“Rivers of piss…” – a report from Saturday 13th’s BLM protest

The following post is the opinion of one antifascist who was present for the rout of the far right on the 13th at the hands of anti racist protesters. It shouldnt be read as the opinion of the whole assembly, but has been written to offer readers a glimpse into how the protests went from an antifascist point of view.

As things stand, and the smoke clears, it appears that the far right has been utterly humiliated. They’ve been humiliated in the press, and forced off the streets. However in the aftermath, the Metropolitan Police conducted large sweeps of the city centre and punitively arrested a large number of black people, racially profiling them in order to satisfy their institutional racism and frustration with the success of the Black Lives Matter protests. The weekend’s events demonstrate that while the more violent components of the far right can be defeated when confronted, the fascism of the police is still a grave danger. The protesters who were on the ground on Saturday 13th did amazing work, which must not be forgotten, and their gains must immediately be built upon. Seeing drunken EDL dropouts getting obliterated all across central london by a joyous and rebellious protest movement was quite a sight, and one that everyone should be proud of

The anti-fascist movement was severely hampered by a number of issues, which disrupted efforts to mobilise at the last minute, but it was still able to support the protests in a limited role. This role should, and could, have been much larger than it was, and we need to learn from the events that led to our support actions being called off. We’ve got to adapt, and learn to combine our future efforts with radical anti racist movements in the city in order to regain ground and actually live up to the goal of anti-fascism, anti-racism, and solidarity. The anti-fascist movement must become more able to resist political policing and targeted actions by our opponents in authority. We owe it to the radical groups that are furthering this struggle to be there in numbers on the day whenever needed. These goals are all desirable and achievable. This must be done in order to further the cause of the BLM movement, particularly the calls for police abolition and prison abolition.

The fascist movement, including groups like For Britain, Britain First, the DFLA and various others attempted to force a hard right version of events into the eye of the media, by dreaming up a racialised narrative about “protecting statues” and defeating an imaginary army of opponents. They proved to be their own worst enemies, and the reality on the ground was approximately 1 to 2000 drunken gammon-dads drinking tins and urinating on each other, the street, random buildings, and on one occasion, the memorial of a police officer. This display is already causing disarray in their ranks and recriminations: Enoch Powells “rivers of blood” have turned into rivers of piss.

The anti racist movement at large has done well in highly trying circumstances. We anti-fascists must contribute even more to this next time. See you in the streets.

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