Following the apparent chance meeting between Stephen Yaxley Lennon, who styles himself Tommy Robinson, and a group of young Army recruits at a motorway service station, where a video was recorded in which the recruits chanted the former EDL head man’s name approvingly, much has been made over the news that one of those recruits is to be discharged from the Army.
Now, Lennon has posted a recording of an officer in the Yorkshire Regiment putting what has to be assumed is a group of recruits straight about associating with Lennon, who claims to be a mere “Journalist” (ho ho ho) but is an infamous far-right activist with a history of violence, intimidation and other unlawful behaviour.
Lennon has introduced the recording thus: “British Army Major bullying and shutting down free speech within his ranks. This is Major Farley (He sounds female but is not) of the British Army passing on the message about me from the Head of the Army. All this to appease Islam! Political correctness is even destroying our Armed forces”.
It has nothing to do with free speech, nothing to do with Islam, and nothing to do with political correctness. And the smear isn’t making it. Here’s what the Major said.
“This is s pretty serious matter. The reason I’ve got you here is, it has come to light that [Redacted] has been in touch with Tommy Robinson. Anyone who does not know who Tommy Robinson is, he is the founder of the English Defence League, he is an extreme right wing activist. In light of pictures that were taken of some recruits at ITC at a service station with a Yorkshire Regiment cap badge surrounding him, Chief of General Staff has got involved. [Redacted] then took it upon himself to direct message him on Facebook”.
There was more. “Saying yeah, come down to [?] Barracks, come down and get a photo with me and my mates, to which Tommy Robinson says yeah, right, fine, I’ll be there, and he’s then put it all over Facebook”. Wasn’t just a “photo with a journalist”, was it?
Major Farley then puts his audience straight. “I will not be associated with people like that, and the problem is, wearing this kit, I am. And I take it as a personal affront to be associated with people like that. The only thing anyone is talking about in the Yorkshire Regiment is our association with the right wing”. Why was this a problem?
“We fight the Queen’s enemies all round the globe. We fight people who oppress other people’s freedom of speech and thought, because they’ve got a narrow minded view of what the world should look like. This [characterisation omitted], this is exactly what he [Lennon] does. This has got national ministerial attention”. And he wasn’t finished.
“So if you have anything to do with this, if you are part of the messenger group or follow him on Facebook, get yourself rid of it [if not, the authorities will] search Facebook and find out who you are. Do not share anything around this camp to do with this message. [Redacted] will not be in this camp for much longer. Anybody found dealing in the same sort of shit will follow him out. My advice to you is dissociate … [don’t] drag my name and my regiment and cap badge through the mire by associating with people like that”.
Zelo Street has seen evidence that there is indeed a Major of that name in the Yorkshire Regiment. Lennon clearly thinks he’s on a winner by publishing those comments. But anyone who knows the uniformed services will know otherwise. Consider why.
One, it wasn’t just “a photo with a journalist” that got one recruit discharged. There was, it seems, further communication between him and Lennon. Why someone who is so ready to call “liar” on others has not been totally honest, I will leave to others to figure out.
Two, it’s not about FREEZE PEACH™. Recruits are free to hold whatever opinions they like. What they are not free to do is to associate the Army with Stephen Lennon, a career criminal who is back in court later this month.
Three, the armed forces have only one loyalty, and as the Major shows, it is to the Crown. Showing loyalty to anyone else is expressly against Queen’s Regulations.
Four, the only thing Lennon has achieved through his latest campaign is to purge our armed forces of the far-right, and educate others to its danger.
So perhaps we should, for once, be grateful to him. I’ll just leave that one there.
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