Most anti-fascists already know the BNP lies – but in the case of one high-profile Nazi, it is now official.
Barking & Dagenham councillor Richard Barnbrook – who also sits on the London Assembly – was suspended from the council for at least a month after a joint standards board last week found him guilty of bringing his office into disrepute.
The charges related to a web report posted on Barnbrook’s blog, YouTube and the Telegraph website last year.
Barnbrook was filmed claiming that there had been three knife murders in the Barking & Dagenham area in the previous three weeks.
Figures from the police proved that Barnbrook’s claims were false. And NHS sources showed that no-one had been hospitalised by knife crime in the borough during the period in question.
Barnbrook changed his story several times during the investigation. He initially wrote in the local paper, “To my mind it makes little difference whether there were one or three murders.”
He said that he knew that the information in the blog was wrong but that what he had said about one murder “came out wrong” and in the other two cases they were on life support at the time – another claim that has been exposed as a lie.
And at last week’s hearing Barnbrook finally pleaded that he was “forced to rely on hearsay” to get his facts.
As well as being suspended from the council, Barnbrook has been instructed to publicly apologise for his lies.
The London Assembly has also instructed him to attend ethics and standards training – though how you train a lying Nazi in ethics will be a mystery to most Socialist Worker readers.
This is not the first time the BNP has used lies to stoke fears in Barking & Dagenham.
It has a history of spreading scare stories about asylum seekers and migrants taking council homes in the area.
This latest case shows once again that Nazis lie to get what they want.
This is another reason why fascists can’t be beaten through debate – but only by organising a mass movement to confront them.