20 March 2008

Exeter meeting rallies support to baulk BNP

A public meeting has been held in opposition to the British National Party, prompted by news that it plans to field candidates in local elections in Exeter.The event was organised by the Devon branch of the National Union of Teachers in a bid to combat growing political activity in the city by the far right party.

The BNP contested 11 seats on councils in Devon last year and campaigners are concerned that candidates may stand in the city's council elections in May.

The meeting was held at the Global Centre, St David's Hill, last night.

On the reasons for arranging the event, Mike Gurney, deputy secretary of Devon NUT, said: "The NUT is always interested in fighting for an education system available to all equally and has always held a strong commitment to anti-fascism. That means opposing the BNP. Hopefully, we will get a group of people who will campaign against the BNP if they stand. We want people to swamp the BNP vote."

Jessica Pearce, from the PCS union, said: "Trade unions have been key in fighting fascism for decades and my union is launching a campaign to make sure people vote in elections to stop the far right and make sure the myths of fascism don't go unchallenged. They pretend the reason people can't get jobs is because people from other countries come and take them, and that blatantly isn't true."

South West MEP Glyn Ford was unable to attend but sent a message of support. Other speakers included a representative from Unite Against Fascism and John Cox, welfare and equal opportunities officer from the University of Exeter's students' guild.

Express and Echo

1 comment:

Long Live Life! said...

Let’s be clear about this: the BNP pose a serious threat to Devon and wider south-west England. Back in June 2002 BNP leader, Nick Griffin addressed a fascist meeting in Newton Abbot at which the BNP proclaimed its intention to effectively ethnically cleanse south-west England. The BNP stated that it was drawing a line from Bristol to Bournemouth which would make south-west England euphemistically a multicultural-free zone (1). In other words, kick out all the non-whites. This was echoed by the BNP's Somerset organiser, Clive Wakeley, who urged the repatriation of non-whites, called for Yeovil to be kept ethnically pure and homogenous, and embarked upon an anti-mosque/Muslim campaign (2).

Then let’s not forget Liam Birch, the BNP’s candidate in Plymouth, exposed as a rabid anti-Jew hater and Holocaust denier. The neo-nazi and racist content of his blog was so extreme that Plymouth University fired him from his position as assistant warden at a Plymouth University hall of residence. And, the BNP gave their full support to Liam Birch. Not surprising. The following are extracts from an article exposing BNP nutzi Liam Birch:

“We found a series of statements Birch had posted on a student forum denying that the Nazis exterminated millions of Jews in gas chambers, using arguments from the discredited nazi Leuchter Report and asserting that the chimney to a gas chamber “was/is a Soviet dummy”. He also denied that Nazi guards enjoyed watching people suffer and blamed the Second World War on “worldwide Judea”: “The Jews declared war on the Nazi’s [sic], not the other way round.

Some of his postings were accompanied by the emblem of White Pride Worldwide, a symbol widely adopted by nazis, racists and antisemites. A comment by someone described as Liam’s friend expressed admiration for him because, “he wants to throw the Jew down the well”.

“Stuart Russell, the BNP’s national press officer, said Birch’s blogs did not “show Nazi sympathies … Liam tells me that on matters of ‘Holocaust denial’, like the rest of us, he must accept it as a fundamental truth or face arrest and prosecution by the EU police Europol,” a statement that appears to be limited to saying that Holocaust deniers should best not express their views in public.

Russell went on to say, “Liam is not antisemitic and his girlfriend is half Jewish”. It is not known what she thinks of this photograph of Birch in a T-shirt reading “Dead women don’t say no”, with a Confederate stars and bars flag, popular among white supremacists, on the wall. Fellow students say that Birch cheated on her.” (3)

There’s more. Peter Watson (former UKIP organiser for north Devon) is a BNP member/ sympathiser. He hangs out on e-email groups heavily dominated by BNP members. For example:

From: Peter Watson Peter_at_pwwatson.demon.co.uk>
Date: Fri, 21 Apr 2006 16:29:56 +0100

"Jay" jason_at_pcandy.demon.co.uk wrote in message news:1145631440.852968.154540_at_i39g2000cwa.googlegroups.com...
> I've been selected for Jury service, and don't really want to do it.
> Firstly, I'm rather busy at work that month (self employed).
> Secondly, I've booked a golfing holiday in Spain four weeks after I'm
> due to serve, and certainly don't wish to miss that.
> Does anyone know anything that I can do or say to get out of it?
> Should I wear my BNP T-shirt?

just answer the questions honestly


Whilst with the UKIP Peter Watson was alleged to have distributed anti-Jewish messages via e-mail, including one remark that read “Jewish merchant bankers
[are] responsible for the ills of England
” (4). Indeed, we have a little racist within Peter Watson as is evident from one of his internet postings:

"he/she could start by asking why ethnic minorities are represented utterly disproportionately in school books and on BBC children's educational programmes - ethnic minority representation is over 50 per
cent and these books are designed to be used nationally not just in
Camden, Brent, Islington and Tower Hamlets
Peter Watson

Diane Carr, another ex-UKIP member, stood as the BNP candidate in Bristol’s Stockwood Ward. Carr made the wild and preposterous claim that the European Union (EU) is trying to turn Britain into an Islamic state! Here’s what Carr said:

the EU is turning England into individual regions and bringing in asylum seekers and alien people and putting them in certain areas right across the middle of Britain and trying to turn it into an Islamic state (6)

Ahh well, I guess it makes sense in Carr’s little BNP world. Leading on from this, Graham Green and Peter Mullins (BNP candidate for North Cornwall District Council), both leading lights in Plymouth BNP, demonstrated against certain theatre productions. Apparently their politically opportunistic Victorian tastes were offended by the secular art on offer. Mullins, as some of you will know, made the childish and racist claim that the accession of eastern European states to the EU on 1st May 2004 would result in Britain being swamped by “75 million immigrants and Gypsies”. Talk about exaggeration and plain scaremongering. Four years and where are the 75 million Gypsies and eastern European immigrants that are supposed to be devouring Britain as we speak? You’ve guessed it – in eastern Europe! Interestingly, Mullins (who posts all over the internet imploring us mere mortals to vote for the BNP) attempted to pass off BNP-branded wine as British wine despite being made (as he admitted) from imported, foreign grapes (nice to know that the BNP buys British).

Thankfully, the BNP’s only councillor in Devon, Peter Pirnie (who makes the odd internet posting urging people to vote for the BNP) resigned after misleading Kingswear Parish Council about his political status. Peter Pirnie told the parish council meeting that co-opted him that he an independent candidate. But, after his co-option, Pirnie then described himself as a BNP councillor in a BBC interview! Here’s an article extract:

The row over his co-option broke as the BNP's official website celebrated Mr Pirnie as the party's first councillor in Devon and the second in the Westcountry.

Kingswear's parish council chairman revealed yesterday that he had given Mr Pirnie an ultimatum - to either quit as a councillor or quit the BNP.

"I understand that he is standing down as a councillor. I am going to his home tonight to collect his resignation and I will be very relieved to do so," he said.

Earlier Mr Hawkins had said that both before the parish council meeting on Tuesday and during it he had asked Mr Pirnie if he was standing as a BNP candidate or as an independent.

"He said he was standing as a resident of Kingswear an independent. On that he was co-opted with the other two candidates."

He went on: "If he had stood as a BNP candidate that parish would never have even considered him. He has lived in Kingswear for a long time. We would not have co-opted a BNP councillor."

Not so long ago Devon police issued verbal warnings to two south Devon BNP candidates, Peter Lucas and BNP regional organiser Tony North following their harassment of anti-racist activists in Torquay. This followed an earlier incident when a nazi thug screamed "Sieg Heil" at anti-fascists after a leaflet was delivered to the house of the Newton Abbott BNP candidate, Darren James. James was forced out of his house to drag his "friend" inside.

Tony North is an interesting character. He gave a stupid racist speech at the BNP’s Red, White and Blue bash in 2001 in which he complained about the presence of Black people in Brixton, London. Further, North invoked the ire of Steve Smith, leading light in Burnley BNP, over his letter to local papers disowning the BNP founder John Tyndall in favour of the man who deposed him, Nick Griffin. North also attempted via the local press to canvass votes by blaming high council taxes on ”ethnic minority children”. Now, given that North is quite prepared (without any statistical evidence to back up his claims) to scapegoat children and make them objects of blame (their crime: to be born human), one naturally expresses alarm at North’s presence as a parent governor at Furzeham County Primary in Brixham.

The BNP in this part of the world contains further nasty surprises. Currently, we have Tony Shell of Plymouth BNP, spreading misinformation about racially-based violence in the UK.

In north Devon, BNP candidate Peter Chantler , despite the almost near absence of Black people in his election ward, thought it best to tell us about the perils of ”black crime” and the need to “stop trying to mix people artificially”. Sigh. But, in keeping true to BNP form, Peter Chantler was embroiled in controversy: several of the people who signed his nomination form claimed not to have been aware of what they were signing. They included Mullins’s own sister-in-law, a lifelong Liberal Democrat (8). Further, in an interview with the Big Issue South West, Chantler said that he ”does not believe homosexuality is morally right”. Well, given Chantler’s own immoral racist views and his membership of a thoroughly immoral party Chantler is hardly the most suitable person to tell anyone about what is moral/immoral.

To add to this wonderful BNP mix we have another serial BNP internet poster, John Jarvis (BNP candidate for Bristol’s Brislington East Ward). John Jarvis is quite keen to tell us the following:

“I am against the large mosque project” (9) (one’s response is to say, ‘Well then, someone give you a prize. Perhaps one of those nice Blood and Honour badges to pin to your lapel').

” When they [white people] complain about loud music, they are called racist by the local council” (10) (here, John Jarvis is just making up stuff. I wonder what misanthropic kaleidoscope he views the world through).

So, folks you’ve had a brief introduction to the wacky world of the BNP in south-west England. ¡No PasarĂ¡n!


2. http://bristol.indymedia.org/article/3716

3. http://www.searchlightmagazine.com/index.php?link=template&story=168

4. Cranks and Gadflies: The Story of Ukip, Mark Daniel, p. 175. http://books.google.co.uk/books?id=My7bPb1XnVIC&pg=PA175&lpg=PA175&dq=diane+carr+bnp&source=web&ots=GGWvbJFAhM&sig=EcQvPrpfNTLhCzhmqqd5JUSiSg4&hl=en. Also, http://www.democracyforum.co.uk/ukip-general-issues/31459-view-ex-ukip-member.html

5. http://www.legalspring.com/Articles/uk-legal/20030909/771773_CRE-involved-in--sys.html

6. Cranks and Gadflies: The Story of Ukip, Mark Daniel, p. 175-176. http://books.google.co.uk/books?id=My7bPb1XnVIC&pg=PA175&lpg=PA175&dq=diane+carr+bnp&source=web&ots=GGWvbJFAhM&sig=EcQvPrpfNTLhCzhmqqd5JUSiSg4&hl=en.
http://lancasteruaf.blogspot.com/2007/06/i-quit-says-bnp-council-row-man.html. Also, http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/devon/6765343.stm

7. http://lancasteruaf.blogspot.com/2007/06/i-quit-says-bnp-council-row-man.html. Also, http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/devon/6765343.stm

8. http://www.searchlightmagazine.com/index.php?link=template&story=25

9. http://www.mayorwatch.co.uk/article.php?slug=Standard-Remove-Controversial-Mosque-Poll&article_id=636

10. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/talking_point/debates/european/1926634.stm