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Because of Brexit, People Are Victims of Violence More Than Ever
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Pictures of Daniel Ezzedine show him to be a fresh faced 17-year-old with a warm cheerful smile. His parents are Lebanese but he was brought up in Germany where he had just left school. His teachers brought him to celebrate his graduation on a trip to Canterbury where he was assaulted and beaten half to death by a gang of youths in what local people are convinced was a racist attack.

It took place at 6pm on 6 June in Rose Lane in the centre of the city about 250 yards from Canterbury Cathedral. Daniel received a merciless beating from his numerous attackers, which left him close to death. Rushed to hospital in London by helicopter, he is still in a coma and doctors initially gave him only a 30 per cent chance of surviving. Seven people were arrested – six of them teenagers – but none have been charged.

The family had difficulty at first in getting visas to enter Britain to see their son because they are not German citizens, though they have lived in Germany for 30 years. “I pray and ask Allah for mercy and that you will soon be on your legs again my little brother,” wrote Bassam, one of Daniel’s five brothers. “You don’t deserve the dead!”

I live in Canterbury and often pass the spot outside Tesco, Marks and Spencer and HSBC where Daniel was set upon. Details of what happened are sparse because the police are not saying what they know and Daniel remains in a coma. But it is telling that the gang chose a Lebanese Muslim to target out of all the passers-by in this well-frequented part of Canterbury.

The attack took place close to a pretty little park called Dane John, which in recent years has become a notorious haunt for gangs selling drugs. I asked one young man if he walked through the park at night. “I do not like to walk through it in day time,” he replied. He said that gangs there are often looking for victims and might easily target a Muslim or anybody different from themselves. A well-attended march against racism took place through the city on Wednesday.

The fate of Daniel Ezzedine is evidence that Britain is becoming a more racist country since the Brexit referendum. Pro-Brexit politicians like Michael Gove deny this, but a poll by Opinium found that overt ethnic abuse and discrimination reported by ethnic minorities has risen from 64 per cent at the beginning of 2016 to 76 per cent today.

But this understates the change for the worse that we are seeing. The Brexit vote promoted English national identity and questions about who is and who is not English – increasingly distinguished from being British – to the top of the political agenda and this is not going away. One can see this in Canterbury, normally a liberally-minded and tolerant little city accustomed to large numbers of foreign visitors and students.

But since 2016 expressions of gut racism have become much more common. Soon after the poll, an Argentinian woman asked for directions from a guard at Canterbury Cathedral and was told: “that way to Dover, love.” More recently, a homeless person in the high street told a friend of mine: “soon the immigrants will go and I will be able to get a job.”

I have been travelling around the UK writing a series about “Britain in the Age of Brexit” and I wondered if members of ethnic minorities believed that racism and racist harassment had increased. I asked three people in South Wales – chosen because it is so different from south-east England – from diverse backgrounds (Pakistani, Sikh, Caribbean, Portuguese) if they had experienced greater racist abuse since the Brexit vote.

Shavanah Taj, a national officer for the Public and Commercial Services Union, whose father came from Pakistan to work in a steel plant in south Wales in 1958-59, said that racist harassment had risen in the past three or four years, though it had also been bad in the past: “In the 1980s, we used to regularly have dog shit in Tesco bags pushed through our letter box and ‘Pakis Out’ in big letters written on the side wall of our house.” That sort of thing had ebbed but is now back and more virulent than before.

As an Asian woman with two small children, she finds her way often deliberately blocked by white men in the street. She and her Nigerian husband ask themselves for the first time “if we will get to the point when we will no longer think of this country as our home.”

Amarjite Singh, a Sikh who works for the Royal Mail and wears a distinctive red turban, agrees that open racism fell away from the end of the 1980s up to 2016. He is alarmed today by the degree to which the far right is more active, holding rallies up and down the country at the same time. He says that many Sikhs – there are about 2,500 in Cardiff – voted Leave because they feared that their jobs were threatened by East European immigration, but they found that they were also being subjected to anti-immigrant abuse.

Singh speaks of one incident that struck him as a sign of escalating racism: “Two weeks ago I was on a bus and there was a Somali woman with a baby in a pram which could not put in the space allotted for it because a young man was blocking it. When the bus driver told him to let her park the pram there, the young man replied: ‘Who does she think she is? She’s only a foreigner.”’

ORDER IT NOW

Andrew Woodman, whose mother came here from Portugal in 1952 and his father from Guyana, says that the Brexit vote has emboldened “people, as it does in Trump’s America, to say in public what they used to say in private. I have been called the N-word and that had rarely happened in recent years.” He adds that all you need to generate racial hatred “is to persuade people that those who are different from themselves are the reason they are poor.”

Al Qaeda and Isis attacks from 9/11 to London Bridge all contributed to Islamophobia, but the Brexit crisis is having much greater and longer-term impact because it is redefining English nationalism in a more exclusive and confrontational way. This affects women of Pakistani origin shopping with their children, but it also leads – so a university vice chancellor was telling me this week – to a high flying German scientist, who can easily get a job elsewhere, deciding that he no longer likes the UK and has gone back to Germany.

Euro-sceptic leaders are in denial about the degree to which the Brexit project depended on beating the anti-immigrant drum. But look at how many Conservative and Brexit Eurosceptics found time this week to denounce Jo Brand and the BBC for expressing purely rhetorical violence. And then consider how few of them have expressed dismay at the real violence which inflicted terrible injuries on young Daniel Ezzedine in the centre of Canterbury.

(Republished from The Independent by permission of author or representative)
 
• Category: Foreign Policy • Tags: Brexit, Britain, Immigration, Racism 
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  1. plantman says:

    Another moronic piece by Cockburn.

    Has Brexit made the British people more racist or is racism merely a predictable reaction to shitty economic policies (austerity) coupled with unfettered immigration???

    For 3 years, the US media has been trying to convince Americans that Trump’s victory is a sign of growing racism, but is it?

    Trump was elected because Obama’s economic policies failed to deliver. Standards of living are slipping despite the Democrats claims of a “great economic recovery”.

    Recovery for who?? The 1 percent who own everything?

    The same phenomenon is taking place in the UK: Things are getting worse economically, while more migrants keep poring over the border. Does Cockburn expect people to be overjoyed about this reality????

    The man’s an idiot.

    • Agree: YetAnotherAnon
    • Replies: @getaclue
    , @Richard B
    , @Mr. Grey
  2. getaclue says:
    @plantman

    Meanwhile he’s good with Muslims killing, beating up, and throwing rocks at people as has been reported happening in the UK and all over Europe and the world? No problem there for the Leftist “journalist” he sees it all as a problem with the dreaded “whitey”. The only “racism” he sees are some anecdotal incidents that he tries to pin on “whitey” although no “whiteys” have yet been charged, which is amazing if they are in fact at fault given how the system works in the UK these days on any allegations made against the same (especially by a Transgender….), and he has some supposed “name calling” to report–wasn’t Jussie Smullet available for some input for him on what “whitey” is up to or maybe his UK Cousin could get with the “journalist” for some good “whitey” hating/fabrication? …. This is all part of the genocidal Kalergi plan that has been in the planning and public record since the 1920’s and which is playing out thru this Mass Immigration the “Elites” i.e. Globalists are forcing on populations in Europe, the UK, and the USA–none of this is happening organically with Soros and affiliated “Elite” /Communist NGOs financing and causing it to happen aided and abetted by corrupt politicians and “journalists”.

  3. Paddy and uisce beatha reasoning. LOL.

    Pictures of Daniel Ezzedine show him to be a fresh-faced 17-year-old with a warm cheerful smile. His parents are Lebanese but he was brought up in Germany where he had just left school. His teachers brought him to celebrate his graduation on a trip to Canterbury, where he was assaulted and beaten half to death by a gang of youths in what local people are convinced was a racist attack.

    Selective empathy. What about the many locals killed by Third Worlders since 1948, notably Keith Blakelock, Ross Parker, Kriss Donald, Lee Rigby and Charlene Downes?

    Besides this article is based on conjecture as investigations are still ongoing.

    The fate of Daniel Ezzedine is evidence that Britain is becoming a more racist country since the Brexit referendum.

    Hyperbole. Correlation does not imply causation.

    The Brexit vote promoted English national identity and questions about who is and who is not English – increasingly distinguished from being British – to the top of the political agenda, and this is not going away.

    Everyone, bar diversity drivel adherents, knows the English, Scots, Welsh, Irish even the Cornish, the Manx and Shetlanders are white and mostly Northern European.

    ‘British’ is now just shorthand for Third Worlders and their mixed race offspring with identity anxieties.

    They will never be English and are in fact dragging the country to the abyss with their awful norms like Voodoo human sacrifice on the Thames, eating chimpanzee meat, female genital mutilation (FGM), honor killings, polygamy, inbreeding like the Windsors, cruel halal slaughter, electoral fraud and welfare dependency.

    • Replies: @Bardon Kaldian
  4. I thought Cockburn had some common sense left. I was wrong.

    • Agree: Dan Hayes
  5. Sean says:

    But it is telling that the gang chose a Lebanese Muslim to target out of all the passers-by in this well-frequented part of Canterbury

    Telling that you are writing about a Lebanese getting attacked. White from the EU getting attacked is not news apparently.

    More recently, a homeless person in the high street told a friend of mine: “soon the immigrants will go and I will be able to get a job.”

    That can’t be Non Europeans he is talking about.

    He says that many Sikhs – there are about 2,500 in Cardiff – voted Leave because they feared that their jobs were threatened by East European immigration,

    They were not alone ..

    ..but they found that they were also being subjected to anti-immigrant abuse.

    > maybe, but no one could have thought Brexit would deal with NonEuropeans from the Commonwealth who are officially as British as anyone now and have British passports to prove it. For every importation of a energetic person from a huge country like India someone in Britain is displaced from full time good earming employment and the many things which follow from that

  6. Richard B says:
    @plantman

    It seems to be an incurable blind spot with the Cockburns of the world, ie; Privileged Whites.

    They’ve always held underprivileged Whites in contempt and when those Whites responded with a predictable resentment, the Cockburns of the world responded with more contempt. Rinse and Repeat. That’s all they’ve ever had for us, contempt. No empathy or shame.

    They’ve always looked at us as proles and rubes. But once we rejected their precious communism, we became worthless proles and rubes. But that is a judgment made in error, obviously. Because minus that empathy and shame they’ve failed to develop full humanity and so, are in no position to look down on anyone.

    Fact is, once the Cockburns of the world realized the workers had rejected communism they turned to non-Whites and, together, turned on the working poor Whites, with a vengance.

    The Cockburns of the world, bereft of reason and hostile to fact, still can’t see that the current rise in Nationalist sentiment is the natural and inevitable reaction to decades and decades of being squeezed from both sides and after centuries of being crushed from the top. What did they expect?

    No demographic in history – none – has been more deliberately neglected, abused, and scapegoated, than the White working poor. Their oppression goes back millienial, not a meesly three centuries. And they’ve never been coddled, pampered and spoiled psycho, like that other group of violent cry babies who cling to their distorted intepretation of the past as if it were an absolute truth. An interpretation, by the way, provided to them by – you guessed it – the Cockburns of the world.

    Everyone knows the worst is yet to come. And it’s because of the Cockburns of the world.

    • Replies: @Curmudgeon
  7. El Dato says:

    While a mob attack on a 17-year is to be deplored (indeed, my suggestion would be have Pinochet Air take care of the perps), nothing in the Independent story indicates a link to “racism” except the required expressions and demands for group shame and guilt (mental!).

    that the gang chose a Lebanese Muslim to target out of all the passers-by in this well-frequented part of Canterbury.

    Could be he didn’t know what locals know.

    The attack took place close to a pretty little park called Dane John

    That seems to be quite the “park”:

    https://www.kentonline.co.uk/canterbury/news/a-magnet-for-violence-gang-42992/

    A Freedom of Information request reveals there have been 46 violent crimes in the park since August 2012, with 20 reported drugs offences involving cannabis and ecstasy.

    Ch Insp Mark Arnold said: “Eighty- four crimes in three years equates to an average of 28 crimes a year or just over two crimes a month.

    Young immigrant males collide with drugs users who collide with bored teenagers who collide with alcoholics who collide with transients who collide with nightclubbers who collide with commuters.

    White trash and other heinous savages … prospective occupants for a leased Siberian Reeducation Camp. But nowadays, anything goes. Letting it all hang out has become the new normal. But the pendulum will swing back.

  8. @Richard B

    Relatively few workers ever favoured communism. There is no question that many trade union leaders and politicians did, but not the man on the shop floor. It is important to note, that while Germany, under the NSDAP, imprisoned the political communists, they fully understood that once they began to improve the economic situation, while holding employers accountable and providing better working conditions, the “working” communists would come to them. They did so in enormous numbers, because they began to have direct access to the highest level of bosses.
    Real trade unionists have always been nationalists, understanding that immigration means excess labour and lower wages, while increasing living costs and diluting social services.

  9. An Egyptian girl studying in England died after being attacked by a gang of black girls a month or two back. Where’s the Cockburn outrage? And four non-natives people have been charged with murdering 17 year old Jodie Chesney.

    Native Brits are disproportionately victims, not perpetrators, of inter-racial violence. Cockburn cherry-picks a single murder – where AFAIK there’s not even any evidence of the ethnicity of the perps – to make a political point. He should be ashamed, but I guess he’s got a living to make and times are hard.

    He’s not a journalist, he’s a politician masquerading as a journalist.

  10. Ragno says:

    The fate of Daniel Ezzedine is evidence that Britain is becoming a more racist country since the Brexit referendum.

    …and the fate of countless young girls over the DECADES of Rotherham are evidence of the suicidal timidity wrought by policies demonizing patriotism and racial solidarity, precisely?

    Second trumps, and cancels out, the first.

    When a nation’s elites refuse to pull their fingers from their ears – or their heads from their arses – until its common people grow hoarse from crying out and are finally and fully replaced…..violence isd what you can expect – thank God.

    You break it, you bought it. Present your bill for damages to the Board of Deputies of (((You Know Who))).

  11. Mr. Grey says:
    @plantman

    Great comment and replies. All Cockburn wrote was an anecdotal list of POC dealing with assholes. I always laugh when I read someone claiming to be aggrieved by hearing the N-word. It’s the favorite word of black people under 50.

  12. Haha, tough crowd for old Cockburn here. I suppose the best that can be said for his anecdotes of the rising tide of racial aggro is that some of them may even be true. But if he truly wants to earn brownie points, he could allow that itinerant Canterbury stroller to kip down of a night in his garden shed.

  13. So Brexit is the reason why the UK is awash with knife wielding Muslim rapists,

  14. mantumba says:

    Real story here is the volume of riff raff that has left London due to housing pressures and has spilled out into numerious peripheral towns in the south east, including it would seem canterbury.

  15. eah says:

    …a more racist country since the Brexit referendum.

    A little more ‘racism’ a little earlier might have inspired fear of righteous retribution by the white man in those Paki child rapists.

  16. “The fate of Daniel Ezzedine is evidence that Britain is becoming a more racist country since the Brexit referendum”

    Blacks attack South Asian Muslims.

    Whites to blame.

  17. In other words, gang violence endemic in liberal minded tolerant Canterbury. What a surprise.

    And this guy blames it on Brexit.

    He’s such a caricature that he reads like some sort of intellectual deception operation, as if he’s trying to discredit the side he supposedly is on.

  18. Parfois1 says:

    Mr Cockburn, this piece does not give much credibility to you as a writer or reporter. It is an embarrassment, to put it mildly, and it does not enhance your position as a pro-EU supporter. In fact it gives ammunition to your detractors and I wonder whether that was the purpose of publishing this tosh.

  19. @Amerimutt Golems

    I tried to watch that Afua Hirsch vid, but I couldn’t.

    Why these coloreds just can’t live their lives & leave others in peace?

  20. Icy Blast says:

    This Cockburn guy is a bitter old angry Marxist. He’s stuck in the 70’s when he could get a date by spewing out Marxist jargon at critical moments. Now his frustration is boiling over. He’s too proud to admit he was just your average victim of a political hoax.

  21. It’s remarkable how Cockburn knows the motives of the authors of this disgusting attack, and the underlying causes, before we even know who they are. Unbelievable, in fact.

    Seven people were arrested – six of them teenagers – but none have been charged.

    If the criminals are under 18, the British legal system means that we will never find out who they are, or even what race they belong to.

  22. Steve Hayes says: • Website

    “Opinium found that overt ethnic abuse and discrimination reported by ethnic minorities has risen from 64 per cent at the beginning of 2016 to 76 per cent today.” Either Cockburn is innumerate or he is deliberately attempting to mislead. The claim of an increase from 64% to 76% tells us precisely nothing.

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