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Submitted by AWL on Fri, 06/11/2009 - 12:54

Socialist Worker's report of the events in Leeds is astonishing - a true piece of Stalinist-style whitewashing.

Entitled "Leeds marches on against Nazis", it alternates between stressing the 'marching element' of the day (ie the feeder marches, described as "march[ing] on City Square") and claiming that only the police prevented protesters from confronting the EDL:

"A larger feeder march from Hyde Park, made up mainly of students, had also tried to make it down to confront the EDL, but the police presence in the city centre had proven too strong... Though people left the rally with their spirits lifted, they were also frustrated that the police presence had meant that UAF had not been able to take its message to the EDL more directly."

This is quite amazing. Hundreds or thousands of people will read Socialist Worker and have no idea of the role Weyman Bennett and the UAF stewards played in assisting the police.

The report also writes out of history the defeats anti-fascist movement has suffered with the EDL marches in recent months - or rather presents them as victories: "A number of racist EDL protests have taken place across the country in recent months. All of them have been met with determined counter-demonstrations, where the racists have been outnumbered."

It goes on: "This was true in Leeds, despite police and council leaders warning local Muslims to stay away from the city centre." The police and council leaders - no mention of the mosque and community leaders who also tried to prevent young Muslims from marching, as this would not fit the SWP's political picture.

After come bland blah about the EDL's racism and the need for "unity", we are told that "there was a feeling of unity and solidarity at the rally"!

"Glenn Pickersgill, a Unison union steward, spoke at the rally on behalf of the striking bin workers in Leeds. He told Socialist Worker, 'We have Asian, black, Irish, Polish and white members all sticking together in a class struggle. It’s not where you come from that matters – it’s where you are going.'"

No mention, naturally, of the strike-breaking Lib Dem councillor who preceded Pickersgill on the platform!

SWP comrades, don't you find this embarrassing?

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