The Third Way Research Department
An article was published in the Evening Standard on Tuesday, 18 April 2006. Andrew Gilligan wrote it. The article was intended to smear the good name of the Third Way and dissuade people from voting for our 14 candidates in Havering and our allies in the Peoples Alliance. It harked back to the fact that some prominent members of Third Way were previously members of the National Front and published photographs from the 1980s. Allegations made by the writer were never put to Third Way representatives for reply prior to publication. The facts were made to fit an already arrived at conclusion.
It appears that the smear has failed and support for Third Way and Peoples Alliance candidates continues to grow. Here we document the lies, half-truths, omissions and distortions published by the Standard and give our answer.
LIE: “Yet Third Way’s protestations of respectability start to fall a little flat when you look at its website, with its contributions from Mr Griffin, protesting that the BNP is the ‘oppressed opposition’ and from Mr Williamson himself, describing Britain’s ‘fragile multi-ethnic state'”.
TRUTH: Our Website published an article by British National Party Chairman Nick Griffin. We also published this in Taking Liberties. We published this article because we believe in freedom of expression not because we agree with the BNP. Whilst we oppose BNP policies we are completely against attempts from some quarters to deny their rights as a legal political Party and attempts to persecute individual members or supporters.
Graham Williamson is quoted out of context. Here is the full paragraph:-
” There is a fear, however, amongst the establishment or in Nick Griffin’s parlance ‘The Powers that Be’, that the BNP’s message might damage our fragile Multi-Ethnic State. In other words if ‘Ethnic Nationalists’ such as the BNP were able to mobilise large numbers of people to think as they do, this could result in more overt expressions of Separatism or ‘racism’, thus encouraging a similar reaction from ‘non-white’ communities. This could ultimately fragment the Multi-Ethnic State and undermine social stability. This would of course make the governance of such a state even more difficult than it already is. Many establishment thinkers believe that it is simply too late to disentangle the ethnic weave of the modern British state and that any attempt to do so will lead to civil strife.”
Clearly when talking of our “fragile Multi-Ethnic State” it is in reference to the fears of the establishment. The article itself is unsympathetic to the BNP viewpoint. You can read it in full on our site.
On the first page of our Website is a clear Equal Opportunities statement. Curiously Gilligan seems to have missed it. For his benefit this is the text:-
“Equal Opportunities Statement (Third Way Executive)
Third Way supports and is concerned to implement equal opportunities. We aim to ensure that all members of the public have equality of access to the services we provide and that none receives less favourable treatment on the grounds of his or her gender, race, ethnicity, colour, nationality, disability, sexuality, age, trade union activity, religious or political beliefs. We welcome membership applications from individuals over eighteen who are not members of proscribed organisations and who wish to work with us towards social and economic justice.”
LIE: “‘What we are seeing is the rise of Trojan Horse parties,” says Gerry Gable, publisher of the anti-racist magazine, Searchlight. ‘It’s the far-Right practicing a kind of infiltration into community politics.'”
TRUTH: Searchlight publisher and rent-a-quote Gerry Gable has boasted of his links with various intelligence agencies. He is not a credible witness against our Party. Third Way is a Party of the Radical Centre and not the Right, yet alone far right. We state our beliefs openly and campaign to implement our policies. To describe us, as a ‘Trojan Horse’ is a false analogy unsupported by evidence. Our interest in Community Politics is long-standing and stems from our concern for the neighbourhoods we live in and our belief that decisions should be taken at the lowest possible level.
LIE: “Companies House records reveal that Third Way’s secretary is Patrick Harrington, the National Front organiser whose attendance at the then North London Polytechnic caused a furore in the 1980s”.
TRUTH: Andrew Gilligan recounts how he tracked down Pat’s involvement with Third Way through records at Companies House. What a sleuth! He could have saved himself a lot of trouble. His membership of the National Executive of Third Way is well documented. He has numerous articles and a biography on the Party website. He is also registered as the Nominating Officer with the Electoral Commission. No big secret there, we’re afraid.
Patrick voted for the disbandment of the NF in 1989. We are now in 2006. He has now been a member of Third Way for longer than he was in the NF. He has made his present views on race and immigration clear and as Third Way Nominating Officer has approved candidates from diverse ethnic and faith backgrounds.
LIE: “With its call for direct democracy by referendum, a ‘Swiss-style responsibly armed nation’, and a return of civil national service, Third Way’s national manifesto turns out to bear a striking resemblance to the BNP’s, minus the overtly racist elements.”
TRUTH: The last manifesto published by the Third Way (General Election 2005) contains no call for an ‘armed nation’. It does propose a citizen’s income or basic wage (similar to that supported by the Green Party). Our calls for drug abuse to be dealt with as a medical problem, reform of the prostitution laws, debt cancellation and fair trading relationships with developing countries have supporters in other Parties too. The more people who support these Just causes the better as far as we are concerned. No one Party has a monopoly of the Truth. Why not compare our manifesto with the Greens, Socialists or Liberals? Still that wouldn’t quite fit the agenda would it Mr Gilligan?
The 2005 manifesto also stated that: –
“Those seeking asylum must be welcomed. It is an honour for our country to provide a haven for those fleeing persecution” – sound much like the BNP? It also stated: – “Guest workers should be welcomed to fill in gaps within the country’s infrastructure” and said “They will be offered the opportunity to apply for citizenship after a fixed period if they so desire”.
A “striking resemblance” to the policies of the BNP? No fair-minded, rational person would think so Mr Gilligan.
The use of the term “overtly racist” when describing the BNP is clearly intended by Gillian to plant the thought that the Third Way are secretly racist. Gilligan can’t point to anything in our Manifesto that is racist. Indeed it describes racism as an “evil”. Still, he wants people to believe that the Third Way are racists and the fact that he can provide no evidence just proves how sneaky and secretive we are! Hence his weasel words.
LIE: “Equally striking, the BNP is not standing against Third Way in any seat in Havering, though Mr Williamson denies that he has done any deals.”
TRUTH: The BNP effort is concentrated in neighbouring Dagenham and they would find it difficult to extend beyond this. They are standing in one ward in Havering against our allies in the Peoples Alliance who we are campaigning for and who we urge people to vote for. Graham Williamson told the East London Enquirer:- “The BNP are not part of the PA, they are a rival party. We would urge anybody to vote PA not BNP.” Third Way has stood against BNP candidates in the past and doubtless will in the future.
LIE: “‘They do tend to play the racist card,’ says Graham Carr, a Labour councillor in Mr Williamson’s Elm Park ward, ‘I chair the neighbourhood committee. They turn up and every question they ask is generally to do with race.”
TRUTH: Graham Carr is competing against us for votes and to save his seat. He has a vested interest in doing the Third Way down. Labour is extremely unpopular nationally. It has led us into costly and futile American wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. It is aiming to curtail our traditional liberties. It is corrupt to the core. Locally they are facing real opposition and it scares them.
Third Way asks a variety of questions on a variety of issues. They are questions we regard as matters of legitimate public concern. Labour doesn’t seem to like being put on the spot!
LIE: “Ray Harris, leader of the Labour group in Havering and also an Elm Park councillor, says Third Way has been ‘stirring up campaigns around the alleged expansion of the ethnic minority population'”.
TRUTH: Ray Harris is another of the Labour bums we want kicked out. As such he is hardly an unbiased witness to comment on our actions or policies. Why didn’t Gilligan put these allegations to any Third Way spokesperson prior to publication? Surely that is just Natural Justice?
LIE: “Third Way is linked, through a lobby know as the English Lobby, to another group called the Freedom Party.”
TRUTH: The English Lobby is a coalition, which campaign for the recognition of St. George’s Day and the creation of an English Parliament. The English Democrats and others and we support these aims through the Lobby though we have separate and distinct policies on other matters. We don’t support the policies of the Freedom Party on immigration or asylum (for example). Surely this is not so difficult to understand or are you simply interested in using Stalinist ‘guilt by association’ techniques? The FP’s membership of the Lobby has lapsed in any case.
TRUTH: “Third Way. Nothing to do with Tony Blair”.
TRUTH: Well done Andrew Gilligan for making it absolutely clear that the Third Way has absolutely no association with New Labour’s anti-democratic, reactionary warmongers who waste billions on their overseas adventures while neglecting our boroughs at home.