Happy 100th Birthday, Max Levitas! | Spitalfields Life

Originally posted on Spitalfields Life.

Today we salute Max Levitas, celebrated anti-Fascist campaigner & veteran of the Battle of Cable St who enjoyed his one hundredth birthday yesterday.

Max Levitas became an East End hero when he was arrested in 1934, at the age of nineteen years old, for writing anti-Fascist slogans on Nelson’s Column in Trafalgar Square. “There were two of us, we did it at midnight and we wrote ‘All out on September 9th to fight Fascism,’ ‘Down with Fascism’ and ‘Fight Fascism,’ on Nelson’s Column in whitewash,” he told me, his eyes shining with pleasure, still fired up with ebullience at one hundred years of age, “And afterwards we went to Lyons Corner House to have something to eat and wash our hands, but when we had finished our tea we decided to go back to see how good it looked, and we got arrested – the police saw the paint on our shoes.”

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On September 9th, Oswald Mosley, the leader of the British Union of Fascists, was due to speak at a rally in Hyde Park but – as Max is happy to remind you today – he was drowned out by the people of London who converged to express their contempt. It was both fortuitous and timely that the Times reprinted Max’s slogans on September 7th, two days before the rally, in the account of his appearance at Bow St Magistrates Court, thereby spreading the message.

Yet this event was merely the precursor to the confrontation with the Fascists that took place in the East End, two years later in October 1936, that became known as the Battle of Cable St, and in which Max is proud to…

via Happy 100th Birthday, Max Levitas! | Spitalfields Life.

4 thoughts on “Happy 100th Birthday, Max Levitas! | Spitalfields Life

  1. What a wonderful and determined old man. It was inspiring to read his story, yet sad to contemplate there are few like him left today. I hope that this is used in local schools, so that the current residents of the area will never be unaware of the actions of ordinary people against prejudice.
    Best wishes, Pete.

    Liked by 1 person

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