Back In Black Shirts: The Return of Open Fascism to UK Politics.

Posted: June 17, 2013 in Anti-Fascism, NBU, UK

Sunday 4th October 1936 is remembered as the most prominent moment in British anti-fascist history. It was the day when Oswald Mosley’s British Union of Fascists sought to march through the East End of London only to be met by 100,000 anti-fascists, including local Jewish, socialist, anarchist, Irish and communist groups.

nbu1Now just over 86 years later, and 72 years since Mosley’s party dissolved after being proscribed, a new party has emerged taking up their baton.  The New British Union (NBU), lead by former BNP Scotland Organiser Gary Raikes, are an openly fascist party following in the footsteps of Oswald Mosley that describes itself as a political movement for the dispossessed. The NBU has taken on the imagery of Mosley’s party, adopting the paramilitary uniform, red armband and flash insignia. They combine this with a modern edge by also appropriating the popular Stonewall ‘Get over it’ campaign posters.

Echoing the views of Sunderland manager Paulo Di Canio, leader Gary Raikes claims “I am a fascist, not a racist.” adding: “National Front types hate me because I was engaged to a black girl. If we find anyone in our movement into the Nazi stuff or racism, they are out.” With this Raikes clearly forgets his idol Mosley’s fervent support for Hitler. Raikes, who originally comes from Bristol, said: “The uniform is to totally separate us from the shirt-and-tie politicians and it also goes with us being run under military lines.” Another separation is their views on democracy, in an interview the 54-year-old dad of one told The Sun: “If democracy means everyone should have a say, then I’m not democratic, no. I think liberalism is a sickness that needs to be exterminated.”

nbu2The NBU have a basic website, which despite simple appearance has attracted over 40,000 hits, it displays the ‘Stonewall’ image, complete with the words “New British Union. 21st Century Blackshirts Marching On For Britain.” Another picture bears the slogan: “One Nation, One People, One Leader”. There has also been a conference organised by Raikes for the party at a secret location in south east England in October. On this meeting the website, which shows Mosley’s fanatical followers performing the stiff-armed fascist salute, boasts: “This will be an historic occasion, the first official Blackshirt meeting to be held since the Second World War, heralding the return of a registered fascist political party in Britain.”

Raikes says he is in touch with some of the original Blackshirts and hopes “one or two” will speak at the gathering. The fascists are invited to wear uniforms — but only in private. Of the Nazi-style salute, he added: “We don’t do it because it’s been demonised by the Press, even though it goes back thousands of years and is a Roman salute.”

  1. oogenhand says:

    Reblogged this on oogenhand and commented:
    Crying wolf for too long?

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