Socialist Worker

Fascists behind the English Defence League and British Freedom Party

by Patrick Ward
Issue No. 2288

EDL thugs like to pretend they are “peaceful protesters”. But nothing could be further from the truth. The EDL is a group of violent racists led by Nazis.

The EDL threatened to attack the Occupy Leicester camp last year. They also threatened to attack public sector workers who struck on 30 November.

In a recent phone-in on BBC Radio Leicester, EDL spokesperson “Joe from Manchester” attempted to push the lie that the group was non‑violent.

But “Joe” was unmasked on the show as Jeff Marsh, a hardened Nazi who boasts about his record of violence. Marsh has served three prison sentences, including a two year stint inside for stabbing fans of Manchester United.

The EDL recently formed an unholy alliance with the British Freedom Party (BFP)-—a group set up by former members of the British National Party (BNP). The BFP claims to be “moderate” but it is riddled with Nazi thugs.

Michael Wood is the party’s organiser in Cardiff. Wood used to work on the BNP website. His website links to the openly fascist Hungarian group Jobbik, whose targeting of Jews and Roma have led to a huge increase in racist murders and attacks in the country.

Other BFP organisers such as Liverpool’s Peter Stafford and Manchester’s Michael Thompson are also ex-BNP. Mark Dunbar is the party organiser in Witham, Essex. He is also a founder member of Essex EDL.

Bizarrely the BFP also has organisers in New Zealand, (Denis Hounsome) and the Netherlands (Tim Phillips). The BFP boasts that Phillips can be used to foster close relations with the far right Dutch Freedom Party headed by the notoriously Islamophobic Geert Wilders.

The BFP is set to contest elections in wards across the country in the May local elections. Anti-fascists must be ready to expose them.


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