A ‘Block The Fascists’ counter-demo has been announced for April 1st following the decision by EDL and Britain first to hold rallies to capitalise on the recent Westminster attack. In a statement, organisers said:
London Anti-fascists are calling a demonstration to support calls to oppose both Britain First and the English Defense League (EDL) who have called demos in London in light of the recent attack in Westminster.
The far right will use the attack to fuel their anti-Muslim and anti-migrant racist propaganda. We must stand together and not let them divide us!
We encourage all our supporters to take up the slogan “They shall not pass!” and crush the fascists’ attempt to cynically grow off the death of ordinary Londoners. We stand with any and all anti-fascists who want to see fascism defeated by any means necessary.
Block the streets, they will not pass.
Full details of the counter-demo are planned to be released nearer the time.
Britain First is aiming to gather at Charing Cross Station at 1pm, while at the same time the EDL has called its own demo at Trafalgar Square — though at the time of writing the EDL demo looks likely to be sparsely populated with only a few dozen people saying they’ll attend.
In a further statement on their website, London Anti-Fascists said:
The truth of the matter is this. These so called patriots are delighted that this has happened. This one fanatic has given them the opportunity they desired to try and start a conflict in society drawn down racial lines. They would seek to rebuild their failing movements off the blood and tears shed by ordinary people, they would use this attack to justify their own brand of jackbooted terror against the Muslim population of this country.
But we will not let them.
Our group and the national network know the reactionary ideology at the heart of the attack in the capital. Today the howls from the right are directed at us, to claim that we caused this attack through our tolerance of ‘Islamic extremism’ or our work to support the rights of refugees. These claims are built on the assumption that there is a clash of civilisations in this country. That ‘English culture’ and ‘Muslim culture’ cannot co-exist and a war is inevitable.
These are lies.
Our comrades from the Anti-Fascist movement and even from our own group are currently fighting on the front lines near Raqqa, the capital of ISIS. They are their fighting with an international brigade formed of all nationalities, religions and genders. They fight alongside their Muslim comrades in the YPG in the spirit of working class internationalism, and it is that spirit we need today. Their struggle is a struggle against the same forces of reaction that would seek to divide our communities down ethnic lines, it’s a struggle against those who would eradicate the Yazidi minority in Iraq just as much as it’s a struggle against those who would burn down our neighbour’s mosque because they are Muslim.
Right now the Fascists will present ordinary people an outstretched hand of welcome, raised straight up and palm open. It’s an outstretched hand that casts a shadow over modern history and grows out of the gas chambers of Auschwitz. We must reject this offering with the utmost ferocity and anger and in its place we must cement the ideals of working class internationalism. Without facing down the fascists on the streets and offering the working class an alternative to race war we will lose and the shadows of the past will consume our streets.