Over the last 12 months we have seen the reemergence of the far-right onto the streets of Britain. Under various different banners the far-right have been pulling thousands of people onto the streets across the country on a sustained basis. With this new movement have come intimidation and attacks of left-wing organisers. Last summer the DFLA attacked Anti-fascist Network and Stand Up to Racism activists during Tommy Robinson’s ‘Day for Freedom’ event, and then attacked the RMT in a pub during an anti-racist demonstration. All of this is happening with increased levels of violence towards Muslim and Asian communities, with hate crimes against Muslims going up 40% in London last year.
More recently, we’ve seen far-right activists gatecrash a Socialist Party meeting in Leeds, attempt to intimidate an RMT picket in Manchester (throwing racist abuse at an Asian RMT member), and attack a People’s Assembly demonstration in London. The far-right are growing in confidence, and clearly see the left and trade union movement as public enemy number one.
We believe that these attacks and intimidation will continue. As a movement we need to be able to defend ourselves against fascist aggression, and we clearly can’t leave it up to the state to do that job for us. The undersigned are therefore calling on all involved in the left and trade union movement to get involved in their local Red Gym. If you live in one of the below areas, then get involved. If there isn’t a Red Gym in your local area, then start one.
The Red Gym movement has been growing across the UK and Ireland over the last 4 years, with gyms in six different cities and many more set to open in the near future. These gyms are organised run by people from across the left and run on the basis that those who train together, fight together.
Fascist violence is a direct threat to the left, and it’s the responsibility of all of us to ensure that we can adequately defend ourselves against it.
Leeds Fight Club
Reading Red Corner