The Anti-Fascists. A critcism and our reply
The National Union for Combating Fascism,
29, Slack, Heptonstall, Hebden Bridge, Yks.,
April 29th, 1925.
It is only by chance that I have come across your criticism of the above organisation in your April issue. If any such criticism had been made in “The Clear Light” we should have made very sure that the party so criticised would have had a paper sent to him so that he could meet the attack.
The nature of your attack is such that you can hardly refuse me space in your paper in which to meet it, but I am not prepared even to meet it until Mr. “H” steps from behind the cover of his initial and substantiates his insinuation that behind the N.U.C.F. are people of the itching palm, eager for subscriptions and donations for purposes not associated with socialist integrity. Doubtless he will say that he made no accusation; but he made a certain impression and I challenge him to withdraw his statement.
ALFRED HOLDSWORTH, Editor,
“The Clear Light.”
The offending passage was this : “Behind the rank and file of sincere but panicky people who join these freak parties, whether nominally ‘advanced’ or ‘reactionary,’ are usually to be found numerous job-hunters moved by an itch to lay hands on donations and subscriptions. We need not discriminate between the personalities of the N.U.C.F., for as regards possible harm to the cause of socialism there never was much to choose between the unscrupulous and the foggy-minded.”
We understood at the time that a copy of the “S.S.” came regularly into the hands of the Editor of the “Clear Light.” For this omission we offer our apology.
Otherwise we have nothing to withdraw or to apologise for. The only statement made is that there is usually a certain feature associated with freak organisations of this kind. We do not attach great importance to the matter, but the N.U.C.F. could quite easily make its position clear by freely opening all its books and meetings to the public as does the Socialist Party.
Mr. Holdsworth is quite at liberty to use our columns for the purpose of replying to the criticisms of his organisation, and if he does not avail himself of this offer the responsibility rests with him and not with us.
(Socialist Standard, June 1925)