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Remembering Sir Oswald Mosley
(November 16, 1896-December 3, 1980)

874 words

Sir Oswald Ernald Mosley, 6th Baronet of Ancoats, was an English aristocrat (a fourth cousin once removed of Queen Elizabeth II) and statesman. Mosley was a Member of Parliament for Harrow from 1918 to 1924 and for Smethwick from 1926 to 1931. He was also Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster in the Labour Government of 1929–1931.

Mosley began his political career as a Conservative; then he broke with the Conservatives to become an independent; then he joined the Labour Party. In 1931, he broke with Labour and formed his “New Party.” After the New Party candidates failed in the elections of 1931, Mosley regrouped and founded the British Union of Fascists in 1932.

The BUF went through typical political ups and downs, but claimed a peak membership as high as 50,000, including prominent members of the aristocracy, military, press, business community, and intelligentsia. Furthermore, many Britons who sympathized and collaborated with Mosley and the BUF never officially joined the party. Adventurer T. E. Lawrence, author Henry Williamson, and conductor Sir Reginald Goodall have been profiled at Counter-Currents. For an extensive list, see the Wikipedia article on the BUF.

Like other fascist parties, the BUF was anti-communist, nationalistic, pro-private property, and anti-egalitarian. As fascists, the BUF recognized the necessity of cultivating individual excellence, ambition, and creativity. But they also wished to mitigate the worst excesses of individualism and capitalism by opposing free trade (globalization) and usury and advocating better wages and benefits for workers, social welfare programs, and public spending on infrastructure.

Like Hitler and Mussolini, Mosley was a charismatic leader and speaker who sought to attain power by the creation of a mass political party. Public marches and speeches were staples of BUF activity. To protect BUF rallies from Communist and Jewish violence, Mosley formed a paramilitary “blackshirt” corps. There were many bloody brawls and police bans.

The largest meeting addressed by Mosley took place at Victoria Park, Bow, in July 1936. The crowd was estimated at 250,000 people. In July 1939, the BUF held the largest indoor meeting in the world at Earls Court in London, where Mosley addressed a Peace Rally of some 30,000 people.

Mosley’s strongest support was in East London, where in 1937, the BUF won up to one-fourth of the vote.

At the beginning, the BUF, like Mussolini’s movement, was not anti-Semitic and actually had a number of Jewish members. However, over time, it became apparent that the vast bulk of the Jewish community was aggressively anti-BUF, thus the BUF became increasingly anti-Semitic.

The BUF was never a National Socialist party. Like Mussolini, Mosley never took biological race or anti-Semitism all that seriously. After Hitler’s rise to power, however, Mosley maintained cordial relations with the Third Reich. Mosley married his second wife, Diana Mitford, on October 6, 1936 in Berlin at the home of Joseph Goebbels. Adolf Hitler was one of the guests.

In the late 1930s, as Jewish anti-German warmongering intensified, the BUF worked to save Britain and Europe from another war, campaigning on the theme of Mind Britain’s Business. After Britain and France started the Second World War by declaring war on Germany on September 3, 1939, Mosley campaigned for a negotiated peace.

On May 23, 1940 Mosley’s opposition to the war was silenced. He was interned under Defence Regulation 18B, which was used to silence the most active fascists and National Socialists in Britain. The BUF was later banned. Diana Mosley was also interned. The Mosleys lived together in a house in the grounds of Holloway prison until November 1943, when they were released from Holloway because of Sir Oswald’s ill health. They spent the rest of the war under house arrest.

After the war, Mosley returned to politics, in 1948 forming the Union Movement, which called for a European federation (called Europe a Nation) with an essentially fascist political and economic order. The idea of a European federation was advocated in the 1930s by fascists like Pierre Drieu La Rochelle, although it was always a minority viewpoint. After the Second World War, however, it became a central idea of the most far-sighted thinkers of the right, including Francis Parker Yockey, Jean Thiriart, and now Guillaume Faye.

In 1951, Mosley left Britain for Ireland. Later, he settled near Paris. He explained his decision to leave Britain by saying, “You don’t clear up a dungheap from underneath it.” In 1959, Mosley returned to Britain to run in the 1959 general election at Kensington North. In 1966, he ran in the 1966 general election at Shoreditch and Finsbury.

In 1968, Mosley published his autobiography, My Life. In his later years, he suffered from Parkinson’s disease. He died on December 3, 1980, in Orsay, near Paris, aged 84.

Counter-Currents has reprinted seven pieces by Mosley:

See also:

For articles tagged Sir Oswald Mosley, click here.

For more information on Mosley’s life and work, see



  1. Jim Goad
    Posted November 16, 2020 at 12:11 pm | Permalink

    Elvis Costello’s “Less Than Zero” was about Mosley.

    “‘Less Than Zero’ was a song I had written after seeing the despicable Oswald Mosley being interviewed on BBC television. The former leader of the British Union of Fascists seemed unrepentant about his poisonous actions of the 1930s. The song was more of a slandering fantasy than a reasoned argument.”

    • Vauquelin
      Posted November 16, 2020 at 12:59 pm | Permalink

      Great interview, by the way, worth a watch. This man had great energy, wit and political insight even in his old age, evolving with the times but unrepentant for his career in the BUF.

      I’m sure his performance here lead to exactly the sort of impotent gnashing of teeth among the left that led “Elvis” to write that song.

  2. Francis XB
    Posted November 16, 2020 at 1:30 pm | Permalink

    It’s worth checking out the Patriotic Alternative (PA Britain) video: Arrested for Delivering Leaflets with Mark Collett and Laura Towler (see their website).

    The situation: PA recently had one of their activists, a young student, arrested for distributing leaflets. Mark and Laura handled it as pros:
    * They gave the details of the incident and showed that PA acted within the law.
    * They interviewed their activist, got his view, and assured him the organization was behind him.
    * They turned the arrest around to mock the agents of repression and thus discredit them to the public.
    * They attacked the contradictions by pointing out while the police claim they do not have the personnel to go after grooming gangs, they have plenty of resources to arrest activists exercising their free speech rights.
    * They opened up the chat lines so that other activists could recommend additional tactics (and thus gave a sense of audience participation).
    * They spun the incident to make it not just about leafleting but free speech against totalitarianism.

    They provided tactical advice to activists:
    * Get your legal ducks in order prior to conducting an action.
    * How to deal with warrants, searches, and talking to the police.
    * Wear masking clothing to avoid identification by the panopticon cameras.
    * Contact police watch programs to complain about any abuses of authority.
    * Recognize there is a risk in activism, but the end goal of saving the the nation is worth the fight.

    …and most critically…

    * They stated PA will not be backing down and instead will amp up their Days of Action.

    Good training for all activists!

  3. Autobot
    Posted November 16, 2020 at 4:39 pm | Permalink

    This is vaguely related, but I had challenged you guys to say what technology the implant thingie they do grew out of, as it appears much older than I might have thought. It’s in the song Never Let You Go by Third Eye Blind. That guy hadn’t taken it out yet. Then you can figure out who invented it and when by using wikipedia!

    I bet that was a major facet of the anglo-Zionist power structure in the early twentieth century. I bet that’s related to how they got us into the world wars and got Forrestal to kill himself. What do you think?

  4. Jez Turner
    Posted November 22, 2020 at 8:25 am | Permalink

    Sir Reginald Goodall was perhaps Britain’s best ever conductor, especially of Wagner and yet, after the war, was largely sidelined by Britain’s artistic establishment leaving music critics puzzled. Not so much of a puzzle when you realize his politics, (he was still openly supporting Mosley in the 1950’s and 1960’s), and the ethnic make-up of those who controlled and still control Britain’s post-war artistic scene. How much more talent has and is being suppressed today that we don’t know about? So much for the so-called ‘meritocracy’.

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