Comment: The terrible events that hit Norway on Friday appear to be the work of a far-right extremist, according to a story by Reuters below. Taking into account the rise of far-right and right-wing populist parties in Europe due to anti-immigrant and anti-Islam sentiment fuelled by a shaky economic panorama, what happened in Norway can be a serious wake up call to countries like Finland.
Writes Reuters: “But violence, while sometimes fatal, has rarely escalated beyond group thuggery and the use of knives. That may have changed in Oslo and on the holiday island of Utoeya on Friday. Seven people were killed in a bombing in the capital — Western Europe’s worst since the 2005 London al Qaeda-linked suicide attacks that killed 52 people — and at least 10 (the number has risen to at least 80) in a shooting rampage by a lake.”
Migrant Tales and some bloggers who visit our blog have regularly expressed concern about how some far-right members of parties like the Perussuomalaiset (PS) party have stoked the flames of racism with their provocative statments and blog entries.
If a terrible tragedy is possible in Norway could something similar happen in Finland? Certainly it could and it has happened before when lone gunmen have gone on shooting rampages in Jokela and Kauhajoki.
Why is tolerance and acceptance important in society? Why should we confront bigotry and fascism forcefully?
Oslo and Utoeya island, northwest of the capital Oslo, are probably answers and the tragic consequences.
By William Mclean
A report that Norway’s bomb and gun rampage may be the work of a far-right militant confronts Europe with the possibility that a new paramilitary threat is emerging, a decade after al Qaeda’s September 11 attacks.