Red Action

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Red Action was a small British leftist political group formed in 1981. It became known for violently confronting fascist opponents on the streets, and for being the main organisational force behind Anti-Fascist Action.[1] In 1995, The Independent estimated that it had between 20 and 30 branches with 10-15 activists in each, and the paper stated that the group "enthusiastically espouses the use of violence"; it also set out links between Red Action and the Irish republican movement, and stated that members operate primarily in large cities such as London, Manchester, Leeds and Glasgow.[2]

The group was formed by activists who had been expelled from the Socialist Workers Party (SWP) for their involvement in squadism (violent actions against far right racist groups).[2] The expelled activists regrouped around a paper named Red Action. After several years, the group became more interested in the electoral process, and it joined the Red Front electoral alliance in 1987 and the Socialist Alliance in England and Wales in 1999.[3] Red Action members then left this organisation, along with the Socialist Party, citing the domination of the SWP over the organisation. Some Red Action members went on to found the Independent Working Class Association.[4][5]

It has been claimed that members of Red Action were involved in an IRA bombing in Warrington in 1993.[6]


  1. "Anti-Fascist Action" (PDF). 2000. Retrieved 17 October 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. 2.0 2.1 Seaton, Matt (29 January 1995). "Charge of the new Red Brigade". The Independent. Retrieved 26 September 2009. Italic or bold markup not allowed in: |publisher= (help)<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  3. Encyclopedia of British and Irish Political Organizations: Parties, Groups and Movements of the Twentieth Century, Peter Barberis, John McHugh & Mike Tyldesley, Frances Pinter, 2000
  4. "1985-2001: A short history of Anti-Fascist Action (AFA)". Retrieved 17 October 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  5. "Red Action 2000 - Shaping The Future". Retrieved 26 September 2009.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  6. "Warrington bombing linked to Red Action group - BBC News". 2 September 2013. Retrieved 17 October 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

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