A far-right extremist killed 77 individuals in Norway. A decade on, ‘the hatred remains to be on the market’ however attacker’s affect is seen as low

2021-07-22 13:02:46

In a nationwide memorial deal with at Oslo Cathedral simply two days after the assaults, Stoltenberg known as for “extra democracy, extra openness, and extra humanity.”

Talking with CNN’s “Amanpour” present in an interview to mark the anniversary, Stoltenberg — now NATO secretary-general — repeated that message and applauded the best way Norwegians had responded. However, he warned, the “hatred remains to be on the market.”

Final month, the College of Oslo’s Middle for Analysis on Extremism (C-REX) revealed a sequence of analyses taking a look at Breivik’s long-term affect.

The creator of one of many experiences, Dr. Jacob Aasland Ravndal, advised CNN it appeared extra restricted than media protection would recommend. “There was after all a whole lot of concern after the assaults that they’d generate copycat assaults,” he mentioned. However “considerably surprisingly,” he mentioned, there have not been many clear-cut instances of direct inspiration from Breivik.

Rightwing extremist Anders Behring Breivik arrives in court on April 16, 2012 for the start of his trial.
One of many extra obvious hyperlinks is to the taking pictures assault in Munich, Germany on July 22, 2016, by which an 18-year-old German-Iranian man killed 9 individuals. The rampage was carried out on the fifth anniversary of the Norway assaults and the attacker had been “speaking lots about Breivik,” Ravndal mentioned. “However he was additionally deeply impressed by many different figures,” Ravndal mentioned, a few of them school-shooters.
The opposite apparent case is that of Brenton Tarrant, the Australian far-right terrorist who live-streamed an assault by which he killed 51 Muslim worshipers at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, in March 2019.

However though Tarrant claimed to have been impressed by Breivik, investigators discovered that he had began his planning a while earlier than he learn Breivik’s manifesto. “So even there, you may query how a lot of an affect Breivik had,” Ravndal mentioned. Tarrant’s personal manifesto may be very totally different from Breivik’s, together with in its politics, he added.

Inside Norway, analysis signifies that the far proper has not gained a lot enchantment total for the reason that assaults and has been unable to end up supporters in any numbers on the streets, Ravndal mentioned.

“In fact in Norway, as all over the place else, on-line exercise has grown over these 10 years,” he mentioned. “However whether or not that displays a considerable enhance of far-right exercise or just mirrors the expansion of social media on the web, that is very tough to say.”

Taking pictures spree

On that quiet summer time day in 2011, Breivik drove a van full of a selfmade fertilizer bomb into Oslo and parked it outdoors a authorities workplace. A couple of minutes later, it exploded, killing eight individuals, injuring many extra and damaging a number of buildings.
Firefighters work at the site of the explosion near government buildings in the Norwegian capital, Oslo, on July 22, 2011.

Breivik, in the meantime, had set off by automotive on the 25-mile journey to Utoya Island, the place a Labour Get together summer time youth camp was happening. Posing as a police officer who was checking on safety following the Oslo assault, he caught a ferry to the island and carried out a taking pictures spree by which 69 individuals died — most of them youngsters. Many others had been critically wounded.

Throughout his trial, Breivik boasted of being an ultranationalist who killed his victims to combat multiculturalism in Norway, saying he acted out of “necessity” to stop the “Islamization” of the nation below the ruling center-left Labour Get together.
A court docket ruling meant his testimony was not televised, denying him an opportunity to broadcast his views to a large viewers. However Breivik believed his writings would encourage right-wing terrorists to observe in his footsteps.
Police and emergency services gather following the massacre at a summer youth camp on July 22, 2011 on Utoya Island, Norway.
Whereas components of his three-book manifesto had been lifted from different sources, such because the writings of “Unabomber” Ted Kaczynski in the USA, Breivik additionally detailed his meticulous, years-long planning and gave strategic and operational recommendation.

In response to Professor Matthew Feldman, director of the UK-based Centre for Evaluation of the Radical Proper (CARR), Breivik’s doc can nonetheless “simply” be discovered within the darker reaches of the web regardless of efforts to take away it.

That manifesto was “paradigmatic,” Feldman mentioned, “not simply because it confirmed what one particular person can do when it comes to the horrific lack of life” but additionally in its concentrating on of Muslims and what Breivik known as “cultural Marxism.”

Much more importantly, Feldman mentioned, Breivik’s case confirmed the risks posed by lone-wolf actors who self-radicalize on-line by way of networks of like-minded people and perform their preparations for violent assaults on-line, making them very onerous to detect.
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On the identical time, Feldman mentioned, there was the “gradual rise, some would name it mainstreaming, of right-wing extremism,” helped partially by publicity on right-wing media platforms. “For some it was laid naked on January 6 in the USA [in the assault on the Capitol] but it surely’s one thing that is been gathering tempo slowly however steadily in current many years,” he mentioned.

Regardless of this backdrop, Breivik’s actions and manifesto have gained restricted traction, in keeping with Ravndal.

His evaluation for C-REX signifies that “at first the far-right throughout the board rejected him,” mentioned Ravndal. A web-based assist community that was established for Breivik later collapsed. It was solely with the emergence of on-line boards like 4chan and 8chan that Breivik as soon as once more began to get constructive mentions, Ravndal mentioned.

“The primary discovering, all in all, each with regards to techniques but additionally for political, ideological assist, is that it has been surprisingly little,” he mentioned. “It has been doable to seek out assist, however happily lower than one may need fearful about initially contemplating the excessive demise toll and all the eye these assaults received globally.”

Societal affect

Right now, the controversy has shifted in components of Norwegian society to broader ideological questions, Ravndal mentioned.

Some — notably within the youth wing of the Labour Get together — really feel that there has not been a reckoning with the nation’s far-right motion, the most important participant by which is the populist, right-wing Progress Get together, he mentioned.

Breivik had been a member of the Progress Get together when he was youthful however the occasion distanced itself from him after the assault.
In a joint assertion revealed on the occasion’s web site earlier this month, occasion chief Sylvi Listhaug and deputy leaders Ketil Solvik-Olsen and Terje Søviknes pushed again towards any suggestion that the Progress Get together was not united with different Norwegians in rejecting Breivik’s attitudes and actions.

“We should all stand collectively towards violent extremism — no matter whether or not it comes from the ‘far proper’, ‘far left’ or excessive interpretations of faith,” the assertion mentioned. “Solely the extremists will win if we exclude one another from the grief after July 22 and weaken the unity across the battle for democracy, freedom of expression and equality.”

Labour has promised that if it wins energy in elections this September, it’s going to arrange a brand new fee to have a look at radicalization.

There may be additionally debate about whether or not the assault must be interpreted as an assault on Norwegian society as a complete, or as an assault on the Labour Get together particularly, Ravndal mentioned. “Right now, some throughout the Labour Get together maybe really feel that that a part of the story has been uncared for a bit.”

People stand next to the "Iron roses" memorial outside Oslo Cathedral on September 28, 2019, to commemorate the 77 victims of Anders Behring Breivik's attacks.

Feldman considers that Norway’s response was formed by the sense that the perpetrator was “one in all their very own,” as had been the victims, with no sense of “otherness” to power a extra multicultural response.

“Norway primarily requested itself this query, and it is a very legitimate one … ‘How did Norwegian society produce such a monster?'” he mentioned. “It is a very inward-looking query.”

In contrast, he mentioned, New Zealand took a way more international strategy because it checked out what led as much as the Christchurch assaults. This was partially as a result of Tarrant, an Australian, had focused worshipers at mosques, a lot of whom had been foreign-born.

On the identical time, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s response, together with carrying a hijab to satisfy survivors and kinfolk of these killed, was central in bringing all New Zealanders collectively in assist of the victims as fellow residents, he mentioned.
Simply weeks later, New Zealand collaborated with France to supply the “Christchurch Name” — a dedication by governments and tech corporations to remove terrorist and violent extremist content material on-line — and subsequently labored with the USA and United Nations to maintain the problem on the agenda, Feldman mentioned.

He hopes to win additional commitments to counter extremist content material on-line at an occasion he’s concerned with in Bergen, Norway, subsequent month.

Members of the public pay their respects near Utoya Island on July 24, 2011 in Norway.

Breivik’s ideology ‘remains to be on the market’

Talking to CNN earlier this month, Stoltenberg spoke of the shock he felt as he realized the size of the horrors perpetrated by Breivik — and the private disappointment it introduced, since he knew most of the victims.

He additionally stood by the message he delivered to the nation because it was nonetheless reeling from the July 22 assaults.

Norway's then-Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg, left, embraces Eskil Pedersen, leader of the Norwegian Labour Youth league and a survivor of the Utoya attack, on July 23, 2011.

“I nonetheless consider that our reply was the suitable one,” Stoltenberg advised CNN. “[Breivik] needed to assault our free, open democratic societies. So the perfect response is extra openness, extra democracy, as a result of then we show that he’s not successful, we’re successful.

“He demonstrated hatred. The perfect response to hatred is love. So … I actually welcomed the robust message from the individuals of Norway, as (we) have seen additionally in lots of different nations which were attacked, that we get up for our values.”

That however, Stoltenberg doesn’t consider that Breivik has been solely defeated.

“He’s convicted, he’s in jail. However his ideology, that’s nonetheless on the market. And due to this fact we have to proceed — I believe we by no means shall be within the place the place we are able to say that we now have gained the combat, we are able to shut the chapter preventing towards extremism.”

Since 2011, Norway has carried out measures to guard — so far as doable — towards such assaults sooner or later, Stoltenberg mentioned. And, he added, Brevik — whose 21-year sentence may very well be prolonged sooner or later if he nonetheless poses a menace — has misplaced in a single key respect.

“Now we have to grasp that the aim of this assault was to vary Norway basically. And … sure, after all, this shall be a part of Norway’s historical past,” he mentioned. “Will probably be a part of who we’re so long as we exist. However basically, it has not modified who we’re.”

CNN’s Frederik Pleitgen contributed to this report.

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