The political pressure group Unite Against Fascism (UAF) was formed in 2003 primarily by the National Assembly Against Racism and the Socialist Workers Party of Britain to campaign against fascist organisations like the British National Party (BNP) which are fascist/racist in nature. The UAF was formed in the wake of growing political support for the BNP.
The chairman of the UAF is the ex Labour Mayor of London Ken Livingstone, there’s also high visibility people from all mainstream political parties involved with the UAF.
Unite Against Fascism organises demonstrations against the BNP and what the UAF believe are a part of the BNP (which the BNP deny) the English Defence League (EDL) a group that campaigns to halt the Islamification of the West. Both the British National Party and the English Defence League groups have used violence (incited racial hatred/violence) to reach their political goals!
The UAF’s main aims are to stop fascism in British politics and racially motivated hate crimes.
As a person who strongly believes in democracy and that we are all human no matter what the colour of our skin (we have much more in common than not in common) I, like the vast majority of the British people support Unite Against Fascism’s main goals (who wants fascist/racist people in power, certainly not I).
However, I don’t always agree with how the UAF go about campaigning/demonstrating against groups like the BNP/EDL. It’s in some respects a fight fire with fire campaign which is unfortunate because it detracts for their valid arguments against the BNP/EDL!
For example when the BNP won 2 MEP’s, the BNP leader, Nick Griffin called a press conference outside the Houses of Parliament. The UAF used violence and disrupted the press conference by throwing eggs which hit the BNP leader and members of the press. They also attacked Nick Griffin’s car and members of the public were hospitalised : A tourist was treated in an ambulance, after suffering an injured leg!
Unite Against Fascism Demonstration Against the BNP Video
This sort of violent activity makes the UAF appear as bad as the racist/violent organisations they campaign against and this is not the image a group trying to defend democracy should have.
There is something wrong when the BNP leader can rightly say:
“It’s a very, very sad day for British democracy,” and “People should be entitled to hear what we have to say and to hear journalists question us robustly.”
Don’t get me wrong, the UAF goals are admirable and I whole heartedly support them, it’s the UAF tactics I disagree with. The Unite Against Fascism demonstrations should be whiter than white (pun intended) and beyond repute.
Otherwise the BNP can argue they are a democratically elected party (almost 1 million people voted for the BNP in the 2009 European Election!) being stopped from exercising their democratic rights to speak to the press by a non elected group of left wing thugs!
You can not defend democracy from fascism by using fascist tactics against fascists! If you try to, does that not make you a fascist?
Demonstrate peacefully by all means, but do not act in a non democratic way, you are supposed to be defending British democracy not trampling on it because the ends justify the means!