Nigel Copsey, a professor of modern history, has produced a report investigating the English Defence League’s (EDL) structure and focus (PDF) for the group Faith Matters. It is a useful summary of the group, its motivations and future direction. It is a fairly comprehensive study of the EDL, and looks at the sub-divisions opening within the EDL itself:
As well as aggravating religious tensions, the EDL has established a Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Division to “defend” gay people from Sharia law. There are also specialist divisions for women, soldiers and disabled people. The report warns these communities to be vigilant against “selective racism” and the EDL’s attempts at manipulation.
The EDL continues to grow because it ostensibly focuses on Islamic extremism, meaning that it can claim not to be racist, just anti-Islamic. It is not clear whether it will be able to maintain that pretence in the long term.
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Filed in: EDL