• First published in 2004 as Bartholomew’s Notes on Religion (BNOR).

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“Anti-Extremist” Protest in Birmingham

Chants included “Muslims out”

Paul Ray’s Lionheart blog carries footage of another self-described “anti-Islamic extremist” demo, this time in Birmingham city centre. As with the previous outings of this sort (most recently blogged by me here), the protestors mainly sang football chants and patriotic songs; their presence appears to have attracted quite a crowd.

The footage was posted to Youtube by a cetain “railwayendblue”; while he is supportive of the protest and complains bitterly about “Marxists”, he also adds that:

Some of the chanting was bad. And i can’t defend them.. Plus there were many Blacks that i saw that were singing “Muslims Out” as well. Probably 2nd-3rd Generation.

The chant “Muslims out” appears for a moment in this piece of footage (at  9:10), but it does not appear to have been a major theme.  He also tells us that:

 EDL and WDL are not parties, just organisations with supporters on all sides.. Blacks, whites, Hindus all joined in with the sing songs.

This is the “English Defence League” and the “Welsh Defence League”, who accompanied Ray on his trip into “occupied” (his term) east London; “March for England”, which I blogged here and which held a protest in Luton in May, seems to have disappeared off the radar [UPDATE: Actually, a comment below from MfE’s Dave Smeeton explains that they were involved in another event in London, with the United British Alliance).

The protest doubtless capitalised on the recent visit of Anjem Choudary’s “Islamic Road Show” to the city; Choudary is one of the UK’s most notorious Islamist fanatics, and as was widely reported, he managed to get a bewildered-looking 11-year old white boy to recite a conversion to Islam (railwayendblue mentions this incident). Meanwhile, the chairman of Birmingham City Mosque, Mohammed Naseem, refuses to believe that the 7/7 bombers were Muslim extremists – as was noted in a BBC documentary a few days ago; he is now facing calls for his resignation.

Further protests made up from football supporters’ “firms” are planned; a message on the EDL Facebook page from Wayne King tells us that:

…we are hearing another march for brum is being planned for 8th august. we will defo be there and bring all our placards and banners. we will push the march against sharia law as a focus. we have already got a 25 seater coming from luton and many other london firms are on it, qpr and arsenal for defo. so everyone who turned ouy yesterday make the effort again for 8th august, details will follow, if we make enough noise as we have in luton the authorities will be worried about backlashes from our communties when making local decisions,god bless