As I read newspaper after newspaper one thing dominated – the Norway massacre. For a change it was good to read something other than the phone hacking scandal. In reading the story and how this terrorist had been involved in activities for a couple of years at least – It struck me why was it not picked up? Anders Behring Breivik is a man who had freely been allowed to mingle with other like minded extremists, plot and carry out his plan. Now this particular story struck a cord as I read , in The Daily Telegraph Anders Behring Breivik had ‘extensive links to English Defence League’. This man was affiliated to EDL (English Defence League) and even attended some rallies and meetings – why on earth was not this picked up earlier? To me this was a question that kept on popping up everywhere with regards to this story. Now for any who don’t know the EDL are in my opinion a racist, football hooligan style faction who are just plain well…thugs. I failed to understand why they were not kept “under watch” after seeing some members who were demonstrating in London and their vile behaviour.
Now as I carry on following this story – I have this urge to know what the British Governments reaction will be. I’ve seen this government always ready to tackle the “war on terror”..So to put it plainly will they tackle this issue even though it does not involve Islamic extremist? Will European governments carry on taking the threat of right-wing extremism lightly? I was even more intrigued to learn that Norwegian newspaper had reported Anders Behring Breivik was on the intelligence watch list from March this year, if he had managed to be on this list then ultimately there had to be a reason and a need. I do understand that of course there have been very few attacks by right wing extremist; but my question is why wait until they’re even more trained and well organised? What is the point of intelligence agencies if the threat is taken lightly until an attack happens and lives are lost.
As I got on the tube two days ago and sat reading the evening standard a great article by Sarah Sands struck me although somewhat ironic. This was a journalist who was ultimately correcting herself of being judgemental of others merely because what a number of “extremists” did and are doing. Anders Behring Breivik gunned down innocent children and killed ruthlessly in the name of western values and Christianity; ultimately though this does not mean all that want to protect western values or are Christian are cowardly sick killers.
I am for anything to tackle extremism in any form by whichever faction; a murder is a murder and a killer is a killer whether they hide behind an ideology or they play on people’s fears. We shouldn’t assume or fully take out of the picture other forms of extremism. This I believe is the lesson that we should learn from these attacks.
As I write this the Norwegian people’s pain is still too raw for all this to be contemplated… My thoughts and respect for the people whose lives have been lost and to their families.