Peter Hitchens claims not to understand how BNP supporters have come to discover his blog for the Mail on Sunday should be taken with hefty pinch of salt.
As this biography of Paul Dacre, editor of the Daily Mail and editor-in-chief of Associated Newspapers — which includes the Mail on Sunday — reveals, the Mail titles have always been the fascists’ media of choice.
Part of the UK’s oldest national newspaper company still in the hands of its founding family, the titles have shown remarkable editorial consistency. The first Lord Rothermere, great-grandfather of the newspapers’ current proprietor, was an enthusiastic propagandist for fascism, supporting the Blackshirts in Britain and acting as cheerleader to Hitler’s invasion of Europe.
While Paul Dacre’s Daily Mail doesn’t support the BNP, the first Viscount Rothermere would surely smile at newsgathering techniques employed to report on immigration and to see that the Daily Mail carries more coverage of asylum seekers than any other newspaper, while failing to mention what they are escaping from.
Peter Hitchens is careful to protest that the BNP don’t really read his blog. If they did, he explains, they’d realise that they were on common ground on all sorts of issues.
Before they attack Peter Hitchens, the man himself protests, the BNP should take some time to understand his views on Europe, the Labour Party, the Civil Contingencies Act, the Black Police Association and the growth of Islam. And having developed an understanding of the views of Peter Hitchens, the BNP will surely feel less inclined to attack him.