Notes from Norway: Anders Breivik, European Police and Gun Control

The Norwegian spree killing inspired one of our regular, anonymous sources to provide some analysis.

The crime scene is just NW of Oslo, the capital. It’s about 20 U.S. miles NW on E16, a major highway. Don’t know the lake at all, but most such lakes in that part of the world have an abundance of small boats, especially in summer. The small town of Honefoss is about seven miles away from the island where the atrocity occurred . . . The Norwegian police started trying to cover their total failure almost immediately after the crime hit the media, as this quote from the bbc.co.uk’s Unanswered questions in Norway tragedy indicates . . .

On Tuesday, Justice Minister Knut Storberget praised police for “fantastic” work after the attacks that killed at least 76 people, despite the criticisms over their apparent slow response.

“It is very important that we have an open and critical approach… but there is a time for everything,” he said after talks with Oslo’s police chief.

Media helicopters were filming the killings from the air, long before the arrival of armed anti-terrror police officers, more than an hour after the shooting started.

Courageous boat owners were rescuing young people from drowning in the lake long before any emergency services came to their assistance.

Engine failure is said to have delayed the arrival of one commando police boat by 10 minutes. Police surveillance was apparently unavailable because of holidays.

And armed response units were tied up in Oslo, where government buildings had been blown up in an unprecedented attack.

The apparently slow response to the Utoeya massacre raises questions about whether the police were prepared well enough for a dual attack.

In northern Europe, the police are mostly set up for traffic and parking enforcement, DUI checks, and telling drunks to be quiet and go home. They do not like to get involved with real crime. The policy seems to be out of sight, out of mind, no problem. As you might expect, despite specialist SWAT teams, their ability to counter violent crime is tenuous.

As the gun control rhetoric heats-up, the European press continues its blatant anti-gun agenda. svd.se offers a misleading, inaccurate map of civilians weapons in Europe. The fine print at the bottom mentions that their data doesn’t include military, illegal or weapons left over from the various wars. Just firearms legally registered to civilians.

The map’s way off the mark for Eastern Europe. The waves of immigrants from Balkans and Middle East have brought with them expanding criminal networks trafficking drugs, humans and weapons. The northern European establishment doesn’t want to talk about it. But quite a few folks here are starting to believe their lying eyes.

Firearms proliferation in the hands of the bad guys is especially visible in the larger southern cities. The trade in illegal weapons—and attendant gun violence—is so obvious, the press can hardly ignore it.

There are probably a few tens of thousands of [illegal guns] criminal circles, says police Prof. Leif GW Persson. They have a lifespan of several years, found rarely in the Customs and used by criminal gangs. The suspected mass murderer Anders Behring Breivik in Oslo had a license for the weapon he used in fatal shootings.But the past year, several high-profile shootings occurred in both Malmö and Gothenburg, where illegal weapons were involved. In early summer, shot a 22-year-old man to death in Åkersberga north of Stockholm.

The latest info on Breivik’s weapons (which seems to be accurate): Breivik obtained a Ruger Mini 14 in 2010, and a Glock 17 in Jan. of 2011. He had ten 30-round magazines for the rifle. No other info on the pistol yet. The police still don’t want to give out details.

The press is largely ignoring the bomb-making equation and asking the usual questions about the Ruger: how did this madman obtain such deadly weapons? Here’s a familiar sort of [Google translated] quote from svd.se on the availability of high capacity magazines.

– What do you with a tray that holds 30 shots? You may not use it for hunting. If there is a rifle which the statute says you may use as many shots, so there is no use for the magazine in Sweden.

Politically, well, what do you expect? Not wanting to waste a crisis on this side of the pond either, the media and ruling leftist parties are working overtime to brand anyone with dissenting opinions as extremist, far right, racist, Nazi, or all of the above. They are using the spree killing to try to derail the right of center parties in Europe. [In Europe, the center is quite a bit to the left of the center in the U.S.]

The immigration and cultural issues that apparently drove Breivik are valid and serious. They are a matter of growing concern to a lot of people here. Still, with the usual group think prelevant, it is considered not nice to talk about the immigration problems and where it all might lead. A topic that has driven much of the growth of several of the right of center parties.

Unlike earlier waves of immigration, the current one from the Balkans and especially northern Africa and Iraq are not assimilating. The radical Islamic quotient is readily seen in many areas here now. Europe has a very long bloody history of conflict with Islam. While the local media is busy decrying “Islamophobia,” millions of “native” Europeans are rightfully frightened that their culture is under attack.

Breivik’s lunacy did a lot of damage to the center right parties and people genuinely concerned about the immigration situation. The parties most sympathetic to firearms and self-defense rights took a major hit—at least amongst the media.

Whether disingenuously or not, the “extremist” organizations dealing with the issues were quick to distance themselves for the attack. Here’s Germany’s dw-world.de:

Breivik claimed to have links with the English anti-Muslim party, the English Defense League, and referred directly to Geert Wilders Dutch Freedom Party, which props up the country’s center-right coalition. Both parties were quick to distance themselves from Breivik’s manifesto, however, and condemn the attacks.

“No form of terrorism can ever be justified, and the taking of innocent lives can never be justified,” said a statement on the English Defense League website. “We are proud to stand strongly against all forms of extremism and we will continue to speak out against the biggest terrorist threat to our nation, Islamic extremism.”

Manfred Rouhs, chairman of the German far-right party, the Pro Germany Citizens Movement, also refuted the notion that there were similarities between European right-wing parties and Breivik’s ideology.

“Conservatives are for preservation, for adherence to certain rules, and Christians are driven by their love for their fellow human beings,” Rouhs told Deutsche Welle. “The message of destruction and hate that Anders Breivik has brought into the world has nothing to do with Christian or conservative values.”

The statements did nothing to quell commentators, who see Breivik’s spree killing as a harbinger of things to come. Matthew Godwin an “expert on far-right politics at the [far left] University of Nottingham” warned that . . .

 . . . among the growing support network for far-right parties is a minority of extremists who are likely to share Breivik’s ideology.

“Within this movement, this very broad subculture, I think it’s fair to say that there are inevitably within each country a handful of would-be Breiviks, guys who are prepared to undertake violence,” Goodwin said.

[Farago]: It’s only now beginning to dawn on some members of the mainstream media that the “war on terrorism” is, in fact, a war against Islamic extremists. It’s a tragedy that this reality has been brought to the fore by an enormous, entirely misguided, self-inflicted wound. But that doesn’t change the unavoidable fact that when cultures collide, people get hurt.

As the Israelis will tell you, facing the challenge of “assimilating” Islamic cultures may not be a Gordian knot, but it’s close. Meanwhile, leaving your self-defense to someone else leaves you defenseless. And that’s not a good place to be, both individually and as a society.

comments

  1. avatar stateisevil says:

    No matter where you are, the government police will not and cannot defend you from harm.They exist to serve and protect the state. Despite that, if you were marooned with a cruise ship full of people on an island and one family said- ” Only we may have weapons. If you want a weapon, you can ask us for permission”- what would be your response? Everyone would laugh at them. But increase the numbers involved and gun grabbers start popping up. Bizarre.

  2. avatar James Felix says:

    Looking at the smug little smirk on that murderous coc*****ers face reminds me of something all these spree killers have in common: they do it for the perp-walk. They absolutely love the idea that the entire world knows their name and have listened to their crackpot manifestos.

    What I’m about to say admittedly doesn’t count as hard data but it does bear thinking about. The incidence of this type of crime, though still rare, is exponentially higher than it was pre-1968 even though guns are less easily available. You know what’s become more available during that same period? The media.

    I don’t think we should blame anyone for these crimes except the person who chooses to commit them. But if we are going to point fingers at enablers I think the media bears far more responsibility than “gun culture” does. So if we’re going to call for infringements on basic rights to stop these crimes don’t look at the Second Amendment… look at the First.

    (just to be clear I’m not advocating we infringe on either Amendment. I’m pointing out a position logically consistent with the gun control mentality).

    1. avatar Ralph says:

      “they do it for the perp-walk’

      You nailed it. Which is why I prefer the perp to be carried from the scene of the crime on a gurney, covered by a sheet.

      1. avatar TTACer says:

        I thought the same thing after that scumbag shot up Va Tech, not that he survived but people were poring over his deranged rants, same as Loughner. The news should just be “some f’ing loser that nobody gives a shit about killed a bunch of decent people” and not even mention the perp’s name.

  3. avatar Nicholas Dixon says:

    This was NOT terrorism(IMO, obviously). Terrorism refers to intent, and his intentions seemed to be more about killing future political members of labour party, rather than trying to scare them for political reasons into hating immigrants or some crackpot shite.

    I know you’re not claiming it was, but a lot of people seem to be.

    1. avatar Page2 says:

      A guy who in his own words wishes to set off an anti-islamic, anti-multiculturalist, anti-“marxist” conflagration that will kill more than a million people is not a terrorist? Since when?

      The people who are reluctant to call him a terrorist are those who share his beliefs – essentially it is the “we have to save our country / families / world from this attack on our way of life” fringe of the extreme right. Extremism is just the narrative leading to violence — its role is to sharpen the sense of outrage and escalate the level of perceived emergency until, bingo, a Breivik snaps. The reason Breivik makes some folks squirm is not because his ideas remotely resemble extreme right wing beliefs, but because they ARE those beliefs, right down to crossed t’s and dotted i’s. The toxicity of extremist ways of expressing what might be valid grievances is how psychopaths escalate to violence. Breivik himself said in his manifesto: “The time for dialogue is over. We gave peace a chance. The time for armed resistance has come.” If that’s not terrorism, you’ll have to reinvent language.

      1. avatar James Felix says:

        “The reason Breivik makes some folks squirm is not because his ideas remotely resemble extreme right wing beliefs, but because they ARE those beliefs, right down to crossed t’s and dotted i’s.”

        Same question I asked elsewhere in this thread applies here. If what you say is true then why don’t the literal thousands of terrorist attacks that perfectly reflect left-wing beliefs similarly discredit them? Because if you want to make up a scorecard for the last thirty years the left-wing has “out terrorist-ed” the right by at least two orders of magnitude.

        And besides, just because a lunatic shares your idea doesn’t make an idea wrong. You can be against abortion without thinking it’s acceptable to bomb clinics. You can be against a war without thinking it’s cool to murder soldiers. You can be anti-drug abuse and still be against violent no-knock raids. And yes, you can think that unchecked, unassimilated immigration is a bad thing without endorsing mass murder.

  4. avatar Magoo says:

    Quote from the story: “Unlike earlier waves of immigration, the current one from the Balkans and especially northern Africa and Iraq are not assimilating.”

    This accusation is a familiar one and should raise a red flag. For hundreds of years, the United States and other countries have discriminated against each succeeding wave of immigrants on the grounds that they “are not assimilating.” You know: the Irish wouldn’t “assimilate” quickly enough, then the Italians wouldn’t “assimilate,” then Eastern Europeans, etc. One would think we could recognize this for what it is by now: as long as we can recognize their otherness, the immigrants are not “assimilating” quickly enough and it’s their fault we are discriminating against them.

    1. avatar James Felix says:

      I don’t recall any of those other groups asking for an entirely separate legal system based on their religion. And far from being discriminated against the government policy in most western nations is to bend over backwards to accomodate immigrants, making it very comfortable for them to not assimilate.

      1. avatar Magoo says:

        We go through this with every new wave of immigration. They refuse to learn the language, they follow their own laws, blah blah blah.

        1. avatar James Felix says:

          Magoo, it’s not “blah blah blah”. Islamic immigrants (moreso in Europe but also in the US) are actively asserting that they have the right to govern themselves under sharia law, and even more appallingly some governments are willing to entertain that notion. There are entire neighborhoods in Paris that are no-go areas for non-muslims. None of this is a secret, you can easily scan the news (any news)and see it for yourself.

          This one guy committing an atrocity doesn’t invalidate the point, just like the a-holes at E.L.F. blowing up a lab doesn’t invalidate the ASPCA.

        2. avatar Rob says:

          Really? I hear a lot about the desire for sharia law etc but it does usually come from the more conservative right wing news outlets. I have to admit that there isnt a large Muslim population where I live so I have no direct experience but there are large ethnic/racial/cultural communities in my state. The older ones are more assimilated than the newer ones. As far as I know (in my area) none have tried to force their laws but things like language can be a problem. I think the first wave will always be more reluctant to assimilate than their children and future generations. Anyone who denies that historically we have feared or disliked immigrants is being a little dishonest in my opinion.

        3. avatar James Felix says:

          It’s a much bigger problem in Europe than it is here in America, Rob. If you have some time to kill you can look around Google and you’ll see what I’m talking about. One example off the top of my head is the riots a few years back over those Mohammad cartoons. Those are not the actions of an assimilated population.

          Yes, someone who says no nation has ever looked askance at immigrants is being either naive or dishonest. But it’s equally naive and dishonest to wave one’s hand and say “There’s no problem at all here, it’s just those nativist xenophobes.”

        4. avatar Magoo says:

          I’m just saying: beware of the “will not assimilate” canard. The charge is made with every new wave of immigration. It could be true this time but if so, it will be the first time.

          The hysteria about sharia law in the USA is the usual xenophobic BS from the usual suspects — blatant pandering to the rubes and yahoos.

          I fully expect that Europe would have more trouble absorbing immigrants than the USA. That’s not in the nature of the immigrants but of Europe. We are a nation of immigrants. This is our strength.

      2. avatar Eric S says:

        That’s a small minority of Muslims in the United States. Most of the ones I’ve met do everything they can to blend in. You can always tell immigrant stores since most of them are covered in American flags. Also, many of them left their countries to come here to get away from all of the sharia mess.

        I know there are stories of “creeping sharia”, but just like the Mormons having to give up polygamy, so would the Muslims have to give up the sharia.

        P.S. Before 2001 most Musilims voted Republican. They’re very fiscally and socially conservative. A lot of the ones I know still do.

        1. avatar James Felix says:

          If I may quote myself:
          “Islamic immigrants (moreso in Europe but also in the US) are actively asserting…”

          “It’s a much bigger problem in Europe than it is here in America…”

          I know that it’s a small minority of American muslims, and that the ones it does apply to tend to live in a few specific neighborhoods in a few specific cities. I’m describing the current situation in Western Europe.

  5. avatar James Felix says:

    A quick question for those who think that this murderer’s actions somehow discredit the point of view that unchecked, unassimilated immigration is a problem.

    If this one act of violence discredits that entire point of view then why don’t the thousands of acts of Islamic terrorism over the last thirty years serve to discredit the other side of the debate?

    1. avatar Eric S says:

      I know Muslims who no longer practice for that reason. So apparently it does.

  6. avatar ankle says:

    “In northern Europe, the police are mostly set up for traffic and parking enforcement, DUI checks, and telling drunks to be quiet and go home. They do not like to get involved with real crime. The policy seems to be out of sight, out of mind, no problem. As you might expect, despite specialist SWAT teams, their ability to counter violent crime is tenuous.”

    Frankly, I think I’d prefer that over the SWAT-mania we’ve got in the U.S.

    1. avatar davvehall says:

      Sure, less SWAT behavior is good, but, and this is a big but,In most of northern europe you can not get a gun for defending yourself against the real criminals while the police is busy handing out traffic tickets..

  7. avatar Crispin says:

    It’s only now beginning to dawn on some members of the mainstream media that the “war on terrorism” is, in fact, a war against Islamic extremists. It’s a tragedy that this reality has been brought to the fore by an enormous, entirely misguided, self-inflicted wound. But that doesn’t change the unavoidable fact that when cultures collide, people get hurt.

    Wait, what? You’re writing an article about a non-Muslim terrorist — in fact, one who hated Muslims — and you have the gall to say that this proves the war on terror is a war against Islam?

  8. avatar K-Romulus says:

    lulz. . .Muslim immigrants (so I recently read) make up between 3 and 6% of the Norwegian population. Sounds like a real PLA style attack wave. . . .yeah, that’ s it.

    And in other news, I agree with Magoo.

  9. avatar Your Future says:

    Breivik was correct. He was rightly observing what’s happening in his own country – which itself is not far behind Britain and France in letting hordes of immigrants in at the behest of the rich capitalists who want them to drive down wages and working conditions.

    The solution is to stop allowing them in, and to quit electing politicians who betray their own people by opening the floodgates to turn their own country into a Third World – Islamic to boot. They won’t be done until Sharia law criminal courts and worse.

    These immigrants, Islamics/Muslims in particular – don’t come to ‘settle’, or ‘integrate’. They come and form their own communities or just anarchy. As their percent of the population increases, they turn from a nice curiosity or “diversity” into a force to be reckoned with. They become aggressive and start riots, start pushing for their Sharia courts, etc.

    Islam, their religion, preaches hatred and death to infidels. Women who are not married or who aren’t veiled in public may be lawfully raped, stoned or killed. A woman who is raped herself becomes the criminal and is often sentenced to death.

    This is just a part of what they are bringing over. These people, Islamists or not – are desperate and do not share the culture or values of British or Europeans in general. They come from brutal lands where the law of kill or be killed is daily life.

    They are schooled to rape as they please because Islam says they can – and they do! Look at the statistics – you will be thoroughly shocked and horrified as to who the instigators of rapes and robberies are in Norway and Britain.

    The riots we have seen over the last few days in London are a mere beginning for what’s coming.

    As the oil runs out and the jobs disappear, there will be a lot of angry immigrants feeling entitled to a fistful of stolen items and a fiery view of your houses and shops burning to the ground.

    The situation will only get worse which is why Breivik sacrificed himself as he did – to sound the alarm all over Europe and through other First World nations about the tide of Islamic immigration, and Third World immigration which is destroying centuries-old cultures that had achieved a social consensus and lasting peace.

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