Glasgow has been in a state of collective despair over the last week, as the city comes to terms with the tragic loss of Karen Buckley. People have, naturally, wanted to demonstrate both their shock at what happened, and show support for Karen’s family and friends at this difficult time.
Hundreds turned out to a vigil in George Square on Friday evening, while other events are set to be held in the coming days. Over 22,000 people have also liked a Facebook page called “R.I.P. Karen Buckley”, which states it has been set up to allow the public to leave messages of condolence.
However, we can reveal that the man behind this Facebook page is a bigot with links to the UDA, who was jailed for 14 months in 2012 after waging an online hate campaign against then Celtic manager Neil Lennon. Following his sentence, David Craig, 27, moved to Belfast but was chased out after provoking the ire of “UDA terror chiefs” for sharing photos of a paramilitary show of strength on his Facebook page.
Craig has form in this area. Last December, in the hours following the George Square bin lorry crash – which resulted in the loss of six lives – Craig set up a tribute page on Facebook, garnering thousands of likes. At the time, this provoked controversy, with Craig eventually staying away from a vigil in the Square after less palatable aspects of his past were exposed. Clearly, he hasn’t learnt any lessons from then.
We don’t know what Craig’s motivations were in setting up his most recent memorial page. But there are certainly questions to be raised about his self-appointed role as moral arbiter of Glasgow’s conscience. There’s something messed up with the exploiting of a city’s grief with generic, nondescript tribute pages, entirely unaccountable to anyone except the person who set them up. Facebook likes are a valuable commodity, and the sinister side of this was seen recently when the Clutha Trust had to fight to gain control of a 100k+ “‘Support for the Clutha Helicopter Crash” page that was sold on to viral advertisers.
It’s entirely understandable that people want to show their shock, sympathy and grief over the tragic events of the past week. We would, however, urge caution in doing so through a media platform controlled by David Craig.
It’s a classic from the far right: create facebook groups after a tragic event and then start posting updates broadcasting their vile ideas once they have a lot of followers. The French identitarian movement has been quite active in that sector. See e.g. (fr) http://www.arretsurimages.net/contenu-imprimable.php?id=7449
If he wants solidarity why is the muppet standing in front of an English flag?
This guy was in George square the other day. I was piping, when i finished one set he said something to me…we were a bit apart…he was sort ofsaying the name of atune to me..but in a sort of go-on….go-on..play such and such. i thought he was saying ‘flowers of the forest’.. he instantly annoyed me for sort of saying something at that moment..i said ‘what is it..??’.. he replied ‘play the fields of athenry’. I replied no youre ok mate..i dont know it as a pipe tune, and its not suitable for this. (Fields of athenry is actually a nice song. but in more recent years its more known with Celtic fans (the football club, if ye are overseas and dont know) and with Irish republicans. I believe it was used for years by Irelands international team..its a nice song. So….clearly he was hoping id play it for some reason..to use it as propagana that it was a ‘republican’ meeting george square?? who knows. what a fud anyway.
Come to think of it I did notice him on the newsreels