Walthamstow: “If it wasn’t for the coppers you’d be dead”

Police holding back anti-fascists.

The English Defence League (EDL) returned to Walthamstow last Saturday and once again were only able to march through the borough because of the police. Hundreds of riot police, not-so-undercover cops, attack dogs, police land rovers, coaches, trucks, horses and a helicopter were mobilised by the state to facilitate the march, but even this could not stop anti-fascists from making it clear to the EDL they were not welcome in Walthamstow.

We spent time in the run up to the day strengthening our community links and leafleting to promote the protest outside Blackhorse Road train station. We had called for people to gather outside the station to block the EDL march. But the police didn’t appear to be overly keen on this happening, so by the time most of us arrived the protest had already been pushed onto Forest Road, which the EDL were going to march down.

200 anti-fascists from the AFN and autonomous anti-fascist groups were slowly pushed all the way along the route of the march by the cops who repeatedly threw soft cordons around small sections of the protests, re-enforced them and then detained or dispersed those inside the cordon. Had anti-fascists been a bit more organised, this tactic may have been possible to resist but it wasn’t. Several anti-fascists broke away from the march and doubled back on the police while others went and joined the Unite Against Fascism rally outside Walthamstow town hall.

When the EDL last marched in Walthamstow it looked like a complete disaster for the organisation, they had only been able to mobilise 200 people. This time they set off with less than 100. Anti-fascists blocked their route and had to be pushed back by lines of police. The police had surrounded the gaggle of EDL with riot police and then surrounded them with even more riot police, with horses in front and vans behind. Proving once again veteran anarchist Albert Meltzer’s maxim that there is no such thing as a fascist march, only a police march.

Police march in Walthamstow.

The chants of “if it wasn’t for the coppers you’d be dead” were heartfelt, enjoyable and made a pleasant change from the usual anti-fascist repertoire of “alerta, alerta” and “whose streets”. As the EDL held their rally, anti-fascists prepared for their return to the station back down Forest Road. By the time the EDL reached the station the police had to fight back a crowd of anti-fascists who very nearly broke through police lines.

We believe the day was a success, despite the heavy policing. We mobilised a large militant group who slowed down and disrupted the EDL march. The EDL were basically driven through the area like a herd of diseased cattle and prevented from contaminating the area by many hundreds of police. Banned from pubs and being escorted en masse is hardly going where they want.

Militant Anti-Fascists humiliate Golden Dawn supporters again

Militants from the Anti-Fascist Network (AFN) and comrades have once again humiliated Eddie Stampton and Piers Mellor’s band of neo-Nazi misfits as they attempted to show solidarity with Greek fascists Golden Dawn. Under the banner “Freedom for Greek Nationalists” their protest was timed to coincide with the commencement of the trial of the imprisoned leadership of the neo-Nazi party in Greece.

This is the second such protest held by the Golden Dawn fan club in London. Last year we visited their rendezvous point and appropriated their flags and banners – this year we thought we would take a different approach and be ready and waiting for them as they arrived in Holland Park for their protest.

A few early hangers-on were turned away as they arrived at the underground station – one known Golden Dawn supporter was even pitiful enough to claim he was an anti-fascist once he was confronted. He quickly realized it was in his best interest to get back on the tube and make his way home.

The main group of fascists turned up shortly after midday. While Unite against Fascism and Anti-fascist Action For Greece held a static protest adjacent the Embassy, our group took the road which was the most direct route from the tube station to the embassy in an effort to block their protest.

Once the group of 30 or so fascists formed up at outside the station we thought we would make it easier for them to exact revenge for us disposing of two National Front (NF) wreaths earlier in the week, revenge which had been promised on a number of far right forums and websites.

We went down the hill and faced off with them but they were far from interested in making good on their threats and instead refused to move from their position until provided security courtesy of the Metropolitan Police. We carried on holding the road to the Greek Embassy which forced the fascists to take a much longer route under heavy police escort, significantly delaying their rally.

AFN groups then briefly joined the counter-protest, causing the police to block the road between the fascist and anti-fascist protests with two riot vans and a line of TSGs. The fascist protest lasted roughly 40 minutes before being escorted back to the underground and out of the area.

The demonstration was organized by fascist cranks of New Dawn and was supported by Polish fascists from the National Rebirth of Poland, several assorted neo-Nazi boneheads, a couple of members of the South East Alliance and members of the Cyprus sister-party of GD the National Popular Front.

Later in the day, our sources confirmed where the far-right were drinking. Their security dashed inside the pub on sight of the crew of anti-fascists making our way up the road. Stampton was so keen to avoid a repeat of the last time he encountered anti-fascists in Victoria he locked his group in a pub before cowering behind the bar staff!

Eddie Stampton having a break on the pavement, Victoria 2009

We chalk the day up as a success for anti-fascists. The smattering of fascists and neo-Nazis bottled it at every opportunity and cowered behind the police or bar staff at the sight of opposition. We would like to thank all the groups which turned out to make the day such a success.

As revolutionary anti-fascists we see no value in a state ban of parties like Golden Dawn. We do not join in on the call to “Jail Golden Dawn!” but instead recognize they must be smashed off the streets. The political system which creates fascists cannot be their remedy!

Solidarity with Greek Anti-Fascists!

London Anti-Fascists

Britain First stopped in Rochester

A great day for antifascists as Britain First were stopped in their tracks.

Police were nowhere to be seen as they let the visiting band of fascists move off from the train station and attempt to charge through the group of antifascists blocking the road. However, they were stopped in their tracks by militant antifascists that were more than a match for the plastic patriots. Paul Golding later bragged that they would have moved through the antifascists like a ‘knife through butter’ if the police weren’t ‘sabotaging’ their march. Well Paul, you had your chance and you failed. Maybe next time you might want to lead from the front rather than cowering behind your security? The police then took control of the fascist march, forcing through the lines of antifascists before it was finally blocked at the high-street and turned back.

This is just the latest in a string of defeats for the toothless Britain First that has seen its activists chased from the streets across the country. After being turned back from marching twice in Rochester it must be dawning on their leader that facebook likes do not translate into a street movement.

Paul Golding has promised more action after this latest defeat, we think he should learn his lesson and stay at home next time.

ITN Video: http://www.itv.com/news/meridian/update/2014-11-15/clashes-between-marchers-as-rochester-by-election-campaign-continues/

See you on the streets!

London Anti-Fascists

From London to Calais – Anti-Fascist Solidarity

On the weekend of September 6/7th members of London Anti Fascists traveled to Calais to support the call out made by Action Antifasciste Nord-Pas-Du-Calais (NP2C) for a “Weekend of Antifascist Resistance” opposing local far right group Sauvons Calais (“Save Calais”). Along with supporting the NP2C call out, LAF hosted a benefit in late August along with other anti-fascists and No Borders activists, collecting donated materials (books, camping gear, clothing…) to be distributed at the jungles upon our arrival.

Anti-Fascists crew in Calais

Anti-Fascists crew in Calais

Calais is the site of ongoing struggle for an estimated 1200 migrants and refugees forced to live in “jungles” – camps in small patches of forest and abandoned land – and risk death in order to make it to the UK and claim asylum. The squats and jungles inhabited by the migrants are frequently demolished by police, while the threat of fascist and racist violence, for both migrants and activists on the ground, is an everyday reality. In recent weeks and months it has been reported that these attacks have increased in frequency and severity, while there is the looming threat of an eviction of the largest squat in the city currently providing some level of security for several hundred people. It is in this context that SC, led by Calais fascist Kevin Reche, hosted a large scale demonstration on September 7th .

Migrants in Calais face an uncertain future. Many have come from places across Africa and the Middle East escaping War and Poverty.

Migrants in Calais face an uncertain future. Many have come from places across Africa and the Middle East escaping War and Poverty.

Hours ahead of the fascist demonstration, antifascists mobbed up in a nearby park before making their way to the streets. The SC demonstration was able to go ahead, but was only made possible with the protection of several hundred police, while the mobility and combativeness of the upwards of 120 antifa roaming the streets meant much of the rest of town was a no-go zone for the scum. More than a few fascists were unlucky enough to find themselves outside the rally area and were swiftly dispersed.

Anti-Fascists attempt to block the far-right march

Anti-Fascists attempt to block the far-right march

The fascist demonstration drew support from local reactionaries along with well known neo-nazis from across France. There is also evidence that at least a handful of fascists made the trip from the UK.

London Anti Fascists stands in firm solidarity with the thousands facing violence and repression at the hands of the French police, the UKBA, fascist thugs, and against the borders they all serve to defend. LAF will continue to support the struggle of migrants and refugees whenever possible, and along with international anti-fascist comrades to disrupt the efforts of those who target them. The working class has no nation!

For more info on Calais and how to support migrant solidarity work;