Well the bank holiday weekend didn’t exactly create the race war that the English Defence League had hoped for. They suffered a huge anti-climax at Bradford when the supposed 10,000 ‘patriots’ failed to show and instead about 700 arrived and decided to fight amongst each other when more arrived later. Such was ‘the little big one.’ The English Nationalist Alliance, hoping to cash in on the EDL’s financial and media success, were humiliated in Brighton yesterday at their ‘son of little big one.’ About 30 ‘chav scrotes’, ageing football hooligans and kids turned up to be surrounded by cops, forced to wait on the train station for 2 hours, then barracked all the way to the meeting point and back. Anti-fascist turnout was 3-400 with many locals joining in. Our southern correspondent Emma Goldman was in attendance. This is the link to Brighton Argus with some shots of the toothless charmers!
And some even better ones:
Brighton Washout by ‘Emma Goldman’
When we got into Brighton about 40 ENA were gathered either in the pub or on the station concourse completely surrounded by cops. There was a Unite Against Fascism march there heckling them and also a large number of anti-fascists who did not want to be kettled in. The police seemed nervous and I saw 1 guy arrested and another 1 being hassled by a horse cop. The 2 things the cops must hate is football crowds and demos. The UAF march were sent off 1st by the cops but this took ages as usual. The ENA on the station must have been bursting for a wee after a while because they had to wait so long. Anyway, we went round to the Albert (?) pub – the one with John Peel on the side – and had a beer to wait for the redirected ENA march. We were there for a while but it was probably the best place to wait. At least we had access to toilets. And beer. Then eventually the ENA came down. There were more coppers, riot coppers, beat coppers and horses and dogs and about 30 ENA. There were about 15 football lads, some fat blokes and some women and kids. It was a poor turnout. They seemed happy to just give v-signs and sing ‘English till I die’ – the sooner the better! How doing this whilst wearing a beer stained football shirt defeats ‘Islamic extremism’ I’ll never know. The march ground to a halt as anti-fascists blocked the road several times. The cops cleared it after a while.
After photographing the ENA, we got stuck behind the cops and had to go round the side streets and ended up near the Level. The cops had it blocked off so we walked round the other side. I had to pop into a pub called Waggoner’s (?) for a wee but when I went in there were about 6 fat, bald ENA supporters clearly content to relive their football hooligan days. I exited as the landlord, realising who they were, booted them out. They stood outside, with their big shirts untucked to disguise their beer bellies, and were harangued by several anti-fascists. We got to Victoria Gardens (I think that’s the name) and the ENA were put into 1 area and the UAF in another. There were lots of anti-fascists who didn’t get kettled in on the streets roaming about. The cops would not let the UAF out of their compound so some Asian youths who were there tore down the fences and threw them into that weird fountain whilst others tried to break out. The cops didn’t like that.
Eventually the ENA were sent back to the station. As they marched through town followed by loads of cops and a lot of anti-fascists they were booed by the local community who cheered the anti-fascists. There was a bit of a do outside another pub with the ENA fat guys going ‘come on then’ standing next to dozens of riot cops. How brave. The ENA got to the station and were totally surrounded by police. A few hundred anti-fascists surrounded the station and the ENA looked pathetically outnumbered. However, if we compared metric tonnage, it is clear the ENA outweighed us. One anti-fascist shouted ‘Why are you so fat?’ They were then put on a train by the cops. I think there were about 6 arrests in all but the demonstrators and local community showed what they think of the ENA. I heard several people say ‘is this the last gasp of the EDL?’ I hope so because they are an ugly bunch close up.
EDL/ENA by ‘Malatesta’
The bank holiday was a huge disappointment for the EDL/ENA and dwindling numbers, internal contradictions and leadership problems all contribute to their worries. The EDL had promised 5-10,000 for Bradford and it simply did not happen. All the exposes of the leadership as BNP, the football season starting, the rank and file being very divided over tactics, the heavy manners policing and the fact that they are constantly questioned and filmed at demos must get weary. The leadership and stewards have no control over the unruly elements and there are a lot of hangers-on, either hardcore Nazis or ‘chav scrotes,’ who just want to have a fight.
The politics of the ENA are interchangeable with the EDA, although the ENA disguise their racism a little bit better, and the ‘leaders’ are capitalising on the EDL’s popularity. There is money to be made here, as with the EDL merchandise, and they will no doubt be cutting out pictures from the local paper to show in the pub. Apart from not realising that many of their beliefs are at best unrealistic and at worst psychotic, many of these characters suffer from low esteem and seek to blame others for the condition of their lives. By organising tiny grupuscules, giving themselves titles, getting in the papers and bleating away on internet forums they believe they are doing ‘something’ and are actually being ‘someone.’
What happens next will be interesting. The EDL need a rethink, the ENA are a washout and the far right is in a bit of a state: the BNP is self destructing (more on that soon); the Aryan Strike Force collapsed after key members were arrested and jailed for internet racism; the tiny British People’s Party have consigned themselves to a solely internet existence, when they are not falling out with each other; and the British Freedom Fighters have similarly been riven by sexual impropriety recently. ENA? Enough Already!