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The day the EDL didn’t come to Tower Hamlets

Hazel Cheesus | 05.09.2011 09:12 | Anti-racism

The EDL had spent nearly 6 months planning on coming to Tower Hamlets for ‘The Big One’ into ‘the heart of militant Islam’ ‘the lion’s den’.

So to summarise yesterday - The EDL had spent nearly 6 months planning on coming to Tower Hamlets for 'The Big One' into 'the heart of militant Islam' 'the lion's den'.

Six months of riling up their followers with lies about Tower Hamlets for an event they claimed that “the last two years of demonstrations could arguably have been dress rehearsals for this one.”

“We go where we want & when we want, so lets show our strength in numbers & unity”

The Home Secretary banned the march, but allowed a static protest.

The day before the event, they still had no idea where they were going to be. The night before the event, they still hadn't managed the logistics of transport, parking, catering or where they would be directed. Even individuals who were driving, didn't seem capable of opening a map, or calculating where they would park for 'The Big One'.

The EDL claimed they would be holding their static protest in Sainsburys carpark in Whitechapel.

Sainsburys said abso fucking lutely not.

Divisions had to cancel coaches due to lack of interest. Oxford claimed they'd had their tires slashed on the way there. The EDL managed to muster 1000-1100 of it's followers on the day. Out of an organisation which claims 100K members.

All the pubs they planned to drink in refused them and actually closed, losing money, rather than serve the EDL. Only the shittiest, sleaziest strip joint in Kings Cross kept their doors open.

99% of them came from outside London, not knowing a jot about the area, the people, the geography. All they knew was what the EDL Leadership and each other told them, which so far was nothing but lies about the area and nothing about the actual day.

They believed that long standing on-going tube repairs were happening 'on purpose' to prevent the EDL from reaching their destination.

RMT said they would close the stations on health and safety grounds. Both Kings Cross and Liverpool Street were closed for a time. To get them to the protest location, the underground allowed the police to escort them, whilst preventing the public from using the trains.

When the EDL had stopped setting people on fire, and had been drinking for approximately 4 hours, the police guided the EDL to Aldgate – not in Tower Hamlets, but in the City of London and set up an area for them to congregate.

In the meantime, as of 10am, Tower Hamlets was filled with people of all colours, religious, political persuasions, activists, residents, Londoners and others, numbering 1500 (more than the EDL) who were mingling, dancing, waiting for the EDL.

Tommy turns up at his EDL meeting point NOT IN TOWER HAMLETS, on the arm of Roberta Moore, who it had been stated had left/been kicked out of the EDL, Tommy was confusingly disguised as a Rabbi, and the EDLers didn't seem to give his performance that much credence. Even more strangely, Robert 'Rapey' Bartholomeus was there. And even more strangely than that, they'd managed to drag Abdul out from under his rock to present as the only muslim who has ever or will ever support the EDL.

Despite their claims of a multicultural fan base, Abdul was the only non white face in a crowd of 1000 EDL supporters.

Tommy spoke for 10 mins, incited some violence, goaded the police, broke his bail conditions and got arrested, although it's said that he evaded arrest, the stories there get confusing. The EDL threw bottles and firecrackers at the police.

The anti EDL group maintained a wall of people, in Tower Hamlets saying 'they will not pass'.

After Tommy's performance, the EDL were rounded up and painfully slowly guided towards Tower Bridge, to be sent home. Stopping to have the odd impotent scuffle with police and take some tourist pics of the capital city they know nothing about. Best chant of the day? “Whose bridge? Our bridge!”

The anti EDL group celebrated and had a victory march. Not one arrest.

The EDL did not achieve their goal of demonstrating and 'having it' in Tower Hamlets – they didn't even know where Tower Hamlets was, so I can imagine they'd've found it a tad difficult.

Bar one coachload, who for god alone knows what reason, after the EDL were supposed to have left, managed to convince their coach driver to turn around and drive up Whitechapel Road, so they could shout abuse at the locals. They claimed the coach broke down outside the mosque. An EDL 'angel' came out to abuse people close up, was assaulted, and was abandoned by the rest of her EDL 'family'. Some local muslims helped her up and onto her coach again. The coach itself was vandalised.

The coachload of EDL supporters were arrested.

So, the EDL lied about the march.
They lied about the area.
They lied about Roberta and the Jewish Division.
They lied about their numbers.
They lied about their multicultural fan base.
They closed down two of the busiest stations in London.
They closed down busy tourist trade run pubs.
They tried to set alight to a journalist, causing minor burns.
They punched another journalist giving them a black eye.
They were seen seil heiling.
They were drunk and disorderly.
They attacked police.
Tommy dressed as a rabbi.
Tommy broke his bail conditions.
Tommy got arrested.

The EDL didn't come to Tower Hamlets.

The 'Lion's Den' is safe.

Hazel Cheesus
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Hide the following 2 comments

Coach attack

05.09.2011 16:12

Good article. About the coach being attacked, there is a video of it at . It seems that about 20 seconds the first window is broken when a massive slab is thrown through it. The amazing thing is that it comes from inside the coach!


Coach info

05.09.2011 19:50

The EDL coach was certainly attacked outside the mosque and at several other points further east along Whitechapel Road / Mile End Road in slow traffic, but the alleged "breakdown" didn't happen near the mosque. That was past Stepney Green, nearly at Queen Mary College (site of a well-known bookfair). I understand the "breakdown" (which I didn't see) was more a matter of the coach being stopped and surrounded by locals whose friends down the road had passed the message on. It was there that the knuckleheads abandoned it and were herded away by cops, in part using a commandeered 205 bus. Unless there's confirmation that they were arrested, I'm not sure that's right.

What is beyond doubt is that the coach was very comprehensively broken down. I saw it later. But it wasn't a mechanical defect which stopped its progress to Essex, it was human intervention.