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Home | Friday 30th October 2009 | Issue 697

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Over 500 people came out to protest against the BNP’s Question Time debut last week, at a mostly SWP/UAF organised demo. And, with racism’s allegedly respectable but still very ugly face - Nick Griffin - trying to get to the gig of his career, the crowd outside weren’t in any mood for compromise.

Police totally underestimated the size of the crowd, who managed to break through a police line, smash down barriers and scale walls to get into the BBC studios. Some 25 people actually managed to get inside the studio, disrupting TV schedules (but providing great news footage) as they were dragged away by security.

Strangely for us anarchists - used to the Trots organising stage managed a-b demos where the only aggression sanctioned is against ‘fellow’ protesters trying to confront authority - there were plenty of SWPers on the front lines. Apparently even SWP leader Martin Smith got nicked - massively upping his Red-cred. SchNEWS spoke to one Swappy who explained “Yeah, there was a lot of Comrades at the front. We saw the difference between the big stage-managed Iraq war demos and the angry crowds outside the Israeli embassy last winter. Sometimes we just need to be more confrontational.”

There’s been some criticism of the tactic of making the BNP’s showing on Question Time an even bigger show by calling a demo outside but, as the event was such a media circus, having a mid-week riot to greet fascism’s appeal to the mainstream showed the watching masses just how much fascism is hated in this country.

The ‘No Platform’ strategy (ie. Denying fascists mainstream press coverage) is falling apart, with the uncensorable saturation coverage that the internet now provides, so winning the battle against the fash on the streets is more important than ever. Come on Anarchists, let’s make sure that next time it’s the Trots wishing they were at an Antifa action.


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