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A big step forward in the fight against fascism

Guest Author
A big step forward in the fight against fascism

Antifascists have made a big step forward against supporters of Tommy Robinson – but violent fascists physically attacked trade unionists and went on the rampage in Central London

Over 3,000 antifascists took to the streets against supporters of Robinson as they rallied to welcome Donald Trump in Whitehall.

Supporters of jailed Nazi Tommy Robinson brought some 6,000 into Central London – a sign of what a huge threat they pose, but also significantly down on the 15,000 that rallied last month in the same spot.

Groups of trade unionists, Labour Party branches, faith groups and others marched from Parliament to Whitehall to confront the racists.

Antifascists heard from David Lammy MP, Kevin Courtney, the General Secretary of the National Education Union (NEU), and many others.

Reps from NEU, Unite the Union, the RMT rail union, GMB, the CWU postal union, Unison, the PCS civil servants’ union and the UCU lecturers’ union all brought banners.

And some 40 RMT activists with branch banners marched into the Unite Against Fascism to huge applause. RMT members on London’s transport network had put incredible work into building the demonstration over the past few weeks.

The protest was backed by the London Muslim Centre and a delegation from the Kurdish community in London brought a banner – while German antiracists from the Aufstehen Gegen Rassismus group brought international solidarity.

The protest was much bigger than previous counter-demonstrations against the racist street movement around Tommy Robinson, UKIP and the so-called ‘Democratic’ Football Lads Alliance.

The success of the mobilisation comes off the back of a fantastic demonstration in Leeds last weekend that outnumbered supporters of Tommy Robinson seven-to-one – and a demonstration against the National Front in Wakefield that saw 200 antifascists see off 20 Nazis.

Fascists attack trade unionists

But while there is clearly momentum behind the antifascist movement, the threat posed by supporters of Robinson became clear as the day went on.

A large gang of fascists attacked a pub in which antifascists and RMT activists were drinking.

Throwing glasses and chairs, they hospitalised two RMT members, including Steve Hedley, the Assistant General Secretary of the union.

Full report here