Liverpool: mobilising against the far right

Photo - Connor Kelly
Photo – Connor Kelly

OVER THREE hundred anti-fascists protested in Liverpool last Saturday against the British National Party. This follows the police arrest of 12 BNP members in Liverpool on 22 November for distributing racist leaflets in the city centre.

Taken from TheSocialist (Eng & Wales) Issue 559

North-west Socialist Party members attended the demonstration and Tony Mulhearn of the Merseyside branch was among the speakers.

Tony explained how the BNP is fundamentally an anti-working class fascist organisation and underneath their projected image of respectability, are still the same thugs who will use violence and intimidation against political opponents. He went on to explain the importance of the role of trade unions in the struggle against racism and fascism, and in building political representation for working-class people.

Trade unionist Alec McFadden explained that the Attorney General had announced on Friday evening that the BNP literature distributed in the city the previous weekend has now been deemed not to be racist. As Tony Mulhearn said, this shows why we cannot rely on the state forces to counter the far right.

After approximately two hours of protesting, the crowd became aware that the BNP had established a presence at the bottom of Church Street. The majority of anti-fascists then peacefully assembled closer to the BNP, with police holding protesters back a hundred yards from the fascists.

The BNP, for all their talk of demanding a huge mobilisation of their membership after the 12 arrests, had less than one hundred members. This clearly demonstrates how weak and troubled the BNP is following the leaking of their membership details.

Saturday’s protest by left-wing organisations was a big success. However, with BNP leader Nick Griffin standing in the north-west European parliamentary election next year, it is vital that a broad movement, strongly involving the trade unions, continues to campaign against the BNP to prevent them gaining ground.

With the BNP attempting to project themselves as a genuine alternative to the three main capitalist parties, it’s essential for the growth of the Campaign for a New Workers’ Party to continue also.

Any further attempts by fascist groups to spread their bigoted views in Liverpool or elsewhere needs to be countered by large protests from the left.

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