Saturday, July 23, 2011
Royal News Roundup
King Harald was noticeably upset as he spoke to his people and it is no wonder. The normally peaceful Scandinavian monarchy has not experienced such a bloody attack since the Second World War. Some reports describe the arrested Breivik as a “right-wing extremist” while other experts have said they know of no right-wing extremists in Norway capable of carrying out such an attack. So far the motivation remains unknown. Early suspects were Al-Qaeda, opponents of the Norwegian contribution to the war in Afghanistan or the bombing of Libya, and terrorists of that type. The Somalian community in Norway, in the past, provided recruits for terrorist groups operating there. Few of the initial suspect profiles fit the 32-year-old Norwegian farmer now in custody.
Some cannot help but think there is some Islamic terrorism connection and this has led to greater criticism of Norwegian involvement in places like Afghanistan and Libya (which has been nominal in any event, a few hundred support troops and a few fighter jets) as well as the printing of the infamous Danish “Mohammad cartoons”. However, I would caution that even if this man has nothing to do with any of that, there is still a connection in the immediate “it is our own fault” response. When European nations cave in to terrorist attacks, such as Spain did by pulling out of Iraq after the Madrid bombings, it sends the message to everyone that terrorism works. Not a good idea folks. I was also particularly moved by a text message sent out from the island, describing a gunman shooting people and asking when the police were going to arrive. It is chilling and, I am a Texan and I cannot help it, but my first thought is that if someone else, just one person, at that camp had had a weapon of their own they could have put one in the guy’s head and saved a lot of lives.
But, that has not been the Scandinavian way. Even the long-neutral Kingdom of Sweden has not been spared as we can recall the Iraqi immigrant who bombed a crowd of Swedish Christmas shoppers last year. This is the world we live in and so long as things continue as they have been, I cannot see it changing. God bless the Kingdom of Norway and all those affected by this tragedy.
Mad for Monaco.