cocoa and smugly assert on facebook that you and the community united to ‘stop the fascist EDL’, in what was a beautifully uplifting demonstration of community spirit. Though if that was actually true, that would be brilliant.

We are going to do everything we can to appeal to all working class people, to fight back against the class enemy and this of course includes encouraging the abandonment of racism.

Now, to respond to an SWP members wacky claims that NCAG has done nothing in the local area, here is a, likely incomplete, list of projects that NCAG has spearheaded over the last year. None of which any SWP members turned up to- which is a shame really, as at several of them the entire youth branch of the pro-Gaddafi Workers Revolutionary Party ventured out!

1) Organised a gig that raised £1150 pounds for the Tomlinson Family.
2) Organised various protests outside police stations (again related primarily to the murder of Ian Tomlinson)
3) Organised various community meetings, and participated in other local and national campaigns.
4) Leafleted various working-class areas of Norwich and engaged with the residents.
5) Attended countless protests of various issues across the country.

There are of course other things that we have done, and do, as individuals and members of other organisations.

I hope, that the above has helped to clarify some of the obvious misunderstandings and shone light on the potentially purposeful smears. In ending, I must reaffirm that this piece is based upon my personal opinions and experiences as a supporter of the NCAG initiative and that this has been written with the best intentions.



56 responses

  1. Would I be being controversial if I said that the completely fuck all support for the Ian Tomlinson campaign by the SWP and most sections of ‘the left’ was because he was white? Tough!

    I did find it amusing that the SWP had organised another gig that night…an ‘anti-racism’ one wasn’t it?

    August 23, 2011 at 8:47 pm

  2. Pierre Suggman

    I remember the swp once had at the top of their paper neither washington nor moscow is it true it’s now neither washington or moscow but mecca?

    August 23, 2011 at 9:15 pm

  3. Pierre Suggman

    By the way, I think it’s important to post some of the responses the SWP have come out with since ‘the offending article’ which I believe led to your interesting piece Sam.

    “I think the comment “We don’t consider ourselves ‘on the left’.” nicely sums up Norfolk Community inAction Group’s stance as EDL apologists, who are so consumed with pursuing an anti-SWP agenda they more often than not act in a way that benefits the right-wing. The sheer stupidity of this tabloid diatribe is an insult to anarchists everywhere genuinely committed to opposing fascism.

    There was nothing constructive about what that article had to say, it was a cynical attempt at point scoring, of using hindsight to discredit hard working campaigners for no better reason than building their own organisation to the detriment of the community the united front should be defending.

    Solidarity does not consist of telling people to fuck off in some childish attempt to one up other people in the movement.

    This article was written with the intention of being a character assassination of the swp on a local basis. It calls the branch members idiots, despite their fine efforts building a local workers movement. Beyond shouting at top shop employees and writing bitchy articles online, i’ve seen little action (ironic considering the name) on the part of ncag and little interest in building a genuine workers movement.”

    This comes from someone who appears to be about 12 and who takes anti-fascism so seriously his Facebook page is wide open for all to see as are his friends and associates. I like how he uses the word ‘the movement’ and ‘the united front’.

    My only allegiance is to my comrades and my class, sorry sunshine.

    Your talk of ‘workers movement’ is dull pish. I’ve been active since 1984 in one form or another and watched as people come and go. Very few people like you will stay the course. And you really are only addressing the trade union membership of which today is down to 26% of the workforce precisely because of this kind of twaddle.

    You have no interest or knowledge of the working-class therefore absolutely no understanding of the demographic that makes up the EDL. You people made the same mistake with the BNP. Everytime you shouted NAZI another 100 people joined out of pure annoyance.

    Your accusations about us being fascist apologists just makes you a nauseous little sack in my mind.

    As for your attempts to portray a knowledge of anarchism and anarchists it’s just laughable. We don’t need to wave our credentials around they’re well known nationally.

    Likewise is our solidarity to our friends and comrades currently doing time. Real anti-fascists who we doubt you even know the names of.

    But to the crux of the matter, has it ever dawned on you how many anti-fascists knocking about are ex-far right? It’s apparent your little mind hasn’t even approached the subject. Perhaps you should ponder that one.

    By all means there are nasty fucktard racists hanging around the EDL, there’s quite a few in the SWP too, but I wouldn’t dream of painting YOU all the same, and as for some of those scumbags you support like the Islamic Forum of Europe, sort it fucking out! What hypocrasy!


    Final point though-recruitment. We have no policy on it. We have no membership cards or use daterbases to harass people after they sign petitions, in fact we have no petitions full stop. You’re projecting young man.

    August 23, 2011 at 9:38 pm

  4. Alex

    I think the fact that I am the only counterfire member in this region atm and I have not said anything on this issue yet. That is a lie Sam, I would like you to remove it.

    August 23, 2011 at 9:38 pm

  5. villa

    one of the swpys called me an apologist for fash and another called me a secrete fash , this is realy starting to fuck me of , i think we should go to their next meeting and have it out with them , this constant writing is not my thing , they need a good bolickin, or pull them up at their next paper sale , if they cant sort out their own security they should leave us out of it , their the ones who marched with the bnp , and islamic nazis , not us !

    August 24, 2011 at 6:22 am

  6. Bob Harding

    Cheers Sam. Just to point out they are called the English Defence League. Do they discriminate on the basis of which geographical area you happen to be born? Is discrimination on the basis of Nationalism an issue at all? Is Britain on the verge of being ran by Sharia Law? Is Britain at war? Do some people associate “defence” with war?, Is there more open bigotry in England against immigrants in this day and age rather than skin colour? Are any people being scapegoated? Why did the old AWL call islamic fundamentalists “our type of people” when they fought against the Russians? Did people think England shouid be defended against Russia then? Why do some people feel strongly against muslims now but against Irish Catholics in the past and against jewish people in the past before the second world war? Is the issue of Nationlism and war a fundamental issue in all this?

    August 24, 2011 at 7:19 am

  7. You’d have to be mentle to support organisations like the IFE Bob, who have fuck all support in east london Bob. The likes of the Swp though love em. I doubt Sam will disagree with you on your questions Bob. I think he sums up quite clearly how many of us feel about the EDL as an ‘organisation’, but to blatantly describe every member as fascist or nazi is stupid. Anyway this really isn’t about our views on the EDL, it’s about the SWP’s stupidity and hypocrasy.

    August 24, 2011 at 9:25 am

  8. Alex, indeed it appears you are ‘the only member of Counterfire in the region’ and the comments are from a member of the SWP. Will endeavour to change the ‘lie’ as soon as we are able.

    August 24, 2011 at 11:57 am

  9. Bob Harding

    Of course I don’t support the IFE (I had to read back over the comments to know who they are ). I disagree with the SWP and share some of these disagreements with you (and other disagreements I may find that you are more similar to them than me). I don’t think its correct to say the SWP and the left didn’t support Ian Tomlinson because he was white. What did they actually write about him??? I often hear comments about the government being for immigrants and against local whites and its rubbish. Immigrants are now locked up in detention camps simply due to where they happened to be born!

    There are obvious differencies with regard to violent tactics between that Norwegian Supremacist Mass Murderer and the EDL but they share a huge amount of political views on society, “Marxism” and multi culturalism etc etc (originally from an Austrian school of thought). Both of these recent developments differ from the old NF and the BNP because the present Nationalists are seriously dangerous and capable of developing into a genuine fascist movement; following unsuccessful wars. They are determined to scapegoat and foster hatred towards muslims from westerners(the image of) who are both black and whites, straight and gays etc.

    It can’t be right to just simply state that all Islamic bigots are “Nazis” while complaining about calling all the EDL fascists!

    August 24, 2011 at 6:25 pm

  10. “It can’t be right to just simply state that all Islamic bigots are “Nazis” while complaining about calling all the EDL fascists!”

    I’m confused who has been saying that?

    Are you also portraying us as EDL supporters, I’m confused?

    Our criticisms of the likes of the SWP with the ‘poke ya fingers in their ears style of ‘anti-fascism’ is that it didn’t work in the 70’s, the 80’s, the 90’s so why will work in the 21st century? If people have no idea of the opposition except for the caricature they develop they’re simply pissing in the wind and doomed to failure.

    Red Action and AFA realised that years ago…http://www.redaction.org/forum/forumdisplay.php?s=c18bee4ec2c03f5a414212126919cd71&forumid=3 but you are well aware of that…

    This still has nothing to do Bob with Norwich SWP’s stupid and utter disaster and irresponsible actions last Thurday and now their attempts to slander us as ‘fascist appeasers’…

    And I never said you support the IFE, I was referring to the SWP.

    In terms of Ian Tomlinson…where exactly were the mass rallies called by the SWP…and the TUC for that matter? I must have missed them…

    August 24, 2011 at 7:11 pm

  11. pancho villa

    i would just like to point out that when i was in the swp with tipple they were never this shit , the rot set in when the feminists forced him out , after that with the low calibre of member they became a circus freak side show . i left and joined awl and still have good comrades from that party , they are real comrades , the swp are nothing more than a cult.
    i am only talking about norwich though , tony cliff and pat stack always were cock eggs

    August 24, 2011 at 7:31 pm

  12. Bob Harding

    Hi Norfolknonaligned. In reply- One comment here mentioned “islamic nazis” and another comment was made about the EDL that “to blatantly describe every member as fascist or nazi is stupid”. My main point about Ian Tomlinson was that SWP followed their usual cult-like sectarian and opportunist ways and their behaviour wasn’t down to him being white.

    No, I don’t label you as EDL supporters or appeasers. If I thought you were EDL appeasers or supporters I would have used those words. I’ve looked at some links this group has put up about anti-fascists discussing the EDL and I find they are way too unsure and wishy washy about the poliics of the EDL.

    I agree with Sam that “The EDL is a grassroots movement, that at times, is genuinely popular in many communities. The organisation identifies Islam as a major threat to what they perceive as English culture and this is the glue binding the formation.”

    However this undersanding is even truer about the German Nazis and the massive popularity they had “defending German culture against Jews”. I’ve read a little about what comments were said by the German Communists and the arguments they tried to use when intervening in Nazi meetings. Its not surprising this stategy failed and I’m covinced it would also badlly backfire if you debate with the EDL in Nowich.

    With regard to a previous comment “As for your attempts to portray a knowledge of anarchism and anarchists it’s just laughable. We don’t need to wave our credentials around they’re well known nationally”, we shouldn’t be too complacent. After all it was an anarchist, Proudhon, who first suggested the “final solution” with regard to his problem with Jewish people!

    August 25, 2011 at 7:18 am

  13. Bob never once has this organisation ever stated that they were going to be forging links with the likes of the edl! We oppose organized thickness. Unlike the swp however we are not going to stick our fingers in our ears everytime someone says something ‘non pc’! Likewise while much of the organized left are busy inviting each other to meetings and rallies about the cuts (really its all about their own jobs) we’ll be on council estates engaging with ‘the precariat’ and all the other ‘unsavoury types’ the left have no time for and now absolutely no influence over. Oh and are you saying that referring to people who blow up busses and tubes and the tossers who support them should not be referred to as fascist?

    August 25, 2011 at 9:07 am

    • Arthur

      Some of the conversation here is right on the ball but also some is way, way off.
      Yes the EDL is 90% grass roots but it is also far more diverse than you think because there’s little Ideology attached, no longing for political power, just a wish to have our voices heard, overall we hate politicians of every stripe, we back no political party because they do not speak for us, any of them. They have sold us all down the river, so to speak.

      Could you forge links with the EDL, I don’t think that is at all possible, can we talk, yes, of course, but only if you move away from the idea that we are all the names that people call us. Because as an organisation, we are none of those things.
      Are there racist etc among us, I dare say there are and we try to get rid as soon as we find them, but it is very difficult to accuse people and ban them without proof, they may have suspect views but until they voice them, EDL can do nothing.

      Is there a threat from the Islamification of our nation, yes, I believe there is and we need politicians to face up to it and do some thing, quite what I don’t know. But the only way we get our voice heard is boots on the street.

      We didn’t wake up one morning and say the left or anarchist were the enemy, they attacked us first and made them selves into the enemy. What do they expect when they carry placards that say, smash the EDL or have meetings to smash us up, well, surprise, surprise, I don’t want to get my head kicked in, thanks.

      So it shouldn’t come as much of a surprise that EDL are becoming more militant.
      It’s not what EDL as an organisation wants, because our true enemy is the Islamist and the government.
      We would rather have a peaceful demo and go home, violence begats violence and it will be an endless circle.

      August 25, 2011 at 3:50 pm

  14. pancho villa

    i think you both make valid points , however unlike the nazis the edl welcome jewish members and are to a large extent a multicultural and multiracial organisation ,i also suspect that they have a very high gay membership just like the brown shirts .though i am certain that their are hard core nazis within it , i think at a stretch you could call the edl a fascist organisation , but then where is their hitler or strom ?, where is the cult of the personality ?, i would say that certain muslim groups were definatly nazi organisations , they are antisemetic , deal directly with god , seek a return to a feudal utopia , hate communsts gays and feminists ,and have the cult of the personality , bin laden . unlike the edl who just hate islamic fundermentalists .of the two groups , lets say mdl or edl , the edl are the less right wing , i think the edl is a backlash against postmodernist neo liberalism, feminism and top down multiculturalism and a reaction to mass emigration combined with mass unemployment not to mention that britain is involved in three wars against islamic leaders.
    it is a group of people who feel persecuted and marginalised, mainly white working class . they feel this way because they are . and they are now fighting for controle of the working class areas , i realy do have to say that all these equations to nazi germany do get a bit boring , its time we threw away the rule book and started afresh.
    i think that just as the nazis were somthing new in their day i think so are the edl , i dont realy know what they are , if i had to venture an opinion i would say that they were oportunistic gangsters seeking power

    August 25, 2011 at 4:07 pm

    • Arthur

      Pancho, I agree with a lot of what you say but have to disagree with the seeking power, we have no intention of seeking power, because we believe that politicians today are corrupt and we want no part of that.
      Most of us just want our voices heard and then we’ll go away.

      I’m just an ordinary bloke and that’s what most of us are and we’ve come together on this single issue, other than that we don’t agree on anything, there is such a wide range of opinions among us.

      August 25, 2011 at 4:46 pm

  15. pancho villa

    i also think that we could work with the edl , on a class bassed issue , what if a community centre was being closed down , or a hospital in a working class area , as the edl are working class and we are working class i could see us working together to defend our comunitys against the ruling class , also what if the edl held an anti racist or antihomophobic benefit gig? i think this is highly possible , i mean being seriouse , the muslims have got fuck all chance of taking over britain realy everyone knows that their looneys including most muslims , when the muslim issue is over what will the edl do? they wont stay a one trick pony . they will evolve into somthing else , we can encourage and work with them to defend all of the working class , a real force for positive , not just stooges being used by the powers that be to devide the working class along lines of race

    August 25, 2011 at 4:19 pm

    • Arthur

      Pancho, we don’t care about race, we care about our culture and our nation.

      There would have to be lot of discussion for there to co-operation, there’s a great deal of suspicion in the EDL ranks.

      Also, because it is us you could expect the UAF and co to counter it, would a group like your’s to be brave enough, because you’d be seen as traitors and vilified.
      Even daring to suggest it makes you brave in my eyes.

      What you have said tho, has given me food for thought.

      August 25, 2011 at 5:02 pm

  16. pancho villa

    i have to go out in a bit arthur, glad you came back , the thing is through what you guys have been doing you have become “politisised” you all now have a sense of your combined collective power , and i know from exsperiance , its a great feeling , you have created a sense of family and belonging for your members , many of whom i suspect prior to joining the edl felt completely worthless and irrelevant , this is not somthing given up easily , if at all . and why should it , their are always fresh causes to fight for and against , i think the edl will stay on the map , the question is will it choose a path of darkness or light , to be frank i am positive , i think that most members of the edl are good people , that was my gut feeling , and we share a common enemy , militant religeons (all militant religeons ) and the rulling classes , it will be interesting to see how events unfold

    August 25, 2011 at 5:00 pm

    • Arthur

      Thanks, I agree.

      August 25, 2011 at 5:05 pm

  17. Marcus Clarke

    Question Arthur please-Why the hell go to Tower Hamlets when moderate Muslims ask you not to, moderate Christians ask you not to, in fact the whole community ask you not to? What exactly do you see as the point in doing so, or is it just a big willy wave i.e. ‘because we can’ sorta thing?

    Serious question like.

    August 25, 2011 at 6:18 pm

    • Arthur

      Because EDL believe that there should not be any street they can’t march on and it is felt that the area has been taken over by the IFE and that Rahman is furthering the cause of the IFE.

      There used to be 15 gay pubs, now there is 1, A gay man was paralysed in an attack by Islamists, a teacher was nearly beaten to death and women have received death threats because they don’t dress right.
      Hate preachers are allowed to preach hatred toward Jewish people and gay people and no one is stopping this. Despite these things being exposed in the media.

      Mr Rahman is only Major because of a fraudulent petition and vote rigging.

      The march has been banned, in fact marches have been banned in 5 London boroughs and only static protests will be allowed.

      So far no one knows what will happen next. Flash demos are being proposed and a suggestion of a march on Downing street.

      No it’s not a willy wave, it’s to draw attention to the problems there and also we were asked by some residents there to help them expose what’s going on.

      August 25, 2011 at 7:35 pm

  18. Arthur

    Where ever EDL march groups like the SWP and the UAF will be there before us, putting out inflammatory leaflets, starting rumours, we are going to attack a mosque, we are going to rape their women. That the racist Nazi EDL are coming and it’s this that causes the tension. Those groups want a violent confrontation and they work hard to get it.
    We just want a peaceful protest, there will be hundreds of police, plus our own stewards to keep order, so there’s no way that EDL are going to burn down a mosque, people have a right to their place of worship and EDL as an organisation have never touched or attacked any mosque or raped any women.

    August 25, 2011 at 7:58 pm

  19. villa

    well at least we agree on one thing , the swp are shite! they should be gratefull i havent joined the edl .night all

    August 25, 2011 at 9:58 pm

  20. swampy

    I think most of us agree that the SWP Norwich were extremely naive when openly publicising their ill-fated debate. (The older members should have known better) However credit where it is due should be given. The edl turned up to take part. They the SWP had engaged the edl, and by that act alone they should be credited with., then they the SWP shit themselves. The question the SWP want to ask themselves is; Why wouldn’t the edl turn up, after all the debate concerned the edl, and under a democracy, should not the edl be allowed to defend themselves.

    it was interesting to observe (On that ill-fated night) that NCAG and the edl had more (so called) ethnic minorities than the SWP. (No wonder they tried to recruit me 20 or so years ago).

    The other interesting issue was that amongst the edl members present, there were several not from Norfolk, showing that the edl were by far the more organised than the SWP.

    The SWP NCAG edl UAF are all opposed to FUNDAMENTALISM.

    If this is not the grounding for debate on contentious subjects such as; Mult-iculturism: Immigration from a Socio-Economic perspective, opposed to one of Xenophobia.

    Then I don’t Know What Is!


    August 25, 2011 at 11:47 pm

  21. swampy

    NCAG: WRP: UAF: SWP: etc.etc, we are the Working Classes/Poor of Britain. We have one goal in common. Equality; Therefore recognition regardless of: Class, Religion, Ethnicity, Sexuality, Gender, Ability or Skin Colour.

    August 26, 2011 at 12:34 am

  22. villa

    i agree swampy , its pretty basic common sense stuff , we are all united in our oposition to religeouse fundermentalists , but the swp have invented this thing called islamaphobia which allows them to label enemies of radical islam as racist , it realy is the polotics of the school yard , they think that through their front the uaf they can “build the party in islamic communities by basicaly playing the race card but arse about face , im not saying that their isnt racism against muslims in those communities , but the way to resolve that racism is through intergration not multiculturalism which just creates ghettoes of rival ethnic communities , i think the bhurka shoud be banned in britain , they did it in france , why not here , also islamic fundermentalists do have an agenda of world domination , its never going to happen of course impshallah .
    the swp uaf and the unions have taken this line of good race bad race , just like in israel , bad jews and good arabs , they have taken the same line in britain , bad english good muslims , it is in reality racism , but racism bassed on class , the people they hate the most are the people who made them , paid for them and put them were they are , the white english working class , a realy good exsample of this is a debate i had with a typical swapy who said their was no such thing as a white race , and then started going on about black african lesbians , they are weird as pants

    August 26, 2011 at 6:28 am

  23. Marcus Clarke

    Well i for one am opposed to state bans of all types, whether it be edl marches or burkas. Posted an interesting article against banning on here, the latest article, by Phil Dickens from Solidarity Federation, as usual he’s bang on the mark.
    Arthur, the people of Tower Hamlets are well aware of whats been going on and there are alliances and campaigns on the go, predominantly being run by an assortment of community groups from muslim to hindu and jewish sections of the community , aswell as anarchists and a few from the non spaccy left. There is a link above. In lieu of that i would suggest that edl ‘intervention’ is nothing more than provocative with a lack of understanding of whats going on down there.

    The same people in opposition to the IFE and have a critical view of the left and government sponsored divisive multiculturalism, will be out on the street opposing you. A pointless exercise by the EDL which will do nothing other than isolate the ‘moderates’ in the edl further, and further entrench peoples view that the edl are simply a load of ‘racist thugs’. Surely there are better ways of going about this.

    August 26, 2011 at 7:34 am

    • Arthur

      Marcus, thanks for your reply, I will come back to you tomorrow as I have had a very busy day.

      Cheers Arthur.

      August 26, 2011 at 8:53 pm

    • Arthur

      Marcus, some of us are working to get a change in direction but EDL is a big ship to turn around, so to speak.

      Now the march is banned and EDL will be kettled in a car park and what’s the point of any demo if no one sees it and the protesters can’t communicate their message to the public.

      Really EDL should be marching on the home office and the minister that created the ban.
      Also has any one noticed that the ban covers the arms fair, which is inside the 30 days and 5 areas, can’t remember the date. Bit of a coincidence?

      August 28, 2011 at 1:18 pm

  24. swampy

    Time and time again i see reference to “White working class”. Is this not allowing yourselves to use the same language as the SWP/Unions. The language of identity politics. to those who can’t read between the lines you are targeting just one group of the working class. The working class in Britain is made up of people of all colours, by using the term “White” you are in danger of excluding that % of the British Working Class that is of different colour, thus creating divides. We need to start making bridges and engaging all of the British Working Class regardless of their Colour, Religion, Sexuality, Ethnicity, Gender, or Ability.

    August 26, 2011 at 8:11 am

  25. Marcus Clarke

    Yes indeed Swampy, you’re absolutely correct. Thanks for pulling us up on it.

    August 26, 2011 at 8:52 am

  26. Marcus Clarke

    It is important to recognize however that many members of the edl, especially the ‘ex’-bnp types identify themselves as ‘white working class’ and discriminated against because of it.

    It’s funny really, while the likes of the far-right who identify themselves so, while complaining about multiculturalism(and rightly so) are themselves supporting ‘multiculturalism’ by definition..in’it!

    August 26, 2011 at 9:05 am

  27. Dibble

    i am canfused why r u against multyculture?!arn’t u leftie?

    August 26, 2011 at 9:25 am

  28. swampy


    In a nutshell, all Multiculturalism achieves is to create cultural ghettos, which themselves are divisive. It is a system that allows governments to demonise certain cultural groups when it so chooses to.

    “Divide and Rule”

    As long as we see ourselves as different we will not come together as a single unit, we will be like single cellular entities. Which will suit the government as they can then stamp all over us and we will be to busy arguing amongst ourselves or jostling to get to the top of the pile to gain favour. To create a fairer society we need to work together, we can not work together whilst they keep telling and putting us in differing boxes.

    August 26, 2011 at 10:22 am

  29. Marcus Clarke

    At the top of the page are some links. ‘Class, Race, Identity’ sums our views up on multiculturalism.
    We’re predominantly anarchist but there’s a few of all sorts. Anarchists in Britain have become more and more intwinned with ‘the left’ where the likes of the Swp and their fronts have been dictating direction for too long and an at times weak anarchist movement has simply been following along. The times however ‘are a-changing’…

    August 26, 2011 at 10:41 am

  30. swampy

    I believe that the time has come to break any links we have with the SWP and their associated fronts.

    I attended a meeting with one other a number of months ago, a meeting that was made up of the SWP and the unions, this meeting was set up to discuss what pending actions needed to be taken to oppose these cuts. I attended because i thought that, we would be discussing how to engage the working class and the disenfranchised. How wrong was I? Very wrong! All this meeting was about was public sector jobs, their jobs. They were not interested in anything else, my colleague and I attempted several times to engage the meeting to discuss how we were going to approach those in inner city areas, those members of our society that were already struggling and whose lives were about to be made worse by the Governments austerity measures.

    Frankly they did not want to know, and in my view were quite contemptible in their attitude to this subject. They are in it for their own kudos and nothing else, They have very little idea of what goes on within the British Working Class System, the problems and issues this sector of society has to contend with. Numerous of them are middle class and have the attitude of;

    “we will help Little Freddie because he is poor, uneducated and discriminated against” Then we can feel better about ourselves.

    We only have to look at how stupid the SWP are to see who they chose to stand against Charles Clarke in 2002.

    It is time to move away from the left, go no where near the right, find the middle ground, and engage.

    August 26, 2011 at 12:05 pm

  31. villa

    i am going to adress the issue of race and religeon , their are differant races and religeons , they believe in differant things and look differant , they will fight each other for resources , housing , jobs , etc ,banding together under small scale shared identitys , muslims , blacks , whites , their is a competition ,it is often very real and very bitter , their just isnt enough to go round, it is on a global scale as the bosses who have plenty of everything have decided to make it global , what we are united by is” social class ,” we all work in the same factories , sighn on in the same dole offices ,live on the same councile estates get treated like shit by the same people , cops , screws beaurocrats ,the media , this is buffer zone between us and our real enemy , their role is to devide us along lines of race , religeon , gender , sexual preferance , they misdirect our anger at this shit systeme back onto our own kind , we should all band together and reclaim our world , we built it , we paid for it we worked for it , if we are confident their is nothing we cannot achieve , our real enemys are in parliment and the house of lords , the square mile , the generals, the cbi , and they fear us working together

    August 26, 2011 at 5:12 pm

  32. villa

    i would like to explain why i called islamic extremists nazis , a very emotive word i know , ok
    1, both groups are highly antisemetic
    2 both groups work for god
    3 both groups seek a feudal utopia
    4 both groups seek world domination
    5 both groups have wealthy backers
    6 both groups worship their leaders
    7 both groups are anti democracey and advocate violence
    8 both groups are anti union, homophobic, sexist (but interestingly not racist)

    August 27, 2011 at 7:39 am

    • Arthur

      That’s a very good summing up villa, concisely put.

      August 28, 2011 at 1:07 pm

  33. villa

    thanks arthur , so what is your take on the social situation in britain today , generaly , not just on militant islam?

    August 28, 2011 at 3:34 pm

    • Arthur

      Villa, I’d turn that question on it’s head, what’s right in society today?

      Inequality, Loss of community, Intrusion of the state into every aspect of our lives, deep corruption in politics, lack of accountability by the state and big business.
      You could write a book on every single one of the things I’ve listed and there’s probably still more to come.

      I would say that the barrier to solutions is the politicians, all of them, if only we could have a parliament of real people. But we all know that’s impossible. Sadly.

      August 29, 2011 at 9:45 pm

      • villa

        i dont think the problem is just the politicians , they are only puppets for the money men behind them pulling the strings , the cops will protect the politicians who will inturn protect the money men , our first obstacle will be the media and the cops , the media will always portray us as thugs and hooliigans .
        heres a thought for you , perhaps the british ruling class have decided to commit genocide against the british working class , they intend to make our lives so shit that we stop breeding and die out , then when they need working class people they simply import and export them as and when they need them

        August 30, 2011 at 5:30 pm

  34. Marcus Clarke


    ‘Also has any one noticed that the ban covers the arms fair, which is inside the 30 days and 5 areas, can’t remember the date. Bit of a coincidence?’

    This applies to several demos in around 5 boroughs now…If the EDL were a state sponsored organisation this would be a way to shut up your opposition wouldn’t it!

    August 28, 2011 at 4:57 pm

    • Arthur

      Marcus, if there is one sure thing, EDL is not state sponsored, we all pay our own way, there’s no money in the EDL, no mysterious millionaire backers.

      Now the UAF do get funding and they got special funding to run their stop the EDL going into TH and it is their petition that got the march banned.

      They are whinging because it got them banned too, so they now are petitioning for them to have an exemption from the ban, lol.

      August 29, 2011 at 10:01 pm

  35. villa

    marcus , do you think that is a bit of a conspiracy theory , and not just coincidance

    August 28, 2011 at 6:04 pm

  36. @Arthur…er, no millionaire backers…so Alan Lake is a figment of our imagination is he?

    August 30, 2011 at 4:27 pm

    • Arthur

      Here is what Alan Lake says,

      Since the beginning of my involvement as a political activist, there have been numerous false statements attributed to me, and a variety of false claims and exaggerations made about me.

      I tried to get these changed at the beginning, and tried to get the Wikipedia copies corrected, without success. I also sent a legal warning to Searchlight about 14 totally false statements they made about me.

      Due to the current media attention, it may now be possible to correct some of this false information, as follows.

      I am not the financier of the EDL. I have merely given equipment worth a few hundred pounds.
      I am not the “puppet master” of the EDL
      I am not, and never have been, part of EDL management. I directed the speeches and music on stage at several demonstrations, and gave a few speeches myself.
      I never referred to EDL supporters as the “hoi polloi”. What I described was the attitude of British political leaders to those they rule. Those leaders treat the British people as the “hoi polloi” inasmuch as they ignore their opinion, when it does not fit their agenda.
      I am not currently involved with the EDL, and have not been for 6 months

      In my opinion, the EDL has achieved several of its goals. It has enabled the discussion of many subjects previously thought taboo, by reducing the fear of demonstrating alone, and by forcing those topics back onto the political agenda.

      There are also many accusations that I am an upper class manipulator from the South – but I am from the North, and my step father was a plumber. Such allegations show the speaker to be prejudiced against people from different backgrounds. This type of behaviour has been inimical to the organisation’s unity. I hope that with the statement I am now giving, the organisation can reduce this distraction from its goals.

      I have made one internet posting which was open to misinterpretation, then quickly corrected it. Certain mischievous sections of the press have deliberately kept that original posting on display, for which they bear responsibility.

      The abuse to which I have been subjected by some of the media, and others, is symptomatic of the loss of safe democratic freedom in this country, and the vilification of alternate voices. It is precisely this type of behaviour which damages the community discourse. However, I appreciate the efforts that some are now taking, to set the record straight.
      Tags: Alan, EDL, Lake, Statement, from, his, in, regarding, role, the

      August 30, 2011 at 6:26 pm

      • Arthur

        I think that many couldn’t believe how fast EDL appeared and so there had to be a backer, but they didn’t consider how fast and instant the internet is and how quickly things could be arranged on it, part of the reason the Arab spring appeared so quickly was the internet.
        So really there’s little cost involved, only the ability to get to the demo point, the equipment Lake talked of was in fact a sound system for the speeches.

        August 30, 2011 at 6:41 pm

  37. villa

    why dont we all get together on november the 5th and kick of bigtime

    August 30, 2011 at 6:06 pm

  38. Tuborg

    To what end Villa…the emancipation of the working-classes or the eradication of ‘muzzies’…

    August 30, 2011 at 8:27 pm

  39. villa

    im of to bed mr tuborg , i like the idea of emancipating the working classes , wots a muzzie?

    August 30, 2011 at 9:18 pm

  40. pancho villa

    chater on the net is now saying that the november the 5th thing is a pig event to round up and cosh oposition , any thoughts on this welcome

    September 1, 2011 at 6:25 am

  41. Norfolk Non Aligned

    Wouldn’t touch it with a barge pole. Anything on facebook claiming to be by Annony-mouse that then asks people to put their names to for the world to see has obviously got nowt to do with Annony-mouse!

    September 1, 2011 at 7:06 am

  42. Arthur

    Sorry, what Nov the 5th thing?

    September 1, 2011 at 12:07 pm

  43. pancho villa

    just to get as many people as possible in parliment square to protest against this shit government , it looks as though its being organised by the police to trap and target activists , so dont go , the cops are all over face book now , they are targeting the edl too cos of that mentalist dutch bloke , everyone needs to be realy carefull what they say and who they say it too , im of out , later guys , like we were saying the internet hhas changed the world , everyone with half a brain is talking , sharing ideas and comparing notes , well the authorities fkin hate that dont they , works against their devide and conquer , work till you drop tactics , i was wondering the other day , maybe the british rulling class now feel strong enough to commit genocide on the british working class ,(they have always hated us more than anything else) make their lives so shit they stop breeding , then when they need factory or cannon fodder , import and export them from abroad , bit like slavery but with health and saftey lol

    September 1, 2011 at 4:40 pm

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