Fascists on Britain’s Streets?

This, in today’s Guardian:

A cabinet minister last night raised the spectre of a return to 1930s fascism, warning of “parallels” between rightwing groups planning protests in Muslim neighbourhoods and Oswald Mosley’s incendiary marches through Jewish areas of east London in the 1930s.

Read the rest here.

4 comments

  1. Is the specter of Oswald Mosley, a quixotic political clown, supposed to scare anybody? Does anyone even remember him in the UK?

    Nice presentation for the blog, BTW.

  2. As I heard it, John Denham remarked upon the tactical similarity between Mosley’s Blackshirts and groups like the English Defence League (EDL) and Stop the Islamisation of Europe (SIOE). In this, he was correct. Drawing out protestors in the hope of causing retaliatory violence and over-reaction, whereupon our saintly preservers of the national (racial) heritage can sit back and say, ‘well, look at all these savages’, as well as invoking all manner of claims to freedom of speech and assembly, etc. Tried and tested, works almost every time.

    What Denham did not do, and I was watching and listening to the BBC that morning, was say that the EDL, SIOE and the various fragmented tribes of the UK far right, presented a threat to the social fabric akin to Mosley’s 1930s boot-boys. The media tried to goad him into doing so and, to his credit, he refused. The BBC (by which I mean the Today programme and the morning news/magazine programme on BBC1) gradually toned down their assertions over the 6-9am period that Denham was drawing such parallels. By 8am, even the TV had started using the word ‘tactic’ in their headlines, rather than the more inflammatory language of earlier bulletins.

    Perhaps Denham was unwise to raise the ‘spectre’, as Mark says, of Mosley, but his comments were reported incorrectly by the press, in search of a better story. In fact, it would have been a much more interesting story had they reported him accurately! It would have exposed the far right for the devious cowards they are, rather than affording them any credibility derived from political comparisons with the far more successful and insidious movement of Mosley. Racists 1 – UK 0.

  3. Hmm. Interesting. I won’t make any facile comments about media sensationalism, but this does go to show you that patience is a virtue, especially when it comes to digging a bit deeper and doing the necessary homework.

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