Running down the usual double speak conservatives go through whenever one of them engage in the violence they want to attribute exclusively to Muslim terrorists is hard to keep up with concerning the Norway attacks yesterday, but it can best be summed up by the World Darkest White Supremacist Michele Malkin, who herself at first used the tragedy to run down some Muslims in Norway that support terrorism, then put out this statement on her website: "Unlike those who speculated that the Giffords’ shooter was a Tea Party activist and held onto the assumption even after it was disproved, I will not continue to insist that jihadists bear blame for this heinous attack if it turns out they played no role." The caveat? "I will continue to be vigilant in thoroughly covering the global jihadist threat — and in condemning this heinous attack in Norway whoever is responsible." At the time we write this, one her last Tweet on this - after her declaration - was to "report" that Muslims were claiming responsibility for the attacks, but unlike her other "reporting" she did not provide any links. We are guessing that would be due to the fact that this would not jibe with the story that is coming out about Anders Behring Breivik, the "man" accused of killing more than 84 young people at a Labour Party gathering in Norway and at least seven in a car bombing in Oslo. Turns out he is one of those right wing Christian extremists that has been all about the kind of hatemongering against Muslims people like Malkin promote. He is a huge fan and posts regularly to the blog of local Islamophobe Pam Geller, who as Max Blumental noted in his tweets, first tried to blame the Norwiegan governement and Muslims for attacks. He also supports Dutch hatemonger and politician Geert Wilders, the English Defence League and Fox Business personality Lou Dobbs. In short, your garden vareity jihadist. After the Tuscon shooting in January when six people were killed and Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords was seriously injured, Malkin absolutely reveled over the fact that the shooter was a derranged nutjob and not an associate of any right-wing groups, saying, "Despite desperate attempts by the progressive Left to pin the massacre on the 'harsh tone' of its political opponents, a vast majority of Americans reject the cynical campaign to criminalize conservatism, suppress political free speech, and capitalize on a madman’s crime for electoral gain." And if all of this was indeed a ploy to make right-wingers look bad, the sad and tragic fact of it all was that we simply had to wait until the next one to see people like Malkin do exactly that to people of the Muslim faith. There are scores of violent acts over the past two years alone by right-wing extremists, and blogging rants from Malkin is not going to stop us from covering the threat the terrorists she likes pose to the world.
Shortly before midnight on Friday, July 22, police arrested a 32-year-old Norwegian man who allegedly went on a murderous shooting spree at a Labor Party youth camp on the island of Utoya and may also be responsible for the horrific bombing in Oslo earlier in the day.
The man arrested for the attack has been identified as Anders Behring Breivik. Norwegian TV2 reports that Breivik belongs to "right-wing circles" in Oslo. Sources in Norway tell IREHR that Breivik has been known to write posts in right-wing internet forums in Norway, where he has described himself as a “nationalist” and has also written numerous screeds critical of Muslims.
The Associated Press reports that Breivik has a Glock pistol, a rifle and a shotgun registered in the Norwegian gun registry. According to his Facebook page (since taken down), in 2009 Breivik established a business called GeoFarm, which he claimed to be engaged in the cultivation of vegetables. Such a business would give him access to large amounts of fertilizer, which could be used in the making of explosives.
According to witnesses in Utoya, the gunman was dressed as a police officer and gunned down young people as they ran for their lives at a youth camp. Police said Friday evening that they've linked the youth camp shooting and Oslo bombing. Late Friday, police also tell Reuters that the killings are of "catastrophic dimensions", and that the total number dead from the attacks may rise above eighty, just on Utoya. Seven people are currently reported dead from the Oslo bomb blast, though that number may climb.
In the immediate aftermath of the terror in Norway, many news outlets wildly speculated that Islamic terrorists may have been responsible for the attacks. Just as after the tragic Oklahoma City bombing, the press and pundits let bigotry get in the way of the facts. IREHR will continue to follow developments in this case as they become available.
UPDATE 10:01pm - New evidence has surfaced indicating that Breivik appears to be a fan of the Tea Party's favorite Islamophobe, Pamela Geller. The website Little Green Footballs reports that he's been posting links to Geller's website Atlas Shrugged since at least 2009. See here, for example.