Posts Tagged ‘Leicester’

Ken Livingstone on the Rehabilitation of Fascists to Protect Capitalism

May 29, 2016

Ken Livingstone has always been a fierce opponent of racism in all its forms. He makes this very clear in the chapter ‘Labour Should Have Listened to Black People’ in his 1987 book, Livingstone’s Labour. He states clearly that all forms of racism, whether against Blacks, the Irish, or anti-Semitism, are the worst form of reaction and should be fought against. His anti-racism and anti-Fascism are made even clearer in the chapter, ‘Made in the USA’, which is about how the US gained economic and political hegemony over Europe from the end of World War I as part of its campaign to halt the advance Communism. Leninspart is justifiably outraged out how, at the end of World War II, America and the Western powers began to rehabilitate Fascists and Nazis as part of this global power struggle. He writes

The policy of reviving capitalism in Germany, as well as the attitude taken towards Italy, Greece, Spain and Portugal, by the United States and Britain required the rehabilitation of Fascists. This was made simpler by the fact that most Allied leaders, contrary to their claims, had not objected to Fascism as such. What was unacceptable was fascism which threatened Britain and US interests. The US banker Morgan had financed Mussolini’s Italy and Churchill had summarised his attitude towards Mussolini in his History of the Second World War:

He was, as I had addressed him at the time of the fall of France, the ‘Italian lawgiver’. The alternative to his rule might well have been a communist Italy, which would have brought perils and misfortunes of a different character both upon the Italian people and Europe … Even when the issue of the war had become certain, Mussolini would have been welcomed by the Allies.

In line with this attitude, Adenauer, the United States choice to lead West Germany, was perfectly prepared to consort with Nazis. As Walter Laquer Smith admits in his pro-cold War Europe Since Hitler:

While Adenauer’s anti-Nazi record was above reproach, he was less than scrupulous in the choice of his closest collaborators: there could be but one opinion about the career of men like Oberlander and Globke in the Nazi era, but the former was dropped only after protests from all sides and Globke, a lawyer who had provided the official interpretation to the anti-Semitic Nuremberg laws of 1935, remained for years the Chancellor’s close associate and confidant, despite heavy pressure.

Similar policies of rehabilitating ex-Fascists were pursued in the other ex-Axis states. In Italy, out of 800,000 pre-liberation civil servants, many of whom had been members of the Fascist Party, no more than a few hundred were removed from their posts. An amnesty was granted in October 1946 after which only 3-4,000 Fascists and war criminals remained in prison. The surviving Fascist dictatorships of Franco and Salazar were propped up by the United States. The support later given by the United States and Britain, to regimes such as that of South Africa, Pinochet in Chile, and Stroessner in Paraguay had its direct forerunner in the support given to rehabilitating European Fascists.

He goes on to describe how Britain and the US were deeply implicated in this odious policy.

The problem for the USA and Britain in this policy was that the war had been fought under an anti-Fascist banner and the majority of the population of Europe was strongly anti-Fascist. For that reason much work of rehabilitating Fascists and war criminals had to be done under cover and its truth is coming out only today. Ed Harriman has been prominent in exposing this and it is wroth quoting at length from his article in the New Statesman and Society of 5 August 1988:

The first to champion this dubious cause [of protecting war criminals] was Hector McNeil, the Labour government’s man at the United Nations. At the UN General Assembly’s second session in 1947, Soviet, Byelorussian, Ukrainian and Yugoslav delegates taxed McNeil to explain why Britain was sheltering war criminals in displaced persons camps in Germany … ‘In the town of Hoxter in the UK zone of occupation lives the butcher of the Byelorussian people, … Rodoslav Ostroski’, charged a Russian delegate … Ostroski … the Nazi-groomed ‘Fuhrer’ who press-ganged 60 battalions of his countrymen into fighting, and killing, for the Nazi cause. The liquidation of Jews in Byelorussia … was by then well known. Yet McNeil was unmoved. In 1961, Soviet authorities charged three Estonians with organising the mass murder of some 120,000 Jews, prisoners of war and other ‘untermenschen’ … in Estonia. Two pleaded guilty and were shot. The third, Ain Mere, was then living in Leicester. The Soviets said Mere was the Estonian police boss under the Nazis who personally ordered prisoners to be exterminated in the Jagala concentration camp, and joined the local SS. The Soviet request for his extradition was refused. ‘My record was checked when I came to England over 10 years ago,’ Mere told The Times. The Foreign Office reply was to inform the Soviet government that Britain did not recognise Estonia as part of the Soviet Union.

Harriman notes:

In 1945 the Joint Intelligence Committee declared that the Soviet Union, not Nazi Germany, was Britain’s prime intelligence target … In the perverse logic of the spying world, there were few better sources for this than the Gestapo, which had devoted enormous resources and considerable vigour to liquidating communist suspects. The united States government now admits that Gestapo agents and their files were avidly sought be American intelligence. In 1983 the US Justice Department published a hefty report spelling out exactly how the Americans recruited one such agent – Klaus Barbie [the Butcher of Lyons] – and then gave him a free ride to South America. The appendix of the US report explains that before the Americans bagged him, Barbie was being recruited, in 1945, by a pair of ex-Nazis working as agents for Britain’s SIS, a Dr Hoffman and his superior, a man called Markus. Markus had been aide-de-camp to SS Intelligence General Walter Schellenberg, who set up a network of spies and saboteurs amongst Soviet collaborators… Shortly after the war Markus became the mayor of a small town in the British zone in Germany and, according to US documents, ‘was given the task of forming for the British a network of agents in Germany’… Prosecutions of war criminals quickly became an embarrassment to [the Labour] Government. They impeded the cold war… Churchill was one of the first to call for an end to war crimes investigations … Shortly afterwards Churchill made a much publicised donation to the support fund for Nazi Field Marshal Erich von Manstein, who was being 5ried in Hamburg for murdering prisoners of war on the eastern front. Proceedings against Manstein’s fellow officers had already been dropped by British prosecutors on grounds of the defendants’ ‘poor health’. In 1941, in the Crimea and short of food, von Manstein had ordered: ‘The Jewish-Bolshevik system must be wiped out once and for all… especially in the occupied cities, a large part of the population will have to starve.’ By 1952 Manstein was a free man serving in the West German army. The UN War Crimes Commission was quickly wrapped up. Prosecutors such as Gerald Draper found their efforts thwarted. the British and American authorities were not cooperative. General Lucius Clay declared that as of the end of 1947, no more suspected war criminals would be handed over for prosecution from the American zone in Germany. The British followed suit. (Pp. 170-2).

These are clearly not the words of someone who denies the existence of the Holocaust, let alone an anti-Semite. Rather they show that Leninspart was acutely aware of the horrific reality of the Nazi attempt to exterminate the Jews, and was rightly revolted by the way his country’s leaders and the US, including the Labour, had protected Nazi war criminals as part of the Cold War against the USSR. And just as some members of the Labour party were involved in this, so was that great Conservative hero, Winston Churchill.

Vox Political: Britain First Get Chased Out of Leicester

May 23, 2016

And now a piece of good new. I’ve posted up several articles recently about Paul Golding’s neo-Nazi outfit, Britain First. This is another far-Right corpuscule with a tiny membership. It’s also particularly hostile to Islam and Muslims, though that’s pretty much common now amongst the extreme Right and wider sections of British society, thanks to the wars in the Middle East and the continuing threat of terrorism from ISIS and al-Qaeda.

Britain First held a demonstration in Leicester this weekend. They didn’t get very far in their attempts to stir up racial hatred there, and were sent packing. Mike’s covered it over at Vox Political, complete with a piccie of their demo and the crowds of anti-Nazis surrounding them. See: http://voxpoliticalonline.com/2016/05/21/britain-first-leicester-anti-eu-protest-gets-chased-out-of-town/

Every now and then someone produces a statistic that’s supposed to show that most British people are racist and ready to vote for the far Right. From this, it seems that the opposite is true, and that while there is increasing xenophobia in British society – you only have to look at the headlines about immigrants in the Scum, the Heil and the Express to see that – very, very few people in our fair country have any time for Nazism. Groups like the NF, BNP and Britain First have miniscule and dwindling memberships, and have been repeatedly shown by the people of towns up and down the length of Britain that their vicious hatred and violence is not welcome. This is yet another example.

Joshua Bonehill Takes British Far Right Back to Nazi Roots

February 3, 2015

Moronic Bonehill

Joshua ‘Moronic Troll’ Bonehill: Fuehrer without a leaderguard

Remember Joshua Bonehill? Tom Pride over at Pride’s Purge blogged about him a year or so ago. He’s the Hitler wannabe, who boasted at he had at least 20,000 + followers on Twitter. He was trying to set up his own Far Right party and was appealing for men to join his ‘Leader Guard’. This was to be the new Praetorian guard to march with and protect him as Fuehrer of the new British extreme Right. Mr Pride was alarmed as one of his Twitter followers was a British army colonel.

I thought that Bonehill and his dreams of Nazi Fuehrertum were so bonkers that it had to be a wind-up. Surely someone, who was so obviously trying to be early 21st Century’s Britain’s own Adolf couldn’t possibly be serious?

I was wrong.

He was.

Last week was Holocaust memorial week, and the country remembered the liberation of the Nazi Death Camps and the almost unbelievable horror that was perpetuated there. The surviving inmates, some well into their nineties, told their stories.

At the same time this was going, Bonehill was planning a Nazi march against the 20,000 strong Jewish community of Stamford Hill in London. He claimed this was a protest against the ‘Jewification’ of Britain, and particularly against the ultra-Orthodox Haredi community in the area. He claimed the shomrim, a neighbourhood-watch type organisation set up in the Stamford Hill to protect Jewish residents, was actually a religious police.

There’s an interesting article up on Bonehill and his antics at the anti-Far Right site, EDL News. The article’s entitled Moronic Troll Joshua Bonehill and why he probably won’t go to Stamford Hill. The epithet ‘moronic troll’ was given to Bonehill by the BBC. The article suggests that Bonehill won’t actually go on the protest he’s called for. It also gives a list of some of the other weird, disgusting and criminal actions he’s done. It also explains why the Beeb gave him the above nickname. Here they are:

◾ Bonehill attempted to organise a demonstration in Cardiff last year under his National British Resistance Political party. The party consisted of two other people, one with learning difficulties who he scammed for £500. He did not show up, neither did his friends.
◾ His Woolwich Strong t-shirt sales scam saw him allegedly net over £1000. According to our sources, none of the money has been given to the Lee Rigby fund. A grand total of £5 went to Help for Heroes and then rest he put down as administrative costs.
◾ Bonehill’s online popularity seems to stem from spending lots of money buying Facebook likes and Twitter followers from countries such as Pakistan, India and Turkey in order to make himself look more popular. Much of that money went down the pan recently when both Twitter and Facebook kicked him off their networks.
◾ According to locals, Bonehill is allegedly banned from a large supermarket chain nationwide for getting drunk and trying to defecate in the aisle of the cosmetics department, before being forcibly removed by security guards. We cannot corroborate this story ourselves but a number of witnesses have confirmed the story.
◾ Bonehill has a conviction for using his Conservative party membership card to break into a police station and steal uniforms. When caught he assaulted a police officer.
◾ He is allegedly banned from the Mermaid pub in Yeovil after one of the bar maids had him up against the wall by his throat and threw him out for reasons we are unable to disclose. Again, a number of local people have confirmed this.
◾ Drink seems to be a major factor in Bonehill’s life according to most people we spoke to which explains the online bravado exhibited.
◾ He is awaiting sentencing on five charges of harassment and two charges of malicious communications arising from undertaking lengthy and concerted campaigns branding as paedophiles, people who disagreed and outwitted him online (no hard task).
◾ After pleading guilty to a hoax which claimed the Globe Pub in Leicester has refused service to a soldier, the BBC described him as a ‘moronic troll’.

Bonehill is a nasty piece of work, and his organisation is particularly revolting at a time the Jewish community here in Britain and Europe generally is particularly under attack. There is a wave of anti-Semitism rising in Europe, which many observers have described as the worst Jews have experienced since the 1930s. The most obvious example of this was the attack on the customers and staff at a French Jewish supermarket by an Islamist gunman following the attack on Charlie Hebdo the week before last. It should be mentioned here that 15 of the shopper and store clerks were hidden by a Muslim security guard, an act of courage and humanity, which should be given all due credit and respect. It clearly shows that, despite the claims of Islamist terrorists, very definitely not all Muslims share their violent and genocidal racism.

The article’s at http://edlnews.co.uk/2015/02/02/moronic-troll-joshua-bonehill-and-why-he-probably-wont-go-to-stamford-hill/

Jack Renshaw and the BNP

Bonehill, however, isn’t alone on the Far Right in turning to anti-Semitism to shore up their dwindling numbers. According to Hope Not Hate, Jack Renshaw, a young nipper in the BNP is another open Jew-hater. In one of his communiques, he ranted about the Jews encouraging racial mixing in order to destroy the White race as part of a plan to enslave gentiles. It’s the classic Nazi conspiracy fantasy. See the article Big trouble for Little Jack at http://www.hopenothate.org.uk/blog/insider/big-trouble-for-little-jack-4170.

Gary Raikes and the New British Union

Not to be outdone, Gary Raikes of the New British Union is also dragging British Fascism firmly back to the 1930s. His organisation actually has a uniform of black shirt and sweatpants. He himself appears to hold his meeting in full quasi-Nazi regalia, complete with military style cap and surrounded by flags, all emblazoned with the same lightning bolt motif Oswald Mosley used for the British Union of Fascists.

Gary Raikes

Gary Raikes: New Fuehrer of the New British Union

Mosley Cable March

Oswald Mosley: Old Fuehrer of the BUF on the infamous march in Cable Street.

These tactics are likely to backfire massively on Bonehill, Renshaw, Raikes and the other stormtroopers. While there still is anti-Semitism in British society, there isn’t mass support for a blatantly Nazi party. The horrors of the Third Reich and the Second World War effectively destroyed any mass support Mosley’s BUF may have had. And even before the outbreak of the Second World War, they were struggling to retain their membership, partly due to its notoriety for using violence. Richard Thurlow in his book, Fascism in Britain: A History, 1918-1985, makes the case that the Far Right in Britain only survived into the post-War period by making Black and Asian immigrants the targets of their hate, rather than the Jews. Matthew Collins in his account of his years in the BNP, Hate, records private conversations with some of his fellow stormtroopers, who confided they didn’t understand the hatred of the Jews. Even so, members of the National Front were infamous in the 1970s for dressing up in Nazi uniforms.

One book I read recently by an American historian of the Far Right argued that Fascists, by and large, were never successful as mass movements. In Germany, Spain and Italy they owed their accession to government through deals made with other, established right-wing groups and parties, who hoped they could use these movements to bolster their own position. As for the uniforms, I understood that the wearing of paramilitary, political uniforms had been outlawed in the 1930s. Over in France, one of the main Fascist organisations, the Croix de Feu, found their vote actually increased when they gave up wearing them and began instead to look like an ordinary, mainstream political party.

We shouldn’t be complacent. Although the BNP has effectively collapsed into warring splinter groups, the rise of UKIP shows that xenophobia and racism is still an effective political force. Nevertheless, the return of the various Fascist grouplets to anti-Semitism and paramilitary costumes is likely to repel far, far more people than it attracts. This isn’t the image of a brave, new political force threatening to sweep through Britain. It’s the return of an old, collapsing ideology back to its original, murderous and discredited position.

Joshua Bonehill comes from Yeovil, and a few of the good people of that great Somerset town are so ashamed of the disgrace he’s bringing them that they’ve formed their own anti-Bonehill group on Facebook, Yeovil Against Bonehill.

Greetings and Support to DPAC Protesters on the May Day Parades

May 5, 2014

Unemployed Union pic

This is just to say a big ‘Hello’ and give my support to everyone from DPAC rallying against the cuts on the May Day parades in Chesterfield and Leicester today. Good luck, and more power to your elbows!

DPAC Rally Against Cuts and for the ILF in Leicester Tomorrow

May 4, 2014

The East Midlands and Leicestershire branches of DPAC are going to be holding a stall at the Clock Tower at the Leicester Trades Council May Day Rally tomorrow. The Leicester and District TUC are holding a march tomorrow from Victoria Park in Leicester at 11. am to the Clock Tower for the Trades Council rally at noon. they are there to explain why the ILF needs saving, with ‘Save the ILF’ postcards available. See the announcement at DPAC’s site:

http://dpac.uk.net/2014/05/leicester-5th-may-save-ilf-and-may-day-rally/