30 June 2009

Doubts over BNP man's title claims

There was confusion last night over whether Norwich North's British National Party (BNP) candidate has the credentials to call himself “reverend”.

The Rev Robert West is at the centre of a row over his ministerial moniker, which he claimed was genuine - even though he admitted he had no current connection to any Christian denomination.

When questioned, Mr West, who lives in Holbeach in Lincolnshire, said: “It's been dealt with once and I don't have to justify myself.”

He said he had explained himself and shown his ordination certificate on a TV show in recent months, and said he had been advised “not to go through it all again”.

He said he had been “ordained as an elder” of the Apostolic Church of Wales some years ago. He claimed the word “elder” in the New Testament came from a Greek word meaning “priest”.

Mr West, who will be bidding to win the vacant Norwich North seat once the by-election date has been announced, said: “Ordination means recognition. It's simply recognition of what you are. It recognises your gifts.”

Meanwhile, UKIP leader Nigel Farrage was in Norwich yesterday outlining how his party planned to reach out to traditional Labour voters and Tories disenchanted with David Cameron's Conservative Party.

Norwich Evening News

29 June 2009

The Way Forward

With the BNP winning two seats in the European Parliament Nick Lowles looks at where the anti-BNP campaign goes from here

There are three clear facts that need to be remembered at the outset of this article. The first is that the British National Party has won two seats in the European Parliament. This provides it with the platform, financial clout and semi-respectability from which it hopes to build future success at a local and even parliamentary level over the coming year. Secondly, their election is a game changer. Debates around no platform, access to the media and political representation will change whether we like it or not and we will need to adapt accordingly. Finally, and in terms of this article probably most importantly, anti-fascism can be successful particularly if it becomes more organised. While I will argue that only by addressing the public policy issues that give rise to the BNP and challenging the racism at the core of its support can the far right be properly defeated, anti-fascism, particularly at a local level, can halt and even reverse its growth.

It is also important to dispel two widely (though separately) held assumptions. Firstly, this is not the protest vote against mainstream parties and useless locally elected representatives that many politicians would like us to believe. It is an increasingly hard and loyal vote which is based on political and economic insecurities and moulded by deep-rooted racial prejudice. This in turn is linked with a second myth, that the way to beat the BNP is simply to tack left and offer more socialistic policies. While this might peel off some BNP supporters who feel economically marginalised, it will not in itself address the strongly held racist views of many BNP voters.

As the YouGov poll (see below) clearly shows, the racism of many BNP voters goes well beyond simple opposition to current immigration and eastern European migrant workers which one might expect if their support for the BNP was prompted simply by economic insecurity. Belief in the intellectual superiority of white people over non-whites, the view of nearly half of BNP voters that black and Asian people can never be British, the almost universal dislike of even moderate Islam and the contempt and suspicion many of their voters have towards a liberal and multicultural society show how hardline much of the BNP support is and how it will take more than a more progressive economic policy to win them back fully.

More importantly, and regularly overlooked by politicians, activists and commentators alike, are issues around identity. As I have discussed before, the BNP is emerging as the voice of a forgotten working class, which increasingly feels left behind and ignored by mainstream society. As the YouGov research confirms, the majority of BNP voters feel that the Labour Party, for many their traditional political home, has moved away from them and is now dominated by a middle-class London elite who care more for Middle England and the interests of minority groups than for them.

Class politics exists but not as we once knew it. The Labour Party, in line with many other centre-left parties across western European and Scandinavia, draws the bulk of its support from the middle class, public sector workers and minority communities, especially in the big cities. The BNP, on the other hand, is the voice of a section of the white working class, particularly in those areas of traditional industry that have experienced the greatest economic and social upheaval over the past twenty years.

Most of the local authorities with the biggest BNP vote are in areas once dominated by the car, steel, coal or ceramic industries. All have gone, and those people able to leave have left. While some new jobs have replaced those lost, the work is generally lower skilled, short-term and further away from their home. In addition to economic difficulties the identity of the areas has collapsed, leaving behind a confused, resentful and alienated minority. This is the cultural war that the BNP has cleverly exploited, particularly by tapping in to people’s paranoia that outside forces are deliberately conspiring against them and giving preferential treatment to others (viewed by most BNP voters as undeserving).

However, all is not lost. While the BNP vote edged up it did not make the sweeping gains it and others predicted. The vast majority of voters still reject the BNP and many of those equally disillusioned with the political process did not vote BNP but stayed at home.

Addressing the widespread economic insecurities, solving the democratic deficit and forging new progressive identities requires public policy changes that are beyond the remit of the HOPE not hate campaign and anti-fascism generally. We can mobilise the anti-BNP vote and even sometimes suppress the pro-BNP vote but we cannot build houses and reduce waiting lists; we cannot prevent undercutting of wages and the abuse of migrant workers. Local anti-fascist movements cannot get resources into communities, often the poorest, dealing with extraordinary levels of migration.

That is the job of politicians and political parties. It is their failure currently to do so that is resulting in the increasing tribalism of local politics along racial and religious lines.

Making a difference

What we can do, however, is make a difference on the ground. And we do. Results in several local authority areas in the European elections showed the BNP vote (both actual and share of the vote) down compared to 2004. Among these areas were Burnley, Pendle and Oldham in the North West, Bradford and Kirklees in West Yorkshire, and Sandwell and Dudley in the West Midlands.

A common factor in all these areas has been the intensity of local anti-BNP campaigns, which has been all year round and not just a leaflet at an election.

And this sets the model for the year ahead. We will go into the 2010 local elections with an emboldened and financially secure BNP and we believe the number of council wards at risk is now over 150 across the country. The BNP’s main target will be Barking and Dagenham where it will be looking to take control of the council.

To fight the BNP effectively we must move away from city and town centre events to focusing on the very communities where the BNP is drawing its support. We need to return to localised leaflets and newsletters, tapping into the local identities of neighbourhoods and addressing local issues to undermine the BNP’s message of hate.

Smaller, local events are more important than one-off larger ones. The recent anti-racist carnival in Stoke-on-Trent might have been attended by 15,000 people but was it really the best use of £300,000? Even the carnival the year before, in Hackney, might have been attracted 60,000, but what impact does it have on the London hotspots such as Barking and Dagenham and Havering?

The effort required to put on and build such an event drains and diverts activism away from local campaigning, which will be the priority in 2010. Of course in the ideal world we would like both big national events and smaller local events, but where funds and activism are limited this is not possible.

A proper local strategy requires us to localise our campaigning. What works in one area will not work in another. Talking to principally Conservative voters requires a quite different leaflet to what would be put out in a traditionally Labour area. Localising our approach allows us to deal with local issues and also to target our message depending on what we are trying to achieve. And mobilising the anti-BNP vote is sometimes quite different from trying to suppress the BNP vote.

That is why the HOPE not hate campaign will be encouraging and supporting local groups to begin their own local anti-BNP newsletters. We hope that by starting this summer and focusing on the key wards for 2010 the newsletters will become a crucial tool to defeating the BNP at the ballot box.

To begin to undermine local BNP support we also have to build alliances within the community. Local anti-BNP groups need to be accepted and even respected. Every community has key movers and shakers and spending a bit of time cultivating relationships with these people will open new opportunities, allow our message to be widened considerably, potentially increase our activist base and give us a regular flow of information to rebut BNP myths and lies.

We also need to be cleverer in how we present our arguments. The YouGov survey shows the complete lack of respect BNP voters have towards authority – way beyond those of other parties. That means dogmatic or one dimensional arguments on anti-fascist leaflets are likely to fail.

We have to recognise that we might not always be the best messenger to get over an argument. One of the most successful leaflets we have ever produced was in Halifax where we got quotes from local doctors and pensioners to dismiss BNP claims that asylum seekers were forcing old people off GP lists and causing hospital operations to be cancelled. The strength of getting other people to speak up for us, particularly those respected by local people, is also evident from the survey. Local GPs, at 82%, came out as the most trusted professionals among BNP voters.

A new reality

We also have to accept that the political landscape has shifted. Searchlight comes from a proud tradition of No Platform, a belief that fascism should not be allowed to air its politics of hate publicly. We have always opposed legitimising fascism through public debate and where fascists try to incite hatred within communities through provocative marches and actions, we have backed mobilisations against them.

While I still adhere to this in principle I also believe that we have to accept a new reality. Firstly the BNP has MEPs and whether we like it or not Nick Griffin and Andrew Brons will appear more regularly on television. No platform agreements between political parties were already breaking down before the election, with only Labour holding to them, and this process is likely to quicken now.

Likewise, we also have to change our tactics on the streets. The hammer attack on a BNP activist in Leigh, Greater Manchester, in March was an unmitigated disaster. When we learnt about the BNP’s intention to hold a fundraising event in a local nightclub we got almost 5,000 people, including 400 from the local area, to sign an open letter from a local vicar calling for the event to be cancelled. Our pressure proved successful but what should have been a great media story, showing the strength of people power against the BNP, became three days of appallingly negative local headlines after an anti-fascist struck a BNP member in the head with a hammer.

Our response to any BNP activity is a tactical issue. Just as we always consider what is possible, so we have to think about the possible outcomes. With large chunks of local people supporting the BNP something that gives the party media sympathy is often counter-productive. In a 24-hour-communica-tions world every small event that in the past would have gone unreported can be headline news on television, the radio and on the internet within minutes.

With the BNP leaders far more politically savvy than in the past it is not difficult for them to spin a story to their advantage.

There is also a need for an honest debate about the use of rallies, marches and pickets. While one could argue that it is important continually to oppose the BNP gaining any legitimacy, such protests are increasingly ineffective and, probably more importantly, a distraction from the real work required in the communities.

The reality is that most people other than a few highly motivated activists will not come out on a regular basis. Continually chasing the BNP uses up their time when there is more serious but perhaps less glamorous work to be done in local communities. Again, people might say that we should do both. That may be the ideal but it is not the reality and choices have to be made. We have to prioritise our agenda rather than continually react to the BNP’s. Obviously there will be times when mobilisations are important but this cannot be a distraction from the real work at hand.

Moving forward

Over the next few months our priority is to build anti-fascist groups in every community in the country. Over 115,000 people have engaged in some activity for the HOPE not hate campaign. That’s an incredible one in 470 adults in Britain. Over 80,000 people have signed our “Not in my name” petition since the election, of which over 60,000 were completely new to us.

This shows the level of anger at the BNP success, but now we need to harness it in a positive and constructive way that helps us build the necessary networks that can defeat the BNP in the community.

Our initial job is to turn our online supporters into activists on the ground. Hopefully some will emerge as local organisers, committed to the localised strategy ahead. Old hands must be encouraged to support new organisers and we will be providing an organising and leadership programme in every region of the country.

A series of one-day training events will be held to give key activists from local groups the basics in running a local campaign group, working in a target ward and building alliances within the community.

From there a handful of the most enthusiastic local organisers will be invited to a three-day residential programme, to be held in the late autumn, where they will develop leadership and organisational skills.

Developing a pool of local organisers is the way to ensure good quality campaigns. Whatever the enthusiasm of local activists a lack of organising skills and the ability to localise campaigns effectively will result in continued reliance on national help, which in turn reduces the effectiveness of a local campaign.

To support local groups, particularly in the run-up to next year’s local and probable general election, the HOPE not hate campaign will be seeking to put trained organisers on the ground in each region of the country.

The work of local groups will be further supported by an even bigger online effort than we achieved this year. Through online telephone canvassing, supporters across the country will be able to help in our key battlegrounds from their front rooms. Matching groups and activists in one part of country where there is no BNP threat to an area where there is one can help us raise money for local material.

Remaining focused

The BNP success has led some to argue that we need to politicise anti-fascism, even to offer a political alternative to the BNP. While there are clearly public policy failings and a democratic deficit, it is not our job to fill this void. We must leave that to the political parties, old or new.

We are about defeating the BNP, both by turning out those voters totally opposed to their racist politics and by dispelling myths and challenging the assumptions and ignorance that give rise to BNP support.

We have a big job to do but it can be done. The work on anti-BNP campaigns in East Lancashire, Oldham, the Black Country and West Yorkshire is testament to that.

However, for us to defeat the BNP over the coming year requires hard work, building local broad-based coalitions, adapting to the new realities and being a little bit smarter than we have been before. Get these components right and we can hold the BNP at bay.

A hard and alienated vote

Who votes BNP and why

A new survey into the attitudes of BNP voters has produced some startling revelations. Unsurprisingly BNP voters are overwhelmingly opposed to immigration and asylum seekers but a sizeable number also share the BNP’s hardline attitudes about citizenship and racial superiority.

It shows that BNP voters are predominantly working class, drawn from former Labour-voting households and feel more insecure about their economic prospects.

Conducted by YouGov from 29 May to 4 June, the survey questioned 985 BNP voters as part of a much bigger study of the political views of 32,268 people.

The study tells us that men are twice as likely to support the BNP as women, 44% of BNP voters are aged 35 to 54 and 61% are drawn from the social groups C2DE. One third of BNP voters read The Sun or the Daily Star, whereas only 13% read the Daily Mirror and those reading The Guardian and The Independent are statistically insignificant. One fifth claim to be members of trade unions or trade associations and 36% identify themselves as skilled or semi-skilled manual workers.

On one level the report tells us little new. More BNP supporters regard immigration as one of the key issues facing the country at the moment – 87% compared to 49% among all voters. Again unsurprisingly, 94% of BNP supporters believed that all further immigration should be halted. This compares with 87% of UK Independence Party voters, 68% of Conservative voters, 46% of Labour voters, 43% of Lib Dem voters and even 37% of Green voters.

Only 4% of BNP voters believed that recent immigration had benefited the country.

What is more startling is the strength of the racial attitudes of many BNP voters. In a result that gives the lie to the BNP vote simply being a protest, 44% (compared to 12% of all voters) disagreed with the statement: “non-white British citizens who were born in this country are just as ‘British’ as white citizens born in this country”.

Among BNP voters 21% strongly disagreed with the statement compared to just 1% of Greens and Lib Dems and 2% of Labour and 3% of Conservative voters.

More disturbingly, 31% of BNP voters believed there was a difference in intelligence between the average black Briton and the average white Briton.

Although only 2% of BNP voters deny that six million Jews, Gypsies and others died in the Holocaust, a further 18% accept that the Holocaust occurred but believe it has been exaggerated.

It is clear that the BNP receives support primarily on issues of race, immigration and identity but there is also a clear link with economic insecurity. Several of the questions probed respondents’ views on their current and future economic prospects. BNP voters repeatedly had the most gloomy outlook.

When asked whether they were satisfied that they had enough money to live on comfortably, 74% of BNP voters said no, compared to just 43% of Labour and 50% of Conservative voters.

On whether they were confident that their family would have the opportunities to prosper in the years ahead, 75% of BNP voters said no compared to just 35% of Labour voters.

Over half of BNP voters felt the financial situation of their house- hold would worsen over the next 12 months. In contrast only 29% of Labour voters agreed and 27% thought it would get better.

Again, more BNP voters thought someone in their family would lose their job in the current recession than supporters of other parties.

One of the most startling results was the response to the statement that “there is a major international conspiracy led by Jews and Communists to undermine traditional Christian values in Britain and other western countries”. Amazingly one third of BNP voters completely or partially agreed.

However, the significance of this response actually lies in the feeling of victimisation felt by many BNP supporters and cleverly exploited by the BNP itself. The view that they are losing out because of the conscious action of others is widespread among BNP supporters and it comes out clearly in this survey. Over three quarters of BNP voters believed that white people suffered unfair discrimination whereas only 3% thought Muslims did. Nine out of ten BNP supporters felt that councils allowed immigrant families to jump housing queues.

This feeling of victimisation coupled with a widespread belief that the Labour Party, which most once supported, at best no longer cares about them and at worst conspires against them makes these voters susceptible to the BNP’s big lie. It is hardly a surprise then that so many people in Barking and Dagenham were happy to believe the Africans for Essex myth.

Think of the balance of forces. On one side you have the Labour Party (which 57% of BNP voters think no longer cares about them), politicians (who 78% of BNP voters think are corrupt), senior officers in the council (who only 1% of BNP voters trust a great deal) and immigrants (who 87% of BNP supporters think are a problem and only 4% believe contribute anything positive). Then you have the BNP, the anti-establishment party speaking up for the forgotten white working class.

This survey is both predictable and disturbing. While immigration remains the dominant issue for BNP voters it is clear that they more than any other group feel economically insecure and politically abandoned. What is shocking is the depth of their racism and the alienation from mainstream politics. Support for the BNP goes far beyond being a protest, as some politicians would have us believe, and the racist attitudes will not disappear simply by improving economic conditions.

We should be under no illusion that a long and hard struggle lies ahead.

What do you think?

We are opening up the August issue of Searchlight to find out your views on the way forward. Please restrict articles to 500 words and get them to me nick@stopthebnp.org.uk by 10 July. (Please note that space is limited and we cannot guarantee to publish every article.)

Nick Lowles, Searchlight

Prosecutors press for action against BNP leaflets

• Pressure mounts for end to race hate law loopholes
• CPS powerless to pursue complaints made by police

Senior prosecutors are calling for the laws on race hate crimes to be strengthened to counter the threat posed by the British National party.

The threshold for securing a conviction is so high that far-right activists are able to evade prosecution for material that many people would consider to be threatening and racist, according to sources at the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS).

Prosecutors blame the lack of convictions on the strict legal test, which requires showing an intention to "stir up racial hatred" or a likelihood that racial tension would be stirred up.

The offence, which was created under the Public Order Act, only applies to acts that take place or are witnessed in public so it does not cover leaflets that are pushed through people's letter boxes. It also offers no protection against the publication of inaccurate or false information.

Several BNP leaflets have been referred to the CPS over the last five years – some by senior police officers and one by a judge – but no further action has been taken.

Peter Herbert, the chairman of the Society of Black Lawyers and a part-time judge, submitted a complaint last year over a leaflet called The Changing Face of London that had two pictures, one depicting an all-white street party from the 1950s, the other showing three Muslim women wearing a niqab, one of whom is making a V-sign towards the camera.

"Under the law, it has been extremely difficult to mount a prosecution against extremism and hate speech," said Herbert. "But with the rise of the BNP, and the subsequent rise in racist attacks and the fear the party's leaflets can provoke, it is essential we are given the tools to deal effectively with this threat."

Herbert said the law should protect people from material that creates a fear of racist attacks as well as those that are deemed to incite racial hatred. "All the evidence suggests that it is people from minority communities and the faith communities that are put in fear of violence when racist leaflets are delivered in town centres or on estates. If someone handed out the same thing in the workplace, most employers would consider that gross misconduct; if someone does the same thing in the street, there is very little we can do."

Another complaint was submitted to the CPS by Lancashire police who expressed concern about a BNP leaflet which blamed Muslims for the heroin trade. Four people were arrested and released on police bail last year but detectives are still waiting to hear from the CPS about whether they have grounds to prosecute for "incitement to stir up racial hatred".

In another incident, Derbyshire police alerted the CPS about a BNP election leaflet claiming three asylum seekers had raped a woman. The police said the rape claims were "unfounded", but the CPS said there were no grounds to prosecute under existing law. "Whilst those details in the leaflet regarding the alleged rape are factually incorrect, this in itself does not constitute a criminal offence," said a CPS spokesman at the time.

A senior prosecutor told the Guardian: "There are numerous problems. The test to show incitement is very high and the material has to be distributed in public rather than put through people's doors. This makes it really difficult to get convictions for material which many people consider racist."

A CPS source confirmed that the organisation would review its policies on prosecuting race hate crimes following the election of two BNP candidates, including the party's leader, Nick Griffin, to the European parliament.

"We will need to look again at the situation with prosecuting incidences of this material," the source said.

Last week, the Equality and Human Rights Commission, the official watchdog on race and equality, wrote a formal letter to the BNP giving them one month to remedy three alleged breaches of the Race Relations Act, including the party's whites-only membership policy.

That announcement increased the likelihood of legal action against the BNP in the civil courts, but critics say there have been too few criminal proceedings, despite material distributed by the party which many regard as inflammatory.

Herbert, the former chair of the Metropolitan police race hate crime forum, said a number of anti-racism and human rights bodies would back a change in the law.

"I expect a strong coalition will form around this idea and put pressure on the government to instigate a change in primary legislation as soon as possible," he said.

Anti-racism campaigners welcomed the crackdown on inflammatory or racist leaflets but warned more was needed to effectively counter the threat posed by the BNP.

"Where the BNP has been distributing racially offensive material, it is right that they should be prosecuted with the full force of the law," said a spokesman for the anti-fascist organisation Searchlight. "However, the way we will defeat Nick Griffin and his party is street by street and estate by estate, not lawyer by lawyer and courtroom by courtroom."

The Guardian

Have you faced discrimination? Your MEP, Nick Griffin, wants to pretend you have

High-minded notions of rooting out Euro-sleaze voiced by Nick Griffin at his oh-so-lucky election as an MEP already seem to have been forgotten as the Cyclopic one elects to tread more familiar BNP turf, and takes for his first "case" that of a "24 year-old former prison service employee" who attended a Fire Service recruitment open evening in Oldham, and who, according to a posting made by Griffin on his shiny new website, was sent away because "the gentleman concerned was white and he along with around 20 other white males and one white female were told that the fire service were only targeting people from the ethnic minorities and the gay community, and they were sent away and dismissed from the recruitment process".

Even on a first reading this seems improbable, and on a second impossible. If this had actually happened there would have been a clear breach of the law on the part of Greater Manchester Fire And Rescue Service, which covers Oldham, and GMFRS's representatives would have been reduced to making snap judgements on the ethnicity of the attendees, as well as improperly inquiring after their sexual orientation.

Can you imagine the justifiable uproar, the outraged Daily Mail headlines?

So far the outrage seems confined to Griffin's office manager, Tina Wingfield, who fulminates: “This is a worrying case of positive discrimination gone mad. Here we have an ideal applicant for the job of firefighter but he was barred from even applying because he is a white hetrosexual. This is a shocking state of affairs and that needs to be addressed.”

What needs to be addressed is the BNP's relationship with the truth.

An amused GMFRS spokesperson told us there was not the remotest possibility of any person being "sent away and dismissed from the recruitment process" because they happened to be white heterosexuals. He agreed that not only would such a move be negative and counter-productive, it would be a public relations disaster. The idea that this happened to 22 white heterosexuals at an informal open evening in Oldham was "ridiculous".

Nick's first Euro lie nailed?

26 June 2009

Croydon Council looks to take action over BNP member's sick boast

Croydon Council is looking to see whether it can take a BNP member to court after she boasted about mounting a hate campaign against a family of immigrants living in the flat above her.

Charlotte Lewis, who earlier this year stood as a candidate in the Waddon by-election, told a meeting of British National Party members she played loud music late into the night - which may have contributed to the Afghan family moving out. The comments were made at a meeting in east London to celebrate the party's showing in the recent European elections.

Addressing party members at a pub in Dagenham, she said: "I don't think they could take any more of my penchant for playing heavy metal at 1am."

When the Advertiser asked the 36-year-old, who lives in Bensham Lane, Thornton Heath, to explain the comments, Ms Lewis said she had "embellished" the story for the sake of her audience. But she added: "I'm of the opinion that none of them should be in this country anyway. It would be in the best interests of this country if they moved back to Afghanistan. If British people were to move in upstairs I would keep the noise down."

Asked if she had made any efforts to get to know her neighbours, Ms Lewis added: "That would be hypocritical, and I'm not hypocritical. What on earth would we speak about, even if they could speak English? They're immigrants in my country and I'm a member of the BNP."

Croydon North MP Malcolm Wicks - a patron of the West Croydon Refugee Centre - said he was appalled at her remarks. He said: "If she admits that she made the comments, it's a really extraordinary thing. It's clearly anti-social behaviour and the idea that someone could be considered for elected public service after admitting this kind of anti-social behaviour is bizarre. It shows the good sense of the people of Waddon for not voting for her."

Councillor Alison Butler, who represents the Bensham Manor ward where Ms Lewis lives, was equally disgusted by her bragging. She said: "I'm going to see if there's any action we (Croydon Council) can take. I'm just horrified at her despicable remarks, I just wish we'd heard about it sooner."

Gavin Barwell, the council's cabinet member for safety and cohesion, has asked officers to investigate what steps they can take against her under anti-social behaviour laws. He said: "I share Councillor Butler's concerns and will be looking into it. I view it very seriously, and I'm taking advice from officers about whether there is any legal action we can take."

This is Croydon

25 June 2009

Going West

While leading members of the BNP are afforded the luxury of having themselves pelted with eggs, those lower down the ranks are only thought worthy of cheaper alternatives.

In the case of the BNP's Norwich North by-election candidate this was a jug of iced water expertly flung at pretend prelate the "Reverend" Robert West by an irate housewife in North Hykeham, Lincs, when West - sporting his trademark dog-collar - came calling on behalf of the racist party.

The incident happened in 2006, soon after West resigned from a Conservative Party about to expel him for speaking at BNP meetings and for his role in setting up the BNP's bogus "Christian Council of Britain".

The unnamed housewife later told the Lincolnshire Echo: "He was wearing a dog collar so I asked him whether he was a real reverend. He refused to enter into a debate about it. I had the jug of iced water because I was preparing for friends who were visiting that day. I refuse to apologise. I have no remorse. If he comes here again I will empty a whole jug over his head."

The matter of whether West is a "real reverend" or not has exercised quite a number of people for quite some time, not least those who take a closer interest in religious affairs than the "Rev." West finds comfortable.

In the past West has refused to discuss the validity of his orders - that is, who ordained him, into which church, when and where? Without valid orders, West has no more right to call himself "Reverend" or to pass himself off as a clergyman than you or I.

There have been unsourced reports that West was ordained as an "Elder" into something calling itself the Apostolic Church, but the only legitimate existing British church of that name denied all knowledge of him, telling a researcher for the Love @nd Rage website:
First of all may I confirm that The Apostolic Church does not support the views or the activities of the British National Party. The Church has no political association whatsoever.

On the second matter I am uncertain about who is the Mr Robert West mentioned in the article. One thing is certain: he does not speak on behalf of The Apostolic Church. If this person lives in Lincolnshire he does not attend The Apostolic Church. In fact as a denomination we have no churches in Lincolnshire.

I note that he is quoted as being ‘ordained as an elder’ within the Church. If this person has had any association with The Apostolic Church in the past the only means by which he can maintain either his membership or office is by attending one of our churches. If he were an active member of the Church his views would not be accepted by the Church and disciplinary action would be undertaken by the Church which strongly distances itself from views such as these.
West operates - if that is the word - the Grace Covenant Fellowship from his Holbeach home, the "Fellowship" strongly suspected, like the "Christian Council of Britain", of having a membership of one.

Following the European elections West appeared on BBC television's "The Big Question", in company of ex-Nazi and ex-National Front leader, Andrew Brons. At the beginning of the show West was explictly challenged by Ekklesia director Jonathan Bartley to say how many members the CCB had, and not for the first time shied away from answering. Bartley told West in no uncertain terms that it had one, namely himself, to which West could only grimace lamely.

Back in April, however, on the East Midlands version of The Politics Show, West produced what he claimed to be a diploma from the Apostolic Church Bible College, located in Pen-y-groes, south Wales. An Apostolic college certainly exists in Pen-y-groes, and is indeed run by the Apostolic Church, a Pentecostal Christian denomination founded in the early 20th century. Its title, however, is Apostolic Church School of Ministry (ACSOM), previously the Apostolic Church International Bible School.

What is immediately apparent from its website is that ACSOM and the church to which it is attached are multi-cultural, multi-racial, and inclusive. Its members do not wear dog-collars, nor do they use the title "Reverend". And the last thing they will preach about is the "sin" of race-mixing.

Little wonder, then, that the church is keen to distance itself from the claims of the "Reverend" West.

As Jonathan Bartley asks of the well-watered "cleric": "Will any church come forward to claim him? Or is this another example of BNP deception?"

Well, the voters of Norwich North and Norfolk journalists are going to have every opportunity to find out the answer to Jonathan's question when West and his cohorts of decidedly unsaintly BNP hatemongers descend upon the Fine City in the near future.

Don't forget to ask: who ordained Robert West? Into which church? When? Where? And let's see his written orders, please.

23 June 2009

BNP: Commission takes action over potential breach of race discrimination law

The EHRC has today written to BNP over possible breaches of anti-discrimination law.

The Equality and Human Rights Commission has today written to the British National Party over possible breaches of anti-discrimination law. The Commission has demanded that the party address potential breaches related to its constitution and membership criteria, employment practices and provision of services to the public and constituents.

The letter, sent to the party chairman Nick Griffin, outlines the Commission’s concerns about the BNP’s compliance with the Race Relations Act. The letter asks the BNP to provide written undertakings by 20th July that it will make the changes required by the Commission. Failure to do so may result in the Commission issuing an application for a legal injunction against the BNP.

The Commission has a statutory duty, under the Equality Act 2006, to enforce the provisions of the Act and to work towards the elimination of unlawful discrimination. This duty includes preventing discrimination by political parties.

The Commission thinks that the BNP’s constitution and membership criteria may discriminate on the grounds of race and colour, contrary to the Race Relations Act. The party’s membership criteria appear to restrict membership to those within what the BNP regards as particular “ethnic groups” and those whose skin colour is white. This exclusion is contrary to the Race Relations Act which the party is legally obliged to comply with. The Commission therefore thinks that the BNP may have acted, and be acting, illegally.

The Commission has required the BNP to provide a written undertaking that it will not discriminate contrary to the Race Relations Act in its employment and recruitment policies, procedures and practices.

The BNP’s website states that the party is looking to recruit people and states that any applicants should supply a membership number. The Commission thinks that this requirement is contrary to the Race Relations Act, which outlaws the refusal or deliberate omission to offer employment on the basis of non-membership of an organisation. The Commission is therefore concerned that the BNP may have acted, and be acting, illegally.

The letter asks the BNP to provide a written undertaking that it will amend its policy on recruitment accordingly so that it complies with the Race Relations Act.

The Commission is also concerned that the BNP’s elected representatives may not intend to offer or provide services on an equal basis to all their constituents and members of the public irrespective of race or colour. The Commission thinks that this contravenes the Race Relations Act and the Local Authority Model Code of Conduct and that the BNP may have acted illegally and may act illegally in the future.

The Commission’s letter asks the BNP to provide a written undertaking that its elected representatives or those working for them will not discriminate on grounds of race or colour in the provision of services to members of the public or constituents.

John Wadham, Group Director Legal at the Equality and Human Rights Commission said:

“The Commission’s statutory role includes a duty to investigate possible breaches of discrimination law and take action where appropriate. The legal advice we have received indicates that the British National Party’s constitution and membership criteria, employment practices and provision of services to constituents and the public may breach discrimination laws which all political parties are legally obliged to uphold. We await a response from the BNP to our letter before deciding what further action we may take. Litigation or enforcement action can be avoided by the BNP giving a satisfactory response to our letter.”

Equality and Human Rights Commission

21 June 2009

Four arrested at BNP rally

Four people including a teenager have been arrested on suspicion of "racially aggravated" offences at the British National Party's 'Victory' rally in Lancashire.

The men, who are not believed to be connected to the party or anti-fascism protestors picketing the event, are being held by police after confronting protestors outside the Kimberley Hotel in Blackpool on Saturday. The four arrested on suspicion of inciting racial hatred were a 16-year-old boy and a 22-year-old man from Widnes, Cheshire, a 21-year-old man from the Wirral and a 41-year-old man from Leigh, near Wigan

Up to 80 members of the Unite Against Fascism (UAF) group gathered outside the hotel where BNP leader and North West Euro MP Nick Griffin is expected to address members around 4pm.

A Lancashire Police spokesman said that the protest ended around 2pm and passed off "without major incident" despite the arrests. She said: "It is not believed the four are associated with the UAF or the BNP in any way."

Protesting outside the hotel on the resort's seafront, Raymond Bennett, joint secretary of Unite Against Fascism, held up offensive, threatening posters which he claimed had been put through his door by the party. He said: "Don't tell me it's a normal political party - that's what the Nazi Party said in the 1930s. And we must expose them. It doesn't matter what Nick Griffin says.

"They are respectable in the daytime but at night go around kicking in doors."

Mr Griffin, who was elected a Member of the European Parliament for the North West earlier this month, said the rally was to thank the party's "key people and activists all over the country." He said: "We will be talking about where we go from here and to make sure we serve our constituents properly."

Lancashire Evening Post

Ignore this vile abuse, Kelly Holmes is a true Brit

You always remember what you were doing when something wonderful happened.

Well, on the evening of August 28, 2004, I was standing on a track-side seat and screaming as a young woman drove herself through the last few strides of an Olympic final. When she crossed the line, adding the 1500metres title to her 800m victory, I apologised to an American colleague for my outburst.

'Don't worry,' he said. 'She's a great lady, Kelly Holmes. You Brits should be proud of her.'

He was right, of course. Kelly's double was a prodigious achievement. In the annals of British sport it takes its place alongside Roger Bannister's four-minute mile, Bobby Moore's World Cup winners of 1966 and the 2003 Rugby World Cup victory of Martin Johnson's men. I well recall her tears of pride as she climbed to the peak of the podium and she did not cry alone.

Since that glorious Athenian evening, Kelly has continued to bring honour and credit to her sport. She was appointed National School Sports Champion and has enjoyed real success in increasing the amount of PE and active sport in our schools. She has designed and promoted programmes to support the development of gifted young sportsmen and women.

And she carries the credibility of an athlete whose own career - despite being distorted by injury and plagued by ill fortune - represented the ultimate vindication of spirit, endurance and towering talent. She was created a Dame in 2005 and more recently was elected President of Commonwealth Games England. In short, she is something more than a mere heroine; she has attained the status of national treasure.

Which makes the intervention of one Andrew Brons even more offensive.

Mr Brons is a leading light in the British National Party. He recently polled 9.8 per cent of votes in the Yorkshire and Humber region, which won him a seat in the European Parliament. He is a former member of the neo-Nazi National Socialist Movement. And this odious fellow has just expressed a view about our Kelly.

Although she was born in Pembury, Kent, and served for several years in the British Army before embarking upon her stunningly successful career in the British vest, she is not, in Brons's considered opinion, a fully-fledged Briton. For Kelly is the daughter of an English mother and a Jamaican-born father and her mixed-race heritage means that she is 'only partially from this country'.

Or, as he puts it: 'I don't accept the term Black British or Asian British. Britons are the indigenous peoples of these isles.'

Now, normally I should not dream of publicising the pitiful fantasies of Brons and his fellow inadequates. But his idiocy gives us the chance to reflect upon just how far sport has come.

Football, the national sport, has played a major part in engaging the entire community. The briefest glance at the current England team tells us how handsomely the sport has embraced diversity. Track and field has always had an admirable record in this area while rugby and cricket can point to genuine progress.

In truth, most of our major sports - with tennis a faintly depressing exception - have made intelligent efforts to broaden their talent base and British sport has benefited greatly from such enhanced inclusiveness.

It is, therefore, appropriate that the country should take collective offence when a fascist like Brons dares to question their presence in the nation's sport by declaring: 'They are British citizens, which is a legal concept, but not British by identity.' It is a statement both baseless and insulting and it says more about the poisonous dullard who made it than the men and women who it seeks to belittle.

For they are considerable people who have achieved great things, people like Ugo Monye, Ravi Bopara, Emile Heskey, Theo Walcott, Monty Panesar and Rio Ferdinand, as well as the woman who brought us screaming to our feet at the Athens Olympics.

'She's a great lady, Kelly Holmes,' said the American journalist. 'You Brits should be proud of her.'

Indeed we are, because Dame Kelly is one of the finest athletes in Olympic history. And she is one of us.

Patrick Collins in the Mail on Sunday

19 June 2009

Euro far-right rejects the BNP

The British National party's (BNP) efforts to form a coalition with other extremist groups in Europe have ended in failure.

Party leader Nick Griffin had hoped to form a grouping with parties such as Italy's Northern League and France's Front National.

Parliamentary groupings require 25 MEPs from at least seven countries, which triggers up to a million euros funding for staff and office costs.

"It appears at present we are below the threshold," Mr Griffin said after talks at the European parliament in Brussels.

"We have to see how the other political groups get on with their negotiations and if they cannot do a deal whether they will deal with us."

The BNP grouping has only attracted 12 MEPs, despite wide gains for the far-right in the recent elections.

The far-right often struggles to work together across national boundaries.

In the last parliament the Greater Romania party broke up the far-right Identity, Tradition, Sovereignty group after a spat with Mussolini's daughter, Alessandro, who said all Romanians were criminals.

The Northern League's rejection of a BNP grouping will severely hinder Mr Griffin's attempts to have a strong presence in the parliament, because they carry nine MEPs.

Geert Wilder's Dutch Freedom party, which mostly sells itself on an extreme variant of anti-Muslim thought, also rejected the BNP, despite being sufficiently extreme to be banned from entering Britain.

Mr Wilder is understood to be attempting to appeal to mainstream Dutch voters, and is furiously avoiding associations with the likes of the BNP or the National Front.

The Danish People's party is also avoiding Mr Griffin. It has also tried to avoid Jean Marie Le-Pen's National Front, after he again denied the Holocaust at the parliament.

Groupings must be declared by July 14th, for the parliament's inaugural sitting.


Hodge accused over Barking selection battle

Barking MP Margaret Hodge was accused this week of involvement in alleged dirty tricks over selections to her local council. The row threatens to tear Labour apart locally and help the British National Party take over the council in next year’s elections.

Speaking to Tribune, Labour activists, councillors and community representatives have accused Ms Hodge of being a “control freak” who has engineered the deselection of Labour members of Barking and Dagenham Council in a bid to exercise personal control over her constituency Labour party. For personal family reasons, Ms Hodge was unable to respond before Tribune went to press.

Eight Labour councillors have been struck off the candidate list since March this year, including Val Rush, cabinet member for the environment, and planning chair John Denyer. A ninth, deputy mayor Fred Barns, was also deselected but reinstated on appeal. Barking and Dagenham has 12 BNP councillors, more than any other borough in Britain.

Asked what linked the councillors together, one activist said: “They’re all people who didn’t like Margaret”. Another declared: “She is a control freak and she wants total control… I can see the BNP controlling the council”.

Barking Labour Party has been riven with factionalism since 2006, when Ms Hodge was attacked over her remark that eight out of ten white households were tempted to vote BNP in the local elections.

One deselected councillor said of the events: “I felt it gave the BNP the oxygen it needed and I wasn’t alone in speaking out. I think that I’m now paying for that”. They had suffered “bullying and intimidation” including silent phone calls, they added.

Some deselected councillors were discriminated against for their disabilities, a well-placed source said: “John Denyer can’t walk the streets, but there was always something for him to do… Fred Barnes has a disability but he would drive everybody around, pick leaflets up, but he had a hip replacement. That was given as one of the reasons.”

Various sources complained that the selection panels had been fed misleading information about councillors. At least three councillors heard of their deselection before being officially told, and one said: “The BNP seems to know a lot more about what’s going on in Barking Labour Party… They told me before I even had my interview”.

Ms Hodge is said to have announced the deselection of two councillors in Barking’s Thames ward at a coffee morning on 13 March – the same day one of them, Cllr Barnes, received the letter informing him.

The MP is also blamed for alleged misconduct at Barking CLP’s annual general meeting of 2007, branded a “shambles” by two separate sources. They say that non-Labour Party members were allowed into the meeting but other Labour members were barred and that Ms Hodge’s staff instructed delegates how to vote. Delegates complained to London Labour Party.

A London Labour Party spokesperson said its selections had been “fair” and denied any impropriety, including any contact with the BNP over deselections. It was “totally spurious” that disability had been used against councillors, they added. Laila Butt, Ms Hodge’s CLP secretary, said Ms Hodge had no involvement in selections.


Norfolk Unity is a proud friend of Cllr. Val Rush. She fights fascism. Margaret Hodge paved the way for 12 fascists to become councillors on Barking and Dagenham Coucnil.

17 June 2009

Nazi sticker on Blackburn BNP man's car

A British National Party activist drives around with the word “Nazi” written on the back of his car, it has been revealed.

Robin Evans, the BNP’s Blackburn organiser, said he had not tried to remove the word as he did not find it offensive.

The former councillor for Mill Hill in Blackburn, who now lives in Darwen, said he did not know who had stuck the letters on his metallic green Volkswagen Golf, but thought it was “quite funny”, adding: “It doesn’t bother me”

Blackburn MP Jack Straw said the sticker “exposed the true colours of the BNP”.

Party leader Nick Griffin, who was recently elected as a Euro MP for the North West, advised Mr Evans to remove the term.

When asked about it by the Lancashire Telegraph Mr Evans, who stood for the BNP at this month’s Darwen Town Council elections, said: “You know what people are like. Everyone calls me a Nazi.

“Someone put it on there 12 months ago. It was in silver letters. What you see there is the wreckage. I haven’t a clue who tried to take it off but I couldn’t be bothered.

“To be honest I thought it was quite funny. It’s better than them putting my windows through or smashing bottles on my head which I’ve had before.

“The car is on its last legs. I would rather be driving around in a big Porsche. But my car and whatever it looks like does its job and I am OK with it.”

Asked whether he found the term ‘Nazi’ offensive, Mr Evans added: “Everyone is individual. My personal interpretation, not the BNP’s, is that it means a nationalist, which is where the word has come from. If someone’s in the street screaming ‘Nazi, Nazi’, that is offensive. It is not offensive against other people.”

Mr Straw, the Justice Secretary, said: “It’s very offensive, especially to people who are Jewish, but also to virtually everyone else in society.

“This exposes the BNP’s true colours.”

Coun Tony Melia, the leader of the For Darwen Party leader and deputy council leader, said: “If someone put that on my car I would have it taken down instantly. It is absolutely tasteless.”

Mr Griffin said: “I would advise him to take it off. It was obviously put there by some crank. He may be putting a brave face on it.”

Asked whether he found the term offensive, he added: “I don’t know if it’s offensive per se, you see all sorts of swastikas on news stands and history books.

“But used against us it is highly offensive, because we believe in British values like free speech.”

Lancashire Telegraph

We think we know why Robin West isn't bothered about being labelled a Nazi - because he once attempted to start his own Nazi party! See here

14 June 2009

The shower behind the BNP throne

The henchmen behind vile BNP leader Nick Griffin have their thin veneer of acceptability stripped away today.

His minders and hangers-on wore smart suits and ties as they leaped to shield their party leader from a barrage of eggs and anti-fascist taunts this week. But the News of the World can reveal their respectable image conceals a Nazi-saluting RACIST, a depraved SWINGER and a FAILED wannabe councillor who lives with his mum.

The rotten shower were among sidekicks who jumped in to protect Griffin, 49, from furious protesters in London. Griffin and Andrew Brons, who together had just become MEPs in the Euro elections, had been trying to portray their party as a reasonable voice. But we can reveal that their minders' views are every bit as warped as the BNP's policies.

Take JAY SLAVEN, who was seen on camera roughly pushing a bystander aside as he escorted Griffin and Brons away. A truer picture of Slaven, 25, emerges from another photo of him giving a Nazi salute and posing with a St George's flag draped over his shoulders.

The snap features on a Facebook photo album entitled "Forever Brave, Forever True, Forever England! St George's Day!"

Slaven, from Doddinghurst, Essex, tried to make a name for himself by defending Jade Goody's racist remarks to Shilpa Shetty during Celebrity Big Brother in 2007. At the time he claimed the huge row which erupted over comments made towards Indian actress Shilpa was "laughable".

In another rant Slaven, an assistant distribution manager, declared: "I see no possible wrong in wanting to preserve this island race of ours. Racial mixing is not leading to the BNP success, the vast damage done to our nation by successive governments is."

Pictured near Slaven at the egg demo was burly BNP minder MARTIN REYNOLDS, who is Griffin's head of security and a regular feature at his elbow. But Reynolds - married with three kids - is also a regular on the swingers scene and lusts after "big girls". The 41-year- old from Leeds was pictured at the London bust-up in dark glasses. But he wore far less as he watched women indulge in sex acts at a squalid orgy.

Months earlier he had gone on dating website faceparty.com with fellow BNP organisers Mark Collett and Dan Hannam. Reynolds told how he hated stuck-up people and women on diets - and listed his ideal female as "size 16 and above with a good sense of humour and a sex drive to match mine".

Also among Griffin's gang was TONY GLADWIN, who lives with his mum in a 1960s house with a St George's Cross flying from a 6ft flagpole outside. The 25-year-old landscape gardener recently stood as a district councillor but failed miserably to get elected. Gladwin, from Billericay, Essex, has said: "Everyone that knows me knows I am in the BNP. I'm very proud of it. People have made out it's like a secret society, like we should be hiding it."

Another Griffin minder is former London mayoral candidate JULIAN LEPPERT, a postman who is happiest when he is delivering racist scare stories. He said: "We don't want to be a minority in our city, let alone our country. That is what we are going to have by 2055 if current trends continue."

Meanwhile new MEP Andrew Brons, 61, seeks to be the respectable face of the party but 25 years ago he was convicted of behaviour likely to cause a breach of the peace. He and another National Front member were shouting slogans including "Death to Jews" and "White Power".


12 June 2009

Guess what? The BNP takes white-supremacist cash from the US

Who'd have thought it, eh? James Von Brunn, the white supremacist who shot dead a security guard, Stephen Tyrone Johns, at the Holocaust museum in Washington, attended fund-raising meetings of the American Friends of the British National Party.

Yes, I know you can't always blame political parties for where their funding comes from. But imagine if this had happened to a mainstream political party. Suppose the Conservative Party was found to have received funds from a raving anti-semite. Not exactly a source up there with Michael Ashcroft, is it? Suppose the Labour Party had accepted a donation from Hamas?

And remember the fuss we used to make about the IRA receiving financial support from the US? Yet somehow we're not that surprised, nor particularly alarmed apparently, that the BNP is supported by the kind of anti-semitic nutter who murders a Holocaust museum attendant, that BNP leader Nick Griffin has spoken at the AFBNP meetings that such pond-life attend and was only too happy to say that they made a "significant contribution" to the BNP's [2001] general election campaign.

I only mention this because the BNP's apologists have been out in force lately, after the ethnic-cleansing party won two Euro-seats, saying that I have to understand that the miseries and pressures put on communities subject to immigration push white people to vote for the BNP in protest.

I couldn't understand that, apparently, in my cosseted home-counties existence. Which is a bit rich when it comes from tank-topped, metropolitan, neo-cons, tapping away in their stripped-pine loft conversions, with their hearts bleeding for the oppressed Aryans of inner-city Bradford. Patronising or what?

Let me spell it out, BNP apologists. This is the company you keep when you concede that BNP voters have a point: James Von Brunn. It really won't do, saying: "I'm not a racist, but these immigrants are the problem, not the BNP." Immigration pales into insignificance as an issue compared with a party gaining elected representatives in the European parliament, which is funded by the Von Brunns of this world.

You don't have to be a wishy-washy, tree-hugging, airy-fairy, unpatriotic, sitting-on-the-fence liberal to rank the political danger of the BNP and its supporters above the effects of post-war immigration, serious as those are. You just have to be able to think. And to have read a book beyond one-shilling, war-hero trash mags. (Better now, thankyou, nurse).


10 June 2009

Welcome for the BNP: Egg throwers disrupt leader Nick Griffin's victory speech

The moment Griffin's goon brushes pedestrian aside at 0.29

After his party gained its first two MEPs in last weeks European elections, BNP leader Nick Griffin obviously wanted to make his victory Press conference a statesmanlike affair.

But when the far right leader arrived to deliver his speech opposite the Houses of Parliament, he found his party's message of hate was afforded precious little respect.

Together with fellow British National Party MEP Andrew Brons, Mr Griffin tried to use yesterday's Westminster meeting to publicise his party's racist agenda. But, instead, he was pelted with eggs by anti-fascist protesters, some of the projectiles finding their target.

Perhaps anticipating trouble, Mr Griffin had come with a squad of his own burly security guards. There was also a sizeable presence of armed police.

But he was able to speak for only a few minutes before a large gathering of the campaign group Unite Against Fascism disrupted the meeting.

In scenes that are likely to be repeated as the BNP tries to establish itself as a legitimate political party, the Press conference disintegrated into violent chaos as campaigners waving placards and shouting 'Off our streets, Nazi scum' threw eggs and tried to get between the BNP and the news cameras. Heavily outnumbered, Mr Griffin and his supporters were forced into waiting cars, which then sped away.

One of the protesters vowed: 'Wherever you go, we will make sure you are welcomed by demonstrations.'

Television cameras captured disturbing images of one woman in a red jacket being aggressively shoved aside by a BNP security guard in the melee. A female tourist was also injured. Police later received an allegation of assault and reports of a collision, thought to have occurred as the BNP group drove off.

The violent scenes took place on College Green, a small patch of grass opposite the Houses of Parliament often used for interviews.

Still wearing his egg- stained suit, Mr Griffin later toured the television news studios to complain that he had been denied his democratic right to free speech. He said: 'It's a very, very sad day for British democracy. People should be entitled to hear what we have to say and to hear journalists question us robustly.'

Mr Griffin described the protesters as 'an organised mob' and alleged that the police officers had 'on orders from the Home Office' deliberately done nothing to protect him.

Unite Against Fascism is an umbrella group formed by the veteran campaign groups the Anti-Nazi League and the National Assembly Against Racism as well as various trades unions in response to the rising electoral threat of the BNP. Numerous MPs are listed as supporters, including Conservative leader David Cameron.

A BNP spokesman said that it will re-organise the Press conference for later today in Manchester, but said details of the time and place were being kept secret to prevent further trouble.

A spokesman for the Metropolitan Police said two people were taken to hospital after the protest and inquiries were continuing.

Daily Mail

9 June 2009

Griffin's thugs knock down innocent woman

An innocent female pedestrian was brutally thrown to the ground and trampled by Nick Griffin's panicking security thugs as they hustled the terrified BNP leader away from anti-fascist protesters during an abortive press conference outside the Houses of Parliament.

The incident was inadvertently captured on video by ITV News, who said that two people were later taken to hospital.

There are suspicions that the BNP, which employed far more than the normal quota of thick-necked bodyguards to watch over Griffin and Andrew Brons, had engineered the confrontation. Unusually, last night a post on the BNP website announced the "press conference" and gave a telephone number for journalists to contact for further details, and it is believed that this open invitation is how anti-fascists discovered the whereabouts of the event.

Griffin had only just begun to speak when the protesters arrived and began to pelt the North West MEP with eggs. Griffin was quickly hustled away to his car, accompanied by the press and the protesters. It was as they neared the car that a woman pedestrian was elbowed in the throat by Griffin's minder and fell into the busy road, where she was by trampled shaven-headed thugs in the rush to save Griffin's skin.

Ignored by Griffin and the BNP, the woman was helped by anti-fascists.

Here's the sequence of events, taken from the ITV footage:

The woman, captured on video moments before the BNP assault

Engulfed by the BNP

Caught in the melee, Griffin's minder goes for the throat...

... and the woman is trampled by fleeing fascists

The only concern - save Griffin's hide

Later, safe in a South London pub, Griffin told ITV News that the actions of the anti-fascists were "disgusting". He did not ask after the health of the woman knocked down and trampled by his own thugs.

ITV coverage

Andrew Brons: the genteel face of neo-fascism

British National party MEP and former National Front chairman who started political life in group set up in honour of Hitler

It was on Hitler's birthday, deliberately chosen, that the National Socialist Movement was formed in Britain in the 1960s. It was the first political organisation of the far right that Andrew Brons, the newly-elected British National party MEP for Yorkshire and Humberside, was to join – but not the last.

The group that he signed up to as a teenager had been founded in honour of Hitler by the British fascist leader, the late Colin Jordan. No mention of this early political involvement features on the BNP's website celebrating Brons's victory. Instead, Brons is portrayed just as a "veteran British Nationalist".

Brons, 61, comes from what might be described as the genteel wing of British neo-fascism. He lists William Cobbett, the radical journalist and author of Rural Rides, as his favourite historical person, the Pickwick Papers as his favourite book and Zelig as his favourite film. But his early associations with the far right were when it was at its most overtly racist and before it had started to try to present itself as just another political party.

The group he first joined included among its members people responsible for arson attacks on Jewish property and synagogues. According to the anti-fascist organisation Searchlight, which has been tracking his career for decades, Brons appears to have approved. In a letter to Jordan's wife, Brons reported meeting an NSM member who "mentioned such activities as bombing synagogues", to which Brons responded that "on this subject I have a dual view, in that I realise that he is well intentioned, I feel that our public image may suffer considerable damage as a result of these activities. I am however open to correction on this point."

By the 1970s, Brons had moved on the National Front, then the leading far-right group in Britain. He was voted on to the NF's national directorate in 1974 and, as the NF's education officer, he hosted seminars on racial nationalism and tried to give its racism a more "scientific" basis.

After the late John Tyndall left the NF in 1980, Brons was promoted to the post of chairman. Among his allies was Richard Verrall, the author of Did Six Million Really Die?, with whom he edited the NF journal, New Nation. In August 1981 he led a rally in Fulham, west London in support of "rights for whites" and concluded his speech with a call for compulsory repatriation, chanting: "If they're black, send them back." According to Searchlight, in 1982 Brons led an NF march through Northfield on which marchers chanted "We've got to get rid of the blacks".

In June 1984, Brons was convicted by Leeds magistrates of using insulting words and behaviour likely to cause a breach of the peace. The court was told that when PC John Raj, the area's community constable, who was of Malaysian origin, told the group to disperse, Brons, then 37, responded: "I am aware of my legal rights. Inferior beings like yourself probably do not appreciate the principle of free speech." Brons denied the allegations at the time and continues to deny them, describing them as "absurd". His challenge to Raj's evidence was not, however, accepted at his subsequent appeal at Leeds crown court.

After drifting out of far-right politics, he became a lecturer in politics and law at a further education college in Harrogate. He joined the BNP in its current incarnation three years ago. Divorced, with two grown-up daughters and four granddaughters, his election platform was that he "would work to expose the activities and corruption of the EU to strengthen Britain's case for withdrawal" and "would co-operate with patriots in other countries who seek to bring the EU to an end".

Sonia Gable of Searchlight said that his past made him a strange choice for a BNP seeking to create a "respectable" image for itself.

"Everyone in the BNP is trying to look respectable and Brons is an odd choice because he was in the NF at its most racist," she said.

She added that she thought Brons had been chosen as a candidate because Nick Griffin, the chairman of the BNP, believed that he would have strong links with far-right organisations in Europe.

The BNP denies being an anti-semitic organisation, and when asked about Brons's involvement with the NSM and the NF and his calls for compulsory repatriation, a spokesman for the party said: "That was nearly 30 years ago, times have moved on … You print what you want."


5 June 2009

BNP routed in Norfolk

A long night and day of County Council election results has seen the BNP fail dismally in its quest to ride the wave of public discontent.

As we publish, the BNP has gained only three county council seats nationwide after more than 600 declarations. For the BNP, Nick Griffin's "perfect storm" never happened, and currently the BNP leader is feverishly reining in his members' expectations. Griffin and deputy Simon Darby talked up those expectations, but now fear the consequences should disillusion set in as the scale of the party's failure dawns on the membership.

Expectations for the Euro elections, to be counted on Sunday, have been quickly revised. Whereas previously BNP leaders were happy to encourage the idea that the party could gain seven MEPs the new leadership line is that the election of just one BNP MEP will count as success.

Whichever way the BNP want to look at it, to gain that one MEP will have cost the racist organisation proportionately more in money, time and effort than that expended by any other party. If they fail, then they will be forced to content themselves with the three most expensive county councillors in recorded history (as Nick Griffin might put it).

However, we're not going to count our chickens before they're hatched and Sunday's results might yet yield a nasty surprise or two.

In Norfolk, where anti-fascists have been very active, the BNP failed on all fronts, its best result being in King's Lynn North and Central, where it had serious expectations of winning after Norfolk BNP mounted its most professional campaign to date. In other West Norfolk seats the BNP performance was mediocre, while the party barely registered in Yarmouth and Norwich.

Full Norfolk results:

Yarmouth North and Central

Conservative 1001 (34.14%)
Labour 856 (29.2%)
UKIP 549 (18.72%)
Liberal Democrat 278 (9.48%)
BNP 248 (8.46%)

Sprowston (Norwich)

Conservative 1123 (32.37%)
UKIP 663 (19.11%)
Labour 593 (17.09%)
Liberal Democrat 564 (16.26%)
Green 298 (8.59%)
BNP 228 (6.57%)

King's Lynn North and Central

Conservative 677 (32.66%)
Labour 616 (29.72%)
BNP 431 (20.79%)
Green 349 (16.84%)

Gaywood North and Central (King's Lynn)

Conservative 1090 (42.38%)
Labour 445 (17.3%)
Liberal Democrat 369 (14.35%)
BNP 346 (13.45%)
Green 322 (12.52%)

Clenchwarton and King's Lynn South

Conservative 1015 (39.25%)
Liberal Democrat 743 (28.73%)
BNP 313 (12.1%)
Labour 301 (11.64%)
Green 214 (8.28%)

Gaywood South (King's Lynn)

Conservative 865 (32.08%)
Labour 551 (20.44%)
Liberal Democrat 435 (16.14%)
UKIP 376 (13.95%)
BNP 273 (10.13%)
Green 196 (7.27%)

Freebridge Lynn

Conservative 1690 (54.5%)
Liberal Democrat 431 (13.9%)
Green 385 (12.42%)
Labour 347 (11.19%)
BNP 248 (8%)

4 June 2009

The sickness at the heart of the BNP

‘Paedophiles against the BNP’ is the title of a post at the ‘Red Squirrel’ blog of the lunatic Elizabeth Walton of Swindon BNP branch. The post refers to the Church of England as a ‘vile perverts organisation’ and refers to C of E Bishops as ‘pompous, self-righteous windbags … renowned for interfering with young boys’.

Walton borrowed from the post from the BNP supporting ‘Britain Awake’ blog, which is filled with crude racist bile and homophobic content.

Here’s how ‘Britain Awake’ covered a racist attack on a black anti-racist activist:
Racial tension leading up to the European and local elections spilled out onto the streets of London this week after a black anti-fascist campaigner was beaten senseless by a pair of white men

Police were called to Eltham High Street last Saturday afternoon when the volunteer from ‘Unite Against Democracy’ was set upon by two men said to be defending the democratic rights of the British people. Their victim had been handing out anti-democratic leaflets begging people not to vote for the BNP.

Quite frankly this bastard got all he deserved, if he dislikes democracy that much, he should fuck off to Robert Mugabes shit-hole that is better known as Zimbabwe!

Black anti-fascist campaigner… Wouldn’t it be great if it was that Weyman Bennett cunt who received the pasting!
Here’s ‘Britain Awake’ on the dance group ‘Diversity‘, winners of this year’s ‘Britain’s Got Talent’ competition:
Lack of talent contest BGT crowned negro dance troupe ‘Diversity’ as this years winners. Why would anyone would want to watch a bunch of arrogant bastards poncing about unless it was through the sights of a semi-automatic?
The Queen has to sit through this type of shit every time she visits some remote commonwealth country, we think she deserves a break from this sort of crap!
And the ‘Britain Awake’ blogger also posts a video of an Indian man dying from electrocution with the description ‘Certainly more entertaining than that “Diversity” nonsense that won Britains got talent!’

This is the real BNP on show. Remember that when you hear people talking about ‘protest votes’ and seeing the BNP as potential ‘allies’ against Islamism.

Screen shots (click to enlarge):




Harry's Place

3 June 2009

East Midlands BNP officer on nazi night out

Meet Martyn Page on a night out in a Nottinghamshire pub with his mates in May. Page (front, left) is fundholder (treasurer) of the BNP’s active Broxtowe group. With him in dark jacket is Benny Bullman, lead singer with the Nazi band Whitelaw and activist in the openly nazi British Movement.

Page’s wife Kim (below) also seems to have a predilection for a certain type of stiff right arm salute in the company of Bullman. She too is a BNP activist regular fundraiser for the Broxtowe group.

Hope not hate

Kids say the cutest things

Green Bigot in eyesight failure shock

Welsh windbag and armchair BNP "activist" Paul Morris, known and loved by many long term Lithium takers as Green Arrow, is really down on his uppers (or up on his downers) due to a combination of chronic imbecility, too much cheap lager, and a deep sense of rejection since his missus cleared off.

All the Nantyglo Nazi's got in the world is his blog and a belief that this time next week the Queen will invite Nick Griffin to form a government.

It seems now that his mental disturbances are beginning to affect his visual senses, and the Bigot is having trouble telling people apart.

I mean, how do you mistake Tony Blair for David Cameron unless you're a) drunk, b) an idiot, or c) both?

Well, as you can see, Muppet Morris managed to do it.

Now that worries us. What if Morris meets Weyman Bennett in a pub and and invites him home for tea after mistaking him for Simon Darby? The consequences don't bear thinking about.

So we thought we'd help out the myopic Bigot by showing him a pic of two of his favourite people as a test of recognition. We've even made it easy by labelling the pics so the Nantyglo Nazi knows who's who:

There you go, Paul Morris. Just keep staring at the pics and reading the names until you've got it off by heart.

The Nazi who's voting BNP

This is the front window of one Beverley Kerry.

An outright Nutzi, guinea-pig lover Bev supports the BNP, as you can see.

She's also a moderator on the openly Nazi Blood and Honour forum, and has just been made a moderator on the cesspool that is the Vanguard Nationalist Network forum.

In her late thirties, Bev is one of those Nutzis with a lot of time on her hands who spends all day on the internet dishing it out to other Nutzis - you could almost mistake her for one of us, really.

Now Bev has never turned a hand in the real world to support her politics, and sometimes resorts to lies to give herself credibility (as when she recently claimed on Stormfront that she'd helped the BNP deliver election leaflets). No, Bev is strictly an on-line campaigner, and she's usually campaigning against veteran fellow Nutzis who have got a record of real-world activism.

Vile Bev Kerry ("English by birth, Aryan by the grace of Odin") is banned from a number of her local supermarkets (and possibly most of her local kebab shops too). She loathes Jews, Muslims and just about everybody else, but she absolutely loves BNP leader Nick Griffin's Nazi Covert Tactics team, and is extra specially careful to keep on the right side of them.

By repute a workshy lump (aren't most of them?), the Aryan Odinist reckons that missing Madelaine McCann was murdered by her mother, though we don't know whether she's contacted the police to tell them she's solved the case.

Bev likes contacting the police, though they don't seem to take much notice of her as nobody here in Norfolk or up in Lancaster has seen hide nor hair of the boys in blue.

She also likes tracking down the home addresses of antifascists and publishing them on Nutzi websites in the hope that something nasty will happen to them and their families. And, of course, she's won herself much kudos from the dimwit Stormfront Nutzis by copying the dates and locations of Hope Not Hate events from the HNH website and posting them on the Nazi forum.

Now some people (not us mind!) might suggest that in making those posts Bev Kerry was hoping that BNP members would turn up at the Hope Not Hate events, something that would be bound to end in confrontation given the Neanderthal brains of most BNP activists, and which would end up with the BNP earning a nice piece of bad publicity.

We're not in the business of confrontation, however, so we advise the organisers of antifascist events to steer clear of Bev's home at 4 Shirebrook Close, Ilkeston, Derbyshire. We extend the same advice to anybody delivering leaflets for Ilkeston kebab shops.

Failure to do so could result in Bev making a nasty post about you on Stormfront, and you wouldn't want that now, would you?

2 June 2009

The legend of Billy Brit

The BNP's "Billy Brit" - aimed at children but enjoyed by BNP adults everywhere - learns some home truths...

1 June 2009

London postal workers refusing to deliver BNP leaflets

The British National Party is fuming after hundreds of postal workers across South London refused to deliver election leaflets.

The Royal Mail is legally obliged to deliver the leaflets but Communication Workers Union members are exercising a "conscience clause" in their contract not to carry out the work. Workers say they disagree with the controversial far-right parties policies which include voluntarily resettling immigrants. That same union today announced intentions to strike over pay.

Managers agreed to the clause and have been forced to draft in expensive agency workers to offices in Brixton, Stockwell and South Lambeth to clear the backlog.

Pollsters are predicting a "electoral breakthrough" for the party in European and local elections on Thursday with a perfect storm of voter apathy in the wake of the expenses scandal and a low turnout.

"Members won't touch them"

CWU official Martin Walsh told the South London Press: "The leaflets came in last Tuesday but our members wouldn’t touch them. We have a national agreement that states that staff do not have to deliver them but bosses still put our members under pressure. In the end, agency staff were brought in to deliver them."

Staff are "corrupting electotral process"

A BNP spokesman said postal staff are corrupting "the election process not to deliver the leaflets". Adding: "If they don’t want to deliver them they should not turn up to work, not get paid and give the money to someone else who is willing to do the job."

Exceptional circumstances

A Royal Mail spokesman would not comment on agency staff having to deliver the pamphlets, but added: He said: "Royal Mail has legal obligations under the Representation of People Act to deliver election material, so long as the material is legal, and so we deliver all legitimate literature from all parties. In exceptional circumstances – where any individual has a genuine concern – we encourage them to discuss it with their manager and, if necessary, we make alternative arrangements.

We’re not able to comment on individual offices, however can confirm that all election material due to be delivered by the Royal Mail is being dealt with in accordance with the terms of the service paid for by customers."

London Daily News