A protest took place in London on Saturday against social media providers’ decisions to ban content from the conspiracy site InfoWars. Some of those participating wore red “Make Britain Great Again” hats. Sadly, their defence of free speech did not extend to anyone of opposing political view, and so during the evening some of their number decided to pay a visit to Bookmarks, a socialist bookshop, to do some damage.
Luke Nash Jones
As the Guardian has reported, “The owners of … Bookmarks, have said the store was attacked by far-right protesters wearing masks who wrecked displays and ripped up books and magazines … Posting on Facebook and Twitter, Bookmarks said staff were closing the shop on Bloomsbury Street in central London on Saturday evening when about a dozen people descended on it”. Attacking bookshops? What does that sound like?
It certainly didn’t sound like free speech, as Michael Bradley of Stand Up To Racism told: “Luckily no one was hurt this time, but this is a sinister development that indicates the growing confidence of the far right who feel they can attack a bookshop in central London in broad daylight … Attacking a bookshop also exposes their claims to be defenders of free speech as hollow”. So who was behind the attack?
Fortunately, left and right are united in their condemnation of this behaviour, and so identification of the culprits has been swift. And the ever-vigilant Jo Phillips was in the vanguard of those doing the identifying. “Make Britain Great Again led by UKIP member Luke Nash Jones were responsible for the attack on @Bookmarks_books” she told.
There was more. “The guy doing most of the shouting in the video is Mark Martin - I also hear ‘somebody should burn down this shop’ and ‘you should remove yourself from this planet’. We need to get this guy reported to police [dead right we do] … I also see Max 'Red Cap Boy’ … Elizabeth Jones of UKIP's NEC … Sharon Klaff … Martin Costello (UKIP Swindon candidate 2018) … Edward Howard (MBGA Youth Leader)”.
From the right, Sam Bowman seconded one identification: “the man on the left is named Luke Nash-Jones. I can give you details if helpful - send me a DM. I hope you are all okay”. Nash Jones may be familiar to Zelo Street regulars; he is also the voice of the Young Chartists, they of the “People’s Charter Foundation”.
And this is what the PCF says: “The People’s Charter Foundation is a non-partisan identitarian campaign group run by diverse group of passionate Tory, UKIP, and other patriots. We demand for proper Brexit, and for Britain to ban Sharia law. We work closely with the Bruges Group, Gays Against Sharia, the Campaign for Independent Britain, UK Against Hate, the Bow Group, MBGA News, and Better Off Out”.
Small wonder they cheered the release from prison last week of Stephen Yaxley Lennon, who styles himself Tommy Robinson. And small wonder they indulged in a Nazi-style attack on books. After all, this is another self-proclaimed “identitarian” movement, and from the actions of those movements across mainland Europe, we know what that means.
It means actual Nazis, genuine fascists. Freedom of speech is for them to decide. This is the ugly and intolerant face of the far-right. It has to be faced down and eradicated.
Enjoy your visit to Zelo Street? You can help this truly independent blog carry on talking truth to power, while retaining its sense of humour, by adding to its Just Giving page at