30 January 2006
Brian Haw, Parliament Square, London.
I finally got to meet Brian Haw on the 25th of this month. I had tried on the 11th, but he was not around. He was rather critical of the anti-war movement in the UK, claiming that when the SWP turns up to show him their support they cause more problems than they are worth. His main complaint was that they leave the square like a tip and that he then has to get his broom out and sweep up after them. When he complains they sort of roll their eyes and ignore his protests.
Other than this he pretty much said the same things as the people that I had met on the 11th had also said. The British anti-war movement is hampered by the fear that people have of losing their jobs. Thirty years ago during the war against Vietnam, students had grants and workers had unionss, so we could organise then. Today, when students have to pay for their courses and ordinary people are kept in constant fear of the dole, such large-scale protests do not occur.