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UAF and EDL face off in Manchester

Was it a dead cat bounce? Certainly the presence of around 400 supporters of the English Defence League in Manchester at the weekend shows that although numbers attending the rallies have plummeted since the EDL glory days of 2010-11, on a good day and in the right area the EDL can pull together their splinter groups and still get out the numbers.

SchNEWS travelled up to Manchester to take a look. In many ways the event was a less inspired re-run of the EDL's last outing in the city in 2009, when at least the league had novelty value. Manchester cops had decided that the frank exchange of opinions between the UAF and the EDL would best happen in a pair of crowd-pens facing each other across a No Man's Land in Albert Square that were exactly too far apart to throw anything. So all the opposing sides could do was to try and drown each other with their respective sound-systems.

After three hours, the EDL were for the most part shoved onto busses and made their way home. The UAF marched the short distance to Picadilly gardens where the only significant action of the day occurred, as group of jeering EDL hanging around outside a Wetherspoons were driven back inside by a hail of bottles from the feistier elements of the UAF. Loitering autonomous anti-fascists had to make do with some inconsequential scuffling in Picadilly gardens after the march.

Anti-fascists shouldn't be dispirited – the EDL do well in cities that are big enough for no-one to really feel like they own the town centre. When they try to march through a samller town - such as Norwich, Walthamstow, Bradford or even Brighton – it's a different story. However it's clear that despite the relentless online mockery the EDL, though diminished, hasn't gone away.

Dates for yer anti-fascist diary:

March 9th - Swansea – to celebrate White Pride Worldwide the National Front have picked on this city for a demo. It looks like the counter-protest is gonna be massive. For more see Swansea Antifa on Facebook.

April 21st – Brighton – The EDL splinter group March for England is planning to tarnish the streets of our home-town once more. (Even after last years dismal effort) For more see Stop the March for England


Stories about similar subjects...

The English Defence League couldn't have hoped for a better recruiting sergeant than the murder of soldier Lee Rigby in Woolwich last week.

Russian anti-fascist unfairly imprisoned under Putin's new house rules.

Brighton turns out thousands to oppose the March for England's message of hate.

Oh Christ ..not again, about as welcome as Jimmy Saville at an orphanage, it's time for the outbreak of political venereal disease that is the March for England set to tarnish the streets of Brighton again on April 21st.

National Front demonstration has a poor turn out in Swansea, followed by a Blood & Honour gig in the valleys.

Over 10,000 anti-fascists gathered in Dresden, East Germany on Wednesday (13th) to oppose a neo-Nazi march.

Golden shower as British far-right turn in another piss-poor performance at the Greek Embassy

For 25 years Golden Dawn were a marginal group that for the most attacked small left-wing and anarchist groups and sometimes would also go for immigrants.Until a few years ago they never measured more than 200 members. Up until recently they had one office. Now? They have forty-eight.

Twitter: @SchNEWS