NEWS: Religious and Racial Hatred on the Web

Two defendants are currently standing trial at Liverpool Crown Court charged with ‘urging people to kill Jewish people’ via posting on a website. Both Michael Heaton and Trevor Hannington are alleged to be members of the Aryan Strike Force [ASF], and furthermore, having posted racist and anti-Semitic comments designed to incite others to murder. The fundamental aim of the ASF has been described by Andrew Edis QC as ‘clear[ing] the country of all ethnic minorities.’

Alongside the charges currently faced, Hannington has already pleaded guilty to other offences, including ‘possessing information which may be useful to terrorists’ and ‘inciting racial hatred.’ Although both men have denied that their online postings were designed to incite murder, it is suggested that ‘each man was proud to call himself a neo-Nazi’.

Given the continuing media (and political) identification of Islam as the greatest concern with regards to contemporary terrorism, it is perhaps reassuring to note that more traditional forms of hatred still come under the spotlight. However, it does raise the perennial question as to whether one can ever really hope to legislate against the emotion of hate, or truly identify another’s’ motivation.

The trial is due to continue.

Read More:

Aleksandr Dugin’s Neo-Eurasianism: The New Right à la Russe
By Anton Shekhovtsov
(Vol. 4, June 2009)
Religion Compass

‘Fundamentalisms’ Compared
By Henry Munson
(Vol. 3, June 2008)
Religion Compass

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