Sunday, 13 September 2009

Something very odd is happening in England

...well, odder than usual, given that this is the country of Morris Dancing, passive-aggressive queueing (I'll come back to that another time) and politicians like Gordon Brown.

Over the last few weeks, a shadowy group called the English Defence League has been engaged in running street battles with Muslim activists. The general presumption is that the EDL is a offshoot of the British National Party; the Muslim, for their part, have joined forces with left leaning and anti fascist activists.

So far, so bad. But what's the Israel link?

Well, the Jewish Chronicle report that some of the nice fellows at the EDL have decided to adopt the Israeli flag as a standard to rally around at their demonstrations. Not one to miss a trick, a Muslime website has already reported the “connection between the EDL and Zionists”.

Today, there is a pro-Palestinian demonstration at Trafalgar Square in central London; according to today's Observer, police are on high alert for an expected confrontation between the pro-Palestinians and the EDL. "This is the terrorist-supporting 'we are the Hezbollah' mob. We need all our lads to turn out to let them know they aren't welcome here".

The first thing that comes to mind is that old chestnut about the enemy of my enemy being my friend. Which, of course is bollocks. It's nice to see that the Israeli Embassy spoke up quickly, condemning those using the country's flag as a tool to stir up tensions between communities.

The other is Pope's aphorism about setting precedence between a louse and a flea. A little unkind perhaps; I'm sure there are interesting, important arguments buried deep within the operational logic of both parties. But I fear that they both owe something to fascism, in wanting things their way and no other way at all. Which, of course, is a shame.

But it would be fun asking a couple of the 'lads' from the EDL what they think about, for example, the Balfour Declaration, no?

Have a good day.

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