Loughed Down

Antifascists on their way to “welcome” the National Party to Dublin.

A few weeks ago, when the thoroughly racist Irish National Party tried to hold an event at Lough Erne – a swank golf resort (what is it with racist politicians and golf resorts?) near Enniskillen, Northern Ireland – they got a few more guests than they had anticipated.  Before they could get their hate fest going, a busload of antifascists showed up to the soirée to give the fascists a proper Irish welcome. In the aftermath, at least one antifascist was done up on charges and needed some help with the costs of the legal ramifications, which The International Anti-Fascist Defence Fund was pleased to step in and assist with.  

Free Alex!

Alex with one of his canine admirers.

You have to admit one thing about antifascist, artist, and independent journalist Alex Stokes – he’s got some guts. His fearlessness led him into the midst of the chaos around the protests against Donald Trump’s inauguration, where he was falsely arrested (and had his charges later dropped). It led him to the 2017 protests in Charlottesville, where he was injured in an attack by fascists. In 2020, he was on the streets, documenting the uprising around the police murder of George Floyd.

So it came as no surprise that when armed Proud Boys who didn’t join their pals in trying to overthrow the US government in the January 6th insurrection decided to show up at the NY state capitol to test democracy there, Alex was there among counter-protestors. And when the Piss Boys attacked the counter-protestors with weapons, Alex jumped up and defended those being attacked. This very detailed video describes step-by-step how Alex’s actions were clearly done in the defense of himself and others that day.

It’s incredible that, on the same day that Piss Boys engaged in the most serious assault against the US government from within in memory, police looked at this melée and decided that the person to be arrested should be Alex and not the well-armed Piss Boys who initiated the violence. It’s equally shocking that, given that everything was captured in great detail on video, the courts did not see what Alex did as clear self-defense and instead, convicted him on assault charges and sentenced him to twenty years in prison!

This is an obvious miscarriage of justice and the stakes of Alex’s appeal of his sentence could not be higher. The International Anti-Fascist Defence Fund is in direct contact with Alex’s lawyer and has already provided substantial support to bankroll his appeal, but more is needed, so we’ve also set up a dedicated crowdfunder to make sure Alex and his legal team have all the resources at their disposal required to overturn his sentence and get him free!