What Channel Four did not say tonight

Matthew Collins - 09 05 12
Dowson: "Christian"?

Dowson: "Christian"?

Channel Four tonight gave over two minutes airtime to a man with strong recent links to the BNP and with a history of violence, intimidation and extreme anti-abortion activities. ‘4thought’ was aware of the true nature of James Dowson, but decided not to inform their viewer as much.

What makes it all the more interesting and disturbing, is that Dowson could be about to make a dramatic comeback to the BNP!

Shortly before the elections last week we had a tip off that Nick Griffin was seriously considering asking his former concigleri to return to the beleagured party.

The word was that Griffin was tearing his hair out at the way the BNP’s London campaign had descended into sectarian late night drinking binges by key personnel while 150,000 election newspapers were in a lock up undelivered.

There were other problems weighing on his mind too. Since Dowson’s acrimonious departure the party had sunk into desperate financial trouble and were becoming extremely persona non grata in Northern Ireland, from where Dowson had run the party’s offices and where the BNP had run up almost deadly unpaid debts.

Looking at his campaign team, Griffin knew that he had chosen sides badly. He backed the wrong horses after his party’s 2010 election nightmare and he had refused to listen to Dowson who had suggested Griffin dumped the likes of Clive Jefferson and Patrick Harrington. The party was already heading for meltdown and a damaging split

Dowson may had been an expensive and often controversial fundraiser, but he had helped the party get two MEPs elected to Brussels in 2009 by running a large and professional call centre for the BNP for next to nothing.

Two nights before last week’s elections, Griffin rung his Press Officer and de-facto deputy Simon Darby to discuss contacting Dowson and asking him to run his quest to be re-elected to Brussels as an MEP next year. Darby was by all accounts non-committal. Dowson had been very unpopular when he was with the BNP, but after his departure the party haemorrhaged both cash and members.

Darby was charged with going on line and now talking down the BNP’s chances of winning back their seat on the London Assembly, a huge climb down.

Reappointing Dowson would mean that Griffin would have to dump almost all of the party’s current senior management team who had formed a gang against Dowson in the dying days of 2010. The problem with dumping Clive Jefferson would be that Clive not only knows where more than a few BNP bodies are buried, but also that Clive as treasurer, was the sole beneficiary of £500,000 recently left to the party.

People close to Griffin also state that he would appear to suffer separation anxiety when away from Harrington for any period time. Driving back to his home in Wales and not even bothering to attend the count at City Hall Griffin is said to have spoken to at least four senior people to sound out whether they could work with Dowson.

Last week, Dowson was thrown out of an office in Chichester Street in downtown Belfast after an investigation by antifascists into his ongoing business and political activities in Belfast. Like Griffin, we’re fully aware that Dowson is not somebody to rub up the wrong way

Tonight Dowson was on Channel Four tonight arguing against “designer babies” at a time when the BNP complain they get no airtime themselves. Channel Four labelled Dowson a “Christian” despite knowing in advance his past and present involvement in the far-right as a virulent, sectarian extremist as well as an extreme anti-abortionist. They may have also just given him his way back into the leadership of the BNP.


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