January 30, 2010

The snowball that rolled into Hell, and other notes on mental health

24 Comment (s)
The announcement of Mark Collett's candidature in the Sheffield Brightside and Hillsborough seat was greeted with a mixture of incredulity and amusement on the part of fascists and anti-fascists everywhere this week, nobody being quite able to believe that Nick Griffin had sent in a Nazi Boy to do an Aryan hero's job.

Allowing Collett to stand anywhere, given the amount of self-generated dirt he has accumulated over the years, seems at best foolhardy and at worst somebody's idea of sick joke. If ever there was a sitting duck candidate with a very large bull's eye painted on his backside, Collett is assuredly that candidate

Prone to giving barely comprehensible speeches that cause BNP meetings to turn into mass sleepathons, Collett is so widely disliked on the far right we've been hearing persistent rumours that his own shadow is seeking a legal separation.

The Nazi Boy, with Sheffield connections so tenuous even the most powerful electron microscope would have difficulty picking them out, declaims that "the BNP is the only viable option in Brightside and Hillsborough", where Collett will attempt to unseat cow dodging roué David Blunkett - an event so unlikely that as yet undiscovered tribes in the Amazon jungle have inadvertently wiped themselves out as they died splitting their sides on hearing the news.

Collett thinks it's most unsporting that people will keep raking up memories of his solo tour de force in the Young, Nazi and Proud documentary, saying "The issues have moved on and people aren't interested in what I may have said or not said seven or eight years ago."

If only that were true, but the bad news for the Nazi Boy is that Sheffield people are deeply interested in what he did say back in 2002, being a number of absorbing Collettian theories and observations along the lines of Churchill bad, Hitler good, and the Sheffield Telegraph has dug out a whole slew of former BNP voters who would rather not have a mumbling Hitler fan barely out of short trousers going off to tell the Commons what a c*nt Churchill was:
One reader from Rotherham said: "I am a BNP supporter – I have been for the last couple of years and I am not ashamed to admit it either – but I am glad I have not stayed in Sheffield if this is the sort of man we will have standing for the next election."

A Crystal Peaks resident said: "I have voted BNP before but I won't do again if this individual is standing in the Sheffield area. His views of Hitler are wrong, and he is not a local person so how can he know what the voters round here want?"

A Sheffield man said: "I would vote for anyone against Blunkett – but the BNP have shot themselves in the foot here. They should have had someone local with knowledge of local problems. Not this man.
Putting Mark Collett up for election must have seemed like a good idea to somebody, somewhere, sometime, but setting his GPS for Sheffield and sending him down the M1 to certain humiliation at the hands of, well, just about everybody, really, is of the same order as rolling a snowball into Hell with expectations of growing it into a polar ice-cap. That somebody either has a very nice sense of humour or the finely honed political instincts of a mildew spore.

Little Bob Bailey Blues

Of course, the master strategist behind the Nazi Boy's candidature might have been in a condition of deep inebriation when inspiration struck, inebriation being so much favoured among BNP celebrities there are suspicions that some of their number were once perfectly normal people who one night popped into the local for a quick half, got in with the wrong company, and lurched out many hours later clutching titles like BNP Member of the Greater London Assembly and Leader of the BNP Opposition on Barking and Dagenham Council, while nurturing serious alcohol problems.

Bob Bailey, or "Little Bob" as he is known to his affectionate anti-fascist fans, is no stranger to the odd pint or two, followed by another odd pint or two, the diminutive but very human-like semi-professional drinker currently serving out an 18 month driving ban after refusing a breath test when the police caught him driving without lights.

It was at night, too, which only made things worse in the eyes of the boys in blue, but Little Bob wasn't fooled for a moment, claiming his arrest and prosecution were part of "a conspiracy against me, my party and the indigenous people of this country", thus introducing us to the novel concept of the politically motivated driving offence, pootling about Romford without lights and refusing to blow into the bag presumably counting as acts of patriotic defiance against the ever-watchful eyes of whoever it is who ever watches Little Bob.

A court appointed doctor was tasked with the fearful mission of appraising Little Bob's state of mind, and the news wasn't good. The heroic medic said that Barking and Dagenham Council's Leader of the Opposition suffered a "possible personality disorder" which made him suspicious of police officers, a condition more commonly associated with burglars, deserting BNP servicemen who maintain dodgy Facebook pages, the inhabitants of the VNN England forum, and other B-list members of the Crimewatch supporting cast.

The man was "paranoid", said the doctor.

With their friend's health at such a fragile pass it might be thought that those around Little Bob, those who love him, care for him, and steady him when he wobbles, would tread carefully lest they pushed the newly-coined pedestrian over the edge, but poor Bob discovered that the BNP's leadership has no more care for him than it has for a Haitian earthquake victim - for, as he loudly moaned, nobody told him that Dicky Barnbrook's displacement as the BNP's Barking candidate by a carpet-bagging Nick Griffin meant his own demotion from Leader to Deputy Leader of the BNP group on Barking and Dagenham Council, in favour of fellow Bacchanalian Barnbrook.

"They are not telling me anything anymore," gloomed Little Bob when asked who was going to stand against Jon Cruddas in Dagenham, a candidacy he thought was his.

There are probably too many Barnbrooks in London to go around, if you ask Bob Bailey, the cruel irony being that one of the things they weren't telling the little chap was that yet another Barnbrook had been slotted into the Dagenham sinecure.

This is Michael Barnbrook, apparently no relation to his brown-suited namesake, the "sleeze-buster" (sic) who has allegedly (according to the BNP) "exposed more corrupt politicians in Westminster than any other person". How the BNP's latest superhero accomplished these feats of detection we cannot fathom, since, like everybody else, we were forced to rely on the almost hourly revelations coming from the Daily Telegraph. Where Barnbrook got his information from has us stumped, and no mistake. It's a real puzzle, as Martin Reynolds might say when working out which shoe goes on which foot.

The announcement of Michael Barnbrook's candidature naturally brought forth the praises of the BNP's online army of well-wishers and bad spellers, a curiously naive bunch positively swooning at the "sensational" news in a treacly gush of sickly-sweet messages predicated on the apparent certainty that the "sleeze" busting nemesis of 150 corrupt MPs will consign Jon Cruddas to deserved oblivion.

Amid all the masturbatory glee and mountains of discarded tissue paper however stands the forlorn figure of poor Little Bob Bailey, ill-used, smarting over the final words of the BNP announcement - a flat statement that Richard Barnbrook is "the prospective BNP leader of Barking and Dagenham Council".

How that must cut to the very marrow of one who has served the cause of the BNP and alcohol consumption so unswervingly as Little Bob.

And if the man is down in his cups, who can blame him if he reaches for the bottle a little more often than is usual? Who can blame him if he turns up to greet Sir Trevor Brooking and the Royal Anglian Regiment "a little worse for wear", "under the influence" and "in no fit state" at a showcase Barking and Dagenham event?

Certainly not erstwhile friend Richard Barnbrook, so recently told to "shut up" by Bailey at a council meeting.

Gallantly, Barnbrook told reporters that "in my presence he seemed perfectly fine" - but then, since Barnbrook spends so much of his own life under the influence, he would, wouldn't he?

January 29, 2010

Anti-fascist assaulted outside BNP court case

11 Comment (s)
Simon Assaf (centre) is dragged away by two of Griffin's group (Pic: Fil Kaler)
An anti-fascist was assaulted outside the central London county court on Thursday while protesting against Nazi British National Party (BNP) leader Nick Griffin. Griffin was in court because he had missed the deadline to scrap the fascist BNP’s “whites only” membership policy.

Two of Griffin’s group grabbed anti-fascist demonstrator Simon Assaf around the throat and head. His glasses were crushed into his face and he was left with cuts around his eyes. Simon was part of a protest organised by Unite Against Fascism outside the court.

Simon Assaf had to go to hospital to have cuts around his eyes attended to (Pic: Fil Kaler)
He told Socialist Worker, “We wanted to show our contempt for Griffin’s racist views. He came out of the court to make a statement to the press. I moved forward shouting ‘You dirty racist’. Some of Griffin’s group went for me. They tried to drag me away so that Griffin could speak to the press uninterrupted. But protesters managed to drown him out.”

Griffin scuttled away quickly by car.

Simon had to go to hospital to have the cuts around his eyes attended to. He added, “We did nothing wrong. Griffin has been found guilty of Holocaust denial and has been tried for inciting race hatred. The BNP thinks it can attack and injure people who are exercising their right to protest. If it does this in front of the press, I hate to think what it when no one is watching.”

The judge gave the BNP a further two weeks to amend its constitution before facing a possible court injunction.

Socialist Worker

BNP man barred from council ceremony – Labour says he was drunk, he denies it

7 Comment (s)
Bob Bailey, the BNP’s London organiser and leader of the opposition on Barking council, was turned away last night from a ceremony conferring the freedom of the borough on the footballer Sir Trevor Brooking and the Royal Anglian Regiment. He had been due to speak at the event.

That much is common ground – but the reasons are heavily contested. The council’s ruling Labour group has issued a press release claiming that at the reception preceding the ceremony, Cllr Bailey was “worse for wear” and “under the influence.”

The deputy leader of the council, Robert Little, who was at the event, claimed Cllr Bailey was “clearly under the influence of alcohol and was in no fit state to deliver any speech. In all my time as a councillor I have never seen anyone behave in such a way,” he said. “It was embarrassing.”

Cllr Bailey himself, contacted today, flatly denied that he had been drinking and said the claims about his behaviour were “total rubbish.” He told me: “You know the BNP are against the war in Afghanistan and I was barred from attending the event because they were worried I would say something against the war.”

Richard Barnbrook, the BNP’s London leader and another Barking councillor, also present for part of the event, said: “Somebody mentioned it to me when [Bob] was leaving, saying he seemed to be a little bit drunk, but in my presence he seemed perfectly fine.”

Whatever the truth of the matter, it’s the first skirmish in what is likely to be a very tough struggle between the BNP and Labour at the forthcoming council elections in May. Though media attention in Barking will focus on the parliamentary battle between BNP leader Nick Griffin and Labour’s Margaret Hodge, the real contest may be for the council. Last time, had the BNP put up candidates in every ward, it would probably have taken control of the council. Labour is fighting back, but it knows that still remains a possibility.


Internet racism pair lose appeal

1 Comment (s)
Two men have lost their appeals against the UK's first conviction for inciting racial hatred via a foreign website

Simon Sheppard, 51, was sentenced to four years and 10 months, and Stephen Whittle, 42, to two years and four months at Leeds Crown Court in July. However, the Court of Appeal has reduced Sheppard's sentence by one year and Whittle's jail term by six months.

Sheppard, from Selby, North Yorks, and Whittle, of Preston, Lancs, controlled US websites featuring racist material. During their first trial in 2008, they skipped bail and fled to California, where they sought asylum claiming they were being persecuted for their right-wing views, but were deported.

The police investigation began after a complaint about a leaflet called "Tales of the Holohoax", which was pushed through the door of a Blackpool synagogue and traced back to a post office box in Hull registered to Sheppard. Published material found later included images of murdered Jews alongside cartoons and articles ridiculing ethnic groups.

The pair were charged under the Public Order Act with publishing racially inflammatory material, distributing racially inflammatory material and possessing racially inflammatory material with a view to distribution.

Sheppard, of Brook Street, Selby, was found guilty of 16 offences and Whittle, of Avenham Lane, Preston, was found guilty of five. Sentencing them, Judge Rodney Grant said he had rarely seen material which was so abusive and insulting. Sheppard's counsel Adrian Davies told the Appeal Court the sites were "entirely lawful" in the US. He said that there was no evidence that anyone in England and Wales - except for the police officer in the case - had ever seen any of them.

Giving the Court of Appeal ruling, Lord Justice Scott Baker said the material had been available to the public despite the fact that the evidence went no further than establishing that one police officer downloaded it. He said the trial judge had been right to hold that he had jurisdiction to try the pair because much of the activities constituting the crime took place in England. However, although the Appeal Court judges agreed that "this was truly pernicious material", the sentences handed down had been excessive.


BNP given last chance to make equality change to constitution

3 Comment (s)
Far-right party told to address its entry criteria at extraordinary general meeting next month or face legal consequences

The British National party was warned tonight that it had one last chance to scrap its constitution or face legal action under equality laws. Its leader, Nick Griffin, was told at a Central London county court session that new rules must be agreed at an extraordinary general meeting to be held next month. The judgment saw BNP officials forced to rush out letters to members to alert them to the proposed changes.

The Equality and Human Rights Commission, which challenged the whites-only membership criteria last year, said the changes proposed still fell foul of equality laws. John Wadham of the EHRC said the amended version, which refers repeatedly to "indigenous British", displayed indirect discrimination as opposed to direct discrimination. "It is not that much of an improvement," he said.

Judge Paul Collins said: "I'm going to give the BNP an opportunity to have its EGM and take into account what has been said today and get it right. I do not think there will be another opportunity to get it right. This is it." He also ordered the BNP to pay the £12,500 in court costs relating to the adjourned session.

A BNP spokesman Simon Darby said the party would have to "emasculate its constitution and drop its policies and principles" to comply with the court's wishes. "This is a deadly serious attempt to put us out of business," said Darby.

Simon Assaf, 41, from Unite Against Fascism, said he was grabbed round the throat and kicked after shouting "dirty racist" at Griffin outside the court. Darby said BNP members had the right to protect themselves when attacked if the police failed to intervene.


January 28, 2010

Hitler admirer's bid to be city MP

19 Comment (s)

Mark Collett shows us what a Hitlerite twat he can be when he tries
A senior British National Party activist - who has previously expressed admiration for Adolf Hitler - is standing for parliament in Sheffield.

Mark Collett, aged 29, was selected by the far-right party to stand against Labour MP David Blunkett in Brightside and Hillsborough, along with three others who will contest Attercliffe, Heeley, and Penistone and Stocksbridge.

Grammar-school educated Mr Collett is the most senior of the four, as BNP director of publicity and a former chairman of the party's youth wing. His views - which include stating Hitler would 'live for ever' - were today condemned by Sheffield politicians from all three mainstream parties.

Former Home Secretary Mr Blunkett said: "The announcement of this fascist's candidature on Holocaust Memorial Day is demonstration enough, if it were ever needed, of the obnoxious, deeply offensive and dangerous character of these people - who are not only in denial but are seeking to inflict their poison on the people of Sheffield.

"We will be revealing over the next three months the appalling and outrageous views of this individual, much of which is an insult to those who have given their lives in defending this country and who find his views on Hitler abhorrent. In this election, in the new, expanded constituency, every vote really will count."

Mr Collett - who took 1,200 votes in Leeds Central at the last election - told The Star: "I'm coming to Sheffield because the BNP is the only viable option in Brightside and Hillsborough. Sheffield people don't want the Tories, and we are the only alternative to Labour in many parts of the city."

Mr Collett's views were exposed in Channel 4 documentary Young, Nazi And Proud in 2002, when he was secretly filmed saying "Hitler will live forever" and said of British black people: "Just because a dog is brought up in a stable doesn't make it a horse."

Millions of people watched the recording of him saying: "I honestly can't understand how a man who has seen the inner-city hell of Britain today can't look back on that era of Hitler's Germany with a certain nostalgia and think, 'yeah, those people marching through the streets and all those happy people in the streets, saluting and everything, was a bad thing'."

The Star

Stetchford soldier in "Nazi" picture storm admits being in BNP

7 Comment (s)
BNP soldier Anthony Phipps still AWOL
A runaway Birmingham soldier condemned as a “Nazi” broke his silence to insist he would give himself up within days

BNP member Anthony Phipps, aged 21 and from Stechford, went on the run after being accused of having a tattoo in honour of the Third Reich and of making Sieg Heil-style salutes in internet pictures. Despite criticism of his political views, Phipps insisted: “I’m not a racist or a Nazi.”

Speaking as he laid low in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, the Iraq veteran added: “I do follow the BNP, that I don’t deny. But I didn’t join it to be racist. I can’t go back to the Army because I feel threatened.”

Phipps, a member of 3 Mercian Regiment (Staffs), said he fled his barracks in Fallingbostel, Germany, last weekend after a Sunday newspaper revealed pictures of his “Nazi tattoo”, which was originally posted on social networking website Facebook. He was also being hunted by Military Police officers and the Ministry of Defence urged him to give himself up. Phipps said he would hand himself over to the authorities within days. But he claimed the coverage he had received had made it “impossible” to return to his military duties.

“They’ve put me at risk and my family,” he said.

Phipps’s sister Andrea, a 24-year-old mum-of-two, said the picture of him appearing to make Nazi salutes was taken out of context.

She said: “He’s far from a Nazi. The photo was taken at his grandma’s funeral. They were pointing to a picture of his grandma. So what if he is a member of the BNP? He has every right to express his views. He’s a soldier fighting for his country and people are stabbing him in the back. It’s not fair.”

But Hall Green Labour MP Steve McCabe said: “Membership of the BNP is inconsistent with the values of the British Armed Forces. Army personnel are supposed to uphold the values of the Crown and the BNP’s views conflict with those.”

An MoD spokesman said Army personnel were allowed to join political parties as long as their membership did not “conflict with core values and standards”. The spokesman added: “Members of the Armed Forces are entitled to their beliefs provided their practice does not conflict with the Services’ core values and standards. Soldiers who are AWOL are urged to contact their units and to make arrangements to return to military service of their own accord.

“Advice is available from the Services Confidential Support Line – 0800 731 4880. Safeguards have been put in place to ensure those arrested are treated in a sensitive manner. There are many reasons why service personnel go absent and all absentees are afforded Army welfare and duty of care provisions upon return.”

Birmingham Mail

Media and politicians 'fuel rise in hate crimes against Muslims'

7 Comment (s)
Report blames 'Islamophobic, negative and unwarranted portrayals of Muslim London' for increase in attacks in the capital

A rise in the number of hate crimes against Muslims in London is being encouraged by mainstream politicians and sections of the media, a study written by a former Scotland Yard counter-terrorism officer, published yesterday, says.

Attacks ranging from death threats and murder to persistent low-level assaults, such as spitting and name-calling, are in part whipped up by extremists and sections of mainstream society, the study says. The document – from the University of Exeter's European Muslim research centre – was written by Dr Jonathan Githens-Mazer and former special branch detective Dr Robert Lambert.

"The report provides prima facie and empirical evidence to demonstrate that assailants of Muslims are invariably motivated by a negative view of Muslims they have acquired from either mainstream or extremist nationalist reports or commentaries in the media," it says.

Lambert headed Scotland Yard's Muslim contact unit, which helped improve relations between the police and Britain's Islamic communities. The unit won praise from even long-standing critics of the police, and Lambert was awarded an MBE. The study mentions no newspapers or writers by name, but alleges that the book Londonistan, by the Mail writer Melanie Phillips, played a part in triggering hate crimes.

"Islamophobic, negative and unwarranted portrayals of Muslim London as Londonistan and Muslim Londoners as terrorists, sympathisers and subversives in sections of the media appear to provide the motivation for a significant number of anti-Muslim hate crimes," it says.

In his foreword, the rightwing journalist Peter Oborne writes: "The constant assault on Muslims from certain politicians, and above all in the mainstream media, has created an atmosphere where hate crimes, ranging from casual abuse to arson and even murder, are bound to occur and are even in a sense encouraged by mainstream society."

The report is based on interviews with witnesses to and victims of hate crimes, as well as police officers and former members of extremist organisations such as the British National Party. The report cites interviews with rightwing extremists to try to prove a link between what is published in the mainstream media and the anti-Muslim views held by extremists.

It says: "An experienced BNP activist in London explains that he believes that most BNP supporters simply followed the lead set by their favourite tabloid commentators that they read every day. When these commentators singled out Muslims as threats to security and social cohesion, he says that it was perfectly natural for BNP supporters to adopt the same thinking."

The report says the extreme right are directing their violence more against Muslims than black or Asian Britons.

"Interviewees with long experience of extremist nationalist street violence in London are unequivocal in their assessment that Muslim Londoners are now a prime target for serious violence and intimidation in the way that Londoners from minority ethnic communities once were," it says.

"Similarly, interviewees with experience of London street gangs that have no connection or affinity with extremist nationalist politics are adamant that Muslims have become prime targets for serious attacks. In addition, well-informed interviewees are clear that the main perpetrators of low-level anti-Muslim hate crimes are not gangs but rather simply individuals from a wide range of backgrounds who feel licensed to abuse, assault and intimidate Muslims in terms that mirror elements of mainstream media and political comment that became commonplace during the last decade."

The report says the attacks come in part from street gangs targeting Muslims as punishment for members who have embraced Islam and left gang culture.

"Often, they know someone who has left their scene and become a devout Muslim," the document, which also drew on interviews with youth workers dealing with gangs, says. "That is like a defection. And whether they do or don't, they say they know this or that terrorist who used to be a great person till he joined the Muslims."

The report also says gang members believe Muslims values "oppose everything these kids aspire to. Flash cars, nightclubs, expensive clothes, jewellery, drugs, alcohol, casual sex, glamour, dancing, music ...".

The study says the majority of hate crimes involve low-level incidents and are not reported to police. Most officers are committed to tackling anti-Muslim hate crimes seriously, but are undermined by a few colleagues who are not. But the study warns: "Anti-Muslim hate crimes have not been afforded the same priority attention [that] government and police have invested in racist hate crimes."

The report is dedicated to Yasir Abdelmouttalib, a PhD student who was left brain-damaged after a gang of youths attacked him in London, striking him over the head with a stick, as he made his way to a mosque while wearing Islamic clothing.

It cites other cases of rightwing extremists preparing hate campaigns and of serious attacks on Muslims in Britain.

These included: "Neil Lewington, a violent extremist nationalist convicted in July 2009 of a bomb plot; Terence Gavan, a violent extremist nationalist convicted in January 2010 of manufacturing nail bombs and other explosives, firearms and weapons; a gang attack in November 2009 on Muslim students at City University; the murder in September 2009 of Muslim pensioner, Ikram Syed ul-Haq; a serious assault in August 2007 on the Imam at London Central Mosque; and an arson attack in June 2009 on Greenwich Islamic Centre."

The study focuses on anti-Muslim violence in London, with its authors saying they will produce one covering the whole of the UK by this summer.


January 27, 2010

Holocaust survivors' stories

2 Comment (s)
Polish Jews being moved out of the Warsaw ghetto by SS troops in April 1943
As the number of survivors in the UK dwindles to 5,000, Stuart Jeffries commemorates Holocaust Memorial Day by hearing the stories six of them have to tell

Sixty-five years ago tomorrow, the largest Nazi killing camp, Auschwitz-Birkenau, was liberated by the Soviet army. The Holocaust Day Memorial Trust will celebrate the anniversary of that event. So what, you might be thinking. Another anniversary, another wall of newsprint. What, really, is the point of continuing to commemoratesomething that happened a lifetime ago? There are three good reasons. One is, as all the survivors of the Holocaust I interviewed told me, that the slogan "Never again" has become a sick joke, degraded by the genocides in Cambodia (1975-79), Bosnia (1992), Rwanda (1994) and Darfur (2003- today). We have learned too little and let people die en masse not for what they did but for who they were – just as happened in the Nazi death camps.

Second reason: this is one of the last years we are going to have many Holocaust survivors in Britain to share with us what they went through. The Holocaust Day Memorial Trust estimates there are 5,000 survivors left in the UK. It's urgent that we hear their – often incredible – stories before they die. When the war in Europe ended on 8 May 1945, there were 200,000 Jewish Holocaust survivors, according to one source (Zoe Waxman's 2006 book Writing the Holocaust, Oxford University Press).

But Jews weren't the only victims, nor the Holocaust's only survivors: the Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, for instance, defines Holocaust survivors as "any persons, Jewish or non-Jewish, who were displaced, persecuted or discriminated against due to the racial, religious, ethnic, social and political policies of the Nazis and their collaborators between 1933 and 1945. In addition to former inmates of concentration camps, ghettos and prisons, this definition includes, among others, people who were refugees or were in hiding." The museum has a registry that includes more than 196,000 records related to survivors and their families. Any estimate of the number of Holocaust survivors immediately after the war, though, is likely to be wrong, not least because no one then had as their first priority counting up the number of people who survived the death camps.

Third reason: many of the survivors I spoke to, while hopeful for Britain's future, drew parallels between the Nazi Holocaust and the way ethnic minorities are treated in the UK today. As Carly Whyborn, chief executive officer of the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust, says: "Britain is not Nazi Germany in the 1930s. It is not Pol Pot's Cambodia. But on Holocaust Memorial Day we can pause to look at how we treat those around us. We can all make the choice to challenge exclusion when we see it happening – we can choose to stop using language that dehumanises others and we can stop our friends and family from dehumanising and excluding ­others." Otherwise, it might be added, we haven't really learned the lessons of the Holocaust or later genocides.

Memories of the Holocaust: Zigi Shipper
Memories of the Holocaust: Harry Spiro
Memories of the Holocaust: Sabina Miller
Memories of the Holocaust: Ben Helfgott
Memories of the Holocaust: Martin Stern
Memories of the Holocaust: Kitty Hart-Moxon


HMD Trust
Holocaust Memorial Day events in your area

January 26, 2010

Royal British Legion ban BNP meeting in Leighton - BNP fury at cancellation

7 Comment (s)
Right-wing extremists have hit out at a move by Tory MP Andrew Selous to scrap a controversial meeting of the British National Party that was due to be held at Leighton's Royal British Legion Club tomorrow night. Mr Selous, MP for South West Beds, took action after being swamped by complaints from old soldiers who were horrified that their premises were to be used for a political rally.

The local branch of the BNP had hoodwinked the club's secretary Eileen Johnson by booking the West Street Hall under the name British Heritage. It wasn't until yesterday (Monday) that Mr Selous, a member of the club, discovered the real identity of the group, and stepped in to ask the charity to cancel the date.

Mrs Johnson said: "The hall was booked under a lady's name. I knew it was a political group but not that it was the BNP. As soon as I heard we cancelled them. We don't want those sort of people here. Our members wouldn't be at all happy."

In recent months the party has been actively campaigning and recruiting in Leighton-Linslade and the surrounding villages. The meeting on Wednesday night was to introduce three prospective parliamentary candidates to local people.

Mr Selous said: "The British Legion were tricked into taking the booking and I'm worried that people will still turn up thinking the meeting's on. I have had complaints from people who fought fascism in the Second World War and the British Legion isn't prepared to give fascism promotion in any way.

"I recognise that we live in a free society and we are entitled to free speech but the BNP is not a main stream party and they hold extreme views. A BNP meeting in the Royal British Legion Club is not something we want in this town."

Shelly Rose, who was organising the meeting, was furious at Mr Selous' intervention and said that a meeting would still be held. "It is absolutely outrageous. It is Andrew Selous who is acting like a fascist. He won't allow anyone else express their opinions. I'm really angry about this. Make no mistake we will have our meeting but we'll hold it elsewhere.

"This was going to be a low key meeting. There was nothing mysterious or sinister about it. We were going to be discussing the up and coming general election and have three prospective candidates address the meeting. It's Mr Selous who is being heavy-handed about this. It is perfectly fitting for us to hold a meeting in the British Legion. We are the only party opposed to the Iraqi/Afghanistan war and the only party that's patriotic and standing up for our soldiers."

A spokesman for the BNP's national headquarters, slammed the MP's intervention as "undemocratic".

He said: "We are a recognised political party with elected representatives but in some areas we are forced to book venues under an assumed name because of local reaction. In other areas we are completely open and up front about it and accepted. The reaction of certain people is not our fault. It's unfair and undemocratic to ban our meetings. Many of our members are ex-servicemen and the British Legion should be more patriotic and less political."

Leighton Buzzard Online

Violent English Defence League thugs attack lone Police Officer

11 Comment (s)

The EDL constantly say immigrants should respect "our laws", and, guess what... they're right! Why is it then that the EDL refuse to respect our laws themselves?

This video shows a copper (in the yellow hi-vis tunic) being knocked over during a surge of EDL protestors in Stoke on Jan 23. That might have been a genuine accident, but how did these brave law-abiding patriots respond? They punched, kicked and stamped on someone when he was down. One protestor (in the brown jacket) defended the copper while other EDL supporters steamed in to continue the attack - an attack on someone who happens to be a member of the same police force we rely on to protect us from the terrorists the EDL set themselves up to "oppose".

If these idiots had been defending themselves against an unprovoked police attack that might have been fair, but in fact the EDL draw their core support from networks of football hooligans who define their lifestyles around a love of violent crime, so it's hardly surprising people who sing songs celebrating 1960s cop-killer Harry Roberts are totally hypocritical when they talk about respecting British law. No surprise then that EDL co-founder Paul Ray praises the terrorist and mass-murderer Johnny "Mad Dog" Adair and that EDL protestor "Wigan Mike" Heaton was arrested for inciting the murder of Jews in a major police anti-terror sting.

What did the EDL Stoke protest achieve? It tied-up 600 police officers for an entire shift, who could have spent those 4,000-odd man-hours being deployed against terrorism and fighting crime!

Video courtesy of The43Group
Text courtesy of bnpinfo

Thanks to CY2290 for the heads-up.

January 25, 2010

Neo-Nazi Mom Seeks New Line of Work

4 Comment (s)
It’s been a while since April Gaede’s teenage daughters appeared as the racist pop-singing duo Prussian Blue, but the former neo-Nazi stage mom is planning to keep busy with a new vocation: white-power matchmaker.

Eager to see white folks reproduce, Gaede is touting her services on Stormfront.org, the leading white supremacist Web forum. “I am willing to act as a go between, researcher, matchmaker, older sister and guide for any WNs [white nationalists] who are looking for a WN spouse,” she wrote earlier this month. “Only email me if you are serious about finding a spouse or long term partner.”

Gaede, who lives in Kalispell, Mont., is currently offering her expertise for free. “I have racial contacts throughout the US as well as the world,” she wrote in a follow-up posting. “I am planning to create a more secure and successful way for WNs to meet by creating a screening process, starting with a questionnaire. I feel that with my name recognition and my involvement in WNism I will be able to give confidence to the participants and help create a safe way for us to meet and create new families.”

Gaede, 43, even shared her own story of finding true love. “I was 37 with two children when my husband Mark [Harrington] and I met,” she wrote. “In any other circumstances we might have been an unlikely pair, a city boy who plays hockey and a country girl who trained horses. But because of our ideological similarities and our mutual concern about the future of our race we have much more in common than the average couple today.”

She didn’t have such good luck with her first husband, the father of the twin daughters she propelled to international stardom in white-power circles. At 20, Gaede married Kris Lingelser, whom she described as a pot-smoking Icelandic pole vaulter. Although he made for good “Aryan” breeding stock, she claims that their relationship turned violent; they were divorced in the mid-‘90s. Gaede has said her one regret is “the many years that I lost in which I could have produced four to six more children with that ideal eugenic quality that [Lynx and Lamb] possess.”

By 2005, the then-12-year-old twins were wowing white supremacist audience with their sieg heiling and shrill odes to white survival. The following year, after an immense amount of press attention to the twins’ Prussian Blue performances, Gaede and Lingelser clashed in court over custody of their daughters. Lingelser said he’d changed and wanted to remove his children from the racist influence of his former wife. A judge allowed Gaede to retain custody, though Lingelser did get limited visitation rights. While the twins continued their singing act for a couple of years, a 2007 documentary shows them tiring of their mother’s overbearing ways.

In addition to micro-managing her daughters’ musical act, Gaede has boasted of scoring free merchandise by distracting clerks at chain stores. She once rode a horse through town almost naked as part of a radio promotion. And in 2007, she arranged for the body of white nationalist hero David Lane to be transported from a federal prison in Indiana — where he was serving a 190-year sentence in connection with the murder of Jewish talk show host Alan Berg — to her home in Montana. Lane’s cremated remains were apportioned among 14 miniature pyramids, one for each of the “14 Words” — a racist creed Lane authored. The pyramids were supposed to go to 14 white nationalist women, but it wasn’t long before Gaede and others were bitterly feuding over Lane-related matters.

It remains to be seen whether Gaede’s foray into matchmaking will be more successful, but judging from comments on Stormfront, there’s plenty of interest in her latest venture. Wrote one poster: “I need a match to help me light some fires — figuratively speaking, of course.”


Private Hire Cars Suspend Service In City Centre, Store Takings Down And Council Clean Up Begins After EDL Violence

19 Comment (s)
Most of the large private hire car companies suspended service in and around the city centre on Saturday night after verbal threats aimed at their drivers by groups of right-wing extremists. The threat of continued violence was so great, that the police gave out a warning to the companies and their drivers.

It seems that some firms also got phone calls from people threatening violent acts against any Asian drivers suspected of being Muslim. One of the companies targeted was Auto Cab Private Hire, working out of Normacot . They had threatening calls over the phone, in the end the company manager, Basharat Hussein , made the decision to stop cars in the area because of the safety of his staff and customers.

Another firm, City Centre Private Hire suspended service after a call from a sergeant at Tunstall police station warning them not to go out, and that work in Cobridge was also dangerous. Other firms such as Magnum in Burslem and Lucky Seven of Longton also stopped running.

Many shops and stores in the city centre closed early as lack of trade made it the worst day many of them had ever had, some reporting takings down as much as 90%. Many of the Fountain Square stalls packed up as early 2pm. Council work began soon after the protest ended and continued though Saturday night and into the early hours of Sunday to clear the debris.

Pits 'n' Pots

The EDL: not racist, violent or BNP-linked?

17 Comment (s)

EDL say they support British laws and that they're not racist or connected to the BNP, but after the EDL demo in Stoke on 23 Jan 2010, EDL supporters "dispersed" into side-streets to break windows and attack cars owned by Stoke residents. EDL co-founder and convicted knife criminal Jeff Marsh filmed the police ID-ing him by name (0:02 "Jeff Marsh, turn round and go back") and then filmed EDL supporters chanting "BNP, BNP, BNP" (0:26).

Police then chased the EDL into a nearby park where EDL accused police officers of being "Paki loving bastards" (0:35), "Fucking cunts", and one officer of being a "wanker" and "Fucking paki lover"

Video courtesy of bnpinfo

We are still in the shadow of the Holocaust

2 Comment (s)
Anti-Semitism is on the rise, which makes memorial day all the more vital, says Michael Gove

This Wednesday we remember the greatest crime ever inflicted by man against his fellow man. Holocaust Memorial Day allows us to reflect on the bleakest chapter in the history of the 20th century. And there is a special urgency in the call to remember this year, of all years - because the shadow of the Holocaust continues to fall over the world today.

Mass murder is still deployed as a political tool by tyrants, from Burma to Zimbabwe. Racism is returning to the streets of Europe, from St Petersburg to Antwerp. And, hard though it is to credit after the horrors of the last century, anti-Semitism is creeping back into the corridors of power.

We know that Nazi ideology still has the power to motivate evil men. From the Swedish fascist who tried to acquire the "Arbeit macht frei" sign which hung over the gates of Auschwitz, to the British fascists of the BNP, there is an ominous resurgence of extremist activity visible across our Continent. It is because we face a new fascist threat, and because the extremism of the BNP is mirrored in the equally toxic ideology of anti-Semitic groups such as Islam4Uk and Hizb-ut Tahrir, that we need, all of us, to make an additional effort to remember how the Holocaust started. And where it ended.

The history of the Holocaust is the history of a society which blamed the Jews for its miseries, sought to push them to the margins and then sought, literally, to make them vanish from sight. In our time we can see the same trends returning. The calls for boycotts of Jewish thinkers at Israeli universities, the rise in anti-Semitic incidents on our streets, the inflamed rhetoric of vilification which culminates in the Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's call to wipe Israel off the map, are all connected.

As the chief rabbi, Lord Sacks, has so presciently pointed out, anti-Semitism is a virus which mutates. Originally it was the Jewish people's religious identity which came under attack, and the Church led a programme of forced conversion. Then, as society replaced religion with science as a source of authority, anti-Semitism mutated so that the Jewish people came under attack on racial grounds. Now it is Jewish identity expressed through the right of Israel to self-determination which is the focus of anti-Semitism. Israel, like any state, makes mistakes. Sometimes grievous ones. But many of Israel's enemies now risk repeating one of the greatest errors of history by infusing anti-Semitism with a new and toxic vibrancy. We see it in some of those who have attached themselves to recent anti-war campaigns, with Britons marching through the streets of London declaring "We are all Hezbollah now" even though Hezbollah is a fascist organisation whose leader is a Holocaust-denier who believes the Jews are "grandsons of apes and pigs". And we also see the apparent mainstreaming of anti-Semitism in comments such as those of a former ambassador who recently objected to the composition of the Iraq inquiry team because two of its members were Jewish.

When prejudice is unleashed in this way we are all affected. As the chief rabbi has pointed out, what starts with the Jews never ends with the Jews. The Nazis targeted gay men and women, Roma, the disabled and Christians of conscience. The BNP are, similarly, as homophobic, Islamophobic and plain, downright racist as they are anti-Semitic.

History teaches us many lessons, if we are willing to pay attention. And one of the most profound is that the best guide to the health of a society has always been how secure its Jewish community feels. Throughout history the freest societies, from 17th-century Holland to 20th-century England, have been those in which Jewish people have felt safest. And over the ages the surest sign that a country is moving away from liberalism has been a growing prejudice towards the Jewish community, whether Vienna a hundred years ago, Germany in the thirties or Russia in the last decade.

It is because that lesson of history is so important that Holocaust Memorial Day is so crucial. And it is because we must ensure the next generation learns those lessons that the work of the Holocaust Educational Trust is so vital. The Trust provides the tools for schools to communicate the lessons of the Holocaust – so that young people can understand the consequences of allowing prejudice to grow. The Trust provides schools with books, maps, images and artefacts from the past as well as a Bafta award-winning production containing the testimonies of survivors. And two students from every school in the country are given the chance to visit Auschwitz and see the site of mankind's most terrible atrocity with their own eyes.

As the survivors of the Holocaust grow older and we face losing their vivid living testimonies, so the risk of forgetting grows stronger, and with it the risk of repeating history's mistakes. That is why the Holocaust Educational Trust's work has never been more necessary, the lessons of history never more relevant and the act of commemoration never more important. Whatever else may divide politicians, the lesson of the last century is that the resurgence of anti-Semitism requires us all to unite against this most poisonous of prejudices.


January 24, 2010

Hardcore Nazis of the EDL

17 Comment (s)
With thanks to Stoke Anti-fascists

The "peace-loving, tree-hugging non-violent non-Nazis" of the EDL (as they would have us believe) poured into Stoke today intent upon chanting racist slogans, making Nazi salutes and wreaking havoc upon another British town centre.

In a city where BNP councillors make up the political microclimate, and football hooligans veer towards the far right, the neo-Nazi thugs of the EDL attended in larger numbers than expected, and anti-racist demonstrators were down on turnouts in Manchester, Leeds and Nottingham.

Christian, Muslim, Jewish and Sikh faith leaders signed a pledge against all forms of racism, ahead of the event on Saturday, and there was an antiracist rally where resilient locals dodged the Redwatch cameras to make there opposition to organised racial hatred known, but given the historical significance of this part of the Midlands, when Oswald Mosley chose to march through the very same place, many anti-fascist individuals felt intimidated to stand up to be counted. Those people who did join the meaningful anti-fascist protest however, were a broad cross-section of society, unlike the monocultural bigoted Islamophobes of the EDL.

Before every "anti-extremist demo", as the far right EDL like to cleverly brand their racist gatherings for the benefit of the press, deceitful public relations supremo and Portsmouth supporter Trevor KKKelway puts out public declarations to his own supporters to "behave nicely", knowing full well that his street army of hardened soccer hooligans, (for all of their anti-immigrant racism, setting up Facebook groups calling for the expulsion of Non-English speakers from hallowed shores of England), their (almost) totally white membership do not understand English.

Dogs bark, cows moo, cuckoos cuckoo, and brainless football hooligans scuffle and fight. The Police described the UAF protesters as being no-problem, however when the Wetherspoons' bevvies had worked their way into the bloodstreams of the EDL thugs, they "turned native", chucking missiles at riot police, attempting to fatally crush policemen and women to death by attempting to turn over a police van, and while chanting endless racist slogans, burst their way through riot shields, trampling several officers underfoot.

So much once again for the lies and spin of the EDL. When will the media stop being "political correct" about the EDL and stop calling a violent drunken gang of English nationalist racist football hooligans "anti-extremist protesters" with pussyfooting regularity. It's time that the media come clean about the hatred and violence of the EDL.

If anarchists such as G20 protesters had clashed with the police in such a way, trying to turn over police vehicles, attempting to cause grievous bodily harm to police officers, World War III would have erupted in the Sun, Daily Mail and the Daily Express, with gargantuan full-font headlines along the lines of "Lawless Anarchy Wrecks City", but when the aggressors are the violent Islamophobic EDL,media reports are predictability muted, which does little to quell rumours that the neo-Nazi organisation are part of a contrived state conspiracy to shore up the War On Terror, and maintain support for the War In Afghanistan.

Several people have commented about the EDL's plans to become a political organisation to take over from the BNP after Old Nick finally pulls the plug from under his comrades feet and switches the lights off. Masquerading as a charity, working in conjunction with the BNP's Soldiers Off The Street charity, the EDL held unlicensed collections of cash for war victims, as the EDL hope to do what the BNP failed to do, infiltrate the British Army.

Politicisation of the British Armed Services sets a dangerous precedent, and the stupid actions of the EDL actually endangers the lives of British soldiers, as as well as fighting Taliban forces across the hills and valleys, they also work with Muslim villagers in matters of security, protecting villagers from violent Taliban insurgencies. If British forces were to be infiltrated with the institutional racism of the EDL, and racist Muslim-hating bigots become commonplace in our armies fighting in Afghanistan, the British Army would be labelled a Crusade.

The crusading theme continually recurs in EDL mythology. The sham "nationalism" of the EDL is a whimsical excuse for old-fashioned racial and religious prejudice, xenophobia and mass ignorance, and contrary to their parroted protestations, the EDL are happy to accommodate their hardcore nazi element. Wigan Mike is the mere tip of the Iceberg.

Attracting national socialists like flies to a fetid dungheap, the crude ignorant loathings of this despicable far right organisation attract no end of racist nutters to their organisation, a fact self-evident from a random surf of not just the uncensored wastelands of Facebook, nor YouTube, but the EDL's very own "live outside broadcast channel".

Take a look at the screenshot taken from "EDL Media", as they so-slickly call their hate-driven moby phone broadcasts.

When extreme racist supporters are permitted to logon calling themselves "COONS OUT", the damning evidence of the EDL's neo-Nazi pedigree speaks for itself...


Soldier of hate

3 Comment (s)

A soldier in Prince Charles' regiment is today exposed as a Nazi fan and BNP supporter.

Anthony Phipps proudly shows off a Nazi tattoo and pictures of SWASTIKAS on his Facebook page. In one snap, he and some pals appear to be making hateful Sieg Heil gestures used to salute Adolf Hitler.

Another shows a tattoo featuring a Nazi Party-style eagle standing on top of a St George Cross. Phipps makes clear his racist beliefs by stating his political views are "BNP".

Although being a BNP member is not banned in the armed forces, it is frowned upon by top brass.

Last night, it was revealed that Phipps has gone AWOL. He is being hunted by Military Police - who on Friday raided an address in the West Midlands - as well as facing a carpeting over his sinister political beliefs.

No one visiting Birmingham-based Phipps' Facebook page is left in any doubt about his vile opinions.

The frontline infantry soldier serves in 3 Mercian Regiment (Staffs), whose Colonel in Chief is Prince Charles. Yet he lists his political beliefs as: "BNP. i.e. Pride, Power and Patriotism. No surrender, EVER." He even set up his own Facebook group in early 2009 asking pals if they would vote for him if he ran for the racist party.

Pictures Phipps has posted on his personal Facebook page are even more sinister. They include photos where he proudly shows off tattoos - one of which incorporates the St George cross with the eagle from the German Nazi Party. Another snap added to the page is a red-on-black Nazi Party crest complete with a swastika at the bottom.

As a soldier in 3 Mercian - formerly known as 1 Staffords - Phipps will have been in Iraq in early 2007.

An MoD spokesman said last night: "We can confirm an investigation concerning a serving soldier is currently under way. The Army does not tolerate racist behaviour and those who are found to fall short of the Army's high standards will be dealt with appropriately."

A senior military source said: "Being a multi-cultural unit, we are horrified and appalled. There is a lot of anger about the shame he has brought upon us all. He's not fit to wear the uniform."

He added: "Phipps was a bit of a loner. He could not be trusted and would always take the easy option."

News of the World

January 23, 2010

BNP man denies 7 charges

8 Comment (s)
David Lucas - yet another lunatic from the BNP
A farmer who is a British National Party activist has denied seven firearms and explosives charges. David Lucas, 49, of South Road, Lakenheath, denied the charges at Ipswich Crown Court.

Lucas, who stood as a BNP Euro-MP last year, denied possession of explosives in suspicious circumstances, possessing an explosive substance without a licence, possessing a prohibited weapon, possessing ammunition with intent to endanger life, two charges of possession of prohibited ammunition and possessing ammunition without a firearms certificate.

Judge David Goodin told Lucas his trial should start on July 26 and last four days.

Lucas was released on bail on condition he lives either at South Road, Lakenheath, or at Black Dyke Farm, Hockwold. His passport will remain with the police and he must have no contact with two named people.

Lucas has previously claimed he made gallows for Third World countries.

Newmarket Weekly News

CPS refuses to reveal details of Nick Griffin's race hate trial

5 Comment (s)
Prosecutors claim releasing information about 1998 case would breach BNP leader's data protection rights

The Crown Prosecution Service is blocking attempts to disclose details about the prosecution of Nick Griffin, the leader of the British National party, for race hate crimes, claiming that to do so would breach his data protection rights.

Griffin was given a suspended prison sentence in 1998 after being convicted of "publishing or distributing racially inflammatory written material", an offence under the 1986 Public Order Act. The following year he was elected leader of the BNP.

The prosecution centred on a magazine edited by Griffin called the Rune, in which he dismissed the Holocaust as a hoax. At the trial he sacked his legal team and, conducting his own defence, attempted to justify the material he had published.

Griffin has been widely reported as dismissing the Holocaust as an "extremely profitable lie" when he gave evidence at Harrow crown court. But no transcript of the hearing was made and the only records about the case are held by the CPS.

Although the trial was heard in open court and ended in Griffin's conviction, the CPS has rejected an request made under the Freedom of Information Act (FoI) for disclosure of information in its files on the grounds that it is "sensitive personal data" that is protected by the Data Protection Act.

In a letter to the Guardian, which submitted the request almost four months ago, the CPS said: "The majority of the information contained in the case papers is personal data.

"A large proportion of this personal data is sensitive personal data because it consists of information as to the commission of an offence and Mr Griffin's political opinions."

On appeal, the CPS last week reiterated its view that Griffin's rights are not outweighed by the public interest in the disclosure of the information.

Only last month the government announced fresh guidelines intended to give the public more information about criminal prosecutions.

Unveiling the guidelines, Alan Johnson, the home secretary, said they were intended "to set straight the misconception that human rights and data protection laws prevent criminals and their punishments from being exposed".

The Guardian is now lodging a complaint with the Information ­Commissioner's Office, which is responsible for final decisions on FoI requests.

The Guardian

January 21, 2010

Ed Balls accused of wooing the anti-immigrant vote

11 Comment (s)
Ed Balls has been accused of wooing the anti-immigrant vote in his new constituency as he fights to remain an MP in the face of a resurgent Conservative Party and one of the highest BNP memberships in the country.

The Tories have made defeating the Schools Secretary a priority, hoping for an upset similar to the ousting of Michael Portillo in 1997 on a 17.4 per cent swing to Labour. The Tories need a 12.3 per cent swing to take Morley and Outwood, which Mr Balls will fight after his current seat, Normanton, is abolished. They believe that they will be helped by declining Labour support over the past 15 years, Mr Balls’s “Marmite” character and improvements in their own campaign.

At the very least, they hope, their efforts will tie down Gordon Brown’s closest adviser during the campaign.

Mr Balls, who is expected to run for the Labour leadership if the party is defeated at the general election, is visiting the West Yorkshire constituency every week. The Unite and Unison unions are helping to fund his campaign and he is arranging ministerial visits to nearby schools, paid for by public money.

But the party arousing the most interest locally is the BNP. Figures, including Keith Robinson, the president of Morley Chamber of Commerce, said that they understand why the far-right candidate is popular.

In response, Mr Balls is taking on local immigration concerns. But he is risking accusations of “dogwhistle politics” for issuing “immigration surveys” to local residents and holding local meetings focused on the issue.

A visit to the constituency by The Times found widespread sympathy for the BNP, despite the small number of foreign immigrants in the area compared with neighbouring Dewsbury, Bradford and Leeds. Many were happy to speak about their admiration for the party’s local tactics.

“I think a lot of people see Chris Beverley (the Morley South BNP councillor running against Mr Balls) as an upright citizen who cares for the issues of the town,” said Mark Robinson, who runs Cucina Café, a bar and restaurant. “He never talks about race and has been very clever about assisting in the town — shopping for elderly people during the snow — which is what people like.” He did not say how he would vote, even though Mr Balls regularly eats in his restaurant.

Mr Balls’s immigration survey, similar to leaflets used by Labour in the West Midlands, works by promoting existing party policy in the form of a questionnaire.

“Do you support the updating of our immigration laws so that migrants who want to settle here must learn to speak English, YES or NO or NOT SURE”, it asks.

Or whether “a probationary period should be passed before they are able to claim state benefits” and if “the Australian points-based system will be good for our area”.

This is balanced with a question asking when immigration is acceptable. “Do you think that people with high levels of skills such as computer specialists, doctors, etc, should be able to come to this country if there are job vacancies that can’t be filled?”

BNP membership information, leaked in 2008, revealed that the Morley area had 90 members of the far-right party, the highest number of any constituency. Morley Town Council has two BNP members.

One senior Tory said that the leaflet was the sign of a “dogwhistle” campaign, comparing it with Michael Howard’s 2005 “Are you thinking what I’m thinking” election campaign.

But Jon Cruddas, the Labour MP for Dagenham, who leads the party’s campaigns against the BNP, defended Mr Balls’s tactics. “The ‘Are you thinking what I’m thinking’ Tory campaign was pernicious because it simply called for an emotive reaction. The right way to campaign against the BNP is to talk about remedies, which this leaflet does,” he said.

“The idea that there are no-go areas, such as immigration, has to be lanced. People have to be reassured you are aware of the issue and you understand the sheer velocity of the change over the last decade.”

Mr Balls has a battle to take the seat, despite a notional majority of 9,784, according to UK Polling Report, after the Tories designated it a battleground seat and sent William Hague to the area for a poster launch.

At the local elections in 2008, Labour came fourth across the five wards in the new seat, trailing the BNP. The result in Stanley and Outwood East, which mostly falls in Normanton, was a particular shock since the Conservatives took the seat directly from Labour.

While plans are being drawn up for David Cameron to hold a “Cameron Direct” meeting, there is little sign of enthusiasm for his brand of conservatism in the area.

Karen Wilson, 45, a part-time waitress, received a call from Mr Cameron. She complained about the discrepancy between the education of her sons, 14 and 12, one of whom goes to a grammar school and the other to a comprehensive.

“He said that education was something they were looking at the moment. But I felt he was not really listening to what I was saying.” She said that she was unlikely to vote Tory again.

Mr Balls’s efficient local office, serving both his future and current constituents, has won plaudits. It is helped by £31,902 given in 2008 by Unison, and £5,000 given last year by Unite.

Michelle Austerfield, a charity helper, said a problem with her benefits was sorted “overnight” by his team.

Mr Balls has even made public spending pledges — promises to Morley businessmen that he will help to open doors with the regional development agency, Yorkshire Forward, for money towards a new nightlife development in the town centre.

But Philip Boyes, an electrician in Leeds who lives in Outwood, said that Mr Balls’s work was a stepping stone for his national ambitions. He was outraged at tales from his wife, who works at the local school, who reported that staff were discouraged from raising problems with Mr Balls, the Schools Secretary, when he visited.

“I will vote Tory because the country has been living beyond its means,” he said. However, he sympathised with those who turned to the BNP. “At the moment if they got in power it would be anarchy. But if they got rid of one or two of their extremist policies they would be electable.”

Mr Robinson, president of Morley Chamber of Commerce, said that he understood why people supported the BNP.

“Their ideas strike a chord in most people’s minds. Their candidate is a personable young chap. But it’s frustrating because you can look back to times when a similar situation (with growing far-right support) happened in Europe and look how that turned out.”


BNP 'facists' target town

8 Comment (s)
The Scottish leader of the country's most notorious political party will target Barrhead voters in this year's General Election in a bid to claim a top political scalp.

The British National Party's (BNP), Gary Raikes [left], will wage a campaign on the town's streets in an attempt to woo Barrhead voters and oust MP Jim Murphy from his seat in Westminster.

The party, led by outspoken MEP Nick Griffin has been slammed for its 'fascist' views, and says that although it does not expect to win the seat, the BNP is determined to stop Murphy from being re-elected and hopes to take around 1,000 votes from the Barrhead politician. This, the party says, would split the vote and allow the Tory candidate to take the seat.

Mr Raikes, who has led the BNP in Scotland since 2007, is keen to kick-off the publicity campaign, which he says will help his party take root in Barrhead. And he is optimistic about his party's chances in the upcoming election.

He said: "I have decided to stand in East Renfrewshire seat as this is held by Jim Murphy MP - the self appointed anti-BNP spokesman in Scotland. It is time voters got to see the true face of the BNP instead of the stereotype nonsense peddled by Murphy. I am pleased to be standing against the Labour Scottish secretary. I very much look forward to sharing a platform with Mr Murphy during the campaign and enlightening him to the truth about today's BNP."

Responding to Mr Raikes announcement, Mr Murphy said: "Its a shame that the leader of the BNP in Scotland is coming here to peddle his poison and in his own words try to help the Tories win this seat. The people of Barrhead won't be fooled by the BNP. The BNP is a fascist party. Their hatred is the kinds that lead to six million being killed in the holocaust. It is trying to look moderate by swapping skinheads for sharp suits, but they are still the same trade union hating and foreigner hating extremists."

The Conservative candidate for East Renfrewshire, Richard Cook, is determined to keep the fight about politics - and not about the publicity surrounding the BNP's decision to field an election candidate. He said: "The BNP is not welcome in East Renfrewshire, [this] is the great place it is because of its diversity. We proudly boast the largest Jewish population in Scotland and one of the fastest growing Muslim populations too. It is not by accident that we live together in peace and harmony - it is because we are a tolerant area with mutual respect for one another and a loathing for the type of politics pedalled by the BNP.

"As the only East Renfrewshire candidate standing at the British General Election to have been at the forefront of the Scotland United Against Racism and Fascism march last November that ran the Scottish and English Defence League's out of Glasgow, I intend to run a campaign that does the same to the BNP in East Renfrewshire."

Barrhead News

Nick Griffin to address US white supremacist conference

12 Comment (s)
BNP leader Nick Griffin will join Ku Klux Klan members, neo-Nazis, holocaust deniers, anti-immigration extremists and eugenicists at the white supremacist American Renaissance conference in Virginia next month

The convicted racist will appear alongside Dan Roodt, author of “Afrikaner Survival Under Black Rule”, David A. Yeagley, author of “What’s Up With Dark Men?”, lawyer to white supremacist groups Sam G Dickson, segregationist Jared Taylor – who believes Martin Luther King “left a legacy of division and resentment” – Raymond Wolters, a ’scientist’ who wishes to conduct experiments into race and IQ, and racist filmmaker Craig Bodeker.

American Resistance, a newsletter published by Taylor, promotes pseudoscientific research which argues that non-whites are genetically and morally inferior; their conference seeks to bring together various right-wing racist people and ideas. Infoshop News adds that:
“The Anti-Defamation League writes that AmRen, “promotes their views by attacking racial, ethnic, and religious diversity, which they call ‘one of the most divisive forces on the planet’ and therefore ‘dangerous’” and that, “many of North America’s leading intellectual racists have written for American Renaissance or have addressed the biennial American Renaissance conferences”.”
A campiagn has been launched to put pressure on the hotel hosting the event to cancel or face a boycott. Yesterday Left Foot Forward reported Griffin’s attempt to use the Haiti earthquake for political gain.

Left Foot Forward

January 20, 2010

Anti-extremist protesters jailed for Luton rampage

7 Comment (s)
Richard Myers and Tony Griffiths were both jailed at Luton Magistrates Court
Four men have been jailed for going on the rampage during a march against Muslim extremists in Luton. The event on 24 May was held after a protest by Muslim demonstrators during a homecoming parade for the Royal Anglian Regiment earlier in the year.

James Butley, 18, of West Sussex, Tony Griffiths, 27 and Simon Hattle, 21, from Luton were jailed for 16 weeks at Luton Magistrates Court. Richard Myers, 21, from Luton was sentenced to 28 weeks in prison.

The "March for England" through Luton town centre last year saw up to 400 people take part in a peaceful protest, police said. But a group broke away and smashed windows at an Asian-owned fast food shop and an Asian man was attacked. Police officers were goaded by a mob who hurled placards at them, the court heard.

CCTV footage was played in the court which showed a small group running across a dual carriageway where they attacked a car containing three Asian men.

District Judge Carolyn Melanby said: "People who behave in this way will lose their liberty."

Three other defendants who were due to be sentenced had their case adjourned because reports were not ready.


BNP to put own seals on ballot boxes over fraud fears

14 Comment (s)
The British National Party is so concerned about fraud at the general election that it intends to place its own seals on ballot boxes. The party fears its opponents will seek to sabotage its aim of winning a seat in Parliament for the first time.

So it has invoked the Ballot Act of 1872, which allows candidates to put their own seals on boxes, in an effort to avert tampering. Independent election officials always seal boxes when polls close.

BNP spokesman John Walker said his party would apply its own seals in the London seats of Barking - where leader Nick Griffin is running - and Dagenham and Rainham. The BNP hopes to do well against incumbent Labour MPs in both contests.

Under escort

The party will consider adding its own ballot box seals in other seats such as Burnley. Mr Walker claimed the decision by many councils to delay general election counts until the day after voting meant there would be greater opportunity for someone to tamper with boxes.

Normally they are taken under escort straight from polling stations to be counted on the evening of the vote.

Mr Walker claimed there had been suggestions in the past that boxes had been opened and BNP votes spoiled or removed, or other parties' votes added. He said: "We know it happens. We just cannot prove it. It is a shame we have to invoke these things. But some council staff are in the pocket of the local Labour party and we suspect they would use any means to tamper with votes."

'Perfectly lawful'

The Ballot Act of 1872 states that "the presiding officer of each station, as soon as is practicable after the close of poll, shall, in the presence of the agents of the candidates, make up (the ballot boxes) into separate packages sealed with his own seal and the seals of such agents of the candidates as desire to affix their seals".

The legislation also introduced the secret ballot for parliamentary elections to prevent voter intimidation by employers and landowners.

The right for candidates to add their own seals has survived repeated reforms of election law, currently regulated by the Representation of the People Act. Parties rarely use this right.

John Turner, chief executive of the Association of Electoral Administrators, said: "This is perfectly lawful in terms of the Representation of the People Act. But to the best of my knowledge and recollection, no other party does this."

A Labour spokesman said: "We are confident that when the general election comes the British people will clearly reject the disgusting politics of the BNP. That will be because their politics are vile and divisive not because of any bizarre paranoia about ballot boxes."


Time for another caption competition...

15 Comment (s)
'I can't believe Lee Barnes actually said that!'
Pig-farmer Griffin has such a lot of problems at the moment - the pending case with the EHRC, a possibility of further action by the Electoral Commission over the dodgy accounts and the fact that he appears to be rapidly turning into one of his own porkers - that we're not entirely surprised to see him show his desperation from time to time. In fact we encourage it, so let's have some captions for this delightful picture of the Welshpool Führer having a moment of middle-aged angst.

January 19, 2010

New charity Soldiers off the Street is a front for BNP, campaign group claims

8 Comment (s)
Nothing British urges Charity Commission to take action

The Charity Commission has been urged to take action against a voluntary organisation that has been accused of being a front for the British National Party.

Soldiers off the Street was set up last year by the BNP's former Welsh secretary Bill Murray to help homeless former service personnel. Nothing British, an anti-extremist group set up by Conservative supporters, claims the group is one of a growing number of forces groups being established or supported by the BNP as a way of gaining popularity.

Maurice Cousins, a researcher at Nothing British, said: "Soldiers off the Street presents itself as a legitimate organisation but doesn't tell people about its BNP links."

Cousins' complaints to the commission have been rejected because Soldiers off the Street is not a registered charity. But it describes itself as a 'charitable organisation' on its Facebook page, which has more than 4,300 friends. "Unless the commission clamps down, it undermines the work of reputable groups," said Cousins.

Murray said his organisation would apply to become a charity when it reached the £5,000 registration threshold. He said he had never denied his BNP past but now had no political affiliations. "We just genuinely want to help," he said.

A commission spokeswoman said it was reasonable for organisations with incomes of less than £5,000 to say they were charitable provided they did not say they were registered charities. She said people with political affiliations could establish charities provided the organisations did not have political purposes. The commission would treat Soldiers off the Street's application "in line with the registration criteria", she said.

Third Sector

The respectable and democratic BNP?

9 Comment (s)
This article was submitted by one of our readers, Roddy Newman. We welcome any contributions from our supporters (as long as those contributions conform to the law and are in reasonably good taste). Please send your articles to us via email.

Despite the BNP's claims that it is now a respectable and democratic political party, its 2009 election candidates and top officials have included people with far from respectable and democratic views.

For example, an article in "The Observer" of May 31, 2009, "Exposed:ugly face of BNP leaders", said of one of its North West region candidates, Gary Aronsson [pictured]: "...Griffin's running mate for the European parliament in the North West, posts an avatar on his personal web page featuring a Nazi SS death's head alongside the statement, "Speak English Or Die!"...He lists his hobbies as "devising slow and terrible ways of paying back the Guardian-reading cunts who have betrayed the British people into poverty and slavery. I AM NOT JOKING."

In an article in the "News of the World" of May 31, 2009, "BNP chief's Facebook race rants", you could read: "...senior election organiser Jeffrey Marshall wrote vicious comments about the death of Tory leader David Cameron's disabled son.

"When challenged that his views made him either a Nazi or a Marxist, he replied: "Nazi for preference.""

It is hardly surprising that the BNP should have picked people with views like these as its 2009 candidates and top officials, because the late founder and first leader of the BNP, John Tyndall, was an admirer of Arnold Leese, the pre-World War 2 Imperial Fascist League leader, who may have inspired the Holocaust, as British fascists living in Nazi Germany, like Unity Mitford, who was Hitler's girlfriend for a while, according to Martin Bright's Channel 4 documentary, "Hitler's British Girl", could conceivably have told Hitler that Leese had long wanted to gas all Jews, who, in the 1930's, the Nazis said that they wanted to deport from Germany, but not kill.

In an article in the "The Jewish Chronicle" of April 22, 2009, "Neo-Nazi leader Colin Jordan's legacy", you could read: "...Arnold Leese, who led the pre-war Imperial Fascist League and as early as 1928 had advocated the gassing of Jews."

To read the articles which I have quoted from, go here, here and here.

January 18, 2010

English Defence League cracks begin to show

7 Comment (s)
The English Defence League was born in 2009, but as we begin 2010 Simon Cressy wonders whether the EDL is about to self-destruct

The year 2009 could be described as a seesaw year for the newly formed English Defence League. Responding to a protest in Luton in March by the extreme Islamist al-Muhajiroun group against troops of the Royal Anglian Regiment returning from the war in Afghanistan, local football hooligans organised a counter-demonstration under the name United People of Luton. They in turn linked up with hooligans associated with a variety of football clubs across the UK.

Using social networking websites such as Facebook as their means of communication, the hooligans concluded that Islamism was a national problem and they had to put aside club rivalries. By the summer the English Defence League had been born and was holding demonstrations across some of the major cities of England, with smaller ones in Wales and Scotland as the embryonic Welsh and Scottish Defence Leagues.

Hands up all you nazi boys: Liam Pinkham (left) and Jerry “Wurzel” Watson
All seemed to be going well for the EDL, but evidence has emerged that splits and divisions are rife within the organisation.

The EDL has always insisted that it is not nazi or racist, even going to the length of holding a sham press conference complete with a pre-planned burning of a swastika flag. However elements in the EDL leadership are quite prepared to accept members of nazi groups as long as they behave themselves, much to the chagrin of more moderate members.

Joel Titus, the violent teenage leader of the EDL’s youth wing, has voiced loud concern, along with several other members of “the inner circle”, over the glib acceptance of known nazis such as Liam Pinkham of the British Freedom Fighters. Pinkham and his mentor Mike Heaton have been regulars at EDL events since Luton. The EDL inner circle has been well aware of this, yet has refused to distance itself from them.

Pinkham received a four-month prison sentence, suspended for two years, with 200 hours’ community service and two years’ supervision back in July after he burst into the News from Nowhere community bookshop in Liverpool and threatened the female owners. Pinkham, from the Wirral, was taking part in a British National Party march through Liverpool city centre at the time. The women, who were justifiably terrified, testified that Pinkham threatened to “burn down the shop”.

This comes on top of Heaton’s arrest in December by the North East Counter Terrorism Unit. Heaton is currently on bail charged with soliciting murder and using threatening, abusive or insulting words likely to stir up racial hatred. That will no doubt stick in the craw of Titus, who is of mixed race and claims Martin Luther King is his hero.

Following a recent demonstration in London, EDL supporters led by Titus clashed with Nazi-saluting Chelsea hooligans, leaving one of the Chelsea fans hospitalised. It is reported that Titus now wears a stab vest in fear of reprisals following threats made on the Stormfront nazi web forum.

A closer look at the EDL inner circle reveals why its members may be reluctant to jettison their nazi friends. One of the global moderators on the EDL internet forum is Sean Corrigan of St Albans. Posting under the moniker “Road Rage”, what Corrigan fails to tell Titus and the more moderate wing of the EDL is that he is a gold member of the BNP.

(left to right) Chris Renton, Joel Titus, Matthew Kaplan and Leisha Brookes
Another in the EDL inner circle is Chris Renton, a BNP activist from Weston-super-Mare, who now appears to be using the online name “John Sheridan” and controls a large number of EDL Facebook groups.

One who recently fell foul of Renton is the veteran Bristol EDL activist Jerry “Wurzel” Watson, whom Renton blacklisted following allegations, strongly denied by Watson, of theft of a charity box. This led Watson to side with Paul Ray, the increasingly flaky self-styled “spiritual” leader of the EDL. Ray has formed his own St George’s Division of the EDL and has titled himself “Grandmaster Ray”, despite being disowned by the official EDL.

Another leading EDL activist now sidelined is the bullish Leisha Brookes. An ever visible member of the EDL, Brookes has led the women’s division and acted as the group’s police liaison officer. However, her abrasive nature is not to everyone’s taste in the EDL. One person in particular who has had numerous clashes with her is Matthew Kaplan, a Jewish student from Seattle who is studying history at King’s College, London.

Kaplan is the paid EDL publications coordinator, responsible for leaflets and press releases. He has been seen at several EDL demonstrations complete with Israeli flag. He has clashed on several occasions on the official EDL Facebook group with Leisha Brookes and her supporters for a number of reasons, mainly because he is an American.

Brookes has declared that she doesn’t trust him and accused him of working for the police. Kaplan revealed that Brookes and her colleagues threatened to attack him if he turned up at the Nottingham EDL event on 5 December.

Other leading EDL members have accused her of posting racist comments on the EDL internet forum. Whatever the truth behind the fallout, Brookes has definitely been removed as the EDL’s police liaison officer and is no longer in charge of the women’s division.

It is believed that the new EDL police liaison officer is none other than Corrigan, the BNP gold card carrying member from St Albans.

Hope not hate