The group of anarchists who vandalised an east London hipster cafe have responded to their critics, telling HuffPost UK: "It’s a fucking class war – what do people think is going to happen?"
"We don’t wait, we get stuck in," they added.
The protest in east London on Saturday evening saw hundreds of anti-gentrification protesters marched past the Cereal Killer cafe on Brick Lane, smashing windows, spraying graffiti and carrying pigs' heads as they went.
A Class War spokesperson responded to HuffPost's questions via email, writing on the condition of anonymity.
The full exchange is below.
HuffPost UK: Fuck Parade has been described as an ‘anti-gentrification movement with real teeth – but that is also fun to be a part of’. Do you agree? What about the movement is fun for you, and what do you think others find fun?
Class War: The fuck parade is a party – a party with a point where local people can dance and fight back in their communities against gentrification. We intend to carry on until this rotten system collapses.
HuffPost UK: The owners of Cereal Killer cafe said the incident over the weekend left customers including children “terrified for their lives”. Is there a regret at the involvement of members of the public? Will the campaign learn from the weekend for its next protests?
Class War: We are angry but not surprised that the media has chosen to focus and play along with the self-promoting owners of an overpriced gimmick.
The party and protest took place at 9pm to ensure daytime shoppers would not be caught- up in the event. The parade went past the Cereal Killer café but it wasn’t about them.
It was about gentrification and the effect it has on local communities.
HuffPost UK: The announcement of the next location for the movement’s protest as the Jack the Ripper museum appears to portray differing aims – such as the ending of the glorification of violence against women rather than the targeting of estate agents and hipster cafes last weekend – why is this?
Class War: Our campaign against the Jack the Ripper Museum is long standing. We’ve been urging for its closure since before it opened.
A rich businessman has opened up a museum on the pretence of promoting the history of working class women in the area. He lied on his planning application and opened a Jack the Ripper Museum.
It glorifies not just the brutal murder of working class sex workers but it is also a symbol of gentrification. A rich man with a millionaire home in Mayfair sets up a museum on Cable Street and claims he’s an expert in diversity.
The Ripper myth of a rich gentleman coming to the east end to make a killing lives on. We’re going to close it down. We note with interest his PR man is up for the fight and we look forward to it.
HuffPost UK: The Fuck Parade movement appears to move Class War away from seeking electoral legitimacy to achieve its aims – is this the case? Or do you see Fuck Parade as complimenting the party’s efforts at the ballot box?
Class War: Elections don’t get results. Voting changes nothing. Change has to be forced from below on the streets.
We are angry because of the way the rich and powerful are destroying our communities and we are the fight back.
We won’t be waiting for redemption at the next election and a watered down Corbyn.
We’ll be fighting every day instead. We don’t wait, we get stuck in.
HuffPost UK: Class War says it is unhappy with its portrayal in the media after this weekend’s protest – how would you have liked to see the story told?
Class War: We’ve seen some strange stuff, including mention of a dog being ripped apart. That never happened. There was no violence against people but some Sugar Puffs were hurt we believe.
There is video from the night of a police officer thumping a woman unconscious but the media seems to have ignored that for some reason.
We’ve seen people suggesting we got the wrong target; those poor small businessmen etc. We’re sure if someone had trashed Pret or a bank they would have said that was wrong too. There’s no point crying over spilt milk, lads.
It’s a fucking class war – what do people think is going to happen?
Where are you all when the cops and security are dragging people from their homes?
Where are you when people are killing themselves because they got sanctioned by the DWP?
Someone writes ‘scum’ on a window and throws some Crunchy Nut Cornflakes around and the world goes crazy. Get a sense of perspective.
We’re not surprised by the coverage though. It’s easy for the media to focus on a café that was already in the news a few months ago.
You’re all fundamentally lazy bastards aren’t you?
We just thank everyone for the free publicity which will get more people onto the streets next time. We urge the working class to rise with us.
Whether it’s through one off protests, more fuck parades or if we take our action into rich suburbs, everyone who fights with us is welcome.
The Ripper Museum is next!