Editor’s Note: All pictures on this page are from Anders Behring Breivik’s 1,500 page web document which apparently shows his political views on Islam and Marxism. The document is entitled "2083 - A European Declaration of Independence."
OpEdNews - July 26, 2011
Writers cited in Breivik manifesto have spoken at
U.S. military colleges as anti-terrorism experts
By Chris Rodda
In February 2009, the Military Religious Freedom Foundation (MRFF) received some very good news. A woman named Brigitte Gabriel had been disinvited from speaking at the United States Air Force Academy, due to MRFF's year-long battle to stop the U.S. military from allowing Islamophobic fear-mongers to speak at our military's colleges and service academies under the guise of anti-terrorism training.
Just about a year earlier, in February 2008, the Air Force Academy had invited a group called the "3 ex-Terrorists" to speak at its 50th Annual Academy Assembly on the topic "Dismantling Terrorism: Developing Actionable Solutions for Today's Plague of Violence." One member of this trio of self-proclaimed ex-terrorists turned evangelical Christians was Walid Shoebat.
After repeated demands for equal time to counter the anti-Muslim preaching of these so-called terrorism experts, the Air Force Academy eventually allowed MRFF founder and president, and Academy graduate, Mikey Weinstein, MRFF Advisory Board member and Islam scholar Reza Aslan, and MRFF Board member and former Ambassador Joe Wilson to speak to the cadets.
If the name Walid Shoebat sounds familiar, it's because CNN just did an expose on him a few weeks ago. As CNN reported, Shoebat is still being hired to speak to Homeland Security and law enforcement agencies, despite the fact that he has repeatedly been exposed as a fraud by both journalists and academics. Shoebat's mission is clear -- to spread a fear of Muslims and rail against all that liberal political correctness that's causing so many Americans to treat Muslims just like everyone else.
The message of Brigitte Gabriel, founder of ACT! for America and author of Because They Hate is the same as Shoebat's. In June 2007, Gabriel, who has also been brought in as a terrorism expert by several government agencies, delivered a lecture at the U.S. military's Joint Forces Staff College (JFSC) as part of the JFSC's Islam elective for American military and national security personnel.
During the Q & A part of this lecture, a JFSC student asked Gabriel, "Should we resist Muslims who want to seek political office in this nation?" This was Gabriel's answer:
"Absolutely. If a Muslim who has -- who is -- a practicing Muslim who believes the word of the Koran to be the word of Allah, who abides by Islam, who goes to mosque and prays every Friday, who prays five times a day -- this practicing Muslim, who believes in the teachings of the Koran, cannot be a loyal citizen to the United States of America."
Gabriel then proceeded to give the following reason for a Muslim's oath of office being meaningless:
"A Muslim is allowed to lie under any situation to make Islam, or for the benefit of Islam in the long run. A Muslim sworn to office can lay his hand on the Koran and say 'I swear that I'm telling the truth and nothing but the truth,' fully knowing that he is lying because the same Koran that he is swearing on justifies his lying in order to advance the cause of Islam. What is worrisome about that is when we are faced with war and a Muslim political official in office has to make a decision either in the interest of the United States, which is considered infidel according to the teachings of Islam, and our Constitution is uncompatible [sic] with Islam -- not compatible -- that Muslim in office will always have his loyalty to Islam."
Gabriel also expressed her views on immigration:
"Those Al Qaeda members and Hezbollah members who are coming into the United States, they are immediately going from the Mexican border into the major cities where there is large Islamic concentration in the United States, such as 'Dearbornistan' Michigan..."
So, what does all this have to do with Norwegian Christian terrorist Anders Behring Breivik? Well, Walid Shoebat and Brigitte Gabriel are two of the anti-Muslim activists who show up in his manifesto. Shoebat is quoted about fifteen times throughout the manifesto, and a link to a 45-minute Brigitte Gabriel video is provided for further information on one of the sections.
But the most frequently cited author in the manifesto is Robert Spencer, director of Jihad Watch and author of The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam. Spencer is quoted by Breivik over three dozen times, in several places at great length, and Breivik wrote, "About Islam I recommend essentially everything written by Robert Spencer." Breivik even used a take-off on Spencer's book title for a section of his manifesto, which he titled "A politically incorrect guide to the lynching of multiculturalist traitors."
MRFF is quite familiar with Robert Spencer's book, having received numerous complaints over the past few years from service members who want it removed from the military's PXs and BXs, where it is usually displayed right next to the military Bibles.
Three other authors quoted or recommended by Breivik -- Serge Trifkovic, Bat Ye'or, and Abdullah Al Araby -- all appeared in the same Islamophbic pseudo-documentary with Shoebat and Spencer, "Islam: What the West Needs to Know."
In 2008, when the politically useful anti-Muslim film Obsession: Radical Islam's War Against the West was being distributed by the millions in swing states via DVDs inserted in major newspapers, MRFF discovered that this same film, which featured both Shoebat and Gabriel, was being used by the U.S. military. MRFF was able to stop some of the screenings of this film, but many others did take place. The packaging of the "campaign" version even carried the endorsement of a professor from the Naval War College, lending the credibility of the U.S. military to this piece of Islamophobic propaganda.
In short, all of the popular anti-Muslim writers and speakers cited in Breivik's manifesto have essentially the same message -- Muslims are taking over the "Christian" world and must be stopped. And these same writers and speakers all have multiple connections to each other. They appear in the same films, link to each other's websites, promote each other's books and videos, are listed by the same speakers bureaus, serve in various capacities in each other's organizations, etc.
Because I work for MRFF, my focus needs to be on stopping the tide of Islamophobia within the military, but, after reading Breivik's manifesto, it would be impossible for me not to be thinking about the other dangers posed by these Islamophobic fear-mongers, who are feeding countless Americans -- some of whom might be unstable enough to carry out a "mission" like that of Breivik -- a steady diet of justification for their twisted religious or political ideologies.
While it is clear from Breivik's manifesto that he began to formulate his ideas several years before the post 9-11 "popularization" of Islamophobia, I think it's completely legitimate to ask the question: Just how much did the constant validation of these ideas by the likes of Gabriel, Shoebat, and Spencer play a role in Breivik's ultimate decision to actually carry out his terrorist attacks?
Author's Bio: Chris Rodda is the Senior Research Director for the Military Religious Freedom Foundation (MRFF), and the author of Liars For Jesus: The Religious Right's Alternate Version of American History. Author's Website: http://www.liarsforjesus.com
Mirror (UK) – July 26, 2011
Anders Breivik carried out slaughter pumped
up on steroids and listening to X Factor anthem
The right-wing fanatic listened to rousing violin anthem Lux Aeterna by Brit Clint Mansell on maximum volume on his iPod as he lived out his horrific 90-minute death spree. Talking about his favorite song in a diatribe posted online hours before the attack, Breivik wrote he would play the “incredibly powerful song” on repeat to ignite the “passionate rage” within him. “I will put my iPod on max volume as a tool to suppress fear,” he wrote.
The stirring song is used at the beginning of BGT as the judges walk out on to stage and has also featured heavily at various stages of The X Factor. Breivik said it and a cocktail of steroids and stimulant enphedrine would turn him into “an extremely focused and deadly force, a one-man-army,” adding the track will increase “my aggressiveness, physical performance and mental focus”. A version of it was used in a battle in The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers and is the opening for Sky Sports’ Gillette Soccer Saturday. Lux Aeterna means “eternal light” and Breivik said he wants his extremist conservative movement, European Federation to use the song as its anthem.
He added: “I’ve listened to this track several hundred times and I never seem to get tired of it. It is very inspiring and invokes a type of passionate rage within you. In Lord of the Rings, a good version of this track (Requiem for a Tower version which I think is the best) is performed during the most intense fighting of one of the central battles. “Since it has worked for me, it is likely that it will work for you. An invigorating piece of art.”
Inspired by his chosen anthem, Breivik launched the deadly attack using a semi-automatic Ruger Mini 14 rifle to gun down his victims in cold blood. Yesterday, it was discovered that the twisted 32-year-old may have laced the dum-dum bullets he had bought for the gun with poisonous pure nicotine. Sick Breivik wanted wounded victims to die later from the deadly poison. Breivik had practised using the rifle at a shooting range run by Oslo Gun Club and was able to pick off his victims from distance even as they swam out into the lake surrounding Utoya Island. The gun was legally registered to him and he had added a lightweight folding stock and a sensitive trigger for rapid fire. He was also equipped with a Glock pistol which he used to execute close-range targets. Breivik also owns a pump action shotgun and a .308 bolt-action rifle, the same calibre as an AK47.
Experts say the lethal dum-dum bullets he used to inflict maximum pain on victims during his killing spree are a major indicator of his need for extreme violence. Dr Colin Poole, head of surgery at Ringriket Hospital in Honefoss north-west of Oslo, said surgeons treating 16 gunshot victims have recovered no full bullets.
“These bullets more or less exploded inside the body,” Poole said. “It’s caused us all kinds of extra problems in dealing with the wounds they cause, with very strange trajectories.” It also emerged that the killer ordered pure nicotine from China to put into the tips of the bullets.
In his diary marked October-November 2010, Breivik wrote: “I’ve now ordered 50 ml, 99% pure liquid nicotine from a Chinese online supplier. 3-4 drops will be injected in hollow point rifle bullets, which will effectively turn it into a lethal chemical weapon.”
He also recommended that his followers play video game Call of Duty: Modern Warfare to hone their shooting skills…..
Open Democracy – July 26, 2011
Norway: words as weapons
The massacre in Norway cannot be ascribed only to the killer’s mental derangement. It also reflects the everyday nourishment of fear and hatred in the political arena..
By Petter Nome
What kind of mental and moral disorder leads a 32-year-old man to annihilate the heart of political life in a peaceful nation by massacring dozens of young people in a summer camp?
Even as the horror was still unfolding, a psychologist friend of mine commented: “This looks like the ultimate patricide, the modus of a person who was betrayed by the authorities of his childhood and as a result developed in his adulthood extreme hatred towards all kinds of authorities.”
It took a few days for information about Anders Behring Breivik’s main “childhood authority” to emerge. Jens Breivik, encountering news of his son’s crimes over the internet at his home in southern France, expressed shock. His son seemed “quite normal” when they “last met” - in 1995. My friend may have hit the nail quite accurately. In any case, many more such profiles and analyses will surely follow.
But to define what has happened only in terms of the mentality of the killer can lead down a dead-end road. This nightmare is also about politics and its uses. Breivik had been planning his atrocities for much of the nine years it took to write his 1.500-page manifesto. During some of this period, 1999-2006, he was a member of Norway’s Progress Party and served in leadership posts in its Oslo branch. He was a member of the Freemasons and admires their predecessors, the Knights Templars and crusaders. He identifies himself as a Christian fundamentalist and strongly supports the state of Israel.
The “philosophy” outlined in Breivik’s long document is extreme and paranoid, but - shorn of its medieval and militarist obsessions - much of it is an all too recognisable version of ideas and arguments that can be heard in everyday conversations in streets and pubs - and in mainstream politics. His generic anti-Muslim gospel and hostility to “multiculturalisation” are the clearest examples. But Mr Breivik has much more on his intelligent if deeply disturbed mind. He wants to:
* Replace western democracies with administrative rule
* Increase the birthrate in western countries by banning abortion
* Give more cultural power to the church
* Impose the death penalty after three criminal convictions
* Put drug addicts into concentration-camps
* Force re-education on “marxists”.
There are populist parties and movements in most European countries that, backed by “common-sense” language and wrapped in smoother packaging, champion at least some of these ideas. The freedom to advocate intolerance, repression or weird ideas is their right in a democratic society, but what is wrong is that most of these political currents build their power and influence on suspicion towards other people and groups - especially those they hardly know. They work hard to nourish fear and suspicion in their target population. These feelings can bring them a reward in votes - but can also be transformed into real hatred and actual violence.
The ripples of rhetoric
The Progress Party is Norway’s second biggest after the Labour Party. It currently holds 41 out of 169 seats in parliament. Its leader, Ms Siv Jensen, professed shock at the fact that Mr Breivik is a former member. Her tears and strained expression confirm it. But, up to this point, did she ever carry a single brick to the bridge most of us in Norway are trying to build between people and cultures? She never did. Did she ever talk loosely about “Islamisation” and “national” and “Christian” values in order to stir fears and gain votes? She did, almost every day.
Ms Jensen is not a supporter of violence. Neither are most of her colleagues inpopulist and right-wing parties in Europe. But she should not be allowed her shock and puffed face without also having to answer for past words and tactics. For she and those of the same political style carry the profound responsibility of fomenting a climate where some of their most impatient followers can begin to regard hatred and violence as options.
At this moment, Norway is united in grief and sorrow. Everyday political controversies are swept away. The central government area looks like a war-zone, but a mountain of flowers and candles is growing outside Oslo’s cathedral. People across the country mourn the victims and feel the deepest sympathy with their loved ones. There is no visible anger, no loud cries for revenge. Just silent despair, quietly proud moments of dignity. A teenage girl, one of the Ut°ya survivors, speaks for many: “If one man can show so much hate, imagine how much love we all can show together.”
The government has declared that these attacks will not alter the freedom and openness of the Norwegian society. “The Norway of tomorrow will look the same”,says the country’s foreign minister Jonas Gahr St°re. I hope he is right.
But a tomorrow must also come when vital questions of responsibility and its lessons are addressed. That day needs to arrive not only in Norway, but in all European countries where fear, contempt, distance and hate are now both the means and the goals of political rhetoric.
OpEdNews - July 26, 2011
OpEdNews - July 26, 2011
The blue eyes of terror challenge the world to respond
By Danny Schechter
Move over Osama bin Laden even as I know you already have in the physical sense ---because you now have an emulator who borrows your tactics and inverts your ideology.
Anders Behring Breivik, is Norway's candidate for the new world's top living evil-doer and terror supremo having admitted to killing 93 young people and blowing up buildings in Oslo.
While Bin Laden castigated crusaders, Breivik salutes them in a 1518 page manifesto of madness. And his lawyer has rationalized his murder spree in a similar way to those who defended Al Qaeda as defending Islam.
The two are almost carbon copies. The Norwegian posted videos on You Tube while Bin Laden relied on TV communiques.
One was killing in the name of Islam, the other in the name of Christianity. Neither acted alone.
Foreign Policy reports, "Breivik's lawyer said that his client admitted to the killings, but rejected "criminal responsibility." He described Breivik as being motivated to carry out the attacks by a desire to force radical change on Norwegian society.
"He has said that he believed the actions were atrocious, but that in his head they were necessary," the lawyer said."
And now he's pled not guilty, Of course!
Brievik has taken Islamphobia to a new level of violence and killing hoping to spark an uprising in Europe. He quotes from American websites that view all Muslims as Jihadists, and even the tract of the Unabomber.
The Made in USA stamp is all over this despicable act.
We can see how easily hate mongers abandon argument for agitation and vow death for all perceived enemies.
We can also see how quickly major media outlets jumped to the assumption that the perpetrators were Muslims, Al Qaeda killers or worse. All the "terror" experts did what was done before after the Oklahoma City bombings--blame the "other."
Fox News led the rush to judgment with predictable Muslim bashing. CNN's Ton Lister was not far behind, speculating early on, "You've only got to look at the target--prime minister's office, the headquarters of the major newspaper group next door. Why would that be relevant? Because the Norwegian newspapers republished the cartoons of Prophet Mohammad that caused such offense in the Muslim world...That is an issue that still rankles amongst Islamist militants the world over."
Hmmm... and he sounded so authoritative!
A resort to violence escalates when underlying prejudice is legitimated and is recycled. Recently. members of Congress condemned a "ground Zero Mosque that was neither a mosque or at Ground Zero. Demagogues whipped up anti-Islamic passions and promulgated stereotyping.
Protests against the protesters went largely unreported. Today, one time Pizza company executive, Herman Cain, a Republican presidential candidate, spews disdain of all Muslims…..
From the Oslo carnage, three facts emerge as usual.
Firstly, these cowards always turn on their own first, attacking the most defenseless of the society for starters. It may be called the terror stage.
Secondly, the victims always refuse to believe that killer/s could be one/s of their own. In Pakistan, for a long time people said, "these killers can't be Muslims". And in Norway now when the killer is even confirmed as a blond, blue-eyed, indigenous Norwegian white right-wing extremist, their very own Anders Breivik Bin Laden, people are saying, "he can't be a Christian".
Let us call it the denial stage which may linger on, as is in Pakistan, for decades before the victims can differentiate between their Messiahs and killers.
Thirdly, extremists come in every hue. What they have in common is extreme views and the conviction that they know what's good for the rest of us."
And, so, we are at a time of financial collapse and political stalemate when so many want simple explanations and symbolic enemies to go after. As our politics polarize in the USA, so does the world's.
It is shocking but all too predictable.
Its time to take a stand for tolerance and mutual respect, and reject the simplistic attacks on multiculturalism that stirs prejudice and reinforces racism by pandering politicians who play to the public's fears.
It is a time to call a fascist a fascist and condemn this outbreak of violence that stains a great nation and troubles the world. It’s time to crack down on the network of militant naters.
May our artists and politicians speak out before there are more copycat incidents?....
Author's Bio: News Dissector Danny Schechter is blogger in chief at Mediachannel.Org He is the author of PLUNDER: Investigating Our Economic Calamity (Cosimo Books) available at Amazon.com. See Newsdisssector.org/store.htm.
OpEdNews - July 25, 2011
Norway's Mass Killer is a Christian Conservative
By Bob Johnson
The man, Anders Behring Breivik, who used a car-bomb and guns to slaughter 76 people in Norway last Friday is a conservative Christian. And based on his strong favorable beliefs about Israel he could very well be considered a neoconservative.
Breivik has written a manifesto of over 1,500 pages explaining his beliefs about Christianity, Islam and a host of other topics. His main emphasis is on taking Europe back to the Middle Ages. He suggests to fellow European Christian conservatives to reform the Knights of Templar. They were the knights who were the tip of the spear for the Christian Crusades which brought about much death and misery in the so-called "Holy Land." They also brought about much financial wealth for the Catholic Church and themselves. They are considered the first multinational corporation.
Breivik is big on chivalry in his manifesto. However, his actions of slaughtering unsuspecting unarmed people, including many young people, show he doesn't know the meaning of the word "chivalry."
His manifesto is titled 2083 - A European Declaration of Independence. This title makes many people think of the United States Declaration of Independence. However, the American Declaration is a Deistic document in that it mentions God only in Deistic terms such as Nature's God and never mentions Jesus, the Bible, Christianity, etc. Breivik's manifesto is openly a Christian document which does frequently mention Jesus and Christianity.
On page 650 of his manifesto he writes, "I believe Europe should strive for: A cultural conservative approach where monoculturalism, moral, the nuclear family, a free market, support for Israel and our Christian cousins of the east, law and order and Christendom itself must be central aspects (unlike now). Islam must be re-classified as a political ideology and the Quran and the Hadith banned as the genocidal political tools they are."
It's either his ignorance or hypocrisy which makes him want to classify Islam as a "political ideology" but not also Judaism. Judaism is all about a greater state of Israel and the blood-soaked Torah is frequently used as a "genocidal political tool." For example Deuteronomy 4:1 claims that God said to the Hebrews/Jews, "Now therefore hearken, O Israel, unto the statutes and unto the judgments, which I teach you, for to do them, that ye may live, and go in and possess the land which the LORD God of your fathers giveth you." Numbers 31:17-18 has Moses instructing the Israeli army, "Now therefore kill every male among the little ones, and kill every woman that hath known man by lying with him. But all the women children, that have not known a man by lying with him, keep alive for yourselves."
Couple this with what Judaism has at its heart; a land and a virgin grab for the Hebrews/Jews. Why Breivik doesn't mention this fact has got to be, as mentioned earlier, either ignorance or hypocrisy. For a list of many, but not all, Biblical passages which make it painfully obvious that Judaism is an aggressive genocidal political ideology that wants Israel "high above all nations of the earth" just as much, if not more than, Islam wants to rule the world, click here.
The Deist and American founder Thomas Paine has made clear this Christian hypocrisy when he wrote in The Age of Reason , "Christianity grounds itself originally upon the Bible (Old Testament), and the Bible (Old Testament) was established altogether by the sword, and that in the worst use of it - not to terrify, but to extirpate. The Jews made no converts; they butchered all." These are very inconvenient truths for the Christian religious right.
Breivik promotes Christian martyrdom, similar to Islam promoting Islamic martyrdom. He states, "A person unwilling to martyr himself for a greater cause can never call himself a Knight and a Christian individual unwilling to martyr himself for the preservation of European Christendom can never call himself a Knight of Christ." This shows the Christian religious right is just as violence prone as Islamic fundamentalists.
In order to bring the world light years closer to progress and peace we need to replace these despicable "revealed" religions with the natural religious philosophy of Deism. As Thomas Paine wrote in The Age of Reason, we need a revolution in religion!
Author's Bio: Bob Johnson is a paralegal and a freelance writer in Florida. He was raised Roman Catholic, but after reading Thomas Paine's The Age of Reason, he became a Deist. In 1993 he founded the World Union of Deists and in 1996 he launched the first web site devoted to Deism, www.deism.com. He is listed in Who's Who in Hell and is the author of Deism: A Revolution in Religion, A Revolution in You and of An Answer to C.S. Lewis' Mere Christianity. He wrote the introduction to The Age of Reason, The Complete Edition and to Principles of Nature and also writes for Examiner.com and strike-the-root.com.
CAIR – July 25, 2011
U.S. mosques urged to step up security after Norway massacre
WASHINGTON, D.C., 7/25/11 - The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), a prominent national Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today called on American mosques to step up security following attacks by an anti-Muslim, right-wing terrorist in Norway that left more than 70 people dead.
The Washington-based CAIR also called on state, local and national law enforcement and security agencies to drop Islamophobic trainers who were cited in the terrorist's manifesto.
In a statement, CAIR National Executive Director Nihad Awad said:
"Our hearts go out to the families and loved ones of all those killed and injured in these unconscionable and inexcusable terror attacks. As we have stated repeatedly in the past, extremist rhetoric can lead to violence.
"Because the Norway terrorist left a manifesto designed to inspire similar attacks, and because he claims there are others who share his beliefs ready to strike, we urge American mosques and Muslim institutions to step up security measures using CAIR's 'Muslim Community Safety Kit.' Added security measures, coupled with increased outreach and educational efforts, will help American Muslims be safe during the upcoming religious observances associated with the fast of Ramadan.
"These horrible attacks have exposed more than ever before the ideological underpinnings of anti-Muslim extremism in Europe and the United States. It is shocking that some of the individuals cited by the terrorist to justify his crimes have trained American security personnel. Perhaps those who ignored or downplayed this issue in the past will address it now by instituting measures to prevent the use of Islamophobic trainers by government agencies."
As the New York Times reported today: "The man accused of the killing spree in Norway was deeply influenced by a small group of American bloggers and writers who have warned for years about the threat from Islam, lacing his 1,500-page manifesto with quotations from them."
The anti-Islam bloggers and writers cited favorably by the Norway terrorist include Robert Spencer (64 citations), co-founder of the hate group Stop the Islamization of America (SIOA), and Walid Shoebat (more than 15 citations), an "ex-terrorist" recently exposed as a fraud by CNN's Anderson Cooper. SIOA has been designated as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center.
The Norway terrorist also cited the anti-Islam blog of SIOA co-founder Pamela Geller. On her blog, Geller recently sought to minimize the war crimes committed against Bosnian Muslims.
Spencer and Shoebat have both been solicited in the past to train government and security officials, including FBI agents, on the topics of Islam and terrorism.
CAIR has recently called on the Obama administration, the Department of Homeland Security, the Department of Defense, and Congress to provide oversight for apparently widespread anti-Muslim bias in the training of law enforcement, security and military personnel nationwide.
Last month, CAIR and the University of California, Berkeley's Center for Race and Gender released a report that documents growing Islamophobia in the United States and offers recommendations about how to challenge the troubling phenomenon.
Flagler Live – July 25, 2011
The greater threat:
Christian extremism from McVeigh to Breivik
By Pierre Tristam
Timothy McVeigh, meet Anders Behring Breivik. Those two jihadists—two right-wing reactionaries, two terrorists, two anti-government white supremacists, two Christians—have a lot in common, down to the way the massacres they carried out were first mistaken for the work of Islamists by an American press rich in zealotry of its own. And they have a lot more in common with the fundamentalist politicians and ideologues among us who pretend to have nothing to do with the demons they inspire.
After the Oklahoma City bombing in April 1995, speculation flew on television news stations about Arab terrorists seen in the vicinity of the federal building. The thought that a home-grown, Midwestern Army veteran of the first Gulf war could possibly murder 168 people, including 19 children at a day care center, seemed as foreign as those Islamic lands that were then inspiring so much of bigotry’s latest American mutant. McVeigh turned out to be as all-American as he could possibly be, with extras. His paradoxical worship of the Second Amendment was the faith that fueled his hatred of a government he felt had betrayed American ideals by enabling what he called “Socialist wannabe slaves.” His idealism of a golden-age white America was the Christian translation of al-Qaeda’s idealized caliphate.
It became quickly evident that the bombing in Oslo and the massacre on Utoya Island on Friday had been carried out by Anders Breivik, who surrendered to police 40 minutes after beginning his killing spree on the island. Yet the Wall Street Journal ran an editorial on Saturday putting the blame for the attack on Islamist extremists, because “in jihadist eyes,” the paper said, “it will forever remain guilty of being what it is: a liberal nation committed to freedom of speech and conscience, equality between the sexes, representative democracy and every other freedom that still defines the West.”
The paper subsequently amended its editorial to concede that Breivik “was an ethnic Norwegian with no previously known ties to Islamist groups.” But the rest of the piece still framed the attack in the context of Islamist terrorism. It’s a common tactic at the Journal and Fox News—co-owned by Rupert Murdoch’s scandal-riddled News Corp.—where facts are incidental to ideology. It is enough for the Journal to insinuate a connection for its Foxified audience to catch the drift and run with it. Breivik may be Norwegian. But he wouldn’t be doing what he did if it weren’t for the pollution of white, Christian European blood by Muslims and multiculturalists, by leftists, by Socialist wannabe slaves.
McVeigh and Breivik are bloody reminders that Western culture’s original sin—the presumption of supremacy—is alive and well and clenching many a trigger. It’ll be easy in coming days, as it was in 1995, to categorize the demons as exceptions unrepresentative of their societies. Easy, but false. Norway, like much of Europe, like the United States, is in the grips of a disturbing resurgence of right-wing fanaticism. “The success of populist parties appealing to a sense of lost national identity,” The Times reports, “has brought criticism of minorities, immigrants and in particular Muslims out of the beer halls and Internet chat rooms and into mainstream politics. While the parties themselves generally do not condone violence, some experts say a climate of hatred in the political discourse has encouraged violent individuals.”
It’s convenient duplicity. The parties don’t explicitly condone violence. But they would have no appeal without explicitly endorsing beliefs of supremacy and projecting the sort of scorn and hatred for those who fall outside the tribe that cannot but lead to violence or the sort of fractured society we’ve become so familiar with. Those “Take Back America” bumper stickers share most of their DNA with the same strain of rejectionist white Europeans who think their culture is being bankrupted by Socialism and immigrants. Those idiotic anti-Sharia laws creeping up in Oklahoma, Arizona and Florida take their cues from the likes of Geert Wilder, the Dutch People’s Party leader who compares the Koran to Hitler’s Mein Kampf. Florida’s own Koran-burning Terry Jones or the Rev. Franklin Graham’s velvety crusade against Islam are Wilder’s American clones.
Timothy McVeigh’s rhetoric may have been more extreme, but it was indistinguishable from the more college-polished and aged rhetoric of anti-government reactionaries now pretending to speak for American ideals under the banner of patriots, tea parties, Fox News’s hacking of the “fair and balanced” parody, or more establishment oriented zealots in Congress. The common denominator is exclusion and heresy: those who supposedly belong to “true” American values, and those who don’t. Al-Qaeda’s loyalty oath is identical: those who belong to “true” Islamic values and those who don’t. Either way, the inclusive, tolerant, broad-minded, and yes, multicultural outlook is under siege by fundamentalism in virtually every part of society as we know it: cultural, political, economic, religious. Timothy McVeigh and Anders Breivik used bombs and rifles. More seasoned zealots use rhetoric and policies. The ongoing march of folly over the national debt is merely one example among many.
“We tend to think of national security narrowly as the risk of a military or terrorist attack,” the columnist Nicholas Kristof writes today. “But national security is about protecting our people and our national strength — and the blunt truth is that the biggest threat to America’s national security this summer doesn’t come from China, Iran or any other foreign power. It comes from budget machinations, and budget maniacs, at home.”
Islamists who may want us harm need only sit back and enjoy the view. They might as well have outsourced the job to their Christian brethren, with plenty of assists from mainstream conservatives. There’s no segregating these demons and maniacs. They’re an integral part of western culture. They’re us. [ Pierre Tristam is the editor at FlaglerLive.com. ]
Global Research - July 24, 2011
The Norway terrorist attack: "News without facts"
"Experts" on Jihad & "Muslim terrorism"
By Edward Teller
Watching the international media on the web and TV change gears Friday as information started to fasten to the fact that the worst terrorist act in Scandinavia since the 3rd Reich was perpetrated by a right-wing Christian zealot, was fascinating.
This, rather than what Pam Geller, Steve Emerson, Daniel Pipes, Dennis Prager, David Horowitz, CNN, Fox News and many others were touting for hours as most likely an act of Muslim Jihad in a country that is way, way too liberal.
I was keyed into paying attention to how this meme might have to morph fairly early in the afternoon, by an item carried by Michael Rivero at What Really Happened, about the major event at the youth camp the day before the massacre:
During the second day of Labour Youth League summer camp at Ut°ya got the Labour Party’s young hopefuls visit by Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Store.
Together with the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation correspondent Sidsel Wold and Norwegian People’s Aid Kirsten Belck-Olsen, discussed the Foreign Minister of the deadlock between Israel and the Palestinian Authority.
As foreign minister arrived Ut°ya he was met with a demand from the AUF that Norway must recognize a Palestinian state.
- The Palestinians must have their own state, the occupation must end, the wall must be demolished and it must happen now, said the Foreign Minister to cheers from the audience. [automatically translated from Norwegian by Google translate]
That was an event held Thursday at the summer camp for the children of Norwegian liberals.
As the story developed Friday, almost every news outlet was quick to provide experts on Muslim terrorism and how that might have a growing negative impact on Norway and Europe. On Anderson Cooper, Friday afternoon, as he had his experts on Jihadism on camera, he was being told by another person – a CNN reporter – that the shooter, possibly the bomber, was a blond Norwegian. Cooper seemed to be taken aback, turning back to his Jihad experts, who were dismissive of the new information.
The bombing-shootings took up enormous bandwidth in our media machine until it came out that the alleged perpetrator has more in common with Sarah Palin and Alan Dershowitz than with Rachel Corrie or Furkan Doğan, both of whom have been labelled terrorists by Dershowitz.
As the end-of-the-week-in-midsummer stupor overtakes the media on a hot Friday evening in the USA, will they get around to trying to find out what set Anders Behring off?
The bombing had to be pre-planned, probably for some time. Was the pro-Palestinian event Thursday at the camp where over 70 were killed published on the web, facebook, twitter or somewhere else? Most likely. That may be what pushed this guy’s last button.
And just who created the group that fictitiously took credit for the massacres early Friday?
The ‘Helpers of Global Jihad’ group, of which al-Nasser is a member, made the claims in an email circular issued to various sources. The group does not appear to have any past history.
It is thought that the bombings are a belated response to Norwegian newspapers and magazines republishing cartoons of Mohammed originally published by Jyllands-Posten of Denmark.
I’m not about to go all conspiracy theory on this story. I am bothered, though, that the media was extremely rapid to ramp up the radical Islam run amok meme, yet so unready to deal with what is increasingly appearing to be possible – that the Christian gunman was impelled to kill liberals he may have felt were too sympathetic to Palestinians.
Update – Saturday, 12:30 p.m. PDT:
This diary questions what pushed Breivik over the edge. Phoenix Woman’s diary this morning, He’s Not a Terrorist – He’s a Freedom Fighter! touches upon some of the more pathetic errors in the media on Friday, as accurate information on the shooter-bomber became available. David Dayen’s front page fdl diary, takes this subject further - Norway Terror Reveals Disturbing Assumptions About Muslims.
Glenn Greenwald devoted his Saturday column to yesterday’s pathetic media coverage. His second update links to an Electronic Intifada article that shows how the false meme developed soon after the bomb went off in downtown Oslo. Essentially, it appears one dubious “expert” pushed the global media “over the edge”:
The source is Will McCants, adjunct faculty at Johns Hopkins University. On his website he describes himself as formerly “Senior Adviser for Countering Violent Extremism at the U.S. Department of State, program manager of the Minerva Initiative at the Department of Defense, and fellow at West Point’s Combating Terrorism Center.” This morning, he posted “Alleged Claim for Oslo Attacks” on his blog Jihadica:
This was posted by Abu Sulayman al-Nasir to the Arabic jihadi forum, Shmukh, around 10:30am EST (thread 118187). Shmukh is the main forum for Arabic-speaking jihadis who support al-Qaeda. Since the thread is now inaccessible (either locked or taken down), I am posting it here. I don’t have time at the moment to translate the whole thing but I translated the most important bits on twitter.
The Shmukh web site is not accessible to just anyone, so he is the primary source for this claim. McCants stated from the beginning that the claim had been removed or hidden, and on Twitter he even cast doubt on whether it was a claim of responsibility at all.
snip - EI posted screenshots of several tweets by McCants, then this:
McCants later reported that the claim of responsibility was retracted by the author “Abu Sulayman al-Nasir.” Furthermore, according to McCants, the moderator of this forum declared that speculation about the attack would be prohibited because the contents of the forum were appearing in mainstream media. It does seem more than a little bit odd that genuine “jihadis” would post on a closed forum that a former US official and “counterterrorism expert” openly writes about infiltrating.
EI is highly critical about how easily McCants’ dubious information was spread:
The media also failed. They reported on the claims McCants disseminated because his position and perceived expertise gave these claims credibility. Would The New York Times have required multiple sources and independent confirmation of the existence of the posting and its contents if it had not come from someone with McCants’ supposedly solid credentials?
For hours after McCants posted the update that the claim of responsibility was retracted, BBC, the New York Times, The Guardian, The Washington Post were still promoting information originally sourced from him. The news was carried around the world and became the main story line in much of the initial coverage.
The threshold for a terrorism expert must be very low. This whole rush to disseminate a false, unverifiable and flimsily sourced claim strikes me as a case of an elite fanboy wanting to be the first to pass on leaked gadget specs.
Foreign Policy - July 24, 2011
Exploiting a tragedy
By Stephen M. Walt
As soon as the shocking and tragic news from Norway hit the airwaves, it was entirely predictable that various right-wing Islamophobes would type first and think later. They were so eager to exploit the tragedy to peddle their pre-existing policy preferences that they blindly assumed the acts had to have been perpetrated by al Qaeda, by its various clones, or by some other radical Muslim group.
This is the sort of bias one expects from an ideologue like Jennifer Rubin (who gets taken to task for her rush-to-judgment by James Fallows.) Sadly, it is also not out of character for the supposedly respectable Wall Street Journal, whose editorial page has been a reliable source of threat-mongering and distortion for years. Even as Norwegian officials were cautioning that they had no reason to suspect Islamist groups, the Journal was plunging ahead with an editorial entitled "Terror in Oslo," which drew the following utterly bogus conclusion:
Norway certainly did not buy itself much grace from the jihadis for staying out of the Iraq war, or for Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg's demand that Israel open its borders with Gaza, or for his calls for a Palestinian unity government between Fatah and its terrorist cousin Hamas.
Norway can do all this and more, but in jihadist eyes it will forever remain guilty of being what it is: a liberal nation committed to freedom of speech and conscience, equality between the sexes, representative democracy and every other freedom that still defines the West. For being true to these ideals Norwegians have now been made to pay a terrible price."
Given that remarkable statement, the Journal's editors must have been deeply disappointed to learn that the person who was actually charged in the case, Anders Behring Breivik, was not in fact a jihadi, a critic of Israel, or even a Muslim. Instead, he is a right-wing Norwegian Islamophobe who is reportedly obsessed with the dangers of multi-culturalism and a contributer to extremist websites like Jihad Watch and Atlas Shrugs. In other words, he's the sort of person who might well subscribe to the Wall Street Journal not for its coverage of the business world, but for its predictably hardline editorial "insight."
As I write this (Saturday noon EDT), the editorial has still not been removed from the WSJ website and no apology or retraction has been issued. The Journal and its editors are obviously free to continue to sow the seeds of hatred and paranoia, but the rest of us are equally free to view them with appropriate contempt. And let us also take time to reflect on Norway's sorrow, and to remember that hatred and violence can erupt from many directions.
UPDATE: Obviously aware of the egg on its face, the Journal has posted a rewritten version of the editorial on its website. Note the marked absence of any apology for its initial rush-to-judgment. ..And for an interesting commentary suggesting that right-wing hate-mongering websites might have contributed to the murderous mind-set behind the attack, see Paul Woodward's War in Context: http://warincontext.org/2011/07/23/from-pamela-geller-to-anders-behring-breivik-how-islamophobia-turned-deadly/
Stephen M. Walt is the Robert and RenÚe Belfer professor of international relations at Harvard University
OpEdNews - July 24, 2011
The slaughter in Norway
By Robert Parry
News that a Christian extremist has taken credit for the terror attacks in Norway, including the systematic slaying of scores of youth at a summer camp, may be shocking but it shouldn't be surprising.
Over the past decade, the Christian Right and many Jewish neoconservatives have pushed the propaganda theme that Islam is a uniquely violent monotheistic religion that requires special suppression if the West is to avoid having Shariah law imposed on everyone.
Of course, in making that argument, one has to wonder if these Christian/Jewish zealots have ever read the Hebrew Torah or studied the history of Christianity.
The obvious truth is that the Torah (or Old Testament) is filled with story after story of ancient Israelites striking down their enemies with ruthless force and without remorse. Christianity, at least since its merger with the Roman Empire early in the Fourth Century, has been the world's preeminent violent religion bathed in blood and steeped in hypocrisy.
It is certainly true that radical Muslims have misused the teachings of Islam to justify horrendous slaughter of innocents, with al-Qaeda's 9/11 attacks as standing as the most outrageous example. There also have been cases over the centuries of Islamic armies acting in barbaric ways.
But those atrocities have nothing over the genocides and the massacres committed by Christian armies and Christian zealots.
When the First Crusade captured Jerusalem in 1099, the crusaders slaughtered both Muslims and Jews, leaving parts of the Holy City awash in Muslim blood. When Jews sought refuge in a synagogue, it was burned over their heads, killing everyone inside as Crusaders sang songs praising Jesus.
Divisions within Christianity itself set off centuries of killing across Europe, with defenders of the Roman Catholic faith devising new and ingenious ways to torture supposed "heretics" and with European explorers carrying their righteous Christian violence across the Atlantic Ocean to where Bible-toting Christians inflicted more centuries of genocide against the native populations.
In more modern times, the anti-Semitism of some Christians, including leaders of the Catholic Church and some Protestant sects, set the stage for the Nazi Holocaust of European Jews during World War II. After the war, Jewish refugees formed Israel as a "Jewish state" and immediately began persecuting and killing Arabs whose ancestors had lived in Palestine for centuries.
During the Cold War, Christian leaders justified widespread "death squad" operations to eradicate both "godless commies" and their sympathizers, including liberal clerics known as "liberation theologists."
Christian/Jewish-tinged violence has continued into the new millennium with anti-Islamic sentiments an underlying factor in George W. Bush's "war on terror," which included the occupation of Afghanistan and the unprovoked invasion of Iraq, always somehow justified by the glories of Jesus Christ or the teachings of the Torah.
In fall 2002, Bush and his team created the propaganda framework for attacking Iraq, then took the Christmas season off in honor of the Prince of Peace, before revving the war machine back up for the March 19, 2003, attack.
That sort of hypocrisy -- praising Jesus for his commitment to non-violence while using the religion he inspired as a way to justify mass murder -- has been central to the history of Christianity.
So, who can be truly surprised that a Norwegian man, identified as 32-year-old Anders Behring Breivik, a right-wing fundamentalist Christian, has reportedly admitted to his role in the Oslo terror attacks on Friday?
According to press reports, acquaintances describe Breivik as a gun-loving Norwegian obsessed with what he saw as the threats of multiculturalism and Muslim immigration.
Though not admitting criminal guilt, Breivik explained his actions in a detailed manifesto calling for a Christian war to defend Europe against the threat of Muslim domination.
The attacks on Friday included a bombing in central Oslo and then the shooting of young people at a camp sponsored by Norway's ruling Labor Party.
Author's Website: http://www.consortiumnews.com
Author's Bio: Robert Parry broke many of the Iran-Contra stories in the 1980s for the Associated Press and Newsweek. His latest book, Secrecy & Privilege: Rise of the Bush Dynasty from Watergate to Iraq, can be ordered at secrecyandprivilege.com. It's also available at Amazon.com, as is his 1999 book, Lost History: Contras, Cocaine, the Press & 'Project Truth.'
New York Times - July 24, 2011
Killings in Norway spotlight anti-Muslim thought in U.S.
By SCOTT SHANE
The man accused of the killing spree in Norway, was deeply influenced by a small group of American bloggers and writers who have warned for years about the threat from Islam, lacing his 1,500-page manifesto with quotations from them, as well as copying multiple passages from the tract of the Unabomber.
In the document he posted online, Anders Behring Breivik, who is accused of bombing government buildings and killing scores of young people at a Labor Party camp, showed that he had closely followed the acrimonious American debate over Islam.
His manifesto, which denounced Norwegian politicians as failing to defend the country from Islamic influence, quoted Robert Spencer, who operates the Jihad Watch Web site, 64 times, and cited other Western writers who shared his view that Muslim immigrants pose a grave danger to Western culture.
More broadly, the mass killings in Norway, with their echo of the 1995 bombing of the federal building in Oklahoma City by an antigovernment militant, have focused new attention around the world on the subculture of anti-Muslim bloggers and right-wing activists and renewed a debate over the focus of counterterrorism efforts.
In the United States, critics have asserted that the intense spotlight on the threat from Islamic militants has unfairly vilified Muslim Americans while dangerously playing down the threat of attacks from other domestic radicals. The author of a 2009 Department of Homeland Security report on right-wing extremism withdrawn by the department after criticism from conservatives repeated on Sunday his claim that the department had tilted too heavily toward the threat from Islamic militants.
The revelations about Mr. Breivik’s American influences exploded on the blogs over the weekend, putting Mr. Spencer and other self-described “counterjihad” activists on the defensive, as their critics suggested that their portrayal of Islam as a threat to the West indirectly fostered the crimes in Norway….
The Gates of Vienna, a blog that ordinarily keeps up a drumbeat of anti-Islamist news and commentary, closed its pages to comments Sunday “due to the unusual situation in which it has recently found itself.”
The name of that Web site — a reference to the siege of Vienna in 1683 by Muslim fighters who, the blog says in its headnote, “seemed poised to overrun Christian Europe” — was echoed in the title Mr. Breivik chose for his manifesto: “2083: A European Declaration of Independence.” He chose that year, the 400th anniversary of the siege, as the target for the triumph of Christian forces in the European civil war he called for to drive out Islamic influence….
…. he quoted the American and European counterjihad writers by name, notably Mr. Spencer, author of 10 books, including “Islam Unveiled” and “The Truth About Muhammad.”
Mr. Breivik frequently cited another blog, Atlas Shrugs and recommended the Gates of Vienna among Web sites. Pamela Geller, an outspoken critic of Islam, runs Atlas Shrugs….
Despite the Norway killings, Representative Peter T. King, the New York Republican who is chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, said he had no plans to broaden contentious hearings about the radicalization of Muslim Americans and would hold the third one as planned on Wednesday. He said his committee focused on terrorist threats with foreign ties and suggested that the Judiciary Committee might be more appropriate for looking at non-Muslim threats.
In 2009, when the Department of Homeland Security produced a report, “Rightwing Extremism,” suggesting that the recession and the election of an African-American president might increase the threat from white supremacists, conservatives in Congress strongly objected. Janet Napolitano, the homeland security secretary, quickly withdrew the report and apologized for what she said were its flaws.
Daryl Johnson, the Department of Homeland Security analyst who was the primary author of the report, said in an interview that after he left the department in 2010, the number of analysts assigned to non-Islamic militancy of all kinds was reduced to two from six. Mr. Johnson, who now runs a private research firm on the domestic terrorist threat, DTAnalytics, said about 30 analysts worked on Islamic radicalism when he was there.
The killings in Norway “could easily happen here,” he said. The Hutaree, an extremist Christian militia in Michigan accused last year of plotting to kill police officers and planting bombs at their funerals, had an arsenal of weapons larger than all the Muslim plotters charged in the United States since the Sept. 11 attacks combined, he said…..
War-in-Context - July 23, 2011
From Pamela Geller to Anders Behring Breivik
— how Islamophobia turned deadly in Norway
by Paul Woodward
When terrorism has a white face it invariably gets marginalized in the popular narrative. The lone wolf, the outsider, the sociopath — in many cases these portraits of misanthropic, isolated individuals who turn to violence are quite accurate.
The Oslo killings, however, should be seen in a different light since there is a wealth of evidence to suggest that the perpetrator of this atrocity, even if it turns out he was acting alone, was very much part of a political movement — a movement whose leading ideologues regularly appear on Fox News and have high public profiles.
Anders Behring Breivik, the 32-year-old Norwegian man widely assumed to be responsible for the mass murder that took place in Oslo yesterday, is being referred to as a Christian fundamentalist in many press reports.
His comments appearing on the political website Document.no suggest however that this is a rather misleading description. His views, as revealed there, are ideological rather than religious with his preeminent focus being his opposition to multiculturalism. (Quotations of Breivik appearing below come from a translation provided by Doug Saunders.)
In the United States, one of the most prominent public faces of the movement to which Breivik belongs is that of the notorious right-wing, pro-Israel, Islamophobic blogger, Pamela Geller, whose principal mouthpiece is Atlas Shrugs.
The poster below shows a recent event which she backed, along with Robert Spencer who operates Jihad Watch.
The World War Two iconography they employ — battleships, tanks and squadrons of bombers — makes it clear that they regard their campaign against “Islamization” as a kind of war. One of the battles in that war played out in Oslo yesterday.
Breivik, who probably sees himself as one of SIOE’s “freedom fighters,” describes himself as a cultural conservative and anti-Marxist liberal. In his comments at Document.no, he says little about his religious beliefs and seems to see his Christian identity primarily as a cultural identity. He writes:
I myself am a Protestant and baptized / conӿrmed to me by my own free will when I was 15
But today’s Protestant church is a joke. Priests in jeans who march for Palestine and churches that look like the minimalist shopping centers. I am a supporter of an indirect collective conversion of the Protestant church back to the Catholic. In the meantime, I vote for the most conservative candidates in church elections.
The only thing that can save the Protestant church is to go back to basics.
Breivik is much more specific in identifying the sources from whom he takes his own ideological direction: Robert Spencer, Fjordman, Atlas [Pamela Geller], Analekta [Informatics], Gates of Vienna, The Brussels Journal, and The Religion of Peace.
These are the preeminent voices promoting fear and hatred of Islam across Europe and America. But they also form — at least in Breivik’s mind — the “epicenter” of “political analysis” on the threat posed to cultural conservatives by multiculturalism in Europe and America. He recommends Fjordman’s book, “Defeating Eurabia,” as “the perfect Christmas gift for family and friends.”
Do any of the leaders of Stop Islamization of America (SIOA) and Stop Islamization of Europe (SIOE) advocate that their “freedom fighters” should adopt violent tactics such as those employed by Breivik? Perhaps not. Indeed, I have little doubt that in the coming days we will hear many vociferous disavowals of their having any association with the Norwegian. But have no doubt, while they might have a sincere revulsion for Breivik’s actions, they cannot so easily disassociate themselves from the ideas that drove him to murder almost a hundred innocent people.
Two years ago, Breivik called on fellow Norwegians to form a youth action group “that represents our ideological platform (anti-racist but critical of multiculturalism / Islamization etc).” He saw the group developing as part of Stop Islamization of Europe or as a new group that would model itself on SIOE and the English Defense League.
“For me it is very hypocritical to treat Muslims, Nazis and Marxists differ[ently]. They are all supporters of hate-ideologies,” Breivik writes. There is a whiff of the Bush doctrine here — that we should not differentiate between terrorists and those who harbor them. There’s also a hint of Bin Laden’s idea of the near enemy and the far enemy.
Breivik argues that cultural conservatives should not identify their main opponents as Jihadists, but instead should focus their attention on those he regards as the “facilitators” of Jihadists, namely, the proponents of multiculturalism. Hence his vehement opposition to Norway’s Labour Party and its leader, Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg.
Those in the anti-Islam movement who now want to distance themselves from Breivik will proclaim that they are opponents of hatred and maybe that’s true — but that’s how he sees himself too: as a man dedicating his life to combating the “hate ideologies.”
As the last decade has demonstrated, whether it’s on the level of governments or individuals, those who take up a banner in the name of a crusade against hatred have a surprising willingness to employ violence in pursuit of that goal.
New York Times - July 23, 2011
Norway attacks put spotlight on rise of right-wing sentiment in Europe
By NICHOLAS KULISH
BERLIN — The attacks in Oslo on Friday have riveted new attention on right-wing extremists not just in Norway but across Europe, where opposition to Muslim immigrants, globalization, the power of the European Union and the drive toward multiculturalism has proven a potent political force and, in a few cases, a spur to violence.
The success of populist parties appealing to a sense of lost national identity has brought criticism of minorities, immigrants and in particular Muslims out of the beer halls and Internet chat rooms and into mainstream politics. While the parties themselves generally do not condone violence, some experts say a climate of hatred in the political discourse has encouraged violent individuals.
“I’m not surprised when things like the bombing in Norway happen, because you will always find people who feel more radical means are necessary,” said Joerg Forbrig, an analyst at the German Marshall Fund in Berlin who has studied far-right issues in Europe. “It literally is something that can happen in a number of places and there are broader problems behind it.”
Last November a Swedish man was arrested in the southern city of Malm÷ in connection with more than a dozen unsolved shootings of immigrants, including one fatality. The shootings, nine of which took place between June and October 2010, appeared to be the work of an isolated individual. More broadly in Sweden, though, the far-right Sweden Democrats experienced new success at the polls. The party entered Parliament for the first time after winning 5.7 percent of the vote in the general election last September.
The bombing and shootings in Oslo also have served as a wake-up call for security services in Europe and the United States that in recent years have become so focused on Islamic terrorists that they may have underestimated the threat of domestic radicals, including those upset by what they see as the influence of Islam.
In the United States the deadly attacks have reawakened memories of the Oklahoma City bombing in 1995, where a right-wing extremist, Timothy J. McVeigh, used a fertilizer bomb to blow up a federal government building, killing 168 people. That deadly act had long since been overshadowed by the events of Sept. 11, 2001.
According to Mr. Forbrig, isolated right-wing groups in Europe would rise up and then quickly disappear from the ’60s into the ’90s. But in recent years far-right statements have appeared to lose much of their post-World War II taboo even among some prominent political parties.
A combination of increased migration from abroad and largely unrestricted movement of people within an enlarged European Union, such as the persecuted Roma minority, helped lay the groundwork for a nationalist, at times starkly chauvinist, revival.
Groups are gaining traction from Hungary to Italy, but it is particularly apparent in northern European countries that long have had liberal immigration policies. The rapid arrival of refugees, asylum seekers and economic migrants, many of them Muslims, led to a significant backlash in places like Denmark, where the Danish People’s Party has 25 out of 179 seats in Parliament, and the Netherlands, where Geert Wilders’s Party for Freedom won 15.5 percent of the vote in the 2010 general election.
Mr. Wilders famously compared the Koran, the holy book of Islam, to Adolf Hitler’s “Mein Kampf.” Both the Danish and Dutch right-wing parties are backing precarious minority governments while not directly participating by having ministers, and inching toward mainstream acceptance in the process…..
“This may be the act of a lone, mad, paranoid individual,” said Hajo Funke, a political scientist at the Free University in Berlin who studies rightist extremism, referring to the right-wing fundamentalist Christian charged in connection with the killings, “but the far-right milieu creates an atmosphere that can lead such people down that path of violence.”
Global Research - July 23, 2011
Obama reaction to norway massacre betrays
US "War on Terror" fundamentalism
By Finian Cunningham
Within hours of Norway’s deadly bomb and gun attacks claiming at least 91 victims it has become clear that the horror was perpetrated by a Norwegian loner with rightwing Christian fundamentalist affiliations.
Yet President Barack Obama reacted immediately to the news of the atrocity to insinuate an Islamic connection and to justify America’s war on terror.
Obama spoke on Friday while hosting New Zealand Prime Minister John Key in the White House.
The US President said of the attacks: “It's a reminder that the entire international community has a stake in preventing this kind of terror from occurring, and that we have to work co-operatively together both on intelligence and in terms of prevention of these kinds of horrible attacks.”
Prime Minister Key added: “If it is an act of global terrorism I think it shows that no country, large or small, is immune from that risk, and that is why New Zealand plays its part in Afghanistan as we try and join others like the United States in making the world a safer place,” he said….
The profile of Breivik that emerged minutes after the incidents was clearly that of a Norwegian citizen who acted on a deranged loner mission.
However, this did not restrain Obama or his New Zealand guest from issuing wild insinuations about Islamic terrorism. Obama is reported to have been briefed by intelligence officials before he spoke on the matter. Which makes his response an all the more odious bit of politicking to turn a horrific, tragic event into a propaganda stunt to stir up anti-Islamic fears and shore up Washington’s illegal “wars on terror”.
What should be disturbing is the level of inculcation of such irrational propaganda. It seems that every and any horror no matter how obviously unrelated to Islamic countries can now immediately be attributed by Obama and other Western leaders to “Islamic terrorists”…..
Finian Cunningham is a Global Research Correspondent based in Belfast, Ireland.