Brendan O’Neill

Brendan O’Neill

Brendan O’Neill is Spiked's chief politics writer

What Palestine supporters could learn from the anti-Semitism march

Imagine having to be reminded not to be racist. Imagine if officialdom itself felt it necessary to whisper in your ear: ‘Lay off the racial hatred, yeah?’ That’s the mortifying fate that befell ‘pro-Palestine’ marchers on their latest big demo in London yesterday: the Metropolitan Police handed them leaflets pleading with them not to ‘incite

Jess Phillips and the shame of Labour’s ceasefire rebels

I can’t decide if last night’s Labour revolt was an act of pointless narcissism or sinister appeasement. Maybe it was both. On one hand it will make not the slightest difference to world affairs that 56 Labour MPs defied their party leader and backed an ‘immediate ceasefire’ in the Israel-Hamas war. They ignored Keir Starmer’s

The real far-right threat

There was a horrendous far-right gathering in London yesterday. Racist cries cut through the air like a knife. One attendee wished death on an entire race. Others celebrated the mass murder of ethnic minority people. Some even wore fascist-adjacent uniforms, showing off their supremacist ideology to a shocked city. People in London were cosplaying as

Why won’t Gary Lineker call out the fascism of Hamas? 

One of the most curious things following Hamas’s massacre of the Jews on 7 October was the silence of Britain’s fascism-spotters. You know these people. They see fascism everywhere. Everything from a fiery speech by a Tory politician to millions of ‘gammon’ going out to vote for Brexit reminds them of the 1930s. The minute

Hamas’s victim complex

‘We are the victims… therefore nobody should blame us for the things we do.’ Who do you think said this? Some blue-haired campus activist who’s convinced they’re suffering from structural oppression? A trans campaigner, perhaps, who thinks being misgendered is an act of violence? Maybe some other social justice type who feels victimised by everything

The Met Police’s ‘jihad’ lecture shows it has lost the plot

I knew the police had lost the plot, but even I didn’t expect them to start issuing chin-stroking theological justifications for jihad. It happened on Saturday during the ‘March for Palestine’ in London. Protestors chanted for ‘Muslim armies’ to commence ‘jihad’ against Israel. To most ears, it will have sounded menacing, threatening even. To the

Do Jewish Lives Matter too?

For more than a year, English footballers took the knee in solidarity with a petty criminal who was murdered by a cop in Minneapolis. Yet after the racist slaughter of more than a thousand Israelis, the worst act of anti-Semitic violence since the Holocaust, England’s Football Association can’t even be bothered to light up the

The shameful gloating at Israel

Leftists love to fantasise about how heroic they’d have been when Jews were being rounded up in the 1930s. ‘I’d have said something’, they insist. Well, Jews are being rounded up again. They’re being kidnapped, humiliated, paraded through the streets, slaughtered. And leftists are definitely saying something. They’re saying: ‘Good’. These are war crimes. They

The chilling calls to shut down GB News

Tyranny is a sneaky thing. It often scurries in on the back of controversy. It is often when people are angry about something that authoritarians spy an opportunity to take a potshot at liberty. And, boom, before you know it politicians are on TV calling for entire media channels to be shut down. This is

Justin Trudeau’s Nazi blind spot

Justin Trudeau’s government sees fascists everywhere, except when one is standing right under their nose. That’s the brilliant if bleak irony of the Canadian parliament’s standing ovation for Yaroslav Hunka, a 98-year-old veteran of the Ukrainian military who, it turns out, fought under the Nazis in the Second World War. It was an extraordinary sight,

YouTube is wrong to rush to judgement on Russell Brand

It is often on the back of public fury that dangerous new precedents are set. Authoritarianism can sneak in when we’re all hopping mad about something or someone. So mad that we don’t even notice that society’s rules are being rewritten in an illiberal way. I fear it’s happening again, with YouTube’s demonetisation of Russell

Róisín Murphy and the limits of the new authoritarianism

Has cancel culture finally met its match? Have the new blacklisters who hasten to erase anyone who gives voice to a view that displeases them finally had their comeuppance? The roaring success of Róisín Murphy’s new album, Hit Parade, suggests it’s possible. The digital inquisitors tried to silence the queen of new disco over her

The Guardian’s shameful Roisin Murphy review

Of all the smug, bitter things the Guardian has published over the years, its review of Róisín Murphy’s new album has got to be one of the worst. Ms Murphy is a musical genius but a wicked woman, the review essentially says. Why? Because she committed the blasphemy of criticising puberty blockers. Switch off her

The sinister online mobbing of Róisín Murphy

In the past they would put a witches’ bridle on women who yapped too much. Any woman judged to be a gossip or a hysteric or just too darn opinionated risked having this iron muzzle attached to her head to keep her babbling tongue in place. That’d shut her up. Today, more subtle methods of