It is not often that we bring positive news about the English Defence League as there is usually very little to bring you.
If more EDL members followed the lead of East Anglia regional co-ordinator, Ivan Humble, and engaged with the local Muslim community instead of taking part in drink fueled marches shouting 'Allah is a paedo' and threatening to burn mosques, the organisation might be taken a little more seriously by the general public.
With the increased interest in the EDL, after the death of Drummer Lee Rigby, this is the idea opportunity to call time on beered up violent and racist marches and engage with the Muslim community. That means kicking out every violent pisshead and racist and cleaning up their Facebook groups.
Mr Humble and his group's initiative have our full support.
From the Huffington Post:
It might seem a provocative pairing, but when the English Defence League marched with Islamic charity Jimas to pay tribute to Lee Rigby, the protest was peaceful.
Since the Woolwich attack, the far-right group has clashed with anti-fascist organisations in marches organised in response to the killing.
Mosques have also been targeted with anti-Muslim graffiti sprayed on walls, and one place of worship was attacked with petrol bombs.
He said: "We were strongly motivated to match for three reasons. Perhaps first it was to show our respect and offer our condolences to Lee Rigby's family. We also wanted to support our troops in general and show respect for the job they do.
"The third reason was defiance. We wanted to send a message to the extremists that they are committing crimes against Islam. They are not doing these things in our name.
"Although we don't support the far right, I don't like to paint people in general terms. They happened to be there and marching alongside them was about bridge building and preventing other parts of the Muslim community from coming to harm. By being there and opening up lines of communication we helped avoid a fracas."
Ivan Humble, regional co-ordinator for the East Anglia Branch of the EDL, told the Ipswich Star:
This is what we need. We need to be seen working together and talking together.
If we can work together, that has got to be good.From the JIMAS site:
JIMAS seeks to promote an organic, home-grown, indigenous following of Islam, which is relevant to British Muslim concerns in particular and issues of the UK in general. As such JIMAS is distinct from those political movements and ideologies that had originated abroad which by their nature is not synchronised with the needs of the British public.-----------------------------------------------------------
However, there has been some fallout from this unexpected pairing.
More about that on Sunday.