At a time when so many people are commemorating the 80th anniversary of the historic victory over Mosley’s fascists at Cable Street, I thought it was worth taking a moment to remind people about two different court cases that both, in different ways, revolve around people whose (alleged) actions have helped keep the spirit of militant resistance seen at Cable Street alive.
First, there’s the Rotherham 12 trial, which has now started at Sheffield Crown Court. This trial is a result of an incident that took place during a Britain First march through Rotherham in September 2015, shortly after the murder of Mushin Ahmed. Violence erupted after police kettled the counter-demonstration and then forced them to disperse down a route that took them past the pub the fascists were drinking in/outside, and now 12 people are on trial facing violent disorder charges for allegedly taking part in the confrontation with Britain First that followed. Anyone who identifies with the tradition of resistance that was seen at the battle against the British Union of Fascists 80 years ago should do whatever they can to support those who’re facing charges for allegedly taking on Britain First today.
Secondly, Aiden Aslin, the alleged YPG volunteer who’s spent months and months hanging around on bail while the CPS try to get it together enough to decide whether or not they think volunteering to fight against ISIS counts as a terrorism offence or not, will be appearing at Nottingham Magistrates’ Court on October 19th, where the CPS will hopefully announce that the charges are dropped and he’s free to go, but they might charge him, or just postpone making any kind of a decision and keep him in limbo for another few months. If you can get down to Nottingham Magistrates’ on the 19th to support him, please do; if you know anyone who might be able to make it, help spread the word. Whether against Britain First in Rotherham or ISIS in Syria, militant struggle against fascism should be celebrated, not criminalised.