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| Friday 28th April 2006 |
WAKE UP!! WAKE UP!! ITS
YER FLUFF BUSTIN...
Goose-step Beyond | Scrapped Arrest of the
Week | King Comeuppance | An Eye
On Zion | Glasto Mud Slinging | SchNEWS
In Brief | Anarchism06 | ...and
LOCAL ELECTION BREAKTHROUGH?
racist British National Party are fielding an unprecedented number
of candidates for the local council elections on 4th May. Their
campaign feeds off the natural disillusionment people in the UK
have with New Labours cut-throat capitalist policies, which
have flogged off public assets for the profits of a small elite
of wealthy individuals, while clamping down on civil liberties with
authoritarian laws. The BNP uses this dissatisfaction to promote
its racist agenda by blaming all these problems on immigration and
building up the fear-mongering myth of Islamic extremism. Its inflammatory
leaflets use the tried-and-tested tactic of divide and rule to create
divisions within society along racial lines.
the BNPs mid-nineties reorientation to electoral politics
was the result of defeat on the streets. Their strategy of march
and grow where rights for whites were to be secured
with well directed fists and boots collapsed under the
onslaught of Anti-Fascist Action and the Anti-Nazi League. However
the bulk of the party now, publicly at least, supports Nick Griffins
strategy of respectable action through the ballot box.
The BNP are not on the verge of forming a government they
only have currently 20 councillors up and down the country and nothing
like a majority on any local authority. Even if extremely successful
they can only hope to double that number. But significant numbers
of people are willing to put their cross down next to a party that
among other things promises repatriation of every non-white individual
to their country of ethnic origin.
are gravitating to extremist organisations, it is because the mass
organised Left has collapsed and the centre has proved to be an
illusion. After 1997, some people held a naïve hope that things
would improve after the nightmare of Thatcherism, but of course
Neo Labour only continued the capitalist project, adding their own
peculiar twist of authoritarianism and sinister doublespeak (while
fascists threaten to bomb Muslims, Neo Labour are actually doing
it all over the world). The BNPs propaganda attempts to step
into this political vacuum by latching onto legitimate issues like
unemployment, the state of the NHS, privatisation and in fact any
bandwagon with more than three wheels. While seeming to promise
everything to everyone in an attempt to gain support, their answers
consist entirely of racism and hot air, returning relentlessly to
the pseudo-problem of immigration.
they represent is more in the influence they have on mainstream
media and politics than any prospect of jack boots in Whitehall.
Parts of the media, notably the Murdoch press, are pushing an openly
racist agenda, with the likes of Richard Littlebrain (yeah, hes
working for the Mail now) leaving no fact undistorted to blame social
ills and inequality on immigrants. Nick Griffin has described the
tabloids as one of the BNPs best recruiting agents and
expressed his satisfaction with government immigration policies.
The BNPs success has been to get immigration considered a
problem right across the board, dragging the debate
inexorably down and to the right.
political and media campaign has real consequences - last Friday,
18 year old Christopher Alaneme was stabbed to death in Kent in
a racist attack, and the British Crime Survey estimates that there
are more than 200,000 racially motivated incidents every year. The
fact that the Tory partys election campaign echoed the BNPs
stance on immigration and law n order, with Neo-Labour
playing second fiddle, is an indicator that all parties consider
that playing the race card is a potential winner. While the Mirror
may have recently attempted to stem the tide of anti-immigration
propaganda, the recent furore of Charles Clarkes failure to
ensure the control of foreign prisoners shows that many
in the so-called political centre are willing to play
with fire when it comes to using latent racism to score political
points. Politicians and journalists assume that the electorate -
particularly the white working class - is racist, so
their tactic to restore confidence in the centre is
to promise to be tougher with an endless series of crackdowns
and fear-mongering against the most marginalised people in society.
The centre partys ceaselessly irrigate the cesspool in which
the BNP swim.
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attempt by the state to prosecute Nasty Nick Griffin twice for the
same offences of race hate were certain to fail while giving free
publicity to the disgusting ideas he has carefully cleaned up to
remain within the law, and served mainly to soften up public opinion
for more laws restricting freedom of expression and the erosion
of double-jeopardy protection.
the central ironies of the BNPs attempt to surf the zeitgeist
of terrorism paranoia and Islamophobia (the party tastelessly reproduced
images of the bus blown apart on July 7th with the slogan Maybe
now its time to start listening to the BNP), is that
the far-right produced its very own homegrown terrorist David
Copeland. His association with the BNP in the early nineties fuelled
his psychosis, leading to him placing three nail bombs around London
in 1999 in an effort to spark a racial war...so that all the
white people would go and vote BNP. Curiously, in all his
rants about the danger of terrorism from immigrant communities Old
Nick doesnt dwell on his own organisations flirtation
with suspect devices.
are using the BNP as an electoral scare tactic. In an effort to
avoid an electoral referendum over their own cowboy job while in
power, theyre attempting to use the fascist bogeyman to scare
voters back into the fold and make their own authoritarian racist
policies seem relatively moderate. Sadly the main anti-fascist organisation,
the Socialist Workers Party-inspired Unite against Fascism
(UAF), while providing a network of activists prepared to combat
the BNP electoral threat, has chosen to emphasise the message of
using your vote, i.e. voting for either of the other
authoritarian anti-immigration parties on offer. So whats
a good anarchist to do? Leafleting with the UAF at least destroys
the idea of mass consensus around a right-wing agenda, but it is
no alternative to building real anti-fascist coalitions willing
to take on the authoritarians in power as well as the fascists on
Georges Day, for example, Sussex activists chased the BNP
off the streets of Crawley, Ifield and Southgate. Meanwhile in Bristol
recently, local people got together and acted to shut down a neo-Nazi
website run by an organisation called November 9th Society, after
noticing stickers appearing around the city. Residents tracked down
who the site was registered to (one Kevin Quinn, for the record)
and where it was hosted, and then complained to them. US-based Excellence
Host acknowledged that the site stuffed full of race-hate and other
trash breached their terms of service and so suspended the site
on their servers.
In a way, this represents the true political situation in the UK.
The mass organised Left are not out in the streets fighting fascism,
and it has come down to networks of individuals organising ourselves
to fight the BNP without relying on the dubious authority of state
ARREST OF THE WEEK
spending 5 days on remand in Lewes prison and over a year on bail,
anti arms trade activist Jaya Sacca has had trumped-up charges of
assault, ABH and breach of injunction dropped. He was arrested after
being assaulted by security guards at the EDO MBM arms factory in
Brighton in July last year. Charges will be formally dropped at
Lewes Crown court next week. Jaya is the twenty fourth victim of
spurious arrest in connection with protests against EDO MBM to have
demos continue every Wednesday, 4-6pm at EDO MBM, Home Farm Road,
Brighton (off Lewes Rd)
on from last weeks coverage, our man in Kathmandu sent us
not an avatar of vishnu, hes a very naughty boy...
and the entire nation of Nepal is no longer under siege from its
own army. (See SchNEWS 540).
Nepals massive and inspiring democracy movement finally forced
the king to hand power back to the people. Late on Monday night
he made a surprise TV appearance, looking more like a tired fat
haddock than ever. Making minimum concessions he offered condolences
for the 17 dead and 5,000 injured by the brutal repression he had
ordered, and that was that. Not with a bang then, but a whimper.
day hundreds of thousands marched, sang and did the funky chicken
along the ringroad where many of the protests and the bloodshed
had taken place. The mood was positive, but people knew that this
was just the beginning because theyve been let down by leaders
so many times. This time theyre determined not to let it happen
again. When the political elite disappeared to negotiate the carving
up of power with the king, crowds outside demanded the politicians
came out to tell them what they were up to. Twice in one day they
had to stop the talks to come out and promise not to cut any dodgy
the streets unimpressed demonstrators burned effigies of the king.
Setting up puppet governments is a tried and trusted game in Nepal.
The people, meanwhile want the real thing. The international community
on the other hand, was well up for selling out Nepals popular
revolution ASAP. The king, Western leaders said, had made a generous
offer. Sections of the media portrayed the protesters as unreasonable
for not accepting a crappy deal that left the corrupt murdering
fish-faced king still running the show. Reuters and others have
simply reprinted lines straight from the palace propaganda department
which claimed that the enormous nation-wide movement was a Maoist
plot. Demonstrations were described as violent after
the army fired live ammunition into unarmed crowds.
this might be because they werent bothered about reporting
and had pickled their brains in the local moonshine bars instead.
At worst their political bias told them that an inherently violent
status quo is better than the risk of instability. Chaos
is bad for the market, after all, and nobody wants that. Either
way, an enormous massacre was narrowly averted, despite the king
ordering troops to shoot ANY group of people in the streets last
Tuesday. Two million were expected to march on the royal palace
and only a last-minute climb-down by the king stopped a huge bloodbath.
still important. Help squeeze the king out and get the political
prisoners out of jail. Picket the Royal Nepalese Embassy, 12a Kensington
Palace Gardens, London W8 on Saturday 29 April, 2006 at 1pm.
more see www.kantipuronline.com
EYE ON ZION
Brighton activists with the International Solidarity Movement
are currently based in Tel Rumeda near Hebron in the Occupied Territories.
The Palestinian inhabitants of Tel Rumeda are subject to constant
harassment by extremist Israeli settlers. Heres an account
of a typical day April 22nd
gang of 30 militant Israeli settlers attacked a Palestinian grocery
shop, and assaulted the owners son and several others.
Human Rights Workers were also attacked when they stood between
the shop-front and the gang. The settlers only stopped when confronted
by soldiers from the Israeli Army. The gang, composed of teenagers
and older boys, all in Orthodox Jewish dress of white shirts, black
pants and skull-caps and led by an adult man, then moved off into
a near-by Palestinian olive grove, where several Palestinian families
had been building all afternoon. Settler children spat at, and verbally
abused human rights workers in the mid afternoon
later, at approximately 3:45pm, the gang of youths marched through
Shuhada Street, in the old city near the illegal settlement of Beit
Hadassa. They then turned left just before the Army checkpoint and
marched up the hill where they attempted to attack human rights
workers who had become concerned for local Palestinians safety.
The HRWs were backed up against a wall and only saved by the intervention
of a squad of Israeli soldiers who happened to be patrolling at
the time. The gang continued up the hill, where the attack on the
shop took place.
have a long history of violence and intimidation against the Palestinian
population of Hebron, but the Passover holiday period has seen a
dramatic rise in the number and ferocity of their attacks. During
the weeks around Passover, the settlers receive thousands of visitors,
some of whom join in with attacks on Palestinians, Palestinian property,
and the HRWs who attempt to protect them. Attacks have become common.
HRWs report an average of two to three attacks occur each week in
Tel Rumeida. Todays attack was the third such organized attack
to occur on Shabbat
of this excellent blog go to www.brightonpalestine.org
around this time of year we get to hear how quickly it took the
Glastonbury Festival to completely sell out. Just because theres
no Glasto this year, doesnt mean that theres no story.
But this time the sell out is to Clear Channel, the pro-anything-
right-wing broadcast business which has just bought out the Mean
Fiddler Music Group who own a 39% stake in the festival.
Channels been edging its way over to the UK for a while, co-sponsoring
events with Mean Fiddler as part of the courting process. The Texas-based
companys responsible for almost 70% of all ticket sales for
American concerts, running 1,250 radio and 37 television stations
in the US (and interests in 250 radio stations across the globe
for good measure). The station pulled the Dixie Chicks off its stations
the moment they came out as anti-war and company bosses have supported
pro-war Rallies for America and helped fund the campaign
that put Bush in office. Back in a 2001 publicity stunt, Clear Channels
Tampa station DJ, Tod Clem, was arrested for castrating and then
butchering an un-anaesthetized pig in the stations car park.
Perfect partners then for drug-addled corporate mudbathing pseudo-hippies
at the nations favourite festie then.
- Dont attack
Iran Protest, Sat 6th May, Churchill Square, Brighton, 2pm.
Organised by Sussex Action for Peace www.safp.org.uk
For more info contact firstname.lastname@example.org
/ 07815 983022. For info on the national campaign: www.stopwar.org.uk
- Its the last
Friday of the month, so get down to the Level in Brighton at 6pm
for the latest Critical Mass. www.tinyurl.com/dfkc2
needed for demonstration at Broadholme Farm, Irthlingborough,
nr Wellingborough, against neglect, starvation, animal abuse and
cruelty. Meet 29th April at Tesco Carpark off A45 in Turnells
Mill Lane, Wellingborough at 12pm
- Get to the Manchester
Anarchist Bookfair, 29th,12-5pm at The Basement, 24 Lever
Street (off Piccadilly Gardens) Manchester www.bookfair.org.uk
- Stop the Seal Prison
Demo, Sat 13th May, against the Sealife centres application
for seal and otter pools in Brighton. Meet at Sealife Centre 12pm.
Help needed at 11.30am to set up stalls and banners
- Sea Shepherd Talk+Films
- Come and hear tall tales of high seas whale-saving piracy from
a nautical neerdowell. Cowley Club Brighton Weds May 3rd
- Simon Jones
Was Someone! is a play about Simon Joness death
at Shoreham Dock in 1998 and the subsequent campaign for justice.
Performed by The Dingle Community Theatre on May 8th & 10th.
Casa Club, Hope Street, Liverpool at 8pm, free entry with donations
to the Simon Jones Memorial Campaign www.simonjones.org.uk
- The 1 In 12 Club
Bradford is celebrating its 25th Anniversary with a party
on the 28th at 9pm. For listings of other 1 In 12
events see www.1in12.com
- Benefit for Russian
mobilisation against the G8 summit 2006. With stalls, films,
speakers and free vegan food. 28th April, Old Howardian Club,
Clifton Street, Cardiff 8pm. £3 entry.
Picket UKs number
one arms-dealers BAE SYSTEMS AGM. BAE Systems sell £11
billion worth of weapons every year to such freedom-loving regimes
as Saudi Arabia, Indonesia and Israel. are currently working on
a $3.5bn contract to refit the Bradley fighting vehicles being used
in Iraq and Afghanistan. At QEII Conference centre on London's South
Bank. (Tube Waterloo or Charing Cross). By Campaign Against Arms
Trade (CAAT). For more info ring 020 7281 0297 or e-mail
For travel from Brighton call 07891 405923
- 21st Century Ideas and Action.
A two day conference
on April 29-30th celebrating the ideas of... er anarchism. With
debates and discussions about social centres, autonomous workers
struggles, the IWW, recent protests in France, and more. Plus a
benefit gig for the sacked Gate Gourmet workers (See SchNEWS
510) with music and films on Sat night 8.30pm-1am (£5/£3).
The Square Social Centre, 21 Russell Square, London WC1. Nearest
tube: Russell Square.
* For more see www.londonsocialcentre.org.uk
you want a View To A Kill? A stint serving Queen and country?
It seems that the latest Thunderballs from the Dr No-brainers On
Her Majestys Secret Service is advertising for recruits. This
week the Secret Intelligence Services better known as MI6
actually stuck ads in a number of newspapers for budding
007s. Perhaps the traditional recruitment techniques of a word in
the ear of promising looking chaps at Oxbridge just isnt delivering
the same unswervingly loyal, morally bankrupt KGB agents it used
to. The ads asked for people we can depend upon...although
to do what exactly was left unclear.
montage of exotic locations, aeroplanes and balaclavaed man holding
a machine gun may have been providing a clue...We operate
around the world to make this country safer and more prosperous,
claim the spooks, scaring the Living Daylights out of us and leaving
us shaken, but not stirred to figure out just how ruthlessly these
aims might be pursued - we already know that the World is Not Enough
for these puppets masters. So dont be an Octopussy,
pull yer Goldfinger out and get a For Your Eyes Only application
pack...or join the SchNEWS and become the Man (or woman) with the
warns all readers... if youve lurched to the right, dont
expect it to be all white on the night. Honest!
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