Matthew Collins is the ‘head of research’ at Hope Not Hate. He has a history of being part of violent and extreme far-right groups, groups much worse than the media has ever portrayed the EDL as being. He was a member of the National Front and Combat 18 (18 is the numerical equation for the initials of Adolf Hitler – A = 1, H = 8). Matthew Collins, by his own admission, was a violent neo-nazi. His own personal capacity for violence is questionable, or, rather, his ability to DO violence that would injure another person is questionable. In his book HATE he recalls storming a library that was hosting a meeting for ‘Asian’ women and punching a man in the face. The punch did nothing, however, and his mates had to take the man out for him: “I hit him square on the jaw. IT HARDLY KNOCKED HIM OVER, but before he could respond, Blackham gave him a haymaker and the rest piled in.” Matthew’s friends from his past all attest to his alcoholism and addiction to fast-food and his inability to throw a punch. He appears more of an agitator to me rather than a ‘hard man’, a coward who is only capable of violence if he is surrounded by alpha males, men more manly than he himself is. Without having met the man, I would surmise that deep-rooted insecurities plague him judging from what I’ve read about him and the stories I’ve been told about him from his past associates.