Oslo anti-Muslim terrorism and ‘Muslim’ media suggestions

This video says about itself:

Norway Massacre: Anders Breivik: The Killer’s Mind – Discovery Channel Documentary

18 February 2014

Anders Behring Breivik is the perpetrator of the 2011 Norway attacks that killed 77 people. On 22 July 2011, he bombed government buildings in Oslo, killing eight people. He then killed 69 more people, mostly teenagers, in a mass shooting at a Workers’ Youth League camp on the island of Utøya. In August 2012 Breivik was convicted of mass murder, causing a fatal explosion, and terrorism.

Yesterday, there was horrible terrorism in Oslo, the capital of Norway.

Reporting about it, British Leftist daily The Morning Star mentioned:

Police were not commenting on the cause of the explosion.

So, the Norwegian police, and The Morning Star, like they should, were not prematurely blaming anyone: neither Muslims nor Muslim haters. Not “apolitical” common criminals, or others whom maybe one might suspect of this crime.

According to police figures, just 0.4% of terrorist violence in Europe is perpetrated by Muslims.

In addition to the general rule of not blaming anyone before there is enough evidence, that should have cautioned media and politicians against prematurely blaming Muslims.

However, the reality in the Western media in the first hours after the Oslo atrocity was different.

Let us look at media yesterday, just after the terror in Norway. No, I have not even bothered to look at the Murdoch empire media and other outfits known for anti-Muslim and/or anti-immigrant bias.

The Huffington Post, usually considered a non-xenophobic left of center news source in the USA, published an article with a lot of speculations about connections with Muslim militants, angry about the anti-Islamic cartoons published in a corporate daily in Denmark years ago, etc.

I cannot find that particular article anymore.

However, I can still find another Huffington Post article, which said:

Norway Explosion: What’s The Risk Of Attack?

The Huffington Post UK | Dina Rickman First Posted: 22/7/11 15:48 GMT | Updated: 22/7/11 19:59 GMT

In an interview with Foreign Policy magazine the director of Norway’s Peace Research Institute Oslo Kristian Berg Harpviken said:

The only concrete supposition that would emerge in a Norwegian context would be al Qaeda.

Like the Huffington Post, the Peace Research Institute Oslo has a left of center rather than a far right xenophobic reputation.

This shows how far anti-immigrant poisonous ideas have spread beyond their original source, the “white nationalist” extreme Right. People who one might expect to know better uncritically repeat, like Pavlov’s dogs, the “Muslims did it!” meme. Like happened with the Oklahoma bombing in the USA, attributed to Muslims before the Christian conservative background of the atrocity became clear.

Reality turned out to be very different from the extremely premature speculations of Mr Harpviken and many others.

By Mike Head:

Bombing, mass shooting kill at least 87 in Norway

23 July 2011

A bombing and mass shooting in Norway on Friday have left at least 87 people dead. Following a large explosion directed against government buildings in the capital, Oslo, a right-wing anti-Islamic extremist opened fire with automatic weapons on youth at a camp run by the ruling Labour Party on nearby Utoya Island.

At 3:30 p.m. Friday, powerful explosions rocked a government quarter in downtown Oslo that is home to the office of Norwegian Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg, the finance ministry and the country’s biggest tabloid newspaper Verdens Gang (VG). Seven people died and 15 were wounded in the blasts.

Some two hours later, a massacre occurred at the youth camp, attended by about 600 people. The gunman, dressed as a police officer, fired repeatedly on a crowd of mostly 15- and 16-year-old campers, killing at least 80. More deaths are expected to be confirmed as police and rescue teams search the island and the surrounding lake for bodies and wounded survivors.

Police authorities subsequently arrested Anders Behring Breivik, a 32-year-old native Norwegian with known links to anti-Islamic Christian fundamentalist groups. Norwegian media said Breivik had many right-wing connections, including a Facebook account in which he described himself as a Christian conservative.

Norway’s national broadcaster NRK and other media posted pictures of Breivik. According to Norwegian TV2, the suspect belongs to far-right groups in eastern Norway and may have registered two weapons—an automatic weapon and a Glock-type pistol—under the name of one of the groups. The Swedish news site Expressen said he was a self-described nationalist and had written a number of posts critical of Islam.

The island shootings were cold-blooded. Terrified witnesses described young people jumping into the lake or hiding behind buildings in a desperate attempt to escape the gunfire. One, 21-year-old Dana Berzingi, said the fake police officer ordered people to come closer, then pulled weapons and ammunition from a bag and started shooting.

Another 15-year-old eyewitness, Elise, told the Associated Press: “He first shot people on the island. Afterward he started shooting people in the water.” Others said the gunman repeatedly shot his victims to make sure they were dead.

Rune Thomas Ege, one of the only journalists on Utoya when the shootings took place, reported: “We saw people still being dragged out of the water. We saw people being taken care of by paramedics on the shore. There were some horrific scenes of the young kids, some crying, some shaking while watching paramedics trying to save their best friend’s life.”

Earlier, in the city, huge blasts blew out windows and caused structural damage. Images on Norwegian television showed the prime minister’s office and other buildings heavily damaged, footpaths covered in broken glass and smoke rising from the area. “People are lying in the street covered in blood,” Ingunn Andersen, a journalist with public radio NRK, said from the scene.

Before details about the alleged killer emerged, political leaders, both domestic and international, insinuated that the attacks were the work of Islamic extremists and declared that the violence underscored the need to prosecute the “war on terrorism.”

President Barack Obama and European leaders swiftly vowed solidarity with NATO member Norway, whose Labour-Socialist Left-Centre coalition government has 500 troops in Afghanistan and is participating in NATO air strikes in Libya.

The Norwegian police had earlier in the year warned of right-wing anti-Islamic groups seeking provocations. In an unclassified report released in February, Norway’s intelligence police agency (PST) stated: “An increased level of activity among some anti-Islamic groups could lead to increased polarisation and unease, especially during, and in connection with, commemorations and demonstrations.”

Friday’s atrocity occurs under conditions where governments and media outlets across Europe, including the Scandinavian states, have condoned or encouraged anti-Muslim racism and anti-immigrant chauvinism. This appeal to the most reactionary and backward sentiments is aimed at diverting popular opposition to austerity measures and the growth of social inequality.

So, it is really time for police to investigate extreme right anti-immigrant, anti-political left, violence more.

See also the recent massacre in Alphen, the Netherlands. Done by a voter of Geert Wilders’ xenophobic PVV party.

About the Oslo atrocity suspect; from NewsCore today; published by Murdoch’s Fox News, so, my conservative readers, don’t start yelling about “liberal media bias” :

Breivik appeared to come from an affluent background, attending a middle-class secondary school in the city. Apart from a traffic conviction ten years ago he has no criminal record, according to a Norwegian newspaper. He completed a year of national service in the army.

Breivik had set up his own business, Breivik Geofarm, and a month ago had started to run an organic farm in Hedmark in eastern Norway. There he reportedly produced and stored fertilizers that he was able to use in explosives.

He was known to be active on the internet, expressing extremist Islamophobic views on forums and criticizing immigration policies.

He recently claimed that politics today was not about socialism vs. capitalism but nationalism vs. internationalism. He argued on a Swedish news website that the media were not critical enough about Islam and claimed that Geert Wilders’ Party for Freedom in the Netherlands was the only “true” party of conservatives.

He argued that socialism was breaking down traditions, culture, national identity and other societal structures and that this in turn made society weak and confused.

On July 17 he set up a Facebook and Twitter account, posting a single tweet, “One person with a belief is equal to the force of 100,000 who have only interests.”

He claimed to be well-read and worshiped the Norwegian World War II hero Max Manus. On his Facebook profile he listed his favorite books as “The Trial” by Franz Kafka and “Nineteen Eighty-Four” by George Orwell and his favorite television show as “Dexter,” a series about a Miami police forensics expert who moonlights as a serial killer of criminals whom he believes have escaped justice.

Among his other interests he listed founding and developing organizations, freemasonry, working, gaming, partying and fitness. He described his relationship status as single.

His business was described as buying, selling and managing stocks, project developing and real estate.

The Politicons site, a politically conservative site, says that atrocity suspect Breivik had a firearms license. Like the Alphen massacre killer.

UPDATE: According to Dutch news site nu.nl, at least 91 people were killed in Oslo.

Norway suspect described as right-wing Christian; death toll hits 92: here.

From the Daily Kos blog in the USA, about Fox News TV, owned by Rupert Murdoch:

Anders Behring Breivik, the man suspected of the shooting in Norway has, according to the police, links to right-wing extremism. You wouldn’t know that if you tuned into The O’Reilly Factor last night. Laura Ingraham let her opinion be known to her viewers that the attacks were the works of Muslim terrorists.

Norway Live Blog at Al Jazeera site: here.

According to this Dutch blog, Murdoch‘s The Sun reacted, before knowing about the real perpetrator:

Norway’s 9/11

Al Qaedä massacre

Tea Party strikes in Norway: here.

Norwegian terrorist posted ‘manifesto’ warning of “Islamic colonisation”: here.

World public opinion has been shocked by the news of the bloody massacre in Norway. At least 91 people have been killed, including 84 members of the Labour Youth Organisation (AUF) in a summer camp: here.

One Georgian Survives, Another Missing in Norway Attack: here.

Nationalists pose bigger threat than al-Qaeda. Contrary to popular belief, most terrorist attacks in Europe are the work of extremist nationalists: here.

Terrorism Expert: Since 9/11, Only 33 Deaths From Muslim Terrorism Vs. 150,000 Deaths From Murders: here.

93 thoughts on “Oslo anti-Muslim terrorism and ‘Muslim’ media suggestions

  1. http://www.salon.com/news/opinion/glenn_greenwald/2011/07/23/nyt

    Saturday, Jul 23, 2011 07:24 ET
    The omnipotence of Al Qaeda and meaninglessness of “Terrorism”
    By Glenn Greenwald

    “Al Qaeda is always to blame, even when it isn’t, even when it’s allegedly the work of a Nordic, Muslim-hating, right-wing European nationalist. . . . The U.S. and its allies can, by definition, never commit Terrorism even when it is beyond question that the purpose of their violence is to terrorize civilian populations into submission. Conversely, Muslims who attack purely military targets — even if the target is an invading army in their own countries — are, by definition, Terrorists.”

    (updated below – Update II)

    For much of the day yesterday, the featured headline on The New York Times online front page strongly suggested that Muslims were responsible for the attacks on Oslo; that led to definitive statements on the BBC and elsewhere that Muslims were the culprits. The Washington Post’s Jennifer Rubin wrote a whole column based on the assertion that Muslims were responsible, one that, as James Fallows notes, remains at the Post with no corrections or updates. The morning statement issued by President Obama — “It’s a reminder that the entire international community holds a stake in preventing this kind of terror from occurring” and “we have to work cooperatively together both on intelligence and in terms of prevention of these kinds of horrible attacks” — appeared to assume, though (to its credit) did not overtly state, that the perpetrator was an international terrorist group.

    But now it turns out that the alleged perpetrator wasn’t from an international Muslim extremist group at all, but was rather a right-wing Norwegian nationalist with a history of anti-Muslim commentary and an affection for Muslim-hating blogs such as Pam Geller’s Atlas Shrugged, Daniel Pipes, and Robert Spencer’s Jihad Watch. Despite that, The New York Times is still working hard to pin some form of blame, even ultimate blame, on Muslim radicals (h/t sysprog):

    Terrorism specialists said that even if the authorities ultimately ruled out Islamic terrorism as the cause of Friday’s assaults, other kinds of groups or individuals were mimicking Al Qaeda’s brutality and multiple attacks.

    “If it does turn out to be someone with more political motivations, it shows these groups are learning from what they see from Al Qaeda,” said Brian Fishman, a counterterrorism researcher at the New America Foundation in Washington.

    Al Qaeda is always to blame, even when it isn’t, even when it’s allegedly the work of a Nordic, Muslim-hating, right-wing European nationalist. Of course, before Al Qaeda, nobody ever thought to detonate bombs in government buildings or go on indiscriminate, politically motivated shooting rampages. The NYT speculates that amonium nitrate fertilizer may have been used to make the bomb because the suspect, Anders Behring Breivik, owned a farming-related business and thus could have access to that material; of course nobody would have ever thought of using that substance to make a massive bomb had it not been for Al Qaeda. So all this proves once again what a menacing threat radical Islam is.

    Then there’s this extraordinarily revealing passage from the NYT — first noticed by Richard Silverstein — explaining why the paper originally reported what it did:

    Initial reports focused on the possibility of Islamic militants, in particular Ansar al-Jihad al-Alami, or Helpers of the Global Jihad, cited by some analysts as claiming responsibility for the attacks. American officials said the group was previously unknown and might not even exist.

    There was ample reason for concern that terrorists might be responsible.

    In other words, now that we know the alleged perpetrator is not Muslim, we know — by definition — that Terrorists are not responsible; conversely, when we thought Muslims were responsible, that meant — also by definition — that it was an act of Terrorism. As Silverstein put it:

    How’s that again? Are the only terrorists in the world Muslim? If so, what do we call a right-wing nationalist capable of planting major bombs and mowing down scores of people for the sake of the greater glory of his cause? If even a liberal newspaper like the Times can’t call this guy a terrorist, what does that say about the mindset of the western world?

    What it says is what we’ve seen repeatedly: that Terrorism has no objective meaning and, at least in American political discourse, has come functionally to mean: violence committed by Muslims whom the West dislikes, no matter the cause or the target. Indeed, in many (though not all) media circles, discussion of the Oslo attack quickly morphed from this is Terrorism (when it was believed Muslims did it) to no, this isn’t Terrorism, just extremism (once it became likely that Muslims didn’t). As Maz Hussain — whose lengthy Twitter commentary on this event yesterday was superb and well worth reading — put it:

    That Terrorism means nothing more than violence committed by Muslims whom the West dislikes has been proven repeatedly. When an airplane was flown into an IRS building in Austin, Texas, it was immediately proclaimed to be Terrorism, until it was revealed that the attacker was a white, non-Muslim, American anti-tax advocate with a series of domestic political grievances. The U.S. and its allies can, by definition, never commit Terrorism even when it is beyond question that the purpose of their violence is to terrorize civilian populations into submission. Conversely, Muslims who attack purely military targets — even if the target is an invading army in their own countries — are, by definition, Terrorists. That is why, as NYU’s Remi Brulin has extensively documented, Terrorism is the most meaningless, and therefore the most manipulated, word in the English language. Yesterday provided yet another sterling example.

    One last question: if, as preliminary evidence suggests, it turns out that Breivik was “inspired” by the extremist hatemongering rantings of Geller, Pipes and friends, will their groups be deemed Terrorist organizations such that any involvement with them could constitute the criminal offense of material support to Terrorism? Will those extremist polemicists inspiring Terrorist violence receive the Anwar Awlaki treatment of being put on an assassination hit list without due process? Will tall, blond, Nordic-looking males now receive extra scrutiny at airports and other locales, and will those having any involvement with those right-wing, Muslim-hating groups be secretly placed on no-fly lists? Or are those oppressive, extremist, lawless measures — like the word Terrorism — also reserved exclusively for Muslims?

    UPDATE: The original version of the NYT article was even worse in this regard. As several people noted, here is what the article originally said (papers that carry NYT articles still have the original version):

    Terrorism specialists said that even if the authorities ultimately ruled out terrorism as the cause of Friday’s assaults, other kinds of groups or individuals were mimicking al-Qaida’s signature brutality and multiple attacks.

    “If it does turn out to be someone with more political motivations, it shows these groups are learning from what they see from al-Qaida,” said Brian Fishman, a counterterrorism researcher at the New America Foundation in Washington.

    Thus: if it turns out that the perpetrators weren’t Muslim (but rather “someone with more political motivations” — whatever that means: it presumably rests on the inane notion that Islamic radicals are motivated by religion, not political grievances), then it means that Terrorism, by definition, would be “ruled out” (one might think that the more politically-motivated an act of violence is, the more deserving it is of the Terrorism label, but this just proves that the defining feature of the word Terrorism is Muslim violence). The final version of the NYT article inserted the word “Islamic” before “terrorism” (“even if the authorities ultimately ruled out Islamic terrorism as the cause”), but — as demonstrated above — still preserved the necessary inference that only Muslims can be Terrorists. Meanwhile, in the world of reality, of 294 Terrorist attacks attempted or executed on European soil in 2009 as counted by the EU, a grand total of one — 1 out of 294 — was perpetrated by “Islamists.”

    UPDATE II: This article expertly traces and sets forth exactly how the “Muslims-did-it” myth was manufactured and then disseminated yesterday to the worldwide media, which predictably repeated it with little skepticism. What makes the article so valuable is that it names names: it points to the incestuous, self-regarding network of self-proclaimed U.S. Terrorism and foreign policy “experts” — what the article accurately describes as “almost always white men and very often with military or government backgrounds,” in this instance driven by “a case of an elite fanboy wanting to be the first to pass on leaked gadget specs” — who so often shape these media stories and are uncritically presented as experts, even though they’re drowning in bias, nationalism, ignorance, and shallow credentialism.


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  23. Brilliant work!
    When I was studying terrorism last year, our lecturer pointed out that the majority of suicide bombings were carried out by secular rather than religious terrorists, in particular the Tamil Tigers in Sri Lanka who had a special unit of men and women.


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