The far-right was riding the crest of the wave in 2011. In Finland, the radical right Perussuomalaiset (PS)* party had scored their historic parliamentary victory. But then three months later, Anders Breivik appeared from nowhere and went on to murder 77 people to save – according to him – Europe from being overrun by Muslims.
On a day like this, the only thing we can and must do is not to forget.
Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg, who is no friend of Muslims, said in her speech Wednesday that Norwegians must “fight every day for the values which were targeted by the terrorist.”
“July 22nd reminds us that life can be endangered when hate is allowed to stand unchallenged,” she said.
While no sensible person will deny the crimes by Breivik were horrific, we must acknowledge that he grew up in a country that armed him with such hate.
Until January, the Islamophobic Progressive Party (FrP) share power with Solberg’s conservative Høyre. The FrP ditched the government because of the repatriation of a Norwegian woman allegedly linked with Isis had her five-year-old child, who needed medical treatment.
I am certain that Breivik’s stain on Norway will never wipe off. And this is good because it is a reminder of what hatred and racism can do.
In August, Norway almost underwent another Breivik-style terrorist attack when a young man attacked the Al-Noor Islamic Center near Oslo. Fortunately, a 65-year-old man foiled the attack.