The Durham Miners’ Association have issued an additional statement today regarding Sunderland AFC’s appointment of the nazi saluting self-declared fascist Paolo Di Canio as new coach. The DMA statement can be seen here.
In a shocking response letter from Sunderland AFC, Club Chief Executive Margaret Byrne refused to confirm support for the DMA’s request that her club support a campaign “to expose the danger which fascism poses in the present economic climate”.
The DMA have decided for the moment to leave their Miners banner on display in the club, they however they have expressed publicly that
“…. the politics of the Club’s coach should be kept under scrutiny” and emphasised that “any recurrence of fascist and/or racist undertones would mean that the banner be immediately removed and placed back in the community.”
It is absolutely stunning that Margaret Byrne could write to the Durham Miners Association stating that Paolo Di Canio is not a fascist. This is despite thefact that Di Canio has himself said that he is a fascist and proudly wears a tattoo of Italian fascist leader Benito Mussolini. There have also been umpteen photos of Di Canio on the internet making fascist salutes.
In the immediate aftermath of the furore surrounding the appointment of Di Canio, Margaret Byrne similarly stated that Di Canio had been misquoted. One has to wonder what part of “I am a fascist”, she thinks was a misquote.
Byrne has also said that Di Canio was ‘misunderstood’. Again one has to wonder, what Margaret Byrne has not understood about the numerous pictures on the internet of Di Canio making fascist salutes.
It does indeed seem to be the case that as mentioned by the Hope Not Hate
“Sunderland are in a hole and are intent on keeping digging. Sometime they will have to stop digging and start to face up to just what they have done in appointing an openly fascist manager like Di Canio”