Friday, 7 August 2009

The sorry saga of Peter Tierney: an update

In response to BNP "super-activist" Peter Tierney's arraignment on Wednesday - which I reported on in full in my previous post - the BNP propaganda machine has gone into overdrive.

The excuses on the Merseyside BNP blog were painfully transparent, claiming that the party "decided in the interests of public safety to cancel our protest last week" when in fact the national website issued an "urget" appeal for people to attend only a few days before. Accusations that "McFaddens [sic] "hired UAF criminals" [were] doing their best to intimidate Peter Tierney with "whispered threats" of violence in the waiting area" and that the protest consisted of "fifteen protesters who turned up with the intention as usual of acting unlawful" are so facile as to not deserve comment.

On the main website, however, there was no mention of "whispered threats," and the party instead claimed that "Peter was already inside the building" when the protesters arrived and that "a short time later when the BNP contingent left the courts there was not a “protester” in sight." They are now insisting that "this case is yet another example of who the real troublemakers are – the UAF and other unsavoury left wing Labour Party groups staging violent and pointless attacks." However, they are reduced to vague polemicism because the specific accusations they have made about the original incident are now unravelling before their eyes.

After the attack in April, the BNP said that Tierney "was engaging in perfectly legal political activity" when "mob of violent Tory and Labour-supported UAF thugs started harassing him and the other BNP members, including women and elderly folk." According to this version of events, Tierney "defended the women and the elderly members against the deranged leftists" who had "suddenly physically attacked the BNP people."

One anti-fascist was arrested on an assault charge only once Tierney sought out the police to make the accusation, despite the BNP assertion that two "were immediately arrested by the police and dragged away." The second man, of course, was the anti-fascist who had to be taken to hospital with head injuries after Tierney's use of a camera tripod as a weapon. It now emerges that the accused anti-fascist is no longer faced with assault charges. He was arraigned a day after Tierney on one count of "criminal damage" for allegedly smashing on of the BNP's cameras and will be tried for such at a later date. Clearly, the accusation that he "suddenly physically attacked" Tierney had no weight, given that the charge was dropped even before his arraignment.

As mentioned in my previous post, Tierney is now due to stand trial on 3rd September, and it is vital that anti-fascists come out in great numbers to show their opposition to him, whether the BNP cabal turns up or not. Liverpool antifascists are holding a meeting this Saturday (August 8th) to discuss organisation for this event as well as the protest against the BNP's Red White & Blue festival in Derbyshire on August 15th. Coach tickets are available for this event from News From Nowhere, the radical and community bookshop on Bold Street.