Posted by: Eddie | May 3, 2011

Portsmouth Mayday march

Note: There is another account of the Mayday march further down the page as Rich beat me to it. Motherfucker.

On Sunday 1st May, a mayday march of 150 people made its way from Victoria Park to Southsea Common to protest against the cuts.

The march, called by Portsmouth Against the Cuts Together (PACT) and Portsmouth Trades Council consisted of trade unionists, pensioners, students, Sure Start campaigners, socialists and anarchists.

The march passed off without incident despite threats from the English Defence League being made online that they were going to disrupt the march. Portsmouth Anarchists decided not to fly any flags due to this as we did not want to draw unwanted attention to the march. With hindsight, this was probably not required as the few EDL that bothered turning up at the start of the march didn’t react aggressively to anyone bearing Socialist Workers Party or Unite Against Fascism slogans and just watched the march move off. By the end of the march, the only EDL that showed up trying to provoke a reaction were two nippers who stood 200 metres away with a St Georges Cross and a Union Jack. What they thought they were protesting about I have no idea and probably, nor do they.

The march ended with a short rally on the common and a few empty cans of beer. Whilst the turn out wasn’t anywhere near the numbers of the last PACT march, this was the first may day march in Portsmouth that I’ve ever heard of and long may it continue!

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Responses

  1. The two lads that turned up were not acting for the EDL, nor were they protesting against you. They were there to show their support for the great country that you anarchists wish to destroy.

    • In what way are anarchists trying to destroy the country?

      • I’d like to know what this chap thinks anarchism is? And also what he thinks makes England great? Come on , lets have a serious disscussion!

        No bullshit though, we know the pompey EDL Posted the mayday demo on their facebook with a link to the anarchist page. Therefore, for you to then turn up for a two man protest against those opposing government cuts that affect the most vunerable in our society is at best influenced by EDL, if not acting for it.

        I’m willing to discuss it if you are. (although i’m away from a computer for the next 5 days or so)

  2. Aahh yes, I almost forgot, but I remember the Chuckle Brothers turning up on the other side of the common with their ‘made in China’ flags now.

  3. lets look at London anti cuts march… mostly non violent, until anarchists turned up and smashed the place in. thats not the point anyway, they lads that turned up weren’t acting for the EDL.

  4. The use of violence is hardly a good line of critisism coming from the EDL! Not when an angry mob threw rocks and bottles at a crowd assembled to protect the local mosque. A mosque that has no known links to Islamic extremism I might add.

    Though I hardly see the black block as violent, at most it’s mob handed vandalism which is justified in my oppinion. During a time when the NHS and other services are being cut, big businesses are dodging taxes at our expense. What do you expect people to do? Vote Labour and hope it all goes away? The political system in this country has left little option for people to bring about change. You either give up or get angry.

  5. in fairness, no one likes government cuts, unfortunately they are going to do it anyway. my point was that people were there to show support for the country, and stop any anarchists kicking off, as clearly the o.b cant do that. another reason for the EDLs involvement in this is that a fair few of you lot at the march were SWP and UAF, who are against the EDL for some strange reason.

    • It was hardly gonna kick off on mayday. People from Portsmouth Anarchists have attended plently of marches in this city without feeling the need to put in a window. Why start now?

      We were there to support our country or at least support the people in this country who are getting fucked over by the government and big corporations. If you count government advisor/tax avoider Philip Green as a part of this country that’s worth defending then that’s up to you, but I think otherwise.

      More info on Phil Green here: http://www.ukuncut.org.uk/targets/tax-dodgers/sir-philip-green

      As for UAF and the SWP being against the EDL, I think it’s pretty obvious why they oppose the EDL. Whilst I’m sure there are moderates in the EDL, countless videos on youtube show racist chanting directed towards or againsts muslims on EDL marches. Nevermind the connections to the BNP in the EDL leadership. Plus, if the EDL really want to oppose Islamic extremism then your tactics are flawed. Chucking stones and bottles at a mosque with no connections to Islamic fundamentalists is more likely to push moderate muslims in the direction of extremism rather than prevent it.

    • Oh, c’mon. Don’t treat us like idiots. The reason that various groups and individuals are against the EDL is because they have at the head of of the organisation, and many in their ranks, numerous racists and known fascists. They harp on about only being against ‘Muslim extremism’, but certain chants and violent behaviour on their demos reveal a different story. Indeed recent targets are much broader and include those traditionally associated with fascism (left-wing groups, trade unionists, non-whites etc). The action that took place in Portsmouth against the Jami Mosque is an example of this. It was an indiscriminate action to bully and intimidate a place of worship for a minority faith. Why? Apparently because a completely separate miniscule group, not connected to the Mosque, burned some poppies a day or two previously. So the EDL decided to pick on any Mosque. ‘Any Muslim will do’ was the EDL thinking … because at the heart of their ideology is racism. As far as they are concerned all Muslims are fair game. And then all Asians (as we saw when they broke loose in Luton). And then all Commies etc etc. See the pattern here? Anyway, what was the “EDLs involvement in this” anyway? A couple of observers at the beginning and the chuckle brothers at the end? That is not “involvement”, it is just passing by.

  6. who exactly are these racist and fascist heads of the group then? tommy’s family are immigrants and kevs daughter is mixed race. guramit singh is an indian sikh, head of the youth division was mixed race, there is a jewish division and a few (granted, not many) muslim members, and the only reason for that is that the religion tells them to stand with a brother over kuffar no matter what, or words to that effect, im not going to route through every surah in the qur’an to give you the exact quote. the point is, whoever wrote this is a shitty journo at best. do your research, EDL wouldnt have a union jack flag. clue is in the name ENGLISH defence league, not british defence league.

    • First off, flaunting non-whites as members doesn’t dismiss claims of racism or prejudice. Hating muslims but accepting other ethnic minorities or religions means that you’re not white supremecists, not that you’re prejeducided towards muslims.

      As for BNP links to the EDL, Tommy Robinson is a former BNP member.
      http://www.hopenothate.org.uk/features/article/26/the-bnp-past-of-the-edl-leader

      Also, Chris Renton is a BNP member.
      “Standing at the front of the march with a shaved head and EDL Bristol Division hoodie directing the stewards, was Chris Renton. Renton, alias John Sheridan, who was listed on the leaked BNP membership list as an activist runs the EDL website and Facebook groups”
      http://exposethebnp.com/2010/04/05/edl-on-the-ground-in-dudley/

      Plus the many youtube videos of EDL marchers shouting paki insults at passers by.

      Whether or not the nippers were EDL members or not, they were obviously inspired by the EDLs call to counter the march and are at the least, supporters of the EDL, union jack or not.

  7. just want to no why you think there was 2 edl nippers by the end of the march ?? i was there they were 2 young lads who are concerned for there country and who also have the right to standt there and disagree with you … they were not violent… and there was no mention of them being edl…..
    why are you makeing things up ?

    • I never said they were violent or that they didn’t have the right to disagree with me and I’ve explained why I think the nippers were EDL on the above comment and I stand by that.

      • well to be honest i respected them lads because for one they were on there own (weather or not the edl were backing them) and they where showing the flags of our great country. why are they in the wrong being there? and why do you keep bring up .. they stood 200 meters away .. what would you have done if they come closer ??
        also i would like you to look back at some of the pictures that were taken on the day.. because i remember the lads makeing peace sighns.
        thanks
        james

      • You seem to be trying to put words into my mouth. I never said they were wrong to be there, and it seems you are the one that keeps bringing this issue up. Yes, they stood 200 metres away, why are you asking what we would have done if they came closer? You seem to be inferring that we would attack them if they came closer, we’ve never said anything of the sort which is more than can be said about the EDL towards us.

        Also, peace signs? Are you suggesting that these boys were peace activists, what has peace got to do with opposing an anti-cuts march? Give me a break.

    • Firstly Eddie ain’t a ‘journo’ he’s just doing a blog in his spare time, a bit like your EDL facebook page, but less fat, skinheaded, and racist. But I agree all (or most) journo’s are lying bastards.

      Secondly the cunt with ‘confused’ as a user-name: that’s the lamest attempt at trying to hide the fact that you’re EDL I’ve ever seen, you could be a cop with that kind of intellect, or maybe you already are, either way, you clearly dont know what your talking about. fuck off.

      If we were to take the hilariously named ‘pompeyagainstanarchists’ description of the EDL at face value it would appear they are not racist at all, in fact they are completely normal, just a little conservative; They want the police to have more power, and think the government should be even more draconian. They love the fact that our armed forces are fighting overseas as it gives them a cause (although I don’t understand why you don’t sign up if you love it that much). We’ll always disagree here as I think the best way to support our soldiers is to not send them into oil wars in the first place.

      Unfortuanatley for pompeyagainstanarchists everything he has written goes against the what we know for sure. He is either delusional, brainwashed, or a liar. I would like to have said he is stupid and must just be brainwashed but he can obviously string a sentence together so maybe he is just full of shit.

      Can he explain why the EDL turned up outside a mosque that has no connection whatsoever
      to Muslims Against the Crusades armed with fireworks, eggs, bottles, and rocks to throw, whilst chanting ‘You’re not welcome any-more’ – Am I wrong or does this FACT seem to go against everything you have been spewing on here? He actually thinks Anarchists bring trouble to our streets? Look again lad, Pompey EDL has that record!

      Here’s why I think the EDL is a dangerous organisation:

      I’m against all religion but as an anarchist I believe everybody has the right to go about their business without harassment, unless what they are doing is harassing someone else. Blowing yourself up on a bus is pretty harsh harassment, also known as terrorism; Every sane person is against that, you don’t need to protest it, it’s like protesting about changing the name of England to Dog Shit Island – there’s no point because nobody, including the leaders, wants that.

      Whilst I stood outside the Jami Mosque watching the EDL turn uglier, I spoke to someone who said it was lucky a lot of ordinary white folks (Christian, aithiests, whatever), we’re standing with the young Muslim lads. If they had been left on their own to that kind of abuse from the perceived white community, they would have definitely gone home that day pissed off with their situation in the UK, and would have possibly wanted revenge for being attacked when they had done nothing wrong (the mosque had already publicly condemned the 14 or so morons in London who burnt the poppies). In the next day or so the head of the UK police said that the EDL could fuel Islamic extremism, it’s not often I agree with plod but it’s exactly like we were talking about. You go into a peaceful community, try to divide them, and you’re pushing people further away from a peaceful co-existence. Much like the way Al-Qaeda do to get support, devide and conquer. Although luckily most people have a decent moral compass and therefore wont get swayed by the extremists on either side.

      So I doubt very much you will take any of this on board as you’ve chosen what gang you want to be part of and it makes you feel big.

      Listing a few ethnically diverse members only highlights their own naivety, It’s like the Dead Kennedy’s sing about in Nazi Punks Fuck Off ” you’ll be the first to go, unless you think”.

      There, I ended on a quote like the lad in American History X!…although he got shot….but I dont think you understood that film anyway.

      P.S. There will be trouble at the EDL demo. Have you seen those hilarious You-tube video’s? Even when their is no counter demo the idiots fight amongst themselves. EDL takes violence with it wherever it goes, people don’t want Neo Nazi scum on their street. You cant hide behind the St Georges flag forever, The normal people will want it back.

  8. for all you lot know they could have been BNP, NF, EDL, pissed off conservatives or they just might not have liked your presence in portsmouth (not likely to be tory, that mob are cunts 🙂 ). to say they were for sure EDL is small minded and plain lazy reporting. no offence but all journo’s are lying bastards, reporting what people want to hear as opposed to the truth. and threats to disrupt or otherwise cause trouble at the upcoming EDL demostration in portsmouth in your other report are fine, go join the rest of the smelly UAF and get laughed out of town.

  9. The EDL supporters here are a tedious. It is hard to tell whether you are consciously and deliberately spouting the lies of the ‘EDL line’ or if you are genuinely stupid and believe that what you say is the truth. So, let’s ignore the blatant deceit and look at facts and evidence instead.

    That there may be Sikhs, Hindus, Jews, Gays or Lesbians connected to the EDL does not in itself define the organisation as non-racist or non-homophobic. These groups can have in their midst reactionary tendencies and can therefore align themselves to fascist groups. After all it is well known that prominent members of the Nazi brown-shirts were gay, but that didn’t stop gays from being victims of the holocaust. Also, I remember a tiny minority of black people trying to court favour with their racist peers, back in the 70s, by saying that they supported the Nazi NF. It did not mean that the NF were not Nazis just because a few vulnerable and naïve black people said that they supported them. The term ‘turkeys voting for Christmas’ springs to mind here.

    Also, the EDL are not against ‘militant extremism’ per se. Only when they can identify it with a group that they consider to be ‘non-English’ (whatever that is). So, when white Nazis are found to be stockpiling weapons with a view to starting a ‘race war’ the EDL don’t bother demonstrating or marching against that.

    Let’s not be distracted by the bull-shit rhetoric. As I said before let’s look at the facts. Documentary evidence exists to show the following at EDL gatherings, actions and on their website: Violent assaults on Asians generally and their property. Attacks on anti-racist meetings. Attacks on political opponents. Attacks on left-wing book shops. Statements against the student demos against increased tuition fees. Racist chants. Homophobic chants etc etc.

    Against Muslim extremism only? Don’t make me laugh. The pattern here is not of a single-focus group. No, it looks increasingly like a fascist organisation.


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