Tuesday, 12 June 2007

Question Time 8: Hypocrisy

The Britain Forward Lie: “We are prepared to forgive Nick’s visit to the murderous Colonel Gaddafi’s Libya in the company of Patrick Harrington who is now the General Secretary of Solidarity. This could be put down to the indiscretions of very young men keen to follow a revolutionary path to securing the future of our people.”

The Truth: The simple answer is that in the 1980s, Nick Griffin was most probably under the influence of a strand of thought in nationalist politics -- since then, important to note, thoroughly repudiated -- which believed that financial support could be obtained from the likes of Ghadaffi.

In fact, BNP founder John Tyndall was the foremost exponent of this line of reasoning. Tyndall devoted an entire issue of his Spearhead magazine in 1986 to this very topic, praising Gadaffi.

John Tyndall said of the Libyan leader: "Let us consider Colonel Gaddafi. He is not of course our idea of what a political leader ought to be and no doubt we would not want to have such a man governing us. But that is hardly relevant to the issue. What is much more relevant is the question of whether Gaddafi is, as suggested, a madman or a clear thinking politician with a rationally conceived policy for his people.

The mere fact that of his survival over so many years together with his achievement in improving the lot of the majority of Libyans, suggests that we should rule out the first possibility and concentrate on the second. If then, Gaddafi is a clear thinking politician with a policy, what is that policy?

All the evidence points to it being a policy of Arab nationalism and the ultimate goal of Arab unification. Gaddafi would appear to be just one of a number of Arab leaders who see themselves as commission by Allah to give a lead towards such goal. A much more enlightened policy – if we seriously want to put an end to international terrorism – would be to remove its primary cause – by eliminating the commitment to Israel and pursuing the friendship of the Arab nations."
- John Tyndall, Spearhead, No. 211 May 1986

The idea that Arab nations could somehow help nationalism was therefore common in the 1980s. Everyone moves on, and Nick Griffin has long since repudiated that line of thought – but everyone except Britain Forward appears to know this.

The Britain Forward Lie: “Many people we have spoken to, who have been in nationalist politics for years, wanted us to ask why Nick Griffin in the late 1980s was praising the Iranian dictator Ayotollah (sic – your spelling is not so hot, JH) Khomeini and sucking up to the American black Muslim leader Louis Farrakhan and his British supporters.”

The Truth: Nick Griffin never “sucked up to the Iranians.” The quote which critics like to attribute to Nick Griffin in this regard was something published in the National Front News, which read as follows:

“Common interest must be turned into practical cooperation. By supporting Islam and the third Way nations such as Libya and Iran we are coming together in a common struggle for the same ends: Racial Separation and Racial Freedom.”

In fact, this was never written by Nick Griffin, but by the two individuals who edited and published NF News, Derek Holland and Michael Fishwick.

It is, therefore, simply a lie to say that Nick Griffin wrote that sentence. But quoting direct lies and presenting them as “evidence” is Britain Forward’s clear specialty.

As to the allegation that Nick Griffin “sucked up to American black Muslim leader Louis Farrakhan and his British supporters,” the truth is that Nick Griffin has never met Louis Farrakhan or any of his “British supporters” although other members of the BNP have indeed met with Black separatists in London.

Actually, the BNP has no problem in meeting with Black separatists at all – there is no reason why the BNP should not meet with anyone, especially those who oppose integration.

The Britain Forward Lie: “But why much more recently was Voice of Freedom being printed by a company in East London owned by powerful Saudis, the very country that gives political and financial support to Al Qaeda and Osama bin Laden?”

The Truth: “Much more recently?” Britain Forward must be in a time warp. The “Saudi” printing company debacle actually dates from nearly two and a half years ago (March 2005).

However, not letting that tiny fact get in the way of yet another totally unsubstantiated allegation, Britain Forward’s facts, are, as usual just wrong, at best, and a lie, at worst.

Firstly, the BNP did not know that the printing company in question was owned by Saudis.

After the Saudi ownership was revealed in the press, the company received an order from their Saudi owners to stop printing the paper (not even the Saudi owners were aware prior to the newspaper report). This coincided with a decision on the part of the BNP to take the business elsewhere, and that was that.

Britain Forward’s laughable ignorance of international politics is revealed in horrible detail in this remark that Saudi Arabia gives “political and financial support to Al Qaeda and Osama bin Laden.”

Of course, more well-informed people than Britain Forward know that this is utter rubbish: Bin Laden and Al Qaeda are exiles from Saudi Arabia, which is a firm ally of the United States of America against Al Qaeda.

In fact, Osama Bin Laden is a wanted criminal in Saudi Arabia who would most certainly face the death penalty in that country should they ever lay their hands on him.

Saudi Arabia has been the target of a number of Al Qaeda terrorist attacks because it does not support Osama Bin Laden, and has actively sought his extradition and prosecution.

Such a woeful grasp of international politics is either the sign of a halfwit, or that of a deliberate liar. Either would fit Britain Forward’s bill.

The Britain Forward Lie: “And why in 2002 did Nick Griffin share a platform in Cambridge with the Muslim terrorist cleric Abu Hamza, who is now serving a long prison sentence for inciting murder?”

The Truth: Nick Griffin spoke at a panel discussion event organised by the Radio Academy, an independent body made up of an association of radio broadcasters.

He eagerly took part in the panel discussion because it was a golden opportunity to appear in front of, and promote, the BNP, to 300 of the most powerful people in British radio. He would not have turned down the opportunity for anything.

The Radio Acadamy’s other panelists were of their own choosing, and had nothing to do with Nick Griffin or the BNP.

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