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On The Buses: "I hate you, Butler"

Gary Raikes and New British Union
 
Tales From the Twilight Zone
(from European Socialist Action No 45)

Forget Searchlight and Hope Not Hate, we get them all queuing up to tell us all about their plans to take over the world.

The latest is Gary Raikes (left), who boasts that he was the former organiser for the BNP in Scotland and then the leader of Britain First in Scotland from which he says he ‘resigned’. Probably yet another flop, typical of the splinter groups of the nationalist far right, the latest being Andrew Brons’ British Democratic Party with its launch meeting composed of around eighty people and a collection of a few thousand quid. “Tomorrow the world!”, someone could have shouted.

Raikes contacted me to say how much he has learned from the European Action website and what a great job we are doing. It appears he has learned nothing at all because he then goes on about how he is going to revive fascism for the 21st century. He calls his Facebook page Black Shirts, even though I pointed out that the wearing of political uniforms was banned in 1936.

The reason he now wants to call himself a fascist is intriguing. He tells me, because the opposition labels us “fascists” then we should simply adopt the title. End of problem, he says. However, his argument would fall apart if the opposition were to label us Nazis or mental defectives. Do we then adopt those labels, as well? Raikes is not the sharpest tool in the box, we discovered.

His claim to have studied the European Action website also proves weak. If he had learned from us he would realise that fascism is dead, finished off militarily in the ashes of 1945. Mosley did not wish to revive it after the war, having stated, “We have gone beyond both fascism and the old style democracy to a new synthesis ...”.  Raikes has severe learning difficulties in this direction.

He tells me that he wants to adopt Oswald Mosley as his “spiritual leader”, to which I respond that fascism was not a religion and Mosley the Grand Mufti of the BUF.

Spiritual leaders are more often to be figures like the Pope or the Dali Lama.

I had these images of Raikes getting out his Ouija board to contact OM in the spirit world and asking for the orders of the day, as he adjusts his cap and then clicks his heels. Who knows what people get up to behind locked doors.

Coming back to Raikes’ initial claim that adopting the epithets that the opposition throws at us is such a brilliant idea, I think we have now reached the obvious conclusion that Raikes is being disingenuous.

He takes to fascism like a transvestite takes to women’s clothing. He can not wait to adorn himself with all the trappings of uniformed fascism that more sane people would shun.

He describes himself as the ‘Director’ of New British Union in an almost reserved way, just slightly shying away from ‘the Leader’, OM’s title up to his death in 1980.

In an e-mail to me in the middle of January, Raikes wrote, “As you know the UM was de-registered as a political party in 1994, I was wondering if you know who the last officers were of the party [sic] and if any records survive. I am interested in maybe re-registering UM with the Electoral Commission and would like to discuss this with any surviving members and officers first to see if it would be viable or even possible.

As a former West London Area Organiser of UM, I wrote back explaining that Union Movement was not a fascist organisation but was formed in 1948 to promote European union.

Instead, in response, we later had, Twenty first century Blackshirts is the official web-site of New British Union. We are a political community organisation for the dispossessed and disillusioned from all political parties. Our aim is too bring people together in the struggle against the out of touch political class who only represent themselves, rich bankers and industrialists. We are following in the footsteps of Sir Oswald Mosley who remains our spiritual leader, the last man that led a movement that shook the establishment to the core. This of course led to all the lies and misconceptions that have been peddled about Mosley and British Union for decades, wrongs we aim to right. This is a movement of the people for the people, members and supporters from all the factions of nationalist parties are welcome, and membership is free.

Nationalist parties will be thrilled to learn that Raikes is here to save them and unite them  under the new, revived fascist banner of New British Union.

The links on his website are, of course, the Friends of Oswald Mosley and Steven Books. The former led by a retired civil servant at the Public Records Office, Jeffrey Wallder, and the latter run by Searchlight informant, Keith Thompson and IRA supporter Karl Winn. Winn doubles as the webmaster of FOM’s website and campaigns elsewhere against British servicemen.

European Action wants nothing to do with any of them.

The promotion of fascism was never part of Union Movement policy and Europe a Nation was to be based on democratic principles. As Mosley said, fascism tended to ride roughshod over civil liberties. We intend to play a role in preventing any revival of such abuses in the future.

Letters to the Editor

 SHOULD WE REVIVE FASCISM?

Hello,

I have spent some time looking into the BUF and really enjoy your site and hope to promote FOM on Facebook (the page is called Black Shirts).

I was the leader of the BNP in Scotland for a number of years and, more recently, chairman of Britain First Scotland, now resigned.

British nationalist politics are now a laughing stock as it has fragmented into so many factions, so many small groups fighting over so few scraps.

The Establishment has played its part well and completely castrated the nationalist movement, where once there was an eagle now only its droppings remain.

I feel what is required is a movement of the people for the people, members and supporters must break away from the various groups and their egoistical 'leaders' to unite as one.

It is at the grassroots that the fight back will begin. No longer should we have any regard for how our enemies view us.

The fact is, no matter what we do we will be called, by people who have no clue to what it really means, fascist, well if they mean British Fascist then I say yes, you are right I am a fascist and a Blackshirt, a European socialist.

It is under the banner of 'action through unity' that we must now stand, of that I am convinced. British Union Movement is the phoenix rising from the ashes ready to take our country back and place us at the head of Europe one nation.

As you know, the UM was de-registered as a political party in 1994. I was wondering if you know who the last officers were of the party and if any records survive.

I am interested in maybe re-registering UM with the electoral commission and would like to discuss this with any surviving members and officers first to see if it would be viable or even possible.

I would be interested to hear your thoughts.

Regards,

Gary Raikes, Hill of Colp Croft, Turriff

Aberdeenshire

[The editor replies: Dear Mr Raikes,

First of all, we have no connections with FOM, whatsoever. FOM is a small club of amateur researchers and collectors of memorabilia with no political purpose to it. European Action is political through and through. Your Facebook page title is entirely your own business but I would draw your attention to the fact that political uniforms were banned in 1936, which includes the simple black shirt.

I take your points regarding British nationalism which has always been plagued with factionalism. The reason for this is simple: British nationalism has no clearly defined ideology apart from the vague term "right wing". European Action is neither right nor left, of course.

The Establishment did not undermine British nationalism. It was undermined from within by the ineptitude of its own leaders. None of them were up to the mark.

When you say, "We should have no regard how our enemies view us", you are making an error. First of all, you need to decide who and what you are and define it in ideological terms. It is equally important to decide how you view yourselves.

We are European Socialists first and last and do not compromise on this.

As for calling yourself "British Fascist" and "Blackshirt", you need to understand that fascism ended in 1945 and was never revived. Mosley stated in 1946 that he had "gone beyond both fascism and the old-style democracy". He never revived fascism which was a phenomenon of the 1930s and belongs there. You should read our editorial of January/February 2013, now up on the website under the page title, Are We Fascist?

As for contacting former members and officers of the old Union Movement, I am a former UM Area Organiser for West London. Union Movement stood for the promotion of Europe a Nation and not British nationalism. Mosley was never a British nationalist.

The idea of re-registering the title Union Movement for your own purposes would be self-defeating. Union Movement was formed in 1948 for a specific purpose, to promote the idea of complete European unification. European Action continues that great purpose and idea.

You are encouraged to study the movement far more, including Oswald Mosley's autobiography, My Life. We also publish a long list of both pre-war and post-war booklets and pamphlets.

I trust this helps you.

Regards, Robert Edwards]

 

 

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