An outbreak of organised racism in Swansea last Saturday 17 October was cured by a traditional remedy: street confrontation.
The self-styled Welsh Defence League organised a demonstration that day against “radical Islam.” They took their cue from the English Defence League, who have in turn been organising similar protests on the other side of Offa’s Dyke.
The day started when a large group of anti-fascists gathered in Castle Square in Swansea city centre at 1 o’clock. It contained concerned locals of all shades, sexualities and opinions who were joined by people from Unite Against Fascism (UAF), Trades Union and religious representatives, councilors, politicians, leftists and anarchists.
The rally was joyful and yet forceful demonstration to bemused shoppers and residents that fascists are not welcome on our streets.
A Piss Poor Start from the WDL
In the meantime, a gaggle of boneheads from the Welsh and English Defence Leagues gathered in Yates’ Wine Bar at the top of the square and stood around outside getting pissed.
Their original plan had been to have a static demo on the square at 4pm. However, shortly after half past three about 100 boneheads decided to lurch forward en masse.
They were quickly penned into a small space on the pavement by Pizza Hut and – wait for it… the Sheep Shop! – by the cops. This split their group up and they were unable to get onto the square.
In the meantime, anti-fascists moved the the top of the Square and onto the main road, and a line of cops got in front of both groups, preventing any movement.
However, by standing their ground, anti-fascists were able to prevent the boneheads from getting anywhere near the square – despite the cops and others trying to persuade them to move.
Double failure for the WDL!
There are many, many more of us than you
The hundred or so bones, outnumbered 5 to 1 by antifascists, put up a few pathetic placards they’d obviously cobbled together in the bogs earlier. To add to their generally embarrassingly shambolic attempt at protesting, the WDL also tried out a bit of chanting.
Representatives of the Land of Song these people certainly weren’t.
On the other side of the street, anti-fascists, their ranks swelled by concerned passers by, were in full voice. Armed with drums, placards and attitude, they ensured that the during the two hour standoff that followed they really meant business.
The pot-bellied representatives of the so-called master race, their numbers dwindling in the course of the afternoon, stood and stared. And got drunk.
Not racist – honest! (pt 1)
At once stage, a swastika in a red circle with a line through it, which had previously been placed by antifascists in a window above Pizza Hut, was taken down by the WDL – and burned.
This served to remind people that the afternoon wasn’t all about fun and games. The Welsh Defence League people, despite their claims to the contrary, are Nazi scumbags who need sweeping off our streets.
The less said about the end the better
The WDL, unable to get onto the square and unable to muster the will to have a meaningful protest, were marched off by the cops to the railway station down the road.
About twenty of them got penned in by cops when they got there.
Injury Time Shocker
The one arrest that day occurred when a WDL thug started a bit of argy bargy with the cops.
Immediately afterwards, sections of the WDL crowd shouted “We are the BNP” and “We are white and proud.” Maybe they had the wrong demo. Cos as we know, the WDL are NOT racist. No, really…..
Oops: you’re nicked
Post Match Analysis
This was the first outing of the Welsh Defence League, and it was pretty sad affair from their point of view. It showed that opposition to their brand of racist street thuggery is larger, vibrant and better organised.
Not Racist – honest! (pt 2)
You’ll notice how the EDL/WDL’s method of combating “radical Islam” involves campaigning against the building of mosques. Well, is that going to welcome in the vast majority of Muslims in the UK that share those concerns? Of course not!
They also claim they are trying to defend the UK’s “Christian heritage.”But how many of the EDL/WDL have ever been to Church in their lives? This has got nothing to do with combating “radical Islam.”
The English Defence League have recently made videos showing them burning swastikas and having a black contingent in their ranks. So they can’t be racist, right?
Wrong. The main aim of the far right at the moment – whether it’s advocated by the BNP, the Daily Mail or the EDL/WDL – is to demonise Muslims. Islam provides them with a convenient scapegoat and an “enemy within” on which to blame society’s problems.
Most of us are concerned at any interpretation of Islam that encourages suicide bombing and the like. But the advocates of this are a small minority, and should not be used as a means to target every Muslim.
The BNP tried the tactic of lining up other UK ethnic minorities against Muslims, and at one stage managed to persuade some representatives of the Skih community to appear in one of their party political broadcasts.
This fascist trickery should not deceive people that what they’re signing up to is a far right agenda. It’s classic divide and rule.
The WDL and their friends claim to act all surprised that there is a far right presence a their demos. They’re either too stupid to realise what they’re doing, or too stupid to realise their being manipulated. Either way, they’re pretty stupid, really.
Newport here we come!
The WDL claim they called off their demo in Newport next Saturday 24th and will reschedule when they can persuade people they are “not racist.” Well, burning a swastika with a red circle and a line through it and chanting Nazi rubbish isn’t really going to help that, is it?
Whether this cancellation is true or not, there needs to be a strong antifascist presence in Newport next weekend to support the local Muslim community and show the boneheads that they can’t get a foothold on our streets.
The far right have traditionally set a lot of store in having a presence on our streets. Let’s show them they can’t have it.
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