Saturday, 20 November 2010

Extremism breeds extremism

From HOPE not hate:

A BBC radio report into the West Midlands Counter Terrorism Unit has found that police are worried that the violent actions of the EDL are feeding Islamist extremism.

This is precisely the argument that I have been making this week. Hate breeds hate. The EDL breeds Islamist extremism. Islamist extremism breeds the EDL. The bile spewed out by some of Brtiain's newspapers breeds both.

It's time to break the chain.

By Nick Lowles 19 November 2010

Taking on extremism, including Islamic extremism

From The Jewish Chronicle:

The anti-fascist publication Searchlight, which was behind the "Hope Not Hate" campaign to stop the British National Party in east London, is to expand its operations to oppose the Islamophobic English Defence League and Islamic extremism itself.

The magazine, founded in the 1960s to monitor the rise of the extreme right, intends to set up a thinktank to investigate the phenomenon of the English Defence League, which has become a focus of ultra-nationalist opposition to the so-called "Islamification" of Britain. Writing on his blog last week, Searchlight editor Nick Lowles attacked both the EDL and the Islamic extremists of Muslims Against Crusades, who burned poppies, denied the Holocaust and called for a new Muslim fascism.

"For the MAC, the presence and activities of the EDL prove how white British society is the enemy. For the EDL, the Islamist extremists are proof of the violent nature of Islam," he wrote.

An online survey of Hope Not Hate supporters' reaction to Mr Lowles's words showed that over 95 per cent were in support of what he said. Around 40,000 people have viewed the post since it was written last Thursday.

Mr Lowles said that he felt a huge sense of relief that he was finally able to speak his mind. "Islamist extremism has been the elephant in the room for too long," he said. "Everyone knows it is wrong and is actually part of the problem but people have either been bullied into silence or lack the confidence to speak out."

He added: "Islamist extremism is no friend of a progressive society. Staying silent on attitudes and behaviour that is both wrong, offensive and downright dangerous is abandoning one's own progressive values and moral compass. Remaining silent and uncritical will be viewed by others as passive support or acceptance and that is not the basis to build a popular broadbased campaign against Islamophobia."

Several Muslims posted supportive comments on the Hope Not Hate blog as a result of the intervention. Sameena from East London wrote: "It would be good to get some Muslim academics, and leftist leaders on board and being vocal. I would like to see some Muslim women sans hijab as well. There are plenty of us - but the media always wants to show the ones who fit a particular image."

Bushra added: "MAC do not represent all British Muslims! I am a British Muslim and I wore my poppy proudly and observed the two-minute silence. I am sickened and offended that these people have no respect for those who fought and died, so that they could have freedom of speech."

Friday, 19 November 2010

A plague on both their houses

From HOPE not hate:

(left ) Supporters of the Muslims Against Crusades, and (right) the English Defence League  in West London this morning
(left ) Supporters of the Muslims Against Crusades, and (right) the English Defence League in West London

Two sides of hate faced each other today in West London. As Britain remembered those who had died in past wars, 30 Islamist extremists, under the banner of Muslims Against Crusades (MAC), hurled abuse, burned poppies and waved their hate-filled placards. A few metres away 60 supporters of the English Nationalist Alliance and the English Defence League pushed their own intolerant message.

Let us be quite clear, both groups are as reprehensible as each other. In fact, such is the symbiotic relationship between the two that they actually need each other to justify their own existence. For the MAC the presence and activities of the EDL prove how white British society is the enemy. For the EDL the Islamist extremists are proof of the violent nature of Islam. They are two sides of the same coin of hate.

We stand opposed to both sides. We oppose the racism and Islamophobia of the EDL just as weoppose the religious bigotry and antisemitism of the MAC. To hear these Islamist extremists publicly deny the Holocaust and call for the formation of a Muslim Waffen SS Division – as they did today – should rightly sicken every anti-fascist just as much as the racist bile spat out by the EDL and ENA.

We think it is important to criticise both groups publicly. Criticising one group but remaining silent about another leads – correctly – to charges of hypocrisy and double standards. Only by criticising the actions of tiny extremist groups can we say with any validity that neither speaks for the wider communities and religions they claim to represent.

And in criticising both extremist groups I believe that we are in tune with the majority of British people, who want to live in peace and without the hatred and violence extremists bring.

by Nick Lowles 11.11 2010

Pat Richardson now Eastern Region membership secretary

From BNP News:

It was announced on 16th November 2010 that 'long serving British National Party councillor Pat Richardson has been appointed the Eastern Region’s new membership secretary as part of a major overhaul of party’s local organisation'.

It was reported that Cllr Richardson will now be responsible for making sure the branches are kept up to date with all the relevant enquiry information that future campaigns bring in.

Regional organiser Paul Morris said “The regional executive decided exactly how we are going to proceed with local and regional issues and the growth of the British National Party in the region as a whole.”

Mr Morris exhorted the meeting: "(I)t’s up to us to get out there and tell the public exactly what the BNP are about not what the lying media tell them.

“The region is facing change in many areas, such as housing and jobs, about which the public has not been consulted or made aware of. We intend to address these issues with maximum effect.

Delegates were also nominated to attend the intensive election training which is currently being rolled out across all sectors of the party.

Hope not hate, Norfolk will be interested to follow the progress of this little group in a faltering and failing BNP.