Blair Cottrell, a well-known member of the United Patriots Front, a vocal anti-Islam movement, has reportedly been caught tucking into a kebab at Karingal Kebabs in Frankston on Wednesday. While that may seem fairly innocuous, a number of locals are claiming that the kebab shop is halal – something that Cottrell is very much supposed to be opposed to, and has encouraged people to boycott in the past due to the belief that the practice funds terrorism.
Facebook group Melbourne Antifascist Info added the two photos on Wednesday at 11:20am, and they have racked up almost 70 shares since then, bearing the following text:
“Blair Cottrell visits the... kebab shop? Wait, what? Hahahahahahahahahaha. Feel free to share, edit, meme-ify etc.”
While at this stage it cannot be confirmed that the restaurant is indeed halal, commenters on this Facebook post claiming to be locals suggest that it is, which would make this a huge misstep for the staunch anti-Islam campaigner. A similar Facebook group, slackbastard, shared Melbourne Antifascist Info's post, adding the text “you know things are crook when even Der Führer is happy to be halalified”.
This also led one user to post what is alleged to be a text conversation between Cottrell and what seems to be a UPF member who possibly took the pictures. The conversation sees Cottrell cautioning the individual about what he is “about to do”, possibly referring to sending or posting the images. This person then calls Cottrell into question in regards to “being an actual Australian” and scolds him for his “poor leadership”. Cottrell responds by mentioning there will be “consequences”, which the person he is messaging takes as a threat.
Further to this, NeilErikson.com, a pro-UPF page, posted a meme explaining the image, implying that he was simply buying a “juice” from an “Aussie girl”, and branding it a “LeftWing Poparazzi Fail”, adding the hashtag "#nokabab" [sic]. However, some Facebook users were quick to ask why he would be sitting down waiting in the other image if he had not purchased a kebab for himself at the time.
As well as this, according to Cottrell's own beliefs, that juice alone could very well be directly funding terrorism. While the situation is shrouded in speculation at this point in time, it’s a surprising move from someone who is so vehemently Anti-Islam to even take the risk purchasing from a kebab restaurant in the first place; but we’ll certainly be watching for updates on this incident in future.