Here’s a pic (via TPM) of a member of the EDL contingent who unlike Tommy Robinson made it though Immigration at JFK to attend Pamela Geller’s anti-Park51 protest in New York. It looks to me very much like EDL co-leader Kevin Carroll, who is regarded as a bit of a hero in the EDL having been convicted of a public order offence following a clash with Islam4UK demonstrators in Luton.
Carroll also featured in a recent BBC TV documentary on the EDL. His protestations that he was neither a fascist nor a racist were rather undermined when he was confronted with evidence that he had signed the nomination papers for a British National Party candidate in the Luton council elections two years ago.
Indeed, Three Counties Unity reported that Carroll “has been an enthusiastic BNP supporter, living on the same estate as Luton BNP organiser Peter Fehr. He is well-known to local anti-fascists and was only dissuaded from standing as a candidate in the 2007 Luton Council elections by a last-minute plea from his partner, Mary Stevenson.”
Pamela Geller, of course, has long been a fervent admirer of the EDL, hailing them as “courageous English patriots” who have been smeared by the media. “Libel and slander like ‘racist’, ‘fascist’, ‘bigot’, etc. color every news report of every counter-jihad action”, Geller has written. “The quisling media is the propaganda arm of jihad. It’s despicable. There is nothing racist, fascist, or bigoted about the EDL.”
An enthusiastic proponent of conspiracy theories, Geller argues that if there are fascists within the ranks of the EDL it is only because they have “infiltrated” the organisation in an attempt to discredit it – “because the neo-Nazis have generally aligned with the Islamic jihad that the EDL resists”. Will Geller now perhaps denounce Carroll as a fascist supporter of Islamism who has joined the counter-jihad movement in order to destroy it?
Update: See also “English Defence League members attend New York mosque protest”, Guardian, 13 September 2010