Check Out These Photos of a Brexit Naval Battle on the Thames

Watch British rockstar Bob Geldof intercept a flotilla of pro-Brexit fishermen.

A boat carrying supporters for the Remain in the EU campaign including Bob Geldof (C) shout and wave at Brexit fishing boats as they sail up the river Thames in central London on June 15, 2016.
A Brexit flotilla of fishing boats sailed up the River Thames into London today with foghorns sounding, in a protest against EU fishing quotas by the campaign for Britain to leave the European Union. / AFP / BEN STANSALL        (Photo credit should read )
A boat carrying supporters for the Remain in the EU campaign including Bob Geldof (C) shout and wave at Brexit fishing boats as they sail up the river Thames in central London on June 15, 2016. A Brexit flotilla of fishing boats sailed up the River Thames into London today with foghorns sounding, in a protest against EU fishing quotas by the campaign for Britain to leave the European Union. / AFP / BEN STANSALL (Photo credit should read )
A boat carrying supporters for the Remain in the EU campaign including Bob Geldof (C) shout and wave at Brexit fishing boats as they sail up the river Thames in central London on June 15, 2016. A Brexit flotilla of fishing boats sailed up the River Thames into London today with foghorns sounding, in a protest against EU fishing quotas by the campaign for Britain to leave the European Union. / AFP / BEN STANSALL (Photo credit should read )

British fishermen who support a Brexit floated down the River Thames on Wednesday in what they thought would be a peaceful display of maritime strength for leaving the European Union. What could possibly go wrong?

As the trawlers neared London’s 19th century Tower Bridge, the rival “remain” camp sprung a surprise attack. A group of small dinghies flying banners picturing a fish emblazoned with the word “In” swarmed the flotilla. British rock star Bob Geldof led these small boats at the helm of a party boat turned naval frigate. In the heat of this low-level naval battle, rival vessels hosed each other with seawater, blared horns, and launched rhetorical broadsides over loudspeakers.

Geldof, of Irish punk band fame and star of Pink Floyd’s psychedelic film “The Wall,” cranked his loudspeakers all the way up to play songs referencing his cause (see: The In Crowd). He occasionally took the mic to harangue the commander of the rival flotilla, Nigel Farage, a right-wing British politician and, for a few hours at least, captain of H.M.S. Brexit.

British fishermen who support a Brexit floated down the River Thames on Wednesday in what they thought would be a peaceful display of maritime strength for leaving the European Union. What could possibly go wrong?

As the trawlers neared London’s 19th century Tower Bridge, the rival “remain” camp sprung a surprise attack. A group of small dinghies flying banners picturing a fish emblazoned with the word “In” swarmed the flotilla. British rock star Bob Geldof led these small boats at the helm of a party boat turned naval frigate. In the heat of this low-level naval battle, rival vessels hosed each other with seawater, blared horns, and launched rhetorical broadsides over loudspeakers.

Geldof, of Irish punk band fame and star of Pink Floyd’s psychedelic film “The Wall,” cranked his loudspeakers all the way up to play songs referencing his cause (see: The In Crowd). He occasionally took the mic to harangue the commander of the rival flotilla, Nigel Farage, a right-wing British politician and, for a few hours at least, captain of H.M.S. Brexit.

Embedded with the “leave” flotilla was Jim Waterson, the political editor of Buzzfeed U.K. He captured the scenes of chaos on the Thames in a series of tweets, re-posted below.

The pro-Brexit flotilla sailing up the Thames in full force:

Photo credit: BEN STANSALL/AFP/Getty Images

Henry Johnson is a fellow at Foreign Policy. He graduated from Claremont McKenna College with a degree in history and previously wrote for LobeLog. Twitter: @HenryJohnsoon

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