Several weeks ago, Andrew Clarke, a former member of Britain’s National Action, walked free with no criminal convictions after 18 months in prison. During that period of time, Andrew, along with some of his former colleagues, was subjected to two trials at the direction of the Crown Prosecution Service, neither of which convinced a jury that Clarke was guilty of the charge levelled at him – that he remained a member of National Action after the banning of the organization under terrorism legislation in December 2016. Shortly after his release from prison, Andrew reached out to me on social media, in part because I was one of the very few people on the dissident Right to speak out at the time of the banning of National Action and again during the subsequent series of arrests. I was extremely disturbed by what he then described to me about the background and nature of his arrest and imprisonment, and I felt that the attention of a wider audience should once again be directed to these events in England, and for Andrew to be able to have a voice for his experiences.
The nature of increasingly oppressive developments in legislation require that, in order to ensure the continued freedom of Andrew and others, this interview begins with certain legal caveats. Part II, Section 12 of the Terrorism Act (2000) makes it an offence to “invite support for a proscribed organisation,” or to arrange a meeting that is to be addressed by someone “who belongs or professes to belong to a proscribed organisation.” It should be abundantly clear from the following interview, but just to reiterate: the following interview is with an individual who ceased to be a member of National Action either before, or at the event of, its banning under the Terrorism Act (2000). Furthermore, no aspect of this interview should be interpreted as lending or inviting support for National Action, an organisation that is now defunct and probably has been since it was arbitrarily banned by the Home Office. That being said, the position is firmly and unashamedly maintained that the banning process itself, and the background to that process as it relates to a specific proscription, should, in any truly democratic society, be open to scrutiny and critique. The arrest and imprisonment of the many individuals following the proscription of National Action in December 2016 should also be open to scrutiny and critique, especially since these arrests have evidently resulted in the jailing of innocent men.
It is hoped that this interview breaks some of the fear that surrounds the discussion of “right wing terrorism.” The banning of National Action, and subsequent related arrests, have been met with almost complete silence from the dissident Right, presumably because many are fearful of making any kind of statement that could make them liable to arrest themselves. And yet the proscription of National Action is a key element in trends of government actions against the dissident Right, preceding Unite the Right by 8 months, but in many respects also prefiguring the response to the latter. To be clear, the proscription of National Action marked the beginning of the most recent wave of mainstream associations between dissident Right thought and “terrorism” — a term that had hitherto been reserved for acts of violence in the pursuit of political goals. Just days after the proscription of National Action, and long before Charlottesville, I warned:
Faced with a White identity movement that remains, frustratingly for its opponents, law-abiding and peaceful, we can expect an elaboration on existing tactics. The meaning and definition of words like ‘terrorism’ and ‘extremism’ will themselves be expanded to encompass non-violent entities and individuals in an effort to drag them into hastily constructed spheres of illegality and, thus, deeper social opprobrium and even prison sentences.
This prophecy was to come ominously to fruition around a year later, when Andrew Clarke and several others had their homes raided, before being summarily charged and dragged into police vehicles to begin an 18 month odyssey of prison transports, trials, and intense media demonisation. While some would eventually walk free, many remain in prison, and will remain in prison for many years to come. The vast majority were never convicted under the original charges, or indeed under any aspect of the Terrorism Act. Instead, a slow trickle of speech laws and related legislation was brought into play in order to imprison individuals for up to 16 months for placing stickers reading “White Zone” around university campuses. One of the most striking features of all of the trials, and the related media coverage, has been the focus not on what these individuals have or have not done, but on what they think and believe. Thus, regardless of one’s opinion on the organisation that was once in existence, or on any style of activism, these arrests have grave implications for anyone still entertaining the idea they live in a free society.
As a final note, the story of these arrests, and of Andrew’s in particular, is an important corrective and admonition to those among us who have waxed eloquently with their “disavowals” of “terrorism” because it “undermines White Nationalism.” I have always had a problem with such disavowals, and for a few simple reasons. More often than not, they are simply exercises in preaching to the converted. Most disavowals are made by people “plugged into” the “movement”, while the very rare handful of extreme acts of White violence are carried out by isolated fringe individuals who never hear such disavowals or are least likely to be moved by them. Disavowals are thus, more or less, languid and effete acts of moral self-satisfaction. Second, disavowals simply add to, and increase the volume of, discourse critiquing the dissident Right, and they are divisive and demoralising. They implicitly assume a problem within the “movement” that needs to be addressed (where none in fact exists because the movement is already overwhelmingly non-violent), a pernicious trend that conforms very strongly to opposition narratives. They are, therefore, in terms of image management or “optics” undoubtedly worse than mere silence – we can’t correct criticism and image problems by making concessions to the opposition’s vision of our cause. Third, and related to the second, “right wing terrorism” is a largely invented phenomenon, embellished by falsified statistics, media tactics, and the steady production of propaganda by dedicated anti-White groups. It is a largely fictional opposition talking point that would be foolish to adopt ourselves. Fourth, and most important, by adopting discussions and perceptions of “right wing terrorism” we are easily corralled into fear and silence when entirely innocent activists are swept up in “terrorism” arrests. We allow ourselves to be pre-programmed to disavow these individuals and abandon them to their fate. I personally find this mode of conduct to be shameful, cowardly, and highly revealing. I reject it in disgust. Read more