THE Far Right in Britain is today at its weakest point in two
decades, an anti-fascist monitoring group has said. The authors of
the report State of Hate, published for the organisation
Hope Not Hate, nevertheless suggest that the potential for a
revival in new forms is still there.
State of Hate, published this week, suggests that,
despite the propaganda opportunities in 2014 created by the rise of
extremist Islamic fundamentalist groups, and a series of child
sex-exploitation cases involving Asian men, splits in the Right
have left them unable to capitalise.
"In the public mainstream, this should be time to make hay," the
authors, Matthew Collins and Carl Morphett, write. "But the Far
Right is shrinking, divided, and increasingly leaderless.
"The British National Party hardly exists, and its electoral
effort is in tatters. The English Defence League (EDL), which has
provided a street option for a new generation of anti-Muslim
activists and fringe nationalists over the past five years, has
dwindled, split, and split again.
"The British Democratic Party, formed by former BNP organisers,
has not got off the ground, and Britain First, which looked most
likely to fill the void left by the others, ends the year in
painful and slow organisational decline."
The report suggests that one reason for the decline - certainly
of the BNP - is the rise of UKIP, "which has steamrollered through
their previous heartlands and stolen their voters", the report
says. "While UKIP is not the BNP, and Farage is not (Nick) Griffin,
(the BNP's disgraced former leader), it is clear that most former
BNP voters feel quite at home in the UKIP stable."
The report warns of a rise in the numbers of teenage neo-Nazis,
centred on the group National Action, whose followers instigated an
anti-Semitic Twitter campaign against the Labour MP Luciana Berger,
including 20 death threats, and more than 2000 hate tweets.
There is also a concern about "lone wolves" - individuals who
act independently, such as the serving soldier Ryan McGee, from
Manchester, who was sentenced last year after a nail bomb and a
cache of weapons were found at his house.
But the biggest fear is the possible emergence of a charismatic
figure who could unite the opposing factions. One person who could
fill that position, the authors of the report say, is Stephen
Lennon, also known as Tommy Robinson, the EDL founder who is on
licence from prison after being jailed for 18 months for mortgage
The report concludes that he "has the charisma, following, and
media savviness to reignite the British Far Right if he chooses to
return to frontline activity. And he knows it."
British Jews fear for future
ALMOST half the British public sympathise with at least
one anti-Semitic opinion, a survey for the group Campaign Against
And a second survey of Jews in Britain by the group
suggests that they increasingly feel threatened. More than half
believed that anti-Semitism was on a par with the 1930s; a similar
number feared that Jews had no future in Britain; and a quarter had
"The results of our survey should be a wake-up call,"
the group's chairman, Gideon Falter, said. "Unless anti-Semitism is
met with zero tolerance, it will continue to grow."
Reports of anti-Semitic incidents reached record numbers
last year, sparked partly by the fighting in Gaza in July between
Israel and Hamas.
The first poll by YouGov of a cross-section of 3411
British people found that one in eight believed that Jewish people
use the Holocaust as a means of getting sympathy, and a quarter
thought that Jewish people chased money more than other British
The second survey, of 2230 British Jews, showed that 45
per cent of them felt that their family was threatened by Islamist
The two polls make up the campaign's annual
Mr Falter said: "Some anti-Semitic views may be totally
unintentional, but are no less offensive for it. Many people in the
UK have simply never met Jewish people. Jews will increasingly
question their place in their own country. Britain's Jews must be
shown that they are not alone."