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  • Technorati: graph / links

    Will there be a mass-brawl in Harrow today?


    by Sunny on 11th September, 2009 at 8:51 am    

    Today is the 8th anniversary of 9/11. For that reason it seems, the English Defence League and ‘Stop Islamisation of Europe’ (SIOE) have chosen the date to hold a rally in London’s Harrow Central Mosque.
    SIOE say on their blog:

    This will be the largest mosque in England with minarets 40 metres high. That is not integration that is triumphalism.
    It is Harrow now, the next place could be your community.

    Hmmmm….
    I’ve also received a text that is going around among Muslims saying:

    The BNP have re-scheduled their protest & have threatened to attack the harrow mosque on 11th september from 5pm. They are calling it out 9/11, its predicted there will be 1500 of them. Its our duty to protect the mosque. circulate this message. PLEASE be there for jummah if you can Insha Allah, the least we can do is let others know & make a difference.

    At this point it seems to me the whole situation could turn very nasty, very quickly. Wouldn’t it have been better to ban the protest?

    Update at 3pm: Have just heard a big crowd of Muslims has already gathered at the Mosque to defend it.

    Local community activists have released a statement:

    We the undersigned strongly oppose plans by the ‘English Defence League’ - a group we believe to be linked to the fascist BNP - to demonstrate against Harrow Central Mosque. The EDL is a racist group out to attack Asians. It is trying to provoke and intimidate Muslim people by organising its ‘protest’ on a Friday in the holy month of Ramadan.

    Islamophobia - bigotry against Muslims - is as unacceptable as any other f= m of racism. Its aim is to divide us by making scapegoats of one community, just as the Nazis did with the Jews in the 1930s.

    Today they threaten the mosque, tomorrow it could be a synagogue, temple or church. Today they threaten Muslims, tomorrow it could be Jews, Hindus, Sikhs, blacks, gays, travellers or Eastern Europeans. There is no place for Nazis, racists or the BNP in Harrow’s multi-racial, multi-cultural and multi-religious community.

    [Signatories so far include: Tony McNulty, MP for Harrow East; Barry Gardiner, MP for Brent North; Jo Lang, president of Harrow Teachers Association (NUT); Nick Grant, NUT national executive member for outer London; Martin Francis, Green Party candidate for Brent North; Abdul Omer Mohsin, union convenor for Unite at Harrow and Edgware bus garages; Raj Gill, branch secretary, GMB Harrow general branch; Pete Firmin, president of Brent Trades Council; Jon Gamble, secretary Watford Trade= Council Alf Filer, UCU Harrow College; Indro Sen, UCU branch secretary, College of North West London; Milad Ahmed, Muslim Youth Helpline, An-Nisa Society]

    It’s not going to be a pretty sight in Harrow today.



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    35 Comments below   |   Add your own

    1. damon — on 11th September, 2009 at 10:06 am  

      I guess that there will be more police than protesters.
      EDL people going to the mosque will be out on a limb somewhat as it’s in a suburban road that doesn’t offer the cover of a city center.

    2. Ravi Naik — on 11th September, 2009 at 10:09 am  

      The best thing that could happen to everyone is let these little fuckers protest, and humiliate them by don’t giving them an ounce of attention.

    3. coruja — on 11th September, 2009 at 10:30 am  

      Sometime ago in the early/mid 80’s an interviewer on TV asked a ‘political expert’, now that the Soviets were defeated, who would be the next bogey man for the US. The answer was Islam. (I can’t remember the programme, interviewer or the interviewee. I was very young.) Since then there has been a sustained attack/demonization of this religion/culture and the regions where it is prevalent. It always was and will be about oil, or ‘energy security’ as the current phrase goes. And now we have another potential religious/race riot in our suburbs. Not that far from Southall, back to the 80’s again.

      I don’t think any of this could’ve been prevented. What happens on our streets is really a result of what has been followed as foreign policy for the last 25 years. By all means go after the oil, bomb countries, allow refugees from those countries to settle here - as many home secretaries found out they couldn’t really wriggle out of that convention - but at least be honest about it. Possibly even teach some real history, count the number of British soldiers that have died in Afghanistan since the 1830’s. Explain why people with such extreme interpretations of Islam (extreme enough to be expelled from countries like Yemen) were allowed to preach freely in London mosques.

    4. platinum786 — on 11th September, 2009 at 10:54 am  

      I hope there isn’t a brawl, but frankly as a community we can’t let these guys walk up to us and hurl abuse at us and simply stand there watching it all.

    5. Halima — on 11th September, 2009 at 11:06 am  

      All begs the question .. what will the police do …? BNP or the English Defence League goes to bother a mosque, and they will do .. what? Hopefully a good job.

      I wonder how the nation would react if a group of hate-mongers threatened to pull off the same action/ stunt in a church. It would be outrageous. We wouldn’t stand for it.

    6. Boyo — on 11th September, 2009 at 11:11 am  

      I bet it will be a damp squib - after all, 5pm in Harrow? Do the EDL draw their ranks soley from postal staff and the unemployed?

      “Sometime ago in the early/mid 80’s an interviewer on TV asked a ‘political expert’, now that the Soviets were defeated, who would be the next bogey man for the US. The answer was Islam.”

      It may sound an obvious question, but does Nairobi, 9/11, Bali, etc mean nothing to you? Certainly the West has not helped, but it takes two to tango.

    7. Boyo — on 11th September, 2009 at 11:15 am  

      “I wonder how the nation would react if a group of hate-mongers threatened to pull off the same action/ stunt in a church.”

      In fairness there have been plenty of unpleasant demonstrations, for example at military parades, by Islamists. Equally the same folk have intimidated Christian converts (and their churches) in some Muslim areas.

      As I said before, the EDL are a different side of the same coin.

    8. Mangles — on 11th September, 2009 at 11:34 am  

      Sunny my initial thought was to answer your question
      ‘Wouldn’t it have been better to ban the protest?’ with a resounding ‘yes’.

      But then the EDL (BNP) f$%£&*s will use the ploy of ‘free speech’ (which is usually also your pet gripe). The more I think the more I feel let them protest, and let them make fools of themselves. They will have to be given an area to protest within, and a cap of numbetrs. Let the police arrest them if they move from there or say or do anything which breaks the law. Lets face it that is inevitable and it will be so good seeing them being dragged like animals when they are arrested, expecially if their are no arrests of counter-protestors.

      So far all the counter protests have proven largely counter-productive. If the EDL are deprived of this oxygen of publicity which they are so reliant on, they will in time just fizzle out. If their monkeys dont see any action they wont want to come back.

      The text above is playing straight into their hands and so far during protests in Birmingham and the banned one in Luton, the Muslim young men have been visualised as thugs out for a rucous (and more often than not this is precisely how they have reacted, especially during the banned protest in Luton where they vented their anger on teh Police). The advice of the Chairman of Birmingham Central Mosque during the last protest in Birmingham was so stupid it was unbelievable. If the Muslim community comes, they should stay at the mosque, or build a defence cordon around the mosque to stop the jackasses from getting in; they have every right to protect their place of worship. But they should contol the gangs who will want to make a name for themselves, at the expense of the bigger picture.

      Let the EDL come out and be seen for the pathetic inbreds they are. They will be so frustrated by the lack of ‘action’ they’ll end up doing what they’re best at- and end up sleeping it off at the local nick. Win win situation!

      Rab rakha.

    9. Andrew — on 11th September, 2009 at 11:43 am  

      One of my Muslim colleagues has pointed out to me that British Jews and Socialists defeated the British Union of Fascists in the ‘Battle of Cable Street’ in October 1936, and wondered why Muslims can’t do the same thing today! I didn’t really know how to reply!

    10. LOL — on 11th September, 2009 at 11:47 am  

      The left-wing fascists, the right-wing fascists, and the islamo-fascists will fight. The liberals and moderates will hide behind the police. ;-)

    11. Anon — on 11th September, 2009 at 12:09 pm  

      “Wouldn’t it have been better to ban the protest?”

      Harrow Central Mosque did in fact write to the police asking them to ban the protest, but the police said they had no power to do that.

      Under Section 13 of the Public Order Act the police can apply to the Home Secretary for a banning order on “public processions” (i.e. marches), but static assemblies can’t be banned under the POA.

      The police do have the power under Section 14 of the POA to determine where a stationary protest can be held. So they could have prevented SIOE/EDL from demonstrating in the direct vicinity of Harrow Central Mosque and forced them to hold their protest well away from the building.

      But apparently the police have decided not to exercise that power.

    12. Yahya Birt — on 11th September, 2009 at 12:22 pm  

      If there’s a good show of solidarity from the whole local community esp.in terms of numbers in what is a very multicultural part of London, and/or the police do their job properly (unlike Birmingham which was a farce) then hopefully this can pass off peacefully. Otherwise the Muslim boys ‘n the hood are never going to let their community elders or their mosque get attacked in any way. The EDL are obviously out for a ruck in the first place.

      Mangles @ 8

      “they should contol the gangs who will want to make a name for themselves, at the expense of the bigger picture.”

      Of course “they” if by that you mean “community leaders” should say the right things, but the idea that “they” have any control over “the gangs” is pure fantasy. These guys are often acting on their own, and some came from out of town to Birmingham a few weeks ago, just like, well, the EDL did.

      Which “community leaders” were keeping the EDL boyos in check, and how come no one ever asks that question of them?

      In peace, Yahya

    13. Halima — on 11th September, 2009 at 12:23 pm  

      “The liberals and moderates will hide behind the police. ”

      Not this picklar.

    14. Dan — on 11th September, 2009 at 12:24 pm  

      Banning protests is exactly the sort of assault on our civil liberties we don’t need. Let them have their protest if they want it. Protest is a valid form of expression.

      I’m also against responding to their protest with a violent counter protest. Pictures of white guys getting punched by asians (which are gonna be the ones published in the papers from the look of things) is the oxygen the EDL feed on. Just ignore them, and sooner or later, with no fighting or attention, they’ll end up sliding back under the rocks they live under.

      Be peaceful and aloof, and these nutjobs will just expose their own stupidity for a couple of hours, and slink off. Anything more the police can deal with.

    15. Sofia — on 11th September, 2009 at 12:29 pm  

      I hope this doesn’t turn into a brawl…the fascists are hoping for one to prove a point…I just hope today my fellow Muslims in Harrow protect themselves if need be, but do not fight back in anger…

    16. Kulvinder — on 11th September, 2009 at 12:29 pm  

      but frankly as a community we can’t let these guys walk up to us and hurl abuse at us and simply stand there watching it all.

      Thats pretty much what the EDL think ‘as a community’ about these guys walking up and hurling abuse at them.

      A pox on both your houses.

    17. platinum786 — on 11th September, 2009 at 12:32 pm  

      ^^^ Yeah and the Muslim community is represented by “those guys” isn’t it.

    18. smack4head — on 11th September, 2009 at 12:37 pm  

      there is gonna be a brawl, the EDL will hurl abuse and the harrow boy yoof will respond how they always respond. Will be nice if they manage to ignore the EDL but then again it’d be nice if I had halle berry on my lap right now.

    19. Kulvinder — on 11th September, 2009 at 12:39 pm  

      I hope this doesn’t turn into a brawl…

      A faint hope; a public street is not theirs to ‘defend’ nor the EDL’s to ‘attack’.

      Whats most amusing, well pathetic really, is that both sides who ‘protest’ have a blind spot the size of the moon with regards to how they come across. A bunch of white troglodytes upholding their ‘cultural practises’ and ‘defending their way of life’ fighting a bunch of brown troglodytes doing the same.

      Every person who attends that protest, on either side, is a moron incapable of empathising with how they are percieved.

    20. Kulvinder — on 11th September, 2009 at 12:42 pm  

      ^^^ Yeah and the Muslim community is represented by “those guys” isn’t it.

      You tell me; given some of the things you’ve posted on this site in the past i’m unsure how to respond.

      But generally no the small minority of morons who turn up to fight, and lets be honest thats all they turn up to do, don’t represent the majority of white and/or christian people or brown and/or muslim people.

    21. bananabrain — on 11th September, 2009 at 1:23 pm  

      for anyone here that knows anything about spiral dynamics (see http://www.spiraldynamics.com ) this is an excellent example of a situation occurring because two groups arrested at the “purple/RED” vMeme stage are facing off. you can see how they have very similar narratives and ways of acting. the “community leaders” are sticking with their “blue” stage, whereas the liberals and intellectuals are sticking with their comfort zones of “green/ORANGE” and “GREEN/orange”.

      i’m just saying.

      b’shalom

      bananabrain

    22. Sofia — on 11th September, 2009 at 2:24 pm  

      Every person who attends that protest, on either side, is a moron incapable of empathising with how they are percieved.

      most of the muslims attending Harrow mosque will be doing so due to friday prayers..regardless of whether fascist idiots are there or not

    23. Kulvinder — on 11th September, 2009 at 2:36 pm  

      most of the muslims attending Harrow mosque will be doing so due to friday prayers..regardless of whether fascist idiots are there or not

      I quite agree; i hope the minority that decide to pray then fight don’t spoil it for everyone.

    24. Reza — on 11th September, 2009 at 3:06 pm  

      The demonstration is organized by Stop the Islamification of Europe. The EDL might be there. Both organizations are officially non-racist and ban any racist banners or political groups. Yes, unfortunately, individual racists will probably be among their numbers, just as individual islamo-fascists, communists and jihadists will no doubt be demonstrating under the UAF banner.

      Lies, misinformation and bogus accusations of links with the BNP really undermine any integrity the opposition might have had.

      But truth and winning arguments through rational debate are no longer seen as necessary by left-wing fascists.

      So all you leftwing fascists and islamists, get out there and incite violence. Your only achievement will be to generate even more support for the BNP.

      Idiots.

    25. Dan Dare — on 11th September, 2009 at 4:16 pm  

      Speaking of mass brawls, it’s remarkable how little interest the MSM are showing in the reports of ‘running street battles’ involving large gangs of Bengali and Somali youths in East London.

      http://www.eastlondonadvertiser.co.uk/content/towerhamlets/advertiser/news/story.aspx?brand=ELAOnline&category=news&tBrand=northlondon24&tCategory=newsela&itemid=WeED09%20Sep%202009%2019%3A00%3A56%3A007

    26. Joyti Bhojani — on 11th September, 2009 at 4:19 pm  

      Having grown up in Harrow, which is probably one of the most diverse areas in London, the anti-Islam protests are deeply concerning.

      The anti-Islam group Stop the Islamisation of Europe (SIOE) have specifically organised these protests outside Harrow Central Mosque to coincide and commemorate the 8th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks.

      Fears of violent clashes are rife as these protests are being countered by Unite Against Fascism, who clashed with the English Defence League (EDL) last weekend in Birmingham (see image taken at the last EDL rally, above).

      The EDL and various other extremist groups are likely to be present. It’s scary to think that there is no mechanism in place to ban these extremist groups from making their views known in this way.

      And even worse to think this can be allowed to happen in what is meant to be a cosmopolitan area which prides itself on valuing diversity. Given the recent events in Birmingham and Luton, the chances of these protests turning violent are a real possibility.

      We all realise and recognise that the extremist views being represented in Harrow today, only make up a fragment of the views in mainstream society and its right that the public have an opportunity to challenge these views. But the danger is that these protests will result in a divided society, broken by various cultural tensions.

      Surely, in the 21st century, in an area which is otherwise a cohesive community, these protests are a backward step from which it will take a long time to recover from?

      Rather than creating divisions, the aim should be a close knit community based on mutual understanding, respect and appreciation of each other’s cultures, ideas and values which ultimately is the essence of society.

      http://operationblackvote.wordpress.com/2009/09/11/not-in-our-backyard/

    27. Dan — on 11th September, 2009 at 4:38 pm  

      #26

      “It’s scary to think that there is no mechanism in place to ban these extremist groups from making their views known in this way.”

      No, it’s not. It would be scary if protests could be banned. Various morally progressive movements have been seen as extremist in their time, but protest was part of making moral progress as a society.

      That is not to say that I think this protest is morally progressive, I happen to think that the EDL etc are completely abhorrent, but citizens of a state need the right to protest regardless of the establishment’s view. The 1950s establishment certainly didn’t view the gay rights movement as morally progressive, way back in the day. They changed our minds, the fascists won’t.

      As long as they’re not violent, I support anyone’s right to protest. Anything else is just taking away civil liberties.

    28. Reza — on 11th September, 2009 at 5:02 pm  

      “The EDL and various other extremist groups are likely to be present.”

      That would include the unholy alliance of communists, liberal fascists, Islamic fundamentalists and jihadists hiding behind the well-meaning banners of UAF.

      “It’s scary to think that there is no mechanism in place to ban these extremist groups from making their views known in this way.”

      No, not scary at all. Just reassuring, that in spite the best, often violent efforts of left-wing fascists, that our democracy still allows people to protest peacefully against ideologies they disagree with, however much we might disagree with them, as long as they do so peacefully and do not call for violence or law-breaking.

      The bulk of the violence or law breaking I expect to see will come from the AUF section.

      And the link is precious!

      http://operationblackvote.wordpress.com/2009/09/11/not-in-our-backyard/

      Operation black vote! Yet another organization which categorises whole sections of society based upon artificial social constructs such as race.

      Racists, no better than the BNP.

    29. douglas clark — on 11th September, 2009 at 5:20 pm  

      Reza,

      Racists, no better than the BNP.

      Do you want to rethink that? Or not? Clearly racists would be likely to be BNP, och, y’know, I can’t actually be bothered….

    30. Reza — on 11th September, 2009 at 5:26 pm  

      I don’t understand your point Douglas.

      Is it that only white organisations such as the BNP can possibly be racist?

      Do be bothered to have a little think about it.

    31. Maz — on 11th September, 2009 at 5:47 pm  

      Anyone know whether it’s kicked off? I can see a police helicopter circling in the distance.

    32. Dr Anonymous — on 11th September, 2009 at 5:48 pm  

      Operation black vote! Yet another organization which categorises whole sections of society based upon artificial social constructs such as race.

      Racists, no better than the BNP.

      Sure, if you think racism doesn’t exist. Unfortunately it does. As evidenced by a comparison of Operation Black Vote to the BNP ;)

    33. iceman — on 11th September, 2009 at 6:43 pm  

      am i the only one hoping for a mass brawl, where they all beat each other up??

      religion, facsists, potato , potaaato

    34. Serendipity — on 12th September, 2009 at 8:45 am  

      Mangles

      ‘Let the EDL come out and be seen for the pathetic inbreds they are.’

      “Inbreds”? - More a muslim trait, one would think.

    35. aaroncrowe — on 13th September, 2009 at 2:51 am  

      Yes, leave us alone and keep us safe from Islam



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