Wildly flailing about for ideas to head off growing rank and file disaffection and to find scapegoats for the widespread demoralisation of the BNP membership in the wake of a disastrous general election performance, Nick Griffin has determined to fix much of the blame for his own abject incompetence on ousted webmaster Simon Bennett.
In an email sent on Friday afternoon, Griffin writes:
At the height of the General Election campaign, at a time when millions of leaflets were hitting doorsteps around the country, our website was destroyed by a treacherous former employee.
This unforgiveable act of treason contributed to the loss of dozens of election deposits around the country. [Our emphasis]
For several weeks a group of loyal Party officials and volunteers have been working hard getting the entire BNP internet operation up and running once again.
“It has been a hard slog but now things are moving once again. Instead of depending on one person to run the entire BNP cyberspace presence we now have a team of people working together, technicians, designers, writers and moderators,” said BNP webmaster Paul Golding.
The idea that the loss of the BNP’s website cost the party any votes at all is inane and is already being ridiculed for the fiction it is by formerly loyal Griffinites.
In the past few days leading figures in the BNP have taken out a free blogspot called “The BNP Truth Chronicles – Countering the smears, lies, crackpots and traitors” aimed squarely at vilifying Simon Bennett. The location of the blogspot has been widely disseminated, not least by tame poodles “Bev Kerry” of the snake-pit VNN, and the cringingly sycophantic Paul Morris (who has sacked the entire moderating team of his barely visited grovel-fest of a forum).
Scales have been falling from previously unquestioning BNP eyes by the hundred since the magnitude of the BNP reverse became apparent as the hours of May 7th ticked on. The myth of Nick Griffin’s infallibility has been firmly pricked. Formerly pliant members are now admitting that his Question Time performance was a disaster, that the BNP’s Euro “success” was not quite what it seemed, and that the party’s Griffin-led general election “strategy” was a complete failure.
The more intelligent of the grass roots and middle-ranking members aren’t buying Griffin’s excuses or his crude attempts to scapegoat Simon Bennett, and seem fairly resolute in their demand that Griffin stand down from the leadership.
Griffin is undoubtedly watching and waiting to see who comes forward to head up any putative rebellion, the name most talked about being that of Eddy Butler, who left the Barking and Dagenham count openly discussing ways and means of deposing Griffin with Richard Barnbrook.
Butler, of course, is already in the frame to take a share of the blame for Griffin’s ineptitude, while it is believed that Barnbrook continues to smoulder that he was abruptly shoved aside as the BNP’s Barking PPC by the carpet-bagging Griffin on the promise that he would lead the BNP group on Barking and Dagenham Council – an empty promise, as it turned out, and one which inevitably angered drink loving street-fighter Bob Bailey, the sitting group leader, who resigned as the BNP’s London organiser this week.
In the meantime the beleaguered Griffin has launched his standard containment strategy of shifting the blame for his own yawning deficiencies and smearing his enemies as traitors and plants, a strategy he has deployed with unimaginative predictability ever since he first rose to exceedingly minor prominence in the 1980s National Front.
Previously untroubled backwaters of the Internet, where BNP members debated in a quietly deranged way among themselves while contending with the odd anti-fascist interloper, have become targets for blunt but counter-productive Griffinite and Covert Tactics trolling, notably the BNP sub-forum at the British Democracy Forum, where BNP members and supporters are overwhelmingly in favour of change at the top of the BNP. A rash of quickly banned new arrivals whose presence threatened to turn BDF into a replica of VNN caused the forum’s owners to institute a “zero tolerance” policy in tandem with “draconian moderating”.
Zero tolerance is something practiced by Nick Griffin throughout his turbulent, purge-filled years as leader of the BNP. Self-preservation was never so well embodied in the being of one man. He isn’t big enough to admit his failings and walk away. Self-sacrifice for the good of the cause isn’t a thought that ever entered into his head. With a year to pass before local council elections are due, and several years to come before the next Euros, he has all the time in the world to identify his real and potential internal enemies and isolate them before danger threatens.
The question is, now that the spell of Griffin has been broken for so many, will those preparing to topple him – as we know they are – just for once have the wits and strategic sense to attempt to outsmart him on their own terms instead of his; that is to say, will they realise, as they fight over whatever remains of the BNP, that from the beginning a desperate Griffin can be relied upon to play dirty, and that there’s very little point to upholding the Queensberry Rules when the man they are fighting has loaded his gloves with lead?