Socialist Worker

A carnival of resistance to combat the Nazi BNP

by Anindya Bhattacharyya
Issue No. 2097

The final line-up for the free Love Music Hate Racism (LMHR) carnival to be held in east London on Sunday 27 April has been confirmed.

It will be headlined by The Good, The Bad & The Queen, featuring Damon Albarn from Blur, Paul Simonon from The Clash and afrobeat legend Tony Allen. Akala and The View are last minute additions to the bill.

Meanwhile Drew McConnell from Babyshambles has confirmed that band members will be playing despite their lead singer Pete Doherty being jailed last week. Drew and friends will appear alongside a series of special guest vocalists.

Other acts playing the event include Hard-Fi, Roll Deep, Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly, Jay Sean and Wiley. Several stars from the original Rock Against Racism era of the 1970s will also be appearing.

The carnival promises to be the biggest anti-racist event for decades and will set the tone for the local elections on Thursday 1 May – elections where the fascist British National Party (BNP) threatens to grab a seat on the London assembly.

The BNP is attempting to use the election to build a base in order to spread its message of racism and hate.

Anti-fascists reacted with outrage at a decision by the editor of the Hampstead & Highgate Express to run a paid advert from the BNP Nazis last week.

Local campaigners in Camden Unite Against Fascism were set to demonstrate outside the newspaper's offices on Wednesday of this week.

'The BNP is no ordinary political party, it is a fascist organisation,' said Weyman Bennett from Unite Against Fascism. 'Its members admire Hitler and deny the Holocaust. They should not be treated as a legitimate part of our democracy.'

The Nazis need to get 5 percent of the vote in the London assembly elections to secure a seat on the assembly. A high turnout in the elections will make it much harder for them to achieve that task.

Anti-fascists will be kicking off the LMHR carnival at 11am with a march from Weavers Field in Bethnal Green to the carnival venue in Victoria Park. The carnival proper starts at 12 noon.

The march will celebrate the rich tradition of anti-fascism in the area – a tradition that includes the Battle of Cable Street mobilisation against Oswald Mosley's blackshirts in 1936 as well as the 1978 Rock Against Racism carnival that the LMHR event commemorates.

It is not too late to contribute financially to the carnival.

Entry to the event is free – but this means funds need to come in advance directly from supporters and the workers' movement.

For more information, to donate online or to download a collection sheet, go to » www.lovemusichateracism.com


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Tue 15 Apr 2008, 19:24 BST
Issue No. 2097
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