Ian Fleming is credited with the remark:
“Once is happenstance, twice coincidence, three times it’s enemy action”.
Spread over 18 months or so, which, by coincidence, is also the gestation period for elephants, it rings a bell when we look at what’s happening in UKIP.
Here’s the evidence:
After the win of the EU Referendum, Nigel resigned, leaving his Party in disarray: ‘après moi le déluge’, ‘devil take the hindmost’. The hindmost – that was us.
During the following months we heard that Nigel and Arron Banks would start a new Party, like the Beppo-Grillo Italian Job ‘Five Stars’ – all online, all ‘direct democracy’: new, modern, fresh … and thus incidentally getting rid of old founder members.
It never happened. It still has not happened. I’ll tell you why below.
So – into the Nigel-less future, with Diane James, Paul Nuttall, Henry Bolton and all the trials and tribulations they inflicted on us. Little did we suspect at that time … After all, had they not the ‘quality-stamp’ of a Nigel-endorsement? What could go wrong …!
Next, Nigel repeatedly and publicly denounced the NEC as a bunch of useless idiots who didn’t let him do what he wanted – for example, turning UKIP into that five-star-movement. One might ask how would he know – hadn’t he already resigned as leader and swanned off to the USA to help Trump, sunning himself in the glow of achieving Brexit and getting his own radio show, ‘getting his life back’?
So the NEC was officially the ‘bad guy’, Nigel was happy, UKIP was in disarray, and Arron sniped from the sidelines. Every time there was a set-back with a lost by-election and especially after the lost GE, there these two were: their new Party would be the saviour!
UKIP? That was now ‘job done’, forget about it, forget about the local councillors, forget about the UKIP activists, us grassroots! For the last time we received the full Nigel treatment of having our heads patted at the Bournemouth Conference where Nigel finally and officially resigned – no comeback as in 2015.
He watched as UKIP sank deeper into the mire he created. But in spite of all the turmoil and blood-letting, UKIP still wouldn’t die. We grassroot activists didn’t give up.
Stronger measures were needed. So: enter Henry Bolton.
Nigel signed his application as top proposer, and while he was indeed not promoting him on his radio show, members knew that he was Nigel’s choice.
I won’t go into the whole rigmarole about Anne Marie Waters – millions of pixels have shed their lives over this issue. Let’s just say that Nigel was not precisely innocent that so many of her supporters left UKIP.
But Bolton: excellent choice if someone was needed who would procure UKIP’s death by a thousand cuts! No media presence, no communication with members, no work done, lots of excuses – and then the final straw. Enter the fragrant Ms Marney … Suddenly Bolton is all over the MSM, in a bad way. His twitter account is teeming with announcements of where all he’s been on telly … the Jeremy Vine show, for example. Communicating with us members? No.
So let’s connect the dots:
Henry faced the unanimous no-confidence motion of the NEC – Nigel has hated the NEC for a long time – Nigel, in public on air, congratulated Henry to stand against the hated NEC. This is their rebellion against the ‘Party establishment’, Nigel&Henry fashion – what’s not to like!
Forget the information we’ve meanwhile received from Nigel’s former chairman and former interim leader Steve Crowther; forget the information from Mick McGough (NEC) here in UKIP Daily or from Paul Oakley (General Secretary and NEC member) in a phone-in to Nigel’s radio show, setting the record straight – no matter!
Now look at the results:
Before the seminal NEC meeting on Jan 21st Jonathan Arnott MEP leaves UKIP, as does his Hartlepool branch. After the meeting, in spite of Gerard Batten’s and Mike Hookem’s appeals to Bolton to leave for the sake of the party, Henry stays and goes on the attack (we reported on this in UKIP Daily). Worse, he brings the Party into disrepute by stating that UKIP is actually close to bankruptcy – which the MSM, after having gone to town on Ms Marney, lap up. No matter! No matter that most of his shadow cabinet have resigned! No matter that his lies, e.g. that the NEC has stopped paying him, have been refuted by none other than the treasurer! Today’s papers report Henry’s ‘correction’: well, yes, he actually has been paid by UKIP …
Next, on Jan 26th, the whole UKIP Group in Thurrock, councillors and their MEP Tim Akers, leave the party. Finally on the same evening, Arron Banks sends out his ‘Leave.eu’ email, declaring that UKIP better pack it in and we all join the Tories!
One might ask: what about his and Nigel’s fabulous New Party? And what about Brexit? No matter, is it, given the headlines in today’s Daily Telegraph about how that Tory Party is scuppering Brexit!
But perhaps Nigel, who has despised us grassroots (see this article by ‘Stout Yeoman’) forever, doesn’t want us in his new Party? Perhaps he wants us gone, so that he, Henry and Arron can form a UKIP-Remainer-Party? With the proper foot soldiers: good for donkey work, not good enough to think for themselves? Not surprising, is it, that Henry has shown the same disdain for us – why would he communicate with us when he can be on national telly!
I submit, learned Lords and Ladies, that there is indeed a concerted effort by the Triumvirate, Nigel, Henry and Arron, to kill off UKIP. Make us leave, as so many have already done; reduce the Party to a husk of its former self. They can then fill this husk, or so they think, with a Momentum-like following.
This shell of UKIP is what they actually need, not us! Nigel knows full well that he’d have to resign from UKIP were he and Arron to found the new, fabulous Party they’ve kept talking about. As ‘independent’, even as ‘new Party leader’, he’d lose his spot on the front bench of the EFDD in the EU Parliament. He’d be relegated to the back benches: no more opportunities to speak to the nations.
Of course, there is no truth in the allegations that this is not just about their egos but that there’s an establishment plot behind their strange attempt to kill off the Party which created Brexit – after all, Ian Fleming only wrote thrillers …
We cannot let it happen!
We, the grassroots, are UKIP!
Remind them of that, now and at the EGM!