September 30, 2010

Starts Today! A Manly Tale Of Pluck And Derring-Do In The Face Of Unspeakable Beastliness!

13 Comment (s)

Chapter One: Codename - Green Arrow!

“Cripes!” Green Arrow ejaculated, “There's a message coming through!”. “Bertie” Berk and Agent Arrow strained to hear the faint tapping of Morse Code coming through the hissing static of their trusty crystal set. “Can you make it out?” asked Arrow urgently, passing the bakelite headset to Bertie.

“Sound's like “Send... Ammunition?” replied his sturdy sidekick; “Send... A... Musician?”. The two heroic resistance fighters exchanged quizzical glances. Was it code? Had their Controller, the shadowy figure known only as “Agent Cyclops”, adopted a new cypher without telling them, or had the information simply been lost in the last supply drop, along with the oft-promised funds from HQ?

Arrow delicately, and with the practised touch of an expert, tapped the radio rig with the heel of his shoe. The static fell away slightly.

“It's getting clearer”, he said. “Send... A... Alsatian? Dalmatian?”. “Search me, Old Boy” replied Berk, “got any lager?”

The lager, bubbling happily on the Primus stove, had been just about the sole comfort for the brave lads of the Resistance during the long weeks of their confinement at the Nantyglo safehouse, an abandoned shed behind the sewage works. That, and the occasional luxury of a cigarette, cunningly fashioned from tealeaves, acorns and toilet paper.

As Berk poured a chipped enamel mug of the steaming nectar, Arrow continued to alternate between frenziedly hitting the doughty rig with his shoe and tweaking the fragile cat's whisker.

“Kinsman-I'm getting it! Pass me the pen!”

Bertie groaned. The pen – a top secret Resistance-issue ballpoint which (Cyclops had explained, as he sold it to them for twenty guineas) had the cunning function of changing its ink colour instantly whenever the Trained Operative manipulated sliding tabs arranged around the base – was, as ever, in its “special hiding place”.

“Hang on a mo', Old Chap; just finding it.” Berk reached down inside the back of his moleskin trousers and carefully wrested the precious object from its trusty scabbard. After a few moments, beads of sweat dotting his brow, Bertie handed the vital implement to his Comrade.

“You may want to give it a quick wipe.” He said.

Tremulous with excitement at hearing from HQ, Arrow briefly allowed his mind to wander: Was this it? The message all staunch Britons had so long awaited in the dark days of their terror under the iron boot of the ruthless Searchlight Commissariat? The Call to Arms? The beginning of the final titanic struggle that would see all but decent, Christian, heterosexual, heavy-drinking, White Britons driven from the land of his birth?

His thoughts turned to Agent Cyclops sending the message from his secret HQ deep in the Welsh countryside. Perhaps, mused Arrow, the heroic young Leader was sending his message fresh from the shower; rivulets of water still dripping from his broad, manly chest. Perhaps, while composing the vibrant message of hope and defiance, he may have brushed a lock of hair from his forehead, briefly allowing the towel to drop from his waist and perhaps... perhaps...

“You alright, Old Bean?” interrupted Berk. “went a bit flushed for a minute there.”

Arrow shook himself from his reverie and returned to the task in hand.
Letter by letter, he carefully decyphered the stuttering dots and dashes.
“S”, “E”, “N”, “D”, “New Word – D”, “O”, “N”, “A”, “T”, “I”, “O...” Arrow stopped writing.

His staunch heart sank as he closed the notebook.

“While you're at it, Bertie – pour one for me...” Berk filled a jam jar with the potent liquor. Arrow took a sip and recoiled as the scalding brew touched his lip.

“Do you think we're meant let it cool down first?” He asked.

Don't miss next week's thrilling installment: "Carve His Name With Mother's Pride!"

Before you sign, read the terms and conditions

10 Comment (s)
Reports reach the Barnet Eye that a couple of BNP activists were out collecting signatures for a "Bring our boys home" petition at the weekend.

We live in a free country (thank God) and as such, people are free to collect signatures for such a petition and to sign it. What seems to have caused some consternation though, is that several people I spoke to put their names to the petition, without realising that the BNP were the sponsors of the petition. You may say "Well, if I agree with the petition, why should it matter?". Well there are several reasons that it matters quite a lot.

The BNP will say "We got X numbers of signatures for a petition we started". This implies to the wider public a level of support that simply isn't there for their policies. The BNP have not been telling the truth about the whole situation. They told people on the streets "We are the only organisation fighting to bring our boys home". This simply isn't true. There is a massively well supported campaign run by the Stop The War coalition - - They are organising a massive demonstration against the war on November 20th. This is a cross party national campaign. Did the BNP tell the people signing the petition about it? Of course they didn't. Did they hand out leaflets to promote the rally? Of course they didn't. The reason is because they are using the war in Afghanistan to promote their party. Their opposition to it is a cynical ploy.

When they say "Bring our boys home" what do they mean? Who is the bravest man in Great Britain today. I would say it is Johnson Beharry VC is my choice. He won the VC in Iraq for actions of extreme bravery, way beyond the call of duty. Because he's black and because he was born in Grenada, the BNP do not consider this giant of a man to be British. BNP Leader Nick Griffin specifically said when asked about Beharry said "No, he's not British". In fact Nick Griffin said that Beharry, who saved 30 mens lives, only got the medal because he was black.

Now this comment is not just an insult to Beharry. It is an insult to the whole army. This is recognised and a whole array of top generals signed a letter refuting Nick Griffins disgusting comments. Falklands veteran Simon Weston and Ex SAS man Andy McNab also slated the BNP for their comments.

The BNP also opposes the rights of Gurkha veterans to settle in the UK.

The BNP also refuses to acknowledge the sacrifices of the 8 million Commonwealth citizens who served in the armed forces in the second world war and who contributed massively to the defeat of fascism and Nazism.

One of the distinguishing features of the British Forces is the way it accepts people from all around the world and molds them into the worlds most professional army. As well as Gurkhas, many fine soldiers are from places such as Fiji, Africa and the West Indies. When the BNP says "Bring the boys home" they mean "unless you are black, in which case you can piss off".

When you sign their petition, that is what you are signing. If you really care about ending the war, go to the stop the war march.

Many thanks to The Barnet Eye

September 29, 2010

BNP expels Richard Barnbrook as bitter feud threatens to tear apart party

8 Comment (s)
Richard Barnbrook, one of the British National party's most senior figures, has been expelled as part of an increasingly bitter feud threatening to engulf the far-right organisation.

The London Assembly member, who was one of a group of rebels who tried to wrest control of the BNP from party leader Nick Griffin last month, was informed via an internal memo this week that he was no longer a party member.

"Sadly we have concluded that we are left with no alternative but to expel Richard Barnbrook from membership of the British National party," it reads. "I have written to him informing him that I have taken that action today and he is no longer a member of our party."

Barnbrook, who was the party's sole representative on the London Assembly, is one of the BNP's most high-profile officials and his expulsion comes as the party faces a growing political and financial crisis.

Since its poor showing in May's general and council elections, several senior figures have come out against Griffin, at least three local councillors have resigned the party whip and many key activists have been suspended.

The prospect of a permanent split has been heightened by the party's dire financial plight and the formation of a new faction – the BNP reform group – which is openly discussing forming a new party.

"Even by its own vicious standards this has been a bloody episode for the BNP," said Nick Lowles from anti-racist organisation Searchlight. "The relentless infighting has done serious damage to Griffin and the party's organisational ability."

Griffin's opponents have rallied around another leadership challenger, Eddie Butler, who has run the BNP's election machine in recent years. Their anger is focused on Griffin's leadership style and concern about the party's debts.

"You may think I should have little reason to have sympathy for Richard Barnbrook's plight," Butler wrote on his blog this week. "But I can see that they used and abused him … watch and observe. This is the way Nick Griffin's British National party treats its members."

Concern about the BNP's finances has been exacerbated by news that the Electoral Commission is investigating the party's 2008 accounts and that its 2009 accounts are already late. The BNP faces further legal action from the Equality and Human Rights Commission over allegations that it has failed to remove potentially racist clauses from its constitution. Lawyers say the case, due to go before the courts again in November, could see Griffin landed with a fine or even imprisonment for contempt of court.

The BNP refused to comment on reports that the party is more than £500,000 in debt or to confirm how many members had been suspended or had resigned. But Griffin has sent members increasingly desperate appeals for donations to "keep the wolves at bay and to ensure our survival". In one email he admitted that the party was "cash-struck" and needed money to fight the case being brought by the EHRC. "Be clear on this, if you don't give, we can't fight … and if we don't fight we will be shut down and killed off."

Griffin's position has been under attack since the party's poor showing in May's general election when it saw a small increase in its vote but failed to make its promised breakthrough. It also performed badly in the council elections where all but two of its 28 sitting councillors standing for re-election were beaten and it was wiped out in its east London stronghold of Barking and Dagenham. However, last month he managed to see off a leadership challenge when Barnbrook and Eddie Butler both failed to secure enough support to trigger a leadership ballot.

Barnbrook, who lost his Barking and Dagenham council seat earlier this year, resigned the party whip last month calling for an investigation into allegations of wrongdoing by party officials, although he remained a member of the party.

The memo from Clive Jefferson, the BNP's national organiser, said Barnbrook had had time to understand that his actions were "disloyal and unacceptable"

Barnbrook said yesterday that he would launch an appeal against his expulsion and that he would remain an assembly member as an independent.

The Guardian

Richard Barnbrook reported for 'bullying'

5 Comment (s)
A former staff member for Richard Barnbrook, the BNP’s former London leader and London Assembly member, says she has reported him to the GLA’s standards watchdog for his “unreasonable” and “bullying” behaviour towards her.

Tess Culnane, the “Nazi Granny” who was the BNP candidate for mayor of Lewisham this year, tells me she has made an official complaint to the City Hall standards officer, Ed Williams, calling for Mr Barnbrook’s suspension.

She says: “Richard Barnbrook failed to respond to requests for help from members of the public. When I did tell him about people who had come forward, he very often adopted a resentful manner towards me and threatened me with dismissal.
“His continual bullying manner and threats to sack me became intolerable. He would fall into a strop. He would make faces behind our backs when we were talking. He was a total embarrassment to those of us in his office.”

Mrs Culnane also says that Mr Barnbrook took out his anger on other members of his office, including another staffer, Emma Colgate. “She was forced to resign due to Richard’s perpetual hectoring manner,” she said. “At one point he followed her into the ladies’ toilet hectoring her.” Mrs Culnane says her complaint also alleges that Mr Barnbrook has been drunk during Mayor’s Questions.

Mr Barnbrook didn’t return repeated calls and text messages today to answer these allegations. They should be seen, of course, in the context of the fact that he has been in dispute with the BNP for some time. There may be an element of revenge here.
He resigned the BNP whip on the Assembly last month after the re-election of Nick Griffin as leader. Yesterday, he was thrown out of the party. He was also sacked as the BNP’s Barking and Dagenham organiser after the racists lost all their seats – his included – on the local council in the May elections.

A spokesman for the London Assembly said the procedure with complaints was for a sub-committee to decide whether they had enough merit to be considered by the full standards committee. Until then, he said, he could not confirm or deny whether any complaint had been received.

The Telegraph

BNP scraps plans for media office in Stroud following opposition

11 Comment (s)
The BNP has just announced that it is scrapping plans to move its national media office to a unit on the Salmon Springs trading estate near Stroud following opposition.

This statement was sent to the SNJ this morning.

"The local economy in Stroud and Painswick has been deprived of many thousands of pounds of ancillary business and a number of jobs after the British National Party announced that it was going to seek office accommodation elsewhere following protests organised by the local far left anti-democratic Socialist Party, Nick Griffin MEP has announced.

“Previously, the BNP had announced its intention of moving its national media department to a unit on the Salmon Springs Trading Estate between Stroud and Painswick."

The statement then goes on to refer to the Say No To The BNP protest meeting due to be held tonight, Wednesday, at the Space.

The statement continues: “The BNP is a recognised political party for which a million people have voted. We have five national offices across the country, and have many other accommodation possibilities open to us where we are welcomed by democratically-minded people.

"It is no problem to us, but is a blow to the local economy because all the office supplies, rates and taxes and ancillary business which employees in the area would bring, have now been lost to Stroud and Painswick."

The Say No To The BNP protest meeting is still going ahead at 7.30pm at the Space, Lansdown, Stroud tonight, Wednesday. Organisers fear the party may look for another location for its media operation in the Five Valleys.

Stroud News and Journal

September 28, 2010

Horatio Bottomley: A Lesson From History

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This is, of course, nothing to do with anything. I'm not trying to score any of my usual cheap shots or mount any of my customary childish attacks. See this lump of butter? It's been in my mouth all day and it's still rock hard...

Born in London in 1860, young Horatio Bottomley first made an impression in his twenties, selling stocks in Australian goldmines. No problem there, except for the fact that many of these goldmines didn't actually exist – he was running a straightforward Fraud, whereby rising share values of the real goldmines would cover up the black hole of the fakes. The beauty of the whole scheme being that, if he told someone their goldmine had folded, they were hardly in a position to go and see for themselves. Personally, my knowledge of Australian goldmining is so sketchy that if he'd told me it had all gone tits up because the magic elephants had eaten all the miner's marzipan hammers I'd have just thought “Oh dear, that's bad luck” and taken the hit.

Off the back of all this, the tireless Horatio became the Liberal MP for Hackney. Portraying himself as a fierce patriot, he founded a magazine - “John Bull” - which he used to attack anyone who wasn't as patriotic as he was. Which was everyone. Labour politicians. Tory politicians. Liberal politicians. Foreigners who lived in Britain. Foreigners who lived abroad. Britons who lived abroad. Britons who lived in Britain but had once enjoyed a very nice cup of tea with someone whose sister had once thought of speaking to someone who had been abroad.

Very quickly, and no doubt helped by the fact that War was in the air, “John Bull” soon became a publishing sensation. Bottomley's potent cocktail of xenophobia, easy populism and simplistic solutions found a market among the masses. Even the fact that his financial scams came to light in 1908 didn't derail things: Thanks to the “impenetrable chaos of his record-keeping and accounts” a jury were unable to convict him. He was thrown out of Parliament in 1912, a declared (although nowhere near actual) bankrupt. His in-laws bailed him out of his financial troubles.

But folk were made of sterner stuff in the days of Shackleton, Baden-Powell and my terrifying – looking Great-Grandma, and the mere fact that he was a bankrupt, disgraced and (nearly) convicted fraudster didn't throw Bottomley off his stride one bit. Far from it.

He was only just beginning.

Riding a wave of wartime jingoism, he became a hugely successful public speaker; putting “myself, my newspaper and all of the assets at my disposal to the service of our noble Servicemen”. He did, of course, generally charge hefty appearance fees for this selfless work. As well as helping himself to the money raised in collections and endlessly promoting his bloody awful magazine. Reputed to have pocketed upwards of £25,000 from his “patriotic appearances”, he also had a sideline going in the harvesting of names and addresses from the gullible for his ongoing postal “appeals”. By way of an occasional diversion, he spent a fair bit of time in court (usually defending himself) in various libel cases.

In 1918, standing as an Independent, Bottomley got back into Parliament. The following year he founded “The People's League”: Promoted heavily in his magazine as “The Third Party” and “The Only Real Opposition”, the League didn't actually bother with much in the way of policies, per se, preferring to stick to the tried and tested (and far less intellectually taxing), approach of just slagging off Johnny Foreigner.

But then Horatio Bottomley went a scam too far. He began an operation called the “John Bull Victory Bond Club”. He sold more than £600,000 worth of the things (I've got one. Thinking that, because it was so old, it would be worth at least twice the value of a bar of gold wrapped in a Turin Shroud with a Penny Black stuck to it, I took it to a Valuer in Derby. “Not another one of them - I'll give you a tenner for it”, he said...).

Of course, it was all fraud. But not just fraud: It was a scam put together in such an astonishingly cack-handed manner, that it all fell apart after two years. But the big problem for Bottomley was that the fraud was on such a colossal scale – with clumsily forged receipts, duplicate sets of accounts and secret slush funds - that arrest swiftly followed.

Finally caught, convicted and disgraced, Horatio Bottomley was thrown out of Parliament and sent to prison.

He died, penniless and a national laughing stock, in 1933.

Thank goodness there aren't any people like Bottomley around today.

Richard Barnbrook: A Political Obituary

9 Comment (s)
It's often said that the “Characters” - the “One-Offs” - are disappearing from British politics to make way for the bland and the corporate. In fact, only last weekend, the Labour Party have bravely attempted to redress the balance by rejecting the leadership bid of presentable, clone-like “Mr Spock” Miliband in favour of the altogether more visually exciting “Aardman Animation” Miliband.

Over on a rather smaller stage, meanwhile, we have lost a true, erm... “Character”. Richard Barnbrook – the BNP's Man At The London Assembly, has (ironically for one so obsessed with knife crime) finally been stabbed in the back by Nick Griffin.

His political “career” (and I use the term advisedly: Not so much as a series of interlinked terms of employment but rather as something that's out of control and hurtling downhill), has done so much to brighten the humdrum days of Anti-Fascists that it'll be hard not to miss the fool, come May 2012.

The ex-teacher first aroused (if that's the right word) attention when his 1989 student film “HMS Discovery: A Love Story” came to light and was described by some who saw it as “gay porn”. While the mere fact that it contained scenes of male nudity and flagellation shouldn't be used to automatically condemn it as “porn” (after all, “The Passion Of The Christ” has that. AND Judas gets to plant a big kiss on Jesus...), the snippet I've seen is such a towering anti-masterpiece of shonky camerawork, staplegun editing and incoherent narrative that it would be fairer to take issue with its being called “a film”.

His directorial career in tatters, the famously Dyslexic Barnbrook entered the world of politics; first as a Labour Party activist before realising his mistake and joining the BNP. His Dyslexia must be REALLY bad.

Meanwhile, he was employed designing decorative planting schemes to celebrate the Queen's Golden Jubilee. Only one such bed was completed, however, before his BNP activities were discovered and he was invited to move on. ( There Presumably being some kind of protocol issue in HRH being associated with more than one rancid old xenophobe at a time.)

So politics beckoned. Adopting his now-trademark beige suit – a particularly unwise choice - it just makes him look like he's come dressed as a sepia print – Barnbrook worked tirelessly as a BNP organiser, standing as the doomed Parliamentary Candidate for Barking in the 2005 elections and the doomed Mayoral Candidate in 2008, before finally making it to the GLA (thanks to the List System) in the same elections.

Next to his career in the Assembly, Barnbrook's early attempt at filmmaking looks like the lost works of Orson Welles. If Boris Johnson could, in terms of his eloquence and quiet dignity, make Ozzy Osbourne look urbane, then Richard Barnbrook could make Shane MacGowan resemble a veritable Cary Grant with the intellect of a Stephen Fry and the oratorical skills of Plato. It's even rumoured that, come 2012, should the Tories hold the office, Boris will keep him on the Mayor's payroll – paying him a handsome stipend just to stand next to him and make him look normal.

The tics. The eccentric turn of phrase. The funny voices. The occasional treat of his St Georges' Day parade – Dickie could never be accused of being a political giant. But, my God – if he speaks in the Assembly you sit up and watch him. Maybe not for the reason he'd want you to, but you certainly watch him...

And his personal life has become as entertaining as his political conduct: Rumoured to be something of a Player on the Party's social circuit (although one possibly doesn't have to try too hard among the available company: given the conduct of most BNP males, I suspect that if you can manage to eat with your mouth shut and close the toilet door you'd be regarded as something between Roger Moore and Nigel Havers), he has been linked to a number of like-minded partners; the highest profile being Simone Clarke, the “BNP Ballerina” (formerly of the Royal Ballet: Currently based in a Leeds village hall. Another fine example of the BNP's effect on career advancement).

On the subject of Dance: Whatever happens in his political career, Dickie will always retain a place in the public affection for his own, unique contribution to the Terpsichorean Arts (see the video below). Of course, the same display also points to his lack of political savvy – if only he'd thought it through and said it was a performance-based artwork exploring concepts of political alienation interpreted through the medium of free-form slamdancing, he probably could've picked up a tasty GLA grant for it.

Given the Candide-like shambles of his life, it's hardly surprising to note that Barnbrook has long been beset with rumours of a drink problem. Not that such a thing is unusual in politics: My own father was, long ago, on the regular campaign team for our one-time local MP, George Brown. Who was pissed from around 1945 to the mid-eighties. Didn't stop him making Foreign Secretary, though (although check out the infamous “Archbishop of Lima” story...). Indeed, Disraeli was reputed to enjoy the odd glass (or ten) and Churchill managed to win a War while completely hammered. These people didn't, however, seem to let it interfere with their work: Given Dickie's “eccentricities”, it's almost impossible to tell.

To paraphrase St John: “Greater love hath no man than this, that he lay down his political life for his Leader.” For all his weird behaviour, the least accountable has been Barnbrook's willingness to sacrifice his credibility and career (such as they are) to come to the aid of his beloved Nick Griffin.

A shoe-in to fight Barking and Dagenham in May's General Election, he caved in to his Leader's demand that Griffin get a free run at the seat when it began to look a safer bet than Thurrock, the constituency he was already pledged to fight. The result, of course, was total annihilation: Nick's golden touch, easy charm and legendary popularity with his electorate ensured that, not only did he drop the vote by 2% but he wiped out every BNP Councillor there while he was at it.

Then came the “Leadership Election”. For whatever reason (but, of course, we suspect because his Master told him to), Barnbrook stood as a stalking horse candidate. If the B & D election was merely embarrassing, the Leadership Contest must have been the political equivalent of being forced to dance naked in a muddy puddle while tramps throw fruit at you. A staggering 23 people chose to back him. Out of more than 2000. He probably felt like a drink after that one.

And then, finally learning the lesson that doing favours for Nick Griffin is about as solid a guarantee of engendering goodwill as buying a box of chocolates for a puff-adder, Barnbrook resigned the Party Whip in the GLA.

Predictably, there was fury at Welshpool. Even more predictably, Clive Jefferson was dispatched to deliver the final blow and expel him from the Party.

It's unclear at the moment whether Barnbrook will vacate his Assembly seat in favour of the next person on the List. Personally, and just to annoy the hell out of his (former) Leader, I hope he stays put.

Or at least takes his dance show on national tour.

September 27, 2010

Last Orders Mr Barnbrook.

7 Comment (s)
It is with great sadness that we have to announce the passing of one of the finest political careers this country has seen.

Such highlights include the embarrassing St Georges Day parades, the BNP ballerina affair, the gay porn film, the false claims about knife crime and the subsequent suspension, the beige suits, the masterly command of the English language, the recent leadership campaign that brought in a resounding 23 votes out of over 2000 eligible members and last but not least the dancing.

Special Offer! (Clue: It Involves a drain, and BNP Member's money...)

7 Comment (s)

Oh my goodness, he's at it again... (Click image for huge.)

Green Arrow: The End Is Nigh...

15 Comment (s)

This is a sad day for British Anti-Fascism.

The Green Arrow website is to be no more. Never again will we get to chuckle at the sad antics of military fantasist, connoisseur of fine lagers and self-styled scion of the Welsh BNP Paul Morris.

In a characteristically rambling post, Captain Hogwash announces that he will be shutting down his “successful site” because “the name “Green Arrow”... has started to overshadow the message it was intended to promote”.

Indeed, one can't help agreeing with the buffoon there: The name “Green Arrow” has, indeed, become synonymous with suicidally self-defeating idiocy on a scale unseen since Hitler said “and let's have a pop at the Russians while we're at it...”

Whether the decision to close has been Morris' own (which I somehow doubt) or he's only following orders from his Fuhrer due to the massive embarrassment factor of having such a palpable loony as his number one (even though he generally speaks number twos) cheerleader it's best to leave open; although the fact that he's now considered radioactive by his beloved South Wales BNP must have had some bearing on the matter.

So never again will we get our daily trip to the comedy goldmine that is (was?) the Green Arrow site. No more Blimpish hilarity about “traitors” and “kinsmen” and “show 'em the black flag!”. No more of his homoerotic (if unrequited) worship of Griffin. No more platform for his (rapidly shrinking) retinue of Conspiracy Theorists, Armchair Activists and Assorted Cranks. The site is to be no more.

There is hope, however.

In a move sure to rekindle memories of his heroic exploits in Northern Ireland, Aden, Normandy and Mafeking, Hogwash is to go underground and form “The British Resistance”.

Constantly pursued by the Tesco voucher-wielding agents of the State, Morris will dart from safehouse to safehouse across Nantyglo, sheltered in wardrobes and attics as he listens for coded orders from HQ on his crystal set (cunningly fashioned from CostCo lager cans) and relays his messages of hope to the couple of dozen people who still take him seriously (and the hundreds more who enjoy a good laugh). Perhaps, like Jean Moulin before him, he will occasionally emerge from hiding to give inspirational talks at public gatherings. (The main difference being that Jean Moulin was, of course, a Hero. And his few speeches weren't (according to eyewitnesses) typified by semi-coherent rambling and self promotion.)

R.I.P Green Arrow. Let's hope the new site is even half as funny.

September 26, 2010

Poland: Secret Jewish heritage converts neo-Nazi

1 Comment (s)
Pawel sits in the synagogue learning the Torah, praying and getting advice from his rabbi. He appears to be enjoying a happy life married to his childhood sweetheart and the mother of his two children.

But he and Ola have traveled further than most -- from hate-filled neo-Nazism through the shock and anger of learning their heritage was Jewish to taking their place in the synagogue as Orthodox Jews.

They met at school in Poland's capital, Warsaw, when they were 12, but as their teen years passed Pawel first and then Ola grew into the neo-Nazi scene. At 18 they married and a few years later Ola was nagged by a conversation with her mother that she barely remembered -- something about Jewish roots.

She found her answer at the Jewish Historical Institute, which says it has collections documenting 10 centuries of Jewish experience in Poland. While there she said she felt compelled to also check Pawel's family history -- and he too came from a Jewish background.

"Something told me to... It was unbelievable -- it turned out that we had Jewish roots. It was a shock. I didn't expect to find out that I had a Jewish husband," she said. "I didn't know how to tell him. I loved him even if he was a punk or skinhead, if he beat people up or not. It was a time in Poland when this movement was very intense."

Reeling from the news, she had to return home to her neo-Nazi husband and tell him of their Jewish heritage.

There were 350,000 Jews in Poland after World War II -- about 10 percent of the Jewish population before the war. In the 25 years after WWII ended the overwhelming majority left to escape persecution by the Soviet-controlled government.

For those who stayed, their Jewish heritage was hidden often even from their own children. It provided a culture where anti-Semitism could thrive and in 1980s Poland, Pawel was embracing the hate festering in the concrete tower blocks of Warsaw.

When Ola brought home the documents to show Pawel his own history, he rushed to confront his parents, and they told him the family secret.

"I was a nationalist 100 percent. Back then when we were skinheads it was all about white power and I believed Poland was only for Poles. That Jews were the biggest plague and the worst evil of this world. At least in Poland it was thought this way as at the time anything that was bad was the fault of the Jews..." he said.

"Emotions, it is difficult to describe how I felt when I found out I was Jewish... my first thought was what am I going to tell people? What am I going to tell the boys? Should I admit it or not? I was angry, sad, scared, unsure."

Over time, Pawel's anger and confusion subsided and he approached Chief Rabbi of Poland Michael Schudrich.

Speaking in the synagogue where he now worships, Pawel said: "The mirror was a big problem. I couldn't look at myself. I saw a Jew. I hated the person in the mirror then I grew accustomed to it, came to terms with it somehow. I came here to the rabbi and said, "listen, they are telling me I'm a Jew, I have this document in my hand, my mom and dad have said something. Who is this Jew and what is it? Help me because I am going to lose my mind otherwise.'"

In the years that followed they became friends with the chief rabbi and he has been a mentor to them.

Pawel, now 33, said: "I'm not saying that I don't have regrets but it's not something that I walk around and lash myself over... I feel sorry for those that I beat up... but I don't hold a grudge against myself. The people who I hurt can hold a grudge against me."

Today, they're active members of the Jewish community in Warsaw. Pawel is studying to work in a slaughterhouse killing animals according to the Jewish Kosher requirement and Ola is working in the synagogue's kitchen as a kosher supervisor."

Schudrich said: "The fact that they were skinheads actually increased the amount of respect I have for them. That they could've been where they were, understood that that was not the right way, then embraced rather than run away the fact that they were part of the people who they used to hate."

"I think also it says on a personal level, never write somebody off. Where they may be 10 years ago doesn't have to be where they are today. And the human being has this unlimited capability of changing and sometimes even for the better."

CNN (with video)

September 25, 2010

1,000 sign petition to stop EDL march

8 Comment (s)

Up to 1,000 people have signed a campaign group's petition urging authorities to ban a proposed march by the English Defence League.

The petition was launched earlier this week by Hope Not Hate in response to the controversial group's bid to stage a march in Leicester city centre on Saturday, October 9. People can sign the document online or print copies from the group's website.

Last night, Leicester Unite Against Fascism launched its campaign against the EDL's plans at a public meeting in the African Caribbean Centre, Highfields. About 200 members of the public and activists discussed plans for a counter-protest on the morning of the proposed EDL march.

Meanwhile, Leicester City Council's ruling cabinet was due to meet today to discuss the protest and the anticipated counter demonstration by Unite Against Fascism. The meeting was due to take place at Leicester Town Hall at 10am.

Council leader Veejay Patel said: "We have called this special meeting to enable members of the cabinet to discuss the proposal, and to consider advice from the police on the impact these marches could have on the city."

The city council is continuing to measure local opinion on the protest.

Up to 400 people have also sent their views to the council via an e-mail address set up earlier this week. To take part in the consultation send messages to: uk. The petition can be found at:

This is Leicestershire

September 24, 2010

Cuckoo in the McBNP?

9 Comment (s)
Republished without comment from the Glasgow and West Nationalists BNP blog - but note the statement: "Clive Jefferson had told him that any nominations received for Eddy would be ripped up and not counted".

Statement from Walter Hamilton (ex Glasgow Organiser)

I first met Joe Finnie a number of years ago. Joe was a good activist and showed commitment to the British National Party. Unfortunately, I am now beginning to question my judgement of him due to the following events: Several years ago at a social gathering of activists and others, Joe became drunk and abusive and assaulted a party member. No matter what occurs you should never assault a fellow member .He then proceeded to run down a road in the Dennistoun area shouting about the BNP being worse than the Klu Klux Klan. It took quite a while to calm him down from a situation that was of his own making. I did not have any further contact with Joe until about 2 years ago but again I thought he was a good activist and a friend.

I took Joe to a BNP conference in Wigan. After dinner I advised Joe to have a couple of drinks and then retire for the evening to his room. He ignored this and again became drunk and abusive to member sitting with him at this drinking spree. This led to Joe physically trying to assault a fellow member of the party and, when security intervened, he assaulted the security member. I then spent part of the next morning trying to placate Joe, to no avail, as he was determined to continue the argument and I felt this put the Glasgow contingent in a bad light with the members from down South .I missed the entire day of the Sunday meeting due to the security asking me to remove Joe asap. More recently, Joe has made threats against Eddy Butler, stating that "he would have punched his face in" had he known where Eddy was having his meeting with Scottish activists. During Nick Griffin's campaign for Barking, Joe was advised to return to the hotel with other activists who had travelled down but, again, Joe ignored this advice and stayed. In predictable fashion, Joe became drunk and refused a black person the use of the toilet in the pub where BNP members had gathered. Joe has also threatened to assault members of the Glasgow BNP on more than one occasion.

Another concerning factor which has materialised in Joe is his penchant for Nazi memorabilia. Joe gave me 5 Nazi DVD's to view I have refused telling Joe this is not my taste in films/history He has also attempted to give the SDL Organiser Nazi items. Indeed, when Nick Griffin stayed at Joe's house, he was showing him a photograph of Hitler in his collection which Nick promptly ignored. Moreover, Joe contacted the SDL Organiser with a view to inviting him, Clive Jefferson and Nick Griffin to a meal at his house. Nick Griffin did not know of this and one can only wonder why Joe would think this was acceptable since the BNP and the SDL are in no way connected. Imagine the field day the media would have had if Nick Griffin had been caught sitting down to a cosy chat with the SDL. It would have damaged the party's reputation politically.

Other disturbing elements of Joe's personality have come to my notice, namely his propensity for telling lies, spreading untruths accompanied by a nasty, malicious streak. I was advised that he was spreading rumours about the ex Glasgow Secretary, who was also a very good activist. He also attempted to find out her address to inform her employers and have her sacked from her job. Joe also made comments regarding the Press Officer, stating that he was a waste of space, when in fact the Press Officer was a highly competent individual. Joe also maintained that Gary Raikes was hopeless as the Regional Organiser and should be replaced. Joe has made this comment several times to others within the Glasgow BNP.

On the 22nd August, I had arranged for a Day of Action to be held. I had collected over 20 names for this. Prior to this Day of Action, however, I decided to stand down as Glasgow Organiser as I became concerned, as have others, about the state of the BNP accounts and the fact that no-one has been allowed to see them. Joe was given the post of Glasgow Organiser and I congratulated him. I have since been advised, however, that Joe has stated that "Hammy ruined the Glasgow BNP which was good now I can go to the Lothians". I am at a loss what this actually means though. Also, prior to the Day of Action, Joe had spoken to an off-duty police officer and advised him that members of the SDL would be handing out leaflets along with BNP members. This is totally untrue and once again demonstrates Joe's recurring habit of lying. During the General Election campaign, Joe took the decision, against my advice, to campaign in hardline Republican pubs in the Glasgow area. No-one in their right mind would ever dream of campaigning in pubs, let alone those affiliated with Republicanism. As expected, Joe received death threats and I found myself questioning Joe's judgement once again. During the "Count" I discovered that Joe consumed alcohol which is against the rules and he decided to wear a BNP rosette which made it difficult for us to approach the Counters without being noticed, thereby hindering any chance we had of spotting fraud. It also drew attention to our group which was very small (7 or 8) and had the result of the Left directing their abuse at us. Joe then made a complaint to the Police which again he was advised against but Joe took no heed and went to the Police several times to make hourly statements.

Despite my having stepped down from my position as Organiser, Joe continued to bombard me with phone calls, up to 10 a day, advising me of his and Clive Jefferson's conversations. One of these conversations concerned the leadership challenge by Eddy Butler. Joe stated that Clive Jefferson had told him that any nominations received for Eddy would be ripped up and not counted. Joe also mentioned this in a conversation he had with the ex Glasgow Secretary. Joe continued to pass on information given to him by Clive Jefferson. There have been no Glasgow meetings since I stepped down and there has been no contact by the Organiser with personal e-mails in fact I wonder if Joe has been furnished with the contact details for existing members.

Joe has maintained to me several times that he is "naive". I would surmise that, far from being naive, Joe is setting out to destroy the party from within due to his constant behaviour. Joe also complains frequently of headaches and dizzy spells. I would, perhaps, suggest that Joe is suffering from some sort of stress related illness which affects his ability to separate truth from fiction.

In fact I feel Joe has destroyed a close bond we all shared as members. His web of lies has left myself and others disillusioned with the officials at the helm of the party. If they accept Joe openly like we did and keep him as a member then they are truly welcome. I will never work again with Joe Finnie. This man is on a mission to destroy all before him. I fully expect Joe will respond to this with further lies, but fortunately people are beginning to see through him and most members I know have stated they have no desire to work with him again.

What once was a friendship has now turned horribly sour due to Joe's actions. His reputation is increasingly being called into question by members down South and for very good reasons.

Hotelier admits 13 hygiene offences

4 Comment (s)
The hotelier who hosted BNP conferences in Blackpool has been handed a suspended prison sentence after admitting 13 food hygiene charges. Peter Metcalf, owner of the New Kimberley Hotel on New South Promemade, was appearing at Preston Crown Court after environmental health officers raided his premises in October 2008.

Following the initial inspection, the 48-year-old was served a number of orders to ensure the property was clean and structurally sound. But when officers returned early last year they found the kitchen equipment and food preparation areas were caked with mould and grime. Food was stored dangerously and could have become contaminated by bacteria while there was no evidence of any systems to prevent the spread of germs.

He was given a 12 week prison sentence suspended for 18 months.

Coun Maxine Callow, cabinet member with responsibility for quality standards at Blackpool Council, said: "There's no place for people who continually flout the law and put the health of our visitors in danger. I'm pleased the sentence imposed reflects how seriously the courts take instances where public health is put at risk. We give people every chance to change their behaviour and improve the quality of their businesses but if it doesn't happen we will ensure the strongest action possible is taken."

Metcalf appeared before a crown court judge in July where he pleaded guilty to 13 food hygiene charges. He was found guilty of 20 food hygiene offences in 2008 while South Shore Travel Limited, also involved with the running of the hotel, were prosecuted for failing to comply with seven health and safety improvement notices last year.

Blackpool Council revoked the hotel's licence in August 2009 due to 'significant and long standing fire and health and safety concerns'.

Blackpool Gazette

Six held after allegedly burning Qur'ans

8 Comment (s)
• Internet footage shows Islamic holy book on fire
• Warning 'provocation' will increase risk for UK troops

A security expert warned yesterday that the alleged burning of two Qur'ans in northern England risked making Britain more of a terrorist target and endangering British troops.

Police have arrested six men over the apparent burning of the Muslim holy book behind a pub in Gateshead on the anniversary of the 11 September attacks on the United States.

Police refused to say whether those arrested were connected to the far right English Defence League (EDL). A witness said the pub had been the subject of police attention because some customers were alleged to have links to the EDL.

A threat by an American pastor to burn the Qur'an in the United States on 11 September led to warnings from US military chiefs that such an act would endanger troops fighting in Afghanistan, and to an intervention by president Barack Obama. Eventually the pastor called off his planned burning.

Video of the Gateshead incident, posted on YouTube, shows two men with headscarves covering their faces, wearing tracksuits and trainers, and dousing what appears to be the Qur'an with petrol before setting light to it as several others look on. They utter verbal abuse and others are heard to shout, "This is for the boys in Afghanistan; September 11 international burn a Qur'an day", before another book is thrown onto the small fire. At one stage the burning book is kicked.

Police say that a tip-off from a member of the public alerted them to footage of the video, which was posted on the internet.

Rachel Briggs, a senior research fellow with the Royal United Services Institute, said the posting of videos showing the Islamic holy book being burnt in Britain risked further endangering UK troops. "The people who would put our boys in danger are looking very carefully [at] what happens in the UK," she said. "This sort of provocation will have an effect. It plays into their narrative of Jihadist grievance. Whether it's in the UK or US, it's significant because it is happening in the west."

The burning took place in the car park of The Bugle pub on Leam Lane in Gateshead. A barman, who refused to give his name, said it had been targeted by police in the past because some customers had links to the EDL, and that officers' inquiries led them to the pub last Wednesday. The barman said: "The police came to the pub and searched it. We were closed for hours. They took my mobile phones, some empty boxes the phones had been in, some CDs and DVDs, and all the tea towels. They arrested me and another man and took us to the station. They were asking questions about who had been burning the book."

The EDL claims to be a peaceful organisation opposed only to Islamic extremism. However, many of its protests have involved incidents of racism, violence and Islamophobia by some of its supporters.

On its website the EDL says it "does not condone the burning of any religious books … "

The six men were arrested on suspicion of stirring racial hatred, police said, which is outlawed under the 1986 public order act. They were not arrested for the actual attack on, and burning of, the Qur'an, but in connection with the posting of the video.

Section 21 of the 1986 act reads: "A person who distributes, or shows or plays, a recording of visual images or sounds which are threatening, abusive or insulting is guilty of an offence if he intends thereby to stir up racial hatred, or … racial hatred is likely to be stirred up."

The Guardian

September 22, 2010

Calling All Bigots: The Daily Mail Comments Boards Need You!

12 Comment (s)
So. You want to join the online army of the Far-Right and aid the BNP blog, do you? Well, such a noble enterprise is a big commitment.

Some of you on the Far-Right will have jobs, however, and simply cannot spare the long minutes needed to create something so majestic and eponymous as the Green Arrow site. No. Mere mortals – possibly with only a passing interest in fascistic bigotry as a lifestyle choice – have to set your sights lower.

Have you considered the Daily Mail Comments Boards as an entry-level introduction to the wonderful world of petty-minded racist imbecility?

As a budding numbskull, you will possibly be a reader of the Daily Mail, already. Its comforting blend of film stars with cellulite (for which they must be roundly condemned), gentle nostalgia for The Good Old Days When You Could Leave Your Front Door Open And Teenagers Didn't Go Round Stabbing Each Other On Their Facebooks, allied to a reassuring lack of too much actual “News”, has found favour with the ill-educated since the days of Moseley (sterling chap, by the way, and just the sort of no-nonsense politician Britain needs today...).

On the internet (or “t'internet”, as you amusingly call it, ever since you saw that hilarious – and CLEAN – family entertainer Peter Kay do his routine) you can not merely read all the stories of the print edition; you can COMMENT ON THEM, ALSO!

Imagine! YOU can pass ill-informed, kneejerk judgement on the Issues Of The Day! YOUR baseless witterings will be there for ALL THE WORLD TO SEE!

That'll show 'em, eh?

But first, you need to understand a few basic ground rules.

The most important is this: Regardless of how much damage the current Government do with regards to the economy, public services, foreign relations and the general wellbeing of the Nation, everything (wherever possible) remains the fault of the previous Government for at least the next two years. The previous Government will, at all times, be referred to in your comments as “LIEbour”, “Liebore”, “Nu-Labour” and “Za-Nu Labour”. (The appellation “Za-Nu Liebore” is something of a philological stretch, and should only really be used by the more experienced utter twat. Don't worry – you'll get there one day!)

The current Regime should be referred to as “LibLabCon” or “ConDem”.

Remember: You should NEVER admit to being a member of the BNP. In fact, we find that an active DENIAL of membership or support will allow you to get away with even more outrageous buffoonery (in much the same way as anyone who begins a statement with the words “I'm no racist, but...” is very probably still pining for the Good Old Days Of The Wehrmacht).

By way of practice, why not try copying these statements out fifty times each:

“I'm not a supporter of the BNP, but if the Marxist elite ever allowed them to form a Government it would surely usher in a new Golden Age of peace and prosperity for all in our once-great Nation.”

“I have no time for Nick Griffin, but anyone can see that he would rule with exactly the sort of iron fist that this country needs.”

See? It's easy!

Now then: What story to pass comment upon? There are three categories of Daily Mail story involved in this. I suggest you start with Category One – the Nursery Slopes of commentary.

Category One includes all those pieces which bear a direct relation to BNP policy. Something about Asylum Seekers crossing the Channel in a lorry can easily be appended with something lazy and obvious.

“These “people” are criminals – let them drown!” says “Mr Brown”

“WE MUST BRING THE ARMY BACK FROM AFGHANISTAN AND POST THEM AT DOVER WITH THE ORDERS SHOOT TOO KILL! NOW!” adds “Force Five”. (Special note – using capitals makes your post appear more important and will draw the Reader's eyes away from any grammatical errors.)

As you can well see, Category One stories are almost too easy a target. After a short time learning the basics, however, you should be ready for the move to Category Two: Those stories and articles which can be related to the BNP mindset, but it takes a little more work.

A story about a comparison between the standards of living in France and Britain, for example. Not, at first glance, something the average Online Warrior might have much interest in, but look!

“I would like to leave Britain to all the riff raff from the Eastern block countries and elsewhere! No! Rather ship them all out and stay here! Soon it will be a case of SPOT THE ENGLISHMAN!!” says “Teacher”. Beautifully done; notice how “Teacher” begins to advance one argument before dramatically reversing His/Her position and ending on an hilarious punchline. Certainly a Master of the craft in the making.

Category Three, however, should be left to the truly expert. These are the stories with, seemingly, no conceivable bearing on BNP policy or concerns. To the True Master, however, there is NO SUCH THING as a story which cannot be turned into an opportunity for simple-minded bigotry.

Take this piece, for example: A genuinely tragic story concerning a double suicide. Surely, one might think, no-one could possibly get away with scoring cheap xenophobic points off something as awful as this? But no...

“Anyone wondering why this is happening isn't living in the real world” says “Oliver”. He continues: “competition from taxpayer-funded foreigners is excruciating...What will eventually happen is a breakdown of civilisation...that will be the end of government in the UK.”

A work of genius. To move so effortlessly from a story of personal tragedy to an apocalyptic vision of future anarchy brought about by “foreigners” is truly masterful.

Such a towering cretin surely has a glittering future among the ranks of the BNP.

So Has that fired you with enthusiasm? Go on then – sign up for the Daily Mail Comments Board and you, too, can show yourself as the confused, narrow-minded, bigoted bile-dribbler that you undoubtedly are!

Good luck – and remember: Although the Boards claim to be moderated, ANYTHING will get through!

Say No to BNP in Stroud meeting organised

0 Comment (s)
Community groups, trade union activists and political representatives are to stage a meeting called Say No To The BNP in Stroud following news that the party is moving its national media department to the Five Valleys.

The meeting will be held at The Space in Lansdown and organisers say they want to send out a message that the party is not welcome here.

Speakers will include former MP David Drew and district councillor John Marjoram (Green, Trinity), who has gathered more than 100 signatures on a letter protesting against the decision to open the publicity department at Unit 13 on the Salmon Springs Trading Estate between Stroud and Painswick.

Chris Moore, a member of the Stroud branch of the Socialist Party, who recently co-ordinated the town's Save Our Post Offices campaign, is organising the meeting.

"I was shocked and disgusted to hear the BNP was proposing to set up a national propaganda centre in Stroud," he said. "Maybe the party thinks it can get away with it, thinking Stroud is just a little town. But we have a long history of organising demonstrations and protesting."

British National Party leader Nick Griffin recently sent an email to supporters, which is available on the party's website, announcing details about the new centre for media and communications, which will also run party's website.

In a statement sent to the SNJ, a spokesman for the BNP said the party had been using space on the industrial estate as an office for the last two years.

"We have had departments or staff working out of our Stroud office for several years now with no fuss, hassle or grief at any time," he said. "We are utilising an existing office unit, refurbishing it and relaunching it as a campaigns and communications hub.

"Stroud is a beautiful location and we are happy with the surrounding area and amenities."

The Say No To The BNP in Stroud meeting is on Wednesday, September 29 at 7.30pm. All are welcome.

Stroud News and Journal

Germany: The rise of the far-right in the East

0 Comment (s)
Along with many other prejudices, eastern Germany has had to contend with a reputation for neo-Nazism. It's not entirely unjustified, but right-wing extremism in the East has roots in economic hardship.

Right-wing violence was most dramatic in the first years of the newly unified Germany - and more and more often, they occurred in the former East Germany.

For three consecutive nights in August 1992, several hundred neo-Nazis - watched by up to 2,000 locals - attacked an apartment block for asylum seekers in the north-eastern town of Rostock. With the police unprepared and initially outnumbered, the violence continued unchecked until it culminated in an arson attack.

The Rostock riots quickly achieved international notoriety. Pictures of drunken, violent East Germans doing Hitler salutes were printed around the world. This was not the dawn of a new, hopeful country that had been celebrated less than two years before.

Authority vacuum

Neo-Nazi violence was not just a stain on the former East Germany. Over 100 of the 370 rioters arrested in Rostock had travelled from the former West, where there was a string of horrific attacks on Turkish immigrants in the early nineties.

But Rostock cemented the reputation of post-Wall eastern Germany as a new haven for neo-Nazism, and that reputation stuck. What characterized the Rostock riots as specifically East German was the powerlessness of the authorities.

For two or three years after the fall of the Wall, state institutions in the former German Democratic Republic were weakened by the period of transition. Police officers suddenly found themselves associated with a discredited regime. Dierk Borstel, a researcher into right-wing extremism at the University of Bielefeld, described the precarious circumstances in the early 1990s as linked to a lack of functioning insitutions.

"The police force was destabilized and the church had little influence anyway," Borstel told Deutsche Welle. "The eastern German trade unions and the PDS, the successor party to the former ruling communist SED, had little authority, and the trade unions and industry associations coming in from the West were all very weak in the east."

Worst of many worlds

These semi-anarchic conditions were fertile ground for far-right activists in the former East Germany, and their cause was further helped by the disappointment and poverty that spread in the East after reunification.

"The expectation of East Germans after reunification was: 'We're going to get the security of the East plus the freedoms of the West,'" Borstel says. "The result was that they lost the securities and couldn't afford the freedoms."

Even though the skinhead neo-Nazi scene originated in western Europe, it already existed in East Germany before the fall of the Iron Curtain. It was often linked to certain football teams, and occasionally broke out in extreme violence, such as the attack of 30 skinheads on a concert in a church in central East Berlin in 1987.

The far-right movement in the East capitalized on what many describe as the GDR's denial of its own Nazi history. Olaf Sundermeyer, author of "In the NPD," a book about the development of Germany's populist far-right National Democratic Party, believes the GDR's distanced attitude to Hitler's Germany helped feed the neo-Nazi movement.

"Communist leaders in the GDR said, 'We are an anti-fascist state and we have no responsibility for history. There are no Nazis here.' Of course that wasn't true. There were former Nazis in both East and West Germany, but there was no denazification in East Germany - the Nazi history was not dealt with," he said.

Imbalance and injustice

East German society was never particularly multicultural, and the government's immigration policies showed a determination to keep the population monotone. Immigrant workers from other socialist countries like Mozambique were sent home if they got pregnant, or as soon as their allotted time ran out. The lack of a multicultural foundation is still reflected in eastern German society today.

"Eastern Germany has a lot fewer immigrants - and it has long been acknowledged that where there are no immigrants and no Jews, there is more racism and anti-Semitism," Borstel said.

Neo-Nazis were also able to win over some East Germans with familiar ideas. "National Socialism often starts out with the idea of socialism, and then that is combined with frustration, unemployment, lack of opportunity, and populations moving away." This is the opinion of a former neo-Nazi who wants to remain anonymous, working for Exit Deutschland, an organization that helps people leave the far-right scene.

There is a widespread feeling that the West left the East behind economically. In the last 20 years, unemployment in the former East has been consistently twice as high as in the West, and the emigration of young eastern Germans remains a problem. Statistical evidence shows that German far-right parties tend to prosper in times of economic depression, and the NPD has aimed its electoral resources aggressively at the most neglected districts.

The Exit Deutschland representative, who has counseled numerous former neo-Nazis, said that the frustration that comes from being left behind after watching friends leave your home town is a factor common to many of those who turn to right-wing extremism.

"Those who stay, for whatever reason - because they can't find a job anywhere else, for example - feel an enormous frustration. That is fertile ground for far-right groups - and for extremist groups in general," he said.

Sympathy for the Left

This growing eastern German sympathy with the far-right chimed in with a study completed in 2003, which found that 16 percent of Germans had an extreme right-wing world-view - that is, they expressed chauvinistic, anti-Semitic, social-Darwinist or xenophobic opinions, and tended to trivialize the Nazi regime. In the East, this world-view was found in 23 percent of the population, compared to 14 percent in the West.

This showed a marked change from the early 1990s, when a similar study found far-right-wing opinion more prevalent in the West. Statisticians have linked this switch to a decline in economic expectation. Whereas easterners were more optimistic about their economic prospects in the early 1990s, by the late 1990s, westerners had become more positive about the economy.

Behind this turnaround lay a real sense of betrayal. In a study written in 2005, political scientist Richard Stoess wrote, "That the eastern German people overtook their western compatriots in sympathy for right-wing extremism lay in the fact that their initial trust in the western system of democracy and market economy had turned into particularly bitter disappointment."

Neo-Nazis for the new century

As state authority began to re-assert itself in the East, the far-right developed more subtle ways to organize. "The structures have become smaller," said Borstel. "They no longer rely on large parties like the NPD, but rather local cells, which are more difficult for the state to break up. They have become anchored in local communities in a way I thought would never happen."

This assimilation was mirrored in the far-right political parties, which have spent the past decade making themselves electable in the East. Although the NPD have steadily lost ground in the former West, in the East they have gained a foothold in several state parliaments.

"The Big Bang was the state election of 2004 in Saxony, where the NPD first gained representation in an eastern German state parliament," said Sundermeyer. "Since then it has very gradually established itself as a 'normal' party."

The NPD was re-elected to the Saxony parliament in 2009, with 5.6 percent of the vote. The NPD's membership figures had risen from 4,000 in 1995 to 6,800 in 2009.

The NPD has achieved this success by aiming its messages at young people, especially via the Internet, and appealing to sentiments shared by the far-left - anti-Americanism, anti-Israel, anti-globalization. It has worked to pick up the youth protest vote, targeting sub-cultures with an anti-system stance.

Deutsche Welle

September 21, 2010

Weekend reports - BNP chased out of Glasgow, "gutless" Griffin flees Liverpool

13 Comment (s)
BNP & SDL chased out of Glasgow

Saturday 18 September saw a hugely successful day of anti-fascist direct action against the racist thugs of the BNP and the Scottish Defence League – both of whom attempted to carry out public activity in Glasgow on the day.

September 18 was originally the day the SDL were planning to hold a march from Blytheswood Square to the Cenotaph in George Square. With this route being denied by the council – who offered them a static protest instead – the SDL announced that the march was cancelled and re-applied for one in the east end of the city in November.

In light of the events of last weekend, however, when the EDL descended on Oldham in a secret ‘flash mob’ protest, local anti-fascists began to suspect that something similar could be afoot in Glasgow. This was compounded when both the main SDL forum was taken offline, and their facebook page announced that they would be holding a ’social gathering’ in a city centre pub on the day. Acting on these fears, activists from the Scottish Anti-Fascist Alliance decided to keep an eye on the city centre over the course of the day, posting scouts at different locations where it was believed the SDL might show up.

However, it soon turned out that the SDL were not the only group of far-right thugs in town that day. At 1pm, a number of BNP activists were spotted in George Square, setting up a stall and posing for photos with their ‘Support our Troops’ banner. They left soon after, but quickly set up again on Buchanan Street. Anti-fascists from across the city quickly mobilised, and by 1.30 there was a small gathering around the stall, preventing the BNP from engaging with the public. Ten minutes later, a larger group of anti-fascist arrived. Within seconds, the stall was smashed up and the BNP material was scattered and destroyed. The 5-6 BNP members were forced to stand beside the ruins of their stall waiting for the police to show up, which they did – about 15 minutes later.

After a humiliating half hour of being chanted at by a now large group of passers-by and anti-fascists, the BNP were driven away in a police van for their own safety. A total victory for anti-fascists and, judging from the response from the public, a reaffirmation that Glasgow will not stand for the bigotry and racism of the BNP. This was the first BNP activity in the city centre for almost a year, and apparently the ‘launch of their new campaign’. We don’t think they’ll be back any time soon.

But believe it or not, this was just the beginning of a day of successful direct action against fascism. At 3pm, members of the Scottish Defence League began gathering in The Goose pub on Union Street, next to Central Station. Upon being approached by anti-fascists, they informed them that they’d be going to George Square at 5.30pm, apparently with the intention of assembling at the Cenotaph. Clearly, they were after a confrontation – regardless, though, this doesn’t change the issue at hand: fascist gatherings need to be opposed.

By 5.30pm, small groups of anti-fascists and local youth were assembled around the square. When the 15 or so SDL supporters showed up, a brief confrontation ensued. The crowd of around 100 anti-racists ensured that the SDL did not reach the Cenotaph, while a few fists were thrown in both directions, although it’s understood that no anti-fascists suffered injuries. A large number of police then stepped in and pushed the SDL to one corner of the square, where they were held for a period then removed. The BBC are reporting that a 14 year old was arrested – as far as we know this was for punching an SDL member in the face. One SDL supporter was also lifted for a ‘racist breach of the peace’.

Overall, a massive victory for anti-fascists: two groups of racists thrown off the streets. We didn’t rely on the police, and we didn’t rely on the council or Home Secretary to ban them either. The numbers of anti-fascists weren’t massive, but were swelled by passers by and young people who didn’t want the SDL or the BNP on our streets either. A reassuring confirmation that Glasgow is not a safe space for fascists to engage in public activity.

Scottish Socialist Youth

Spontaneous antifascist protest sends BNP packing in Liverpool

Today (Saturday), members of the British National Party – including Nick Griffin – held a stall in Liverpool City Centre. They were, perhaps, hoping to show that they stood tall after their trouncing at the General and local elections. Instead, what it showed was the strength of antifascist sentiment in Liverpool.

Within minutes of the BNP setting up shop in town, word got out. The BNP were on Church Street and texts and phone calls went out across the city warning people and asking for them to turn out in opposition. I was walking the dog at the time, and so and hour elapsed between the time I was first told and the time I reached the crowds. And yes, I do mean crowds.

Nick Griffin had been there, but he fled with his minders the second opposition showed up. As Peter Tatchell opined when he confronted him, the BNP chairman is a gutless coward.

But the local branch of the BNP stayed behind in Griffin’s stead, offering the members of the public a “petition” (PDF) to “Bring Our Boys Home” from Afghanistan. But as Griffin admits on the BNP website, this is not a petition that will be presented to anybody, or even a serious effort to raise the issue of the war in Afghanistan.

Although they will be “under the banner of “Support Our Troops — Bring Our Boys Home”” their true purpose is “the biggest co-ordinated nationalist recruitment campaign ever run outside of an election period.” Hence who signatories “authorise the British National Party to contact” them or send “future promotional, electoral and fund-raising material.”

As I have argued before, the BNP are not an anti-war party. In fact, their 2010 election manifesto explicitly stated that they opposed the Iraq war only on the grounds that “there were no strategic or commercial interests to defend” and “the same applies to the current war in Afghanistan.”

Hence, if a BNP felt there were British strategic or commercial interests at stake (as Blair did in those two wars), then they would have no moral qualms about sending “Our Boys” to die. For the BNP, imperialism’s only bad when you’re not in the seat of command.Which is why the banner of the Stop the War Coalition could be found in the group opposing the BNP.

Unfortunately, their ruse was fooling a lot of people, the anti-war message drawing people away from the fact that this was a fascist recruitment drive, as they planned. Hence why opposition was vital.

Very quickly, a sizeable crowd had gathered, and the BNP found themselves closed off from public view by a semi-circle of very loud antifascists, some bearing banners and signs from various groups. This, in turn, drew members of the public – most notably young teenagers – into the impromptu demo.

While the police held the main demo back from the BNP, some antifascists took the opportunity to talk to people. The general public were receptive to the idea that the BNP were an anti-working class party, offering division at a time when we are facing huge attacks from those in power, and that any pretensions to the contrary (including on the war) were political opportunism.

That their (pre-recorded) chants echoed the Tory party line with calls to “Smash the TUC” certainly didn’t help the fascists’ case.

Arguing the point with the BNP themselves, for those listening in rather than with hope of converting die-hard BNPers, also went in our favour. People can tell the difference between a valid argument and rhetoric, and what Peter Tierney and his friends offered was certainly the latter.

With the rain pouring down, and some people who had arrived earlier on having to leave for other commitments, still the antifascist crowd continued to grow. The BNP struggled to pass out their leaflets or to get many people to sign their petition-cum-covert-recruitment-form. But still they tried to fight a war of attrition, making a show of themselves for a full six-and-a-half hours.

Ultimately, however, over 100 antifascists and local people watched and jeered as the fascists packed their gear into two cars and drove off, protected by a flank of police. No doubt they will try and sell it differently, but for British nationalism this was undoubtedly a failure.

Elsewhere, the BNP’s dissident faction claims that “four teams of two” were “out in Liverpool, Sefton and Knowsley, handing out BNP literature to commuters and the General public.” However, even on the basis of their own piss-poor website all they can prove is that Steve Greenhalgh appeared outside Orrell Park Station and Bootle Strand to give letters to … err, nobody!

But they, like the Griffinites, are promising to be out every Saturday for the next few weeks. On which note, the promise from Liverpool Antifascists is that we will be watching when you turn up again.

Liverpool Antifascists

September 18, 2010

Nothing Flash: The EDL’s New Strategy

7 Comment (s)
Flash Demos?

Reading English Defence League’s forum may give one the impression the EDL is taking over the WORLD but in fact they are in a wee bit of trouble.

Jings! Over the weekend they attempted various mobilisations and publicity stunts that tended to either backfire, or like Bradford, disappoint.
In London 100 turned up at the US embassy and then were escorted under heavy police escort to the Saudi embassy where they stood and shouted for a bit. Rumours that the Saudi’s immediately renounced Allah are yet to be confirmed.

In Nuneaton about 50 EDL caused a bit of consternation after waving at the homecoming troops parade. They were shepherded to a boozer by plod and were subsequently surrounded by 200 people from the local community. If the EDL really want to ‘fight militant Islam’ why don’t they all go down the Army recruiting office and sign up for Afghanistan? Or are their criminal records and membership of far right groups going to be a problem?

In Oldham about 120 EDL, casuals and BNP members assembled for a ‘flash demo’ and according to the EDL forum the local cops were anamused and responded in force. There were several arrests.

Of course, the news media picked up on all 7 EDL members in New York. ‘Tommy Robinson’ AKA Steven Yaxley-Lennon was turned back by customs and claims that the motives were political but ‘Tommy’ was jailed for assaulting a policeman and this is the real reason for his expulsion.
Embarrassing. The EDL are also claiming their hotel rooms were turned over when they were out. This confirms how ‘dangerous’ they are. Which is the point. Without the attendant publicity the EDL cease to exist. Politically they have achieved nothing. They have caused several very negative media splashes at their demos but apart from filling their scrapbooks their gains have been exactly nowt.
They need the press and opposition to make themselves feel important but apart from allowing them to let off steam gets them nowhere. All they get is bad press. Some may say ‘all publicity is good publicity’ but not if your Gary Glitter.

Plod Bother

The EDL’s new strategy of flash demos is not going to please Old Bill in the least.
They are illegal and plod will respond with force. As shown in Oldham.
Some are saying that they should just turn up in Leicester rather than liaising with the authorities because they are sick of hanging around at the RV point for hours then being marched to a site to be kettled in for hours with scant facilities.
Which has caused problems in the past.
At Bradford, ‘chav scrotes’ attacked stewards and fighting broke out with the police. Liaising with plod has caused dissent with many as has the leadership deciding everything (but that’s what leaders do lads!).
Many EDL would rather have a straight fight with the cops and anyone else who opposes them and whilst the flash demos will certainly provide an opportunity to do this, it also means heavier policing, more arrests and diminishing numbers at each demo.
As Bradford showed they are contracting in size. The confrontational approach will attract more Nazis, hooligans and ‘chav scrotes’ but how this will be politically expedient is unclear.

Dutch Courage?

The EDL will be hoping to get to Leicester on October 9th but there are moves to ban the demo. However, the government banned marches in Bradford but it still kicked off on their static demo. They are also hoping to mobilise at Nuneaton again soon.
They intend to go to Amsterdam on 30th October to support right winger Geert Wilders.
A further concern is the influence of the EDL on hooligans across Europe who will copy their tactics and appreciate the opportunity for a scrap and to voice overt racist sentiments with little state repercussion.
Many in the UK see the demos as a good day out on the beer and this will be attractive to Euro-hooligans as well.


The EDL have proven, time and time again, that they are politically naïve in the extreme.

They are genuinely perplexed when the police attack them for illegally assembling.
They still pretend they are ‘not racists’ despite the continued and increasingly noticeable presence of known fascists on their demos.
On the EDL forum, others complain about the Nazis and racist chanting and there have been several notable resignations by prominent members.
They pile into potentially volatile areas – Bradford, Bolton – and then wonder why there are hundreds of people there to oppose them.
Their understanding of the opposition demonstrates their naivety the most: their logic goes ‘we oppose militant Islam so anyone who opposes us therefore supports militant Islam.’
Wrong. That the Muslim communities despise the EDL’s provocation tactics is well documented but there are a great many others who counter-demonstrate because they dislike pissed up racists marching through their towns claiming to represent the majority of British people.
The EDL define themselves by what they oppose, not what they stand for.
They sing ‘English till I die’ but their idea of England does not reflect the reality.
The majority of British people dislike drunken racist hooligans causing violent disturbances and would rather live peacefully.

Thanks to Malatesta

September 17, 2010

Inside the BNP bunker

21 Comment (s)

It has become the heart of the BNP operation and the focus of the growing backlash against the party leadership. Searchlight has exclusively pieced together life inside the Belfast bunker.
By Matthew Collins

The Carrowreagh business centre in Dundonald, on the outskirts of east Belfast, separates two quite different elements of Northern Ireland. To one side lie the scenic green hills of County Down, sprawling farmland and narrow country lanes edged by stone walls. It’s a stone’s throw away from the home of the former First Minister Peter Robinson. On the other side, is the Ballybeen Estate, Northern Ireland’s second largest housing estate, where the local paramilitaries mark their territory with colourful reminders of their deadly existence.

Separating these two worlds is a nondescript cul-de-sac ringed by steel-framed business units. At the far end is number five. Purporting to be a printing centre, it is in fact the heart of the British National Party’s administrative and fundraising operation.

From the mythical new Jerusalem of Dundonald in Northern Ireland, strangers have plundered the BNP’s membership files in search of cash. There are shutters and newly installed shredders to deter prying eyes. Only the most favoured have visited the call centre, unceremoniously ushered upstairs upon arrival and into the offices of Jim Dowson’s empire where he could hold court in privacy.

Downstairs, the staff bickered, fought and betrayed the professionalism that Dowson and the BNP leadership went out of their way to present to the membership. Dowson originally set up the Belfast operation to promote his anti-abortion and fundraising campaigns across Ireland. The BNP was an add-on, an afterthought, after Dowson persuaded the BNP that it needed his professional services.

Sparks first flew with the arrival last year of Jennifer Matthys, the newly married daughter of Nick Griffin, the BNP leader. Matthys and her husband moved to a flat above a petrol station in the staunchly Protestant village of Comber and were presented with a Volkswagen car as part of their moving package. Some thought Ms Matthys was there to provide an ideological input and perhaps become Griffin’s eyes and ears in Dowson’s base.

Instead of the ideology she was supposedly sent to deliver, she became embroiled in a clash of personalities with the eldest of Dowson’s children, James Jnr, who ran a plumbing company, Ltd, from the upstairs offices, a company that does business with Catholic communities.

Dowson Jnr had developed a swagger not dissimilar to that of his father and Ms Matthys took exception, in particular to his insistence that he was about to be installed into her old job as head of the BNP’s youth wing. Dowson Jnr quickly found himself not only out of the call centre, but seemingly out of the BNP. To the rest of the staff it became obvious very quickly that there was only room for one golden child in the call centre, and there seemed little room for dissent. Ms Matthys is silent but deadly while working in the upstairs office, bereft of friends, life or humour.


Any pretence that the call centre was a secure haven for BNP members’ details was shattered in October 2009 when Searchlight investigators revealed to the Irish press that the party had recruited casual staff to work on its European election campaign using the recruitment firms Office Angels and Grafton in Belfast.

This came at a time when staff at the call centre were actively encouraging supporters not to join the party via its website, claiming it was insecure and suggesting members and supporters should take out and renew membership over the phone. Their details were in fact manually taken down on pieces of paper and stuffed into envelopes. Call centre staff were being paid commission on recruitment, sales and subscriptions to publications, and so began an ongoing campaign against the party’s webmaster Simon Bennett, who also had an interest in membership sales and subscriptions. The falling-outs and excessive competitiveness in the call centre were always going to lead to difficulty. Among the staff was a woman who offered sexual services to high rolling clients from the office, another woman who lived in a hardline republican area and Peter Dempster, a foulmouthed evangelical racist whom Dowson had entrusted with the care of Ms Matthys and her husband Angus. It was an explosive mix.

Later that month, the BNP’s membership list was leaked for the second time within a year. What the call centre did not reveal was that not only had there been a report to the police that a laptop had been stolen from the call centre containing details of thousands of BNP members and the party accounts, but that there was a very real fear that this information was now in the hands of Irish republicans.

Inside the call centre, staff were offered more bonuses and overtime as hundreds of angry and abusive members and supporters rang the office to vent their fury over the leak. There then followed a ludicrous propaganda film from the call centre of a member of staff sitting typing away on a keyboard in the absence of any terminal or computer screen.

Party members were turning against the call centre.

A series of high profile exposes by Searchlight followed, including publication of a picture that Dowson distributed of himself holding what appeared to be a sawn-off shot gun, to allegedly intimidate a former employee. Driven by paranoia, Dowson began to feel he was under threat not only from republicans but also from loyalists who had read of his apparent louche lifestyle and fundraising ventures. Of particular interest to loyalist paramilitaries, who are quick to seize upon any suggestion of available cash, is Dowson’s Europe-funded post-conflict cross-community work. A stern message to staff was soon posted around the centre forbidding them from standing outside, and the door from the call centre to the upstairs offices was shut permanently as a further security measure.

By the new year, the call centre had come under increased scrutiny. The party had agreed not to recruit new members, as a result of ongoing legal action by the Equality and Human Rights Commission, and was in the midst of a series of punishing court cases. But Dowson’s Jeep Cherokee was nowhere to be seen while office staff began to tire under the weight of the endless numbers of begging phone calls and letters going out to party members. Fewer of the party hierarchy were visiting the call centre and as new security shutters went up, a desperate sense of paranoia and suspicion set in.

At one party meeting in England, Dowson turned up with his own minder in tow, the self-confessed English football hooligan and club doorman Martin Ambridge, who went on to feature as an employee in the Northern Ireland office.

Dowson’s wife Ann began spending more time at a property he owns in Spain for his supposed charity work at Plaza Del Corazon De Jesus. Dowson, meanwhile, moved into a log cabin he laughably describes as the “guest house” at the back of his family home.

In Dowson’s absence, his sister-in-law Marion Thomas and his longstanding accountant John Thompson, who was appointed as the BNP accountant, took over the running of the office. Another Englishman and relative by marriage, Alan Turner, took over the running of call centre telephone inquiries, while Ambridge and Karen Lowrie, the wife of a serving Northern Ireland police officer, assisted him.


Shortly before the general election Dowson claimed his life was threatened by Mark Collett, the BNP’s head of publicity. However this accusation appears to have stemmed from Dowson’s power grab for greater control of a party he once claimed he had never even joined. Desperate to keep his credit flowing with the printer Romac Press Ltd in east Belfast, Dowson offered the company the contract to print the BNP’s literature as well as his own anti-abortion material. Dowson used the alleged threat to move against Bennett to disastrous effect when Bennett pulled the plug on the website on the eve of the May elections and launched a barrage of attacks on Dowson.

Tom Gower, the party’s election candidate in Coventry North East, was sent to Northern Ireland from Nuneaton to give the office some backbone.

The persistent scrutiny not just from Searchlight but also by BNP members themselves prompted Thompson to quit the thankless role of BNP accountant, taking Zack McAdam, his evangelical computer guru, with him.

For the Matthyses, the move to Northern Ireland has become a nightmare. Ms Matthys was appointed a director of Dowson’s front company Ltd in July 2009, but all it has these days appears to be a mountain of debt. She faces being further shunned in the small publicity-shunning community where she lives after Searchlight revealed that she carried the flags, along with Dowson’s daughters, for the Goldsprings True Defenders Flute Band. Often tearful, Jennifer frequently flies to her father’s side, leaving Angus to lock up the call centre alone.

For Angus, the highlight of his emotionally austere life in Northern Ireland is his responsibility for opening the volumes of mail that arrive daily. It’s hardly the life he studied for or even expected when he agreed to marry Jennifer. With two large rubber gloves he sifts through razor blades, excrement, needles and used prophylactics in search of cash donations that he can present to his wife for counting. It must be the highlight of Jenny’s life there as these unsolicited donations sometimes amount to £2,000 a week, though that is a far cry from the donations of up to £40,000 in one week during the election campaign..

The Dundonald base has become the heartbeat of the BNP and, given how Dowson has made himself irreplaceable in Griffin’s party, it is likely to remain so for as long as the leader remains in place.

Thanks to Matthew Collins at Hope not Hate

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