The killing of 8 people by a bomb in Oslo, placed by the Norwegian berserker Anders Behring Breivik, followed by his gunning down of a further 69 on the island of Utoya, is a horrible reminder of the potential for evil inherent in human nature. That he deliberately chose to gun down children in Utoya strongly demonstrates this. No amount of Scandinavian welfare and niceness can wash away personal wickedness. It will always be there. Breivik’s actions were not “inappropriate” or “deviant” or “contrary to social norms,” as the jargon of the left would put it; they were evil. As he killed the children, he laughed and cried out, “You can’t escape.”
Breivik’s actions and philosophy remind one of the “propaganda of the deed” advocated by anarchists, which led to setting off bombs in public places not only to kill but to destabilize society—also one of Breivik’s aims. These were not the acts of a political party but of wild individuals or cells who saw themselves as part of an invisible elite who could change the world through erratic violence. By chance, I have just returned from the Liceu theater in Barcelona, where in 1893 the anarchist Santiago Salvador threw two bombs at those attending a play, killing 22 and injuring 35. Their successors in our own time were the German and Italian left-wing terrorists of the last 30 years of the 20th century: Germany’s Revolutionary Cells and Red Army Fraction (including the Baader-Meinhof gang), and Italy’s Red Brigades, who were supplied with Czech explosives and weapons by the PLO. They carried out hundreds of bombings and thousands of other vile, violent acts. Anders Breivik and Andreas Baader were brothers under the skin.
Political violence in a democracy is wrong because there are alternatives. Random political violence is evil even in an authoritarian state. It not only involves killing the innocent but leads to other innocents being killed when those in power clumsily retaliate. Indeed, this may be its purpose even in a democracy, as radicals use random violence to provoke violence, revealing the “violent nature of society.” Such are the consequences of the left-wing intellectuals’ belief in “violence for equality.”
What is so special about equality that it should justify abandoning all human decency?
Further evil will follow. Europe’s leftists will use the fact that Breivik was opposed to Europe going Islamic through unchecked immigration and to the pandering to Muslims by social-democratic elites as an excuse to smear peaceful Christians, conservatives, democrats, and libertarians who share these fears.
Already, they have seized on Breivik’s description of himself as a Christian to claim that contemporary Christians are just as violent as Muslims. I doubt if any Hindus, Sikhs, Israelis, or Baha’is will give any credence to this stupid assertion. But it will become an article of faith for left-wing Scandinavian atheists and those nominal Lutherans who are almost indistinguishable from them. It is difficult to think of a milder and less violent group of people than the pietist, quietist Norwegian fundamentalists and the people of Norway’s black coast. They have long endured exclusion from and mockery by Norway’s left-liberal elite with a resigned acceptance that Norway’s Muslims will never emulate.
In January 2006 the Norwegian Christian Magazinet republished the Muhammad cartoons that had first appeared in the Danish paper Jyllands-Posten the previous year and which are freely available on the web. The magazine was immediately denounced by Norway’s Labor government. The government had the impudence to place the magazine under the “protection” of Muslim leaders in Norway, and the editor was forced to apologize. The threat of Muslim violence had prevailed, Muslim power was enhanced and legitimized, and the lack of freedom of speech in Norway was affirmed.
The hypocrisy of the Norwegian Labor Party was exposed later in 2006, when the government said nothing about the actions of the Norwegian comedian Otto Jesperson, who tore up and burned a copy of the Bible outside the town hall in Alesund for his television program Rikets Rost. Norwegian Christians were disgusted but endured the insult. Imagine what would have happened if Jesperson had burned a copy of the Koran! In October 1993 William Nygaard, the publisher of Salman Rushdie’s work in Norway, had narrowly escaped assassination by a Muslim in Oslo. This should have been seen as a warning for Norway to be prepared to resist any further attack on freedom of speech, but when the threat came the government chose appeasement.
This political background casts some light on an oddity about the behavior of the murderous Anders Behring Breivik. He was strongly against Muslims, yet he did not try to kill any. Rather, he attacked members of the Labor Party and their children. Either way, his actions would have been evil, but it is telling that he targeted the social-democratic political class that had consistently marginalized and excluded those who resented Islamic power and Islamic violence. When the sealed pressure cooker exploded, it was Labor supporters who got hurt.
This point is still not understood by Norway’s left-wing elite. When the president of Israel gave his official condolences to the Norwegian people, the king of Norway thanked him for this expression of solidarity. However, the Norwegian ambassador to Israel, Svein Sevje, made a tactless and tasteless distinction between Breivik’s bomb and gun outrages and those committed by Palestinian terrorists against Israeli civilians. The Palestinians, claimed Sevje, have “a defined goal,” whereas Breivik was merely convinced that Norway’s Labor Party is undermining “Norwegian culture.” The Palestinian terrorists do have a defined goal—the destruction of Israel—but why should this be seen as something more positive than the aims of those who seek to preserve Norway and her traditions? The Norwegian politicians have even been willing to engage with the Islamic terrorist organization Hamas. They are quite unable to comprehend the hatred of Israel and the Jews, which is held not just by Arabs but by many Muslims in such distant countries as Pakistan, Somalia, Malaysia, and Iran who are not directly involved in the conflict. What makes the Muslims angry is that a territory that had once been Islamic is now a non-Muslim state, which contradicts the Islamic imperialist belief that a country that has been Islamic must stay Islamic. The other side of this imperialism is the ambition to become so dominant in European countries that sharia and Islamic customs can be imposed. When ambassador Sevje says, “We Norwegians consider the occupation to be the cause of the terror against Israel,” he reveals the blinkered ideological mind-set of the Norwegian left-wing elite. His arrogant use of the phrase “We Norwegians” shows how out of touch he is with the views and resentments of many ordinary people in his own country.
One sad indication of the way the social democrats in Norway have brainwashed their party supporters into hating Israel comes from the comments of some of the children who escaped Breivik’s bullets. Ulrich Sahm has reported that many of them thought that the killer was “simulating Israeli crimes against Palestinians” and “believed that ‘the cruelty of the Israeli occupation’ was being demonstrated to them.” That they should have made such a comparison is bizarre, particularly in light of recent events in Syria, Libya, Iran, and Sudan. But the evil acts of Muslim regimes do not seem to be part of their consciousness—a consciousness molded by the party that held the political summer camp where they were attacked.
Pro-Muslim leftists throughout Europe will now use the Oslo killings to smear as racist all who provide a reasoned criticism of Islamic evils. The Muslims in Europe are not a race, nor even identifiable by color, but range from fair-skinned Albanians to Arabs to Pakistanis to Somalis. In Britain there is no conflict between the indigenous people and the Hindus, Sikhs, Jains, and Parsees, whose ancestry and appearance are roughly similar to that of the majority of Muslims. What is more, they share the indigenous people’s suspicion of Islam, for they or their ancestors have experienced the murder and mayhem caused by Islamic bigotry and belligerence in India. They know what would happen if it came to Britain. Indeed, they have already seen arson attacks on Hindu temples in Britain by Muslims. Indian diplomats have privately warned European politicians that this violence was coming, but they have been ignored.
The hero of those who object to Islam in Britain is Bishop Michael Nazir-Ali, an Anglican born in Pakistan, who has consistently warned of the problems caused by the Muslim immigrants. It is he who first spoke of the parts of East London occupied very largely by Muslims as becoming no-go areas (a prophetic observation). In late July 2011, Muslim activists put up bright-yellow posters in just these parts of London declaring, “You are entering a Sharia Controlled Zone. Islamic Rules Enforced.” Within the zone alcohol, gambling, music, and usury are forbidden by Muslim decree. The organizers have declared that “They wish to put the seeds down for an Islamic emirate in the long term.” Is it so unreasonable to feel harassment, alarm, and distress at the sight of such posters? There were probably only a few thousand bills, and many Muslims likely disapproved, but disapproval is not enough. Why did they not confront those putting the posters up and then tear them down? Why are those Muslims who so stridently demand multiculturalism so quiet when the culture of others is attacked in the name of Islamic supremacy? Come to that, why do they not inform the police when women in these areas are routinely threatened with violence for not wearing headscarves? In fairness, perhaps these “moderates” feel intimidated, but that is equally dispiriting.
The mendacious term Islamophobia is already being employed. A phobia is an unreasonable or disproportionate fear of something, as in claustrophobia or arachnophobia, but there is nothing unreasonable or disproportionate about fearing Islam. Islam is not just a set of spiritual beliefs but an integrated social, legal, and political order, a proselytizing total ideology rooted in religion. It is to be feared and fought, much as Marxism had to be in the past (and, indeed, still has to be). Crying “Islamophobia” is merely a way of evading this harsh fact, as is the spurious distinction between Islam and Islamism. The very idea of a European country becoming an Islamic emirate is an evil and repulsive one, but soon it will be forbidden to say so—perhaps by the use of the criminal law, but more likely through those insidious social pressures and regulations within institutions that are the very essence of Scandinavian authoritarianism.
In Britain those few newspapers who have campaigned against Islamic imperialism and fearlessly reported wrongdoing by Muslims are already being blamed for having “caused” Breivik. Censorship may well follow. Those who have constructed election-winning democratic parties to combat the Islamic evil have been consistently reviled for doing so. Now that it is known that the killer Breivik has expressed admiration for them, we may expect even more savage condemnation of democratic movements that have never advocated violence. Strangely, I do not hear the word McCarthyism being used. Yet we are witnessing a concerted effort by the left to prove guilt by association. Is it true that you once met Breivik in a pub without knowing who he was? Guilty! Did Breivik visit your website? Guilty! Are you mentioned in Section 52, Sub-section 3a, of his manifesto? Guilty!
More people will now die violently as a result of the diversion of resources by the security services from confronting the main threat of Islamic terrorism to finding and watching nativist oddballs. Freedom of speech will be even more restricted to prevent strong, legitimate criticism of Islam.
Evil breeds evil.