Early history 
The current Searchlight magazine was preceded in the early 1960s by a newspaper of the same name, edited by left-wing Labour Party Members of Parliament Reg Freeson and Joan Lestor with Gerry Gable as "research director". It ceased publication in 1967, but Gable, Maurice Ludmer and others stayed together as Searchlight Associates before re-launching a regular journal. The pilot issue of the new Searchlight appeared in February 1975, with Maurice Ludmer as its editor.
In the Ludmer years, Searchlight had a close relationship with CARF, the Campaign Against Racism and Fascism, whose magazine was published as an insert from 1979.
State Links 
Publisher Gerry Gable is known to have links with MI5. His leaked 1977 London Weekend Television Memo stated that he had "given names I have acquired to be checked out by British/French security services". A 1987 profile referred to Gable's "wide range of contacts, including people in the secret services."
Since Searchlight split with HOPE not hate in September 2011, Searchlight has opposed cooperation with the state.
Charitable status 
At the insistence of the British National Party, Searchlight and the associated Searchlight Educational Trust were investigated by the Charity Commission of England and Wales as a result of a complaint that claimed that the Educational Trust had been engaging in political activity incompatible with its charitable status.
The Commission's report stated that, in its opinion, the Searchlight Educational Trust had gone beyond the Commission's guidelines on political activities, and found there was a need for a greater distinction between the public activities of Searchlight Magazine and the educational trust. No action was taken as the charity agreed to follow the Commission's recommendations. Searchlight was divided into three main bodies; Searchlight magazine, the monthly anti-fascist and anti-racist magazine, Searchlight Information Services (SIS), a research and investigatory body which briefs governments, politicians, journalists and the police, and finally Searchlight Educational Trust (SET), a charity devoted to teaching the dangers of racism and fascism. SIS and SET are now part of the HOPE not hate campaign and no longer associated with Searchlight magazine.
Relations with other anti-fascist groups 
The magazine has hostile relations with some other anti-fascist groups in Britain. The magazine group was original part of the steering committee of Unite Against Fascism, but resigned their position after differences over tactics. Recently, Sonia Gable has written critical articles on her blog about Searchlight's former creation, HOPE not hate, a highly visible civil rights campaign (from whom it split in late 2011).
Despite this however, Searchlight magazine maintains friendly relationships with other groups, such as Australia's FightDemBack and some other groups.
Searchlight relies for its material on those involved in the far-right. This includes a range of infiltrators, defectors and casual informers.
Most of its material, however, comes from informers, such as Alan Harvey, who do so because of feuds with their fellow right-wingers and not from any conviction of Searchlight's cause.
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In the early years of the 21st century, Searchlight launched two interlinked anti-BNP and anti-racism campaigns, Stop the BNP and HOPE not hate. HOPE not hate has received endorsement and national publicity from the Daily Mirror newspaper, and revolves around an annual two week bus tour in the run-up to local elections.
Since Searchlight split from HOPE not hate, it has concentrated on publishing the results of its investigation, research and intelligence gathering and supporting direct action against fascist demonstrations, such as those of the English Defence League in Walthamstow on 1 September 2012 and Chelmsford on 18 August 2012. As well as articles exposing the BNP, EDL and the moves towards the formation of a new party spearheaded by the former BNP MEP and veteran fascist Andrew Brons, Searchlight has focussed on the areas where the far right and Conservative ultra right meet, such as the Traditional Britain Group, and the New Right, the powerhouse of far-right ideological development.
See also 
Further reading 
- White Noise by Nick Lowles, 96 pages (November 13, 1998), Publisher: Searchlight Magazine Ltd. ISBN 0-9522038-3-9.
- Searchlight for Beginners by Larry O'Hara, 30 pages (June 1996), Publisher: Phoenix Press. ISBN 0-948984-33-3.
- From Cable Street to Oldham-70 Years of Community Resistance edited by Nick Lowles, 165 pages (October 2007), Publisher: Searchlight Magazine Ltd. ISBN 0-9522038-7-1.
- Notes From the Borderland no 10, pp34–80, by Larry O'Hara and Heidi Svenson, Publisher: Larry O'Hara. ISBN 0-9537434-8-9, which explains in detail the split between Searchlight Magazine and HOPE not hate.
- Searchlight and the State
- David Renton, “The Anti-Nazi League as social movement” Paper at the New Socialist Approaches to History seminar at the Institute of Historical Research, 6th June 2005
- Arcadia Books
- First published in the New Statesman 15th February 1980, reproduced in Lobster Magazine issue 24 December 1992
- Jewish Chronicle 23 October 1987
- Gable, Sonia. "No money no hope: BNP accounts reveal financial disaster zone". Searchlight Magazine. Retrieved 2 November 2012.
- Silver, Steve (July 2005). "Letter of resignation to UAF". Searchlight. Retrieved 2008-12-10.
- Gable, Sonia. "Glasshouses, stones and the thought police". Searchlight. Retrieved 5 November 2012.
- Gable, Sonia. "A meagre dish served lukewarm". Searchlight. Retrieved 22 October 2012.
- Gable, Sonia. "A cause for embarrassment?". Searchlight. Retrieved 22 October 2012.
- Gable, Sonia. "Hate something, change something". Searchlight. Retrieved 22 October 2012.
- Bright, Martin (9 August 2012). "Tragedy of a serious split between anti-fascists". The Jewish Chronicle. Retrieved 22 October 2012.
- R. Hill & A. Bell, The Other Face of Terror- Inside Europe’s Neo-Nazi Network, London: Collins, 1988
- Collins, Matthew Hate: My Life in the British Far RightBiteback Ltd 2011
- Ross Wynne-Jones (2008-04-30). "Our two-week grand tour to beat racism". Daily Mirror. Retrieved 2008-07-04.
- Nick Lowles (2008-04-17). "Hope not Hate bus tour 2008: The day before". Searchlight. Retrieved 2008-07-04.[dead link]
- The Electoral Commission (2011). "Controlled expenditure by registered third parties at the 2010 UK Parliament election". Retrieved 2011-02-15.
- "Stop the EDL in Walthamstow and Chelmsford". Searchlight Magazine. Retrieved 2 November 2012.
- Gable, Gerry. "Editorial: investigating, analysing and campaigning". Searchlight Magazine. Retrieved 2 November 2012.
- Carter, Adam. "Familiar obsessions". Searchlight Magazine. Retrieved 2 November 2012.
- Gable, Sonia. "Where next for the far right?". Searchlight Magazine. Retrieved 2 November 2012.
- Searchlight magazine website
- Searchlight Information Services Press Pack
- Stop the BNP Searchlight's anti-BNP website
- Operation Wedge: Protecting and educating youth against racism
- The fight against Racism:Searchlight Article on Searchlight by the Connections history project.
- "Anti-fascist articles prove rich pickings" The Independent
Public statements 
- Select Committee on Religious Offences in England and Wales Written Evidence Submission from Searchlight Information Services by Gerry Gable, vice chair of the Independent Advisory Group to the Diversity Directorate of the Metropolitan Police Service at Scotland Yard.
Anti-fascist criticism of Searchlight 
- An article critical of Searchlight from the magazine Green Anarchist
- Searchlight and the State, Anarchy 36, 1983 - the first article alleging Searchlight editor Gerry Gable's links with British intelligence (also reprinted in KSL Bulletin 28, 2001)
- Albert Meltzer "Two Fascisms; Anti-Fascist Fascism" in I Couldn't Paint Golden Angels, AK Press