1 December 2018News in Brief

Not a single national newspaper reported the National Unity Demonstration Against Racism and Fascism in central London on 17 November (though many did cover the Extinction Rebellion civil disobedience that day).

60,000 people gathered from around the country, particularly trade union branches and local Labour parties.

Speakers included Labour MP Catherine West, Labour MEP Claude Moraes, Len McCluskey of Unite the Union, and Mark Serwotka, the new president of the Trades…

1 April 2018Review

Verso, 2017; 224pp; £14.99

This book grapples with the puzzling, and seemingly sudden, political trend that has seen much of mainstream European politics shift firmly into the right (and arguably further).

Fekete offers a multifaceted approach to understanding the rise of far-right politicians such as Marine Le Pen in France and outcomes such as Brexit – developments which have baffled the left – as well as the racism underlying these currents.

She rigorously argues that governments across the…

1 February 2018Review

PM Press, 2015; 448pp; £21.99

A story of poverty and desperation and of crashing through a society with few safety nets, Everyone has their reasons is an education in the struggles in Europe in the 1930s. But it is most frightening because its narratives about ethnicity, migration and belonging are still so much alive today, and people at this very moment are experiencing the terror caused by borders.

This harrowing book told me things that I needed to know about Europe – and that we all need to know…

1 October 2017Comment

Violence and a lack of principle helped undermine the movements against German fascism in the 1930s - today's social movements should take heed, argues Milan Rai

Roter Frontkaempfer Bund Logo.
Image: Kille via Wikimedia Commons.


US radical Noam Chomsky recently warned against ‘self-destructive’ anti-fascist tactics such as disrupting right-wing meetings, something that is ‘wrong in principle’, he told the Washington Examiner.

Chomsky added: ‘When confrontation shifts to the arena of violence, it’s the toughest and most brutal who win – and we know who that is. That’s quite apart from the opportunity…

1 February 2015Feature

A Hastings artist and designer takes action when UKIP decides to hold a fundraiser in her local pub

My favourite local pub is the Horse & Groom – up at the top of Norman Road. It proudly boasts its history as the oldest pub in St Leonards-on-Sea, in East Sussex, and is a fine example of what I have always called ‘OMPs’ – Old Man’s Pubs. That’s not an insult, it’s just a special kind of pub.

You enter and there’s usually a warm, quiet atmosphere – a bit of chat at the bar, a few small groups of people sat around tables, a solitary chap reading a paper with a well-behaved dog…

1 February 2015Letter

I am writing with regard to your current editorial, ‘How do we stop UKIP?’. While I cannot disagree with the conclusions of the article, I am amazed that you can write approvingly of the Five Star Movement, as if it represented some sort of alternative to UKIP and other far-right parties and movements that have emerged across Europe in recent years.

The Five Star Movement (5SM) is officially allied with UKIP in the European Parliament. Both parties’ MEPs are members of the Europe…

25 November 2014Comment

To halt the rise of UKIP, white anti-racists need to reach out to their white neighbours and communities – to break racist myths about immigration and Islam, and to organise white people against the real problems in society.

There is something hopeful about the rise of UKIP (UK Independence Party). Yes, it is a racist far-right party; yes, the mainstream parties have responded to its increasing strength by becoming more repressive and racist; and yes, it may win several seats in the general election in May 2015 – all frightening developments.

On the other hand, UKIP is part of a global anti-establishment phenomenon which in Europe is represented not only by far-right parties like Golden Dawn in Greece…

13 August 2011Feature

About 200 local trade unionists and anti-fascist campaigners marched behind the Cambria Drum Band through Wrexham town centre on 12 April in a lively and good-natured protest against the presence of the British National Party (BNP).
The BNP has targeted the town, which has seen an influx of migrant workers in recent years. The far-right party has seven candidates in the 1 May local elections.
After the march, which was well received through the town, the Miners’ Institute was…

1 April 2010News

The attempt by the Scottish Defence League (SDL) to stage a rally in Edinburgh on 20 February was the mother of all damp squibs, as the “patriots” were confined to a couple of pubs in the vicinity of the Royal Mile. For those who had travelled up from England in solidarity, it was, at best, a poor introduction to Scotland’s boozers. Certainly the Scottish Defence League, the little brother of the English Defence League (EDL), must be getting the message that they really aren’t welcome on the…

3 June 2006Comment

The past twelve months have seen Travellers turfed off their own land, and their homes destroyed, by zealous bailiffs. Against a backdrop of local hostility and gains for the BNP in last month's local elections, Grattan Puxon reflects on the impact of the rise of the right on his community.

A pensioner like myself, an elderly man accosted me outside the railway station: “Hey, Mr Gypsy - you. You're a lot of land-grabbers! We don't want you in Crays Hill.” “If you mean Dale Farm,” I said, hiding my anger, “Travellers bought that land.” “Come off it,” he said, coming up closer. “Fucking thieves the lot of you. You should be put off there.”

In the exchange that followed, he said he was voting for the British National Party and wanted Gypsies deported or dead. It was two…