The previous essays in this series examined different aspects of Anders Behring Breivik’s murderous rampage in Norway on July 22, and its aftermath. Some parts of those posts were speculative; some were tangential to the massacre itself. The facts that concern us here are relatively few. From those earlier posts, this is what we know (as opposed to what we and others might be inclined to deduce, surmise, or invent out of whole cloth) about those horrific events:
The above outline is a rough summary of what we know about Anders Behring Breivik and the acts he committed, and the use the OIC is making of this opportunity. Notice there isn’t all that much hard information — the details of the crime, the victims, and the weapons used, plus the online postings and a manifesto that purports to be by the killer.
We must take the word of the Norwegian and Polish authorities that there were no accomplices. Information released to the public by both governments may very well be the whole truth. However, we know our governments are not always candid. They been known on occasion to release misleading, distorted, or falsified information. This is particularly likely when sensitive intelligence data is involved, or if telling the truth would interfere with the execution of crucial state policies. Even more frequently, officials lie if the whole truth and nothing but the truth would tend to embarrass the government or reveal its profound incompetence.
For these reasons, only the facts bulleted above can be assumed as given. Among those givens are statements by official sources or the press. In other words, the issuing of a statement is a fact; the accuracy of the statement may be open to question.
Everything else in this post is nothing but speculation — hypothesis, conjecture, or outright fiction. These hypotheses are attempts to comprehend the pattern of those events in Oslo and on Utøya. If fitting them into a structure makes sense and accounts for most loose ends, then we have at least a few possible paths that lead us into areas that governments and other groups have marked “off limits”.
Fiction can be useful. It may help us understand complex real-world events that would otherwise be a murky muddle. Thus, moving past the assumed factual premises listed above, from here on in I’m making stuff up out of whole cloth. The pattern of pretend I will weave may enhance our understanding of the larger picture. Other, more knowledgeable observers may produce a richer cloth with a pattern that approximates the truth more closely than mine.
It is appropriate to begin our speculative ruminations at the end, rather than the beginning: with the political ramifications of the events of July 22 — the manner in which the event was immediately and ferociously exploited by the politicians and the media. How did their treatment of events serve the ends of Politically Correct Multiculturalism?
Within twenty-four hours after the Oslo massacre, it became evident that there was something peculiar about the killer’s reading habits and internet preferences. The immediate horror of what Anders Behring Breivik did on that dreadful Friday made it hard to think about the implications of his manifesto and internet postings. Later on, however, when the initial furor had subsided somewhat, a number of people — especially those who were pointed to as Mr. Breivik’s “inspiration” — noticed that there was something fishy about the list of writers and websites the media gleefully associated with the Butcher of Utøya.
The roster of “hate sites” was just too perfect. From the point of view of those who would like nothing better than to discredit the Counterjihad movement and drive its adherents out of business, the list was complete. The killer’s favorite authors read like a who’s-who of the resistance to Islamization. All of the most prolific and accomplished anti-sharia activists were included; no one was omitted.
Mr. Breivik’s internet bookmarks eerily resembled an “enemies list” as compiled by CAIR or the OIC. To the skeptic, that peculiarity alone was enough to ring alarm bells.
Even more bizarre was the murderer’s overwhelming focus on English-language sites, especially American ones. Since most educated Scandinavians are fluent in English, Mr. Breivik’s preferences might not seem unusual at first glance. However, compare his preoccupation with American sites with his avowed goal of reviving European nationalism and European civilization. Is it not strange that he paid less attention to major European sites such as Snaphanen, Uriasposten, Politically Incorrect, Islam in Europe, Tundra Tabloids, Politisk Inkorrekt, and Europe News? Why did he obsess on American sources, with their parochially American focus?
It seems Fjordman was his particular favorite. Once Fjordman quit blogging, he chose to publish his writings on sites run by Americans. Those Americans who followed Counterjihad sites in the USA would discover Fjordman and realize his significance, without ever having to look at any European blogs or forums. The same is true of Bat Ye’or, Geert Wilders, and other members of the European Counterjihad, all of whom are prominent on major anti-sharia sites in the USA.
The murderer’s oeuvre resembled a list of enemies compiled by a sharia-compliant American. This peculiarity — the too-perfect listing of anti-sharia writers, with a bizarrely American focus — is what cries out for further speculation and conjecture.
When something smells that fishy, it’s time to go looking for finned creatures, perhaps with a net.
The first post in this series gave a brief overview of the activities of American intelligence agents operating out of the embassy in Oslo during Mr. Breivik’s most active period, which ended in October 2010. The surveillance by US operatives and their local employees continued right up until the moment the operation was exposed by Norwegian television — which happened to coincide almost exactly with the disappearance of Mr. Breivik from his customary internet haunts.
That’s an awful lot of coincidence in just one haul of the net.
Now here’s where our speculation really takes us into deeper water. The presence and timing of American intelligence activities in Oslo, combined with the killer’s American focus and the too-perfect roster of his favorite writers, suggest the possibility that Anders Behring Breivik was a “weaponized psychopath”. If this were a novel, it would depict him being used by American intelligence (with the possible collaboration of elements of Norwegian intelligence) to achieve some well-defined political ends.
However, there’s a problem with this tale: any conspiracy theorizing about the “weaponization” of Mr. Breivik falls apart because it is all but impossible to believe that the CIA or Norwegian intelligence could ever be so cynical and cold-blooded as to allow (or help) a psychopath to obtain the explosives and weapons required to mass-murder his fellow Norwegians. That part won’t hold together.
A few days after the massacre, when discussing these observations with Dymphna, I said, “I can’t see the CIA doing something like that. I could see the Russians or the Iranians doing it, though — both of them have a track record of mounting false-flag operations. But the Russians don’t have the motive — why would they want to eliminate the European Counterjihad? What purpose would it serve? And besides, how could Iran manage something like that in Norway?”
An American attempt to discredit our small Counterjihad pushback makes more sense when you take into account the State Department’s overt cooperation with the OIC, and the ongoing interest of the Obama administration in currying favor with the Muslim Brotherhood. Taking out the “defamers of Islam” with a single blow would definitely suit the State Department’s larger purposes.
Surely not even the Obama administration is depraved enough to engineer a massacre in Norway just to please the OIC. Once again, we plunge into the deep water of improbability.
On the other hand, it’s easy to imagine a non-Western nation or a terror group — that is, the original scenario as suggested during the early stages of the events on July 22, when everyone was crying “terrorists!” — arranging a car bomb in central Oslo. A powerful fertilizer bomb, a few deaths, some badly damaged buildings, hysteria and terror among the Norwegian people — yes, some cynical and evil planner might find such an event useful.
But sixty-eight dead teenagers on a resort island? The chances of blowback would be so great that no competent intelligence group would consider the operation.
There’s no getting away from it: the final argument against any hypothesis involving a cynical, pre-planned operation is what happened on Utøya: the “slaughter of the innocents”. It’s impossible to conceive the utility of this slaughter for anyone engaged in political skullduggery. No matter how callous the organizers of the operation might be, they would hardly find it prudent to stage a deadly incident of this magnitude. The consequences of such horrific slaughter would be unpredictable, and might well spiral out of control.
Our fictional fishing expedition seems to have run out of fuel here, leaving us becalmed in these waters. Past this point, we can’t find enough fishes to tell a story that is convincing and plausible.
A reader of fiction must be persuaded to suspend his disbelief, so this is where an author would lose his audience. Readers would exclaim, “Aw, c’mon! Gimme a break! Nothing like this would ever really happen!”
So we’re led inexorably back to the conclusion: Anders Behring Breivik was exactly what he seemed to be — a lone psychopath who, for his own internal reasons, chose opposition to Islam as the cause for which he would engage in mass slaughter of his own people, inserting his name into the history books forever.
We’re left with two possible stories, each with its own fatal flaws, each having annoying loose ends that are difficult to reconcile into a convincing conclusion. A good narrative demands a complete and satisfying resolution.
The most popular version of this horror story is that Anders Behring Breivik was a “lone psychopath” who conceived and carried out his crimes by himself. The loose end to this tale is the “perfect fit” of the killer’s reading preferences with people and groups that are considered “enemies of Islam” by the OIC and its affiliates, especially CAIR. The whole business smells of a setup.
However, any fictional account that manages to reconcile this loose end left by a so-called setup creates a different loose end. Anyone who could have conceivably “weaponized” Anders Behring Breivik could not also have deliberately allowed the wanton slaughter in Norway, particularly the unexpected carnage on Utøya.
Thus, to get past these seemingly insurmountable difficulties, I propose two new hypotheses. They will resolve those loose ends. They will create a fictional narrative which includes the known facts while remaining consistently plausible.
Hypothesis #1: The state actors who originally planned to “weaponize” Mr. Breivik never intended that any bomb would go off, nor that any people would be killed.
Hypothesis #2: Those who assisted Mr. Breivik in attaining his objectives expected that a bomb would be detonated in downtown Oslo. Such a result suited their purposes. They did not realize that the killer intended to carry out a mass execution on Utøya. This was carried out by the killer for his own reasons, and his plans were known only to him.
If we accept these two hypotheses as premises, we — the authors of this fictional account — can construct a narrative of the events leading up to July 22 that includes the known facts and stitches them together in a way that allows the reader to suspend his disbelief.
What follows is a fictional tale about what happened in Norway last month.
Our novel opens with a prologue, flashing back fifteen years or so before the explosion in Oslo. As Al Qaeda emerges as a potent terrorist actor — especially after the Khobar Towers bombing, and the declaration of war against the United States by Osama bin Laden — various elements in the United States government consider the possibility of a working partnership with the Muslim Brotherhood. This idea first becomes popular with functionaries in the State Department and the CIA, and then later with the Pentagon, and eventually makes its way to the White House.
This partnership with the Ikhwan seems increasingly urgent. Iran is approaching the deployment of a working missile-launched nuclear warhead. The Brotherhood starts to look like a critical ally that can help the United States thwart the nuclear ambitions of Iran.
Over the next decade, through successive presidential administrations, the Muslim Brotherhood gains increasing influence, inserting advisors into staff positions and as consultants within the State Department, the FBI, the CIA, Homeland Security, all three branches of the military, and the White House. What could be more natural? These Brotherhood guys seem like such reasonable fellows — friendly, helpful, and above all non-violent. They are the very antithesis of Al Qaeda. It’s easy to seek and heed their advice on all matters concerning Islam. Government officials believe that by consulting with their Muslim advisors, they can successfully counter Islamic “radicals” without antagonizing “moderate” Muslims in the United States or upsetting our Muslim allies abroad, such as Egypt and Saudi Arabia.
Gradually the lexicon of officially-used terms about Islamic terrorism is changed. The terms “Islamic” and “terrorism” disappear from public statements and publications. Now we go to war against “violent extremism”. Any government employee who says bad things about Islam feels the pressure from above. Changes in school curricula are encouraged. Textbooks now include a CAIR-approved history of Islam. And so on.
Thus we keep our Muslim friends and allies happy while we hunt down and kill off Al Qaeda fighters in distant lands.
The prologue finished, the novel’s opening chapters begin during the first days of President Obama’s administration. The incoming president has told his staff that he will conduct outreach to the Muslim world, thus establishing a new relationship between the United States and Islam. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton eagerly initiates a series of meetings with Muslim leaders. She begins what will become an ongoing close partnership with the Organization of Islamic Cooperation. The OIC convinces her of the crucial need to crack down on hateful speech against Islam and Muslims. If tolerance isn’t enforced, they say, the likely result would be to radicalize the “moderates”, and lead to more “violent extremism”.
In the spring of 2011, her Muslim counterparts in the OIC engineer the passage of UN Human Rights Council Resolution 16/18. It calls for laws against “defamation of religions, including Islam” in all UN member states. Mrs. Clinton’s task is to help the OIC achieve its goals, which have been all but realized in Europe. In the USA, however, the full implementation of laws against the “defamation of religions” is stymied by the First Amendment of the United States Constitution.
Any laws implementing Resolution 16/18 must avoid public outcry until they are passed, and survive any subsequent scrutiny by the Supreme Court. The American people will have to be prepared ahead of time for the necessity of limitations on their freedom of speech. They must be convinced that “Islamophobia” is repugnant, intolerant, and anti-American. The “Islamophobes” must be thoroughly stigmatized and shunned.
Much as its immediate predecessors have done, the Obama administration repeatedly warns about the danger of “right-wing extremists”. The Department of Homeland Security issues directives to be on watch for militia members, former servicemen, Tea Party supporters, and Ron Paul voters. If a “right-wing terrorist” who opposes Islam were to stage a violent attack, it would help the administration soften up America for the necessary suppression of publicly-expressed opposition to Islamic law. Such an attack would be of immense value in silencing any objections to a crackdown on particular kinds of speech, especially “Islamophobia”. In the aftermath, anyone questioning sharia or Islamization would be suspect.
On July 15, 2011 Secretary of State Clinton gives a brief speech after meeting with the OIC in Istanbul. She promises to work with the OIC to implement Resolution 16/18, and lauds the value of “peer pressure and shaming” against those intolerant folks who engage in “incendiary actions” against Islam. Shaming is necessary, she says, to make certain that people understand such behavior is abhorrent and unacceptable.
Meanwhile, interleaved with these chapters about the Muslim Brotherhood and its inroads into American bureaucracy, and the chapters about Mrs. Clinton and the OIC, is a third element: the account of the gradual development of Anders Behring Breivik’s anti-immigrant and anti-Islamic beliefs. After 9-11 the mentally disturbed young man begins to formulate more concretely his grandiose plans for an extraordinary series of violent actions that he believes are necessary to roll back the Islamization of Europe. In his fantasies, he is the natural Nordic leader of his own Reconquista.
He begins to hang out in the Oslo underworld. There he obtains weapons, explosives, and the illegal steroids he needs for his physical training. These underworld encounters allow him access to members of various shadowy networks. Organized crime, drug-traffickers, terrorist groups, and state-sponsored espionage come together here. And it is here he makes contact with people who can obtain the weapons, chemicals, and paramilitary training he needs. His new connections include a former Soviet intelligence officer whose latest career in private intelligence opens doors to Islamic groups in the Middle East and Chechnya. Just months before the killings on Utøya, our protagonist meets an escapee from a Russian lunatic asylum who claims he has been sent to Norway by the Russian authorities to assassinate a Chechen separatist leader.
Mr. Breivik’s widening network begins to include Al Qaeda operatives. These men are the only ones who can provide what he needs: the greatest expertise on the construction of fertilizer bombs. While his mission is to resurrect Europe, he has no strong objection to Al Qaeda. They are not the ones colonizing Norway. Besides, he admires their dedication and ruthlessness in the service of their own cause.
In addition to these Islamic terrorists, there are foreign governments also interested in seeing powerful bombs explode in major European cities. Those who support the cause of the Ummah are dedicated to realizing the murder of infidels while terrorizing survivors into submission.
The enemies of a united Europe are also delighted to assist in actions that demonstrate the weakness and incompetence of the European authorities, while simultaneously inflicting grave damage to the nationalist cause. A successful attack by Mr. Breivik would kill any hopes for the revival of traditional, muscular European nation states.
As you can see, constructing the novel requires several separate but parallel plot lines. To include all the elements of the story, chapters of our novel must also follow American and Norwegian intelligence agents in Oslo. Anders Behring Breivik’s activities in the criminal/espionage underworld do not go unnoticed by the Norwegian security police, who have informants in place throughout the networks where Mr. Breivik is doing business. The security police keep an eye on this young psychopath, and are aware of his political assertions and opinions.
Further complicating the plot are officials in the American embassy in Oslo, who have been conducting surveillance operations in the city as a preventive measure against terror attacks on the embassy. As part of their mission, they also gather intelligence from the many Islamic radicals who find Norway a convenient refuge.
Needing experienced, competent Norwegian employees, the Americans recruit from among retired Norwegian intelligence agents and security police. Obviously, the attractiveness of their new employer lies in the higher salaries offered in comparison with what the Norwegian government is willing to pay. For the Americans, the advantage is obvious: their new employees understand and speak the language. In addition, they bring along their institutional experience regarding the networks of informants from the demimonde where local terrorist groups live and operate.
Still with me? Is my plot structure credible so far?
We are now more than halfway through this thriller novel. The background has been filled in for you, and you can see the major players in place.
We proceed to early 2009, when word makes its way from the higher reaches of the State Department down to the surveillance group in the American embassy in Oslo. Certain top people are in need of a far-right wacko extremist who has his own plans for a terror attack. Norwegian employees tell their supervisors they may have a subject: Anders Behring Breivik could well be their necessary tool. He is known to have grandiose plans for a major attack. However, he has been careful not to attract attention with overt behavior that could cause him to be arrested. They know he has consulted with underworld criminals and with Al Qaeda affiliates. He says he hates Islam and opposes Muslim immigration. In other words, he’s been auditioning for this part.
A team of Norwegian agents from the American embassy makes contact with Mr. Breivik. They pose as like-minded right-wing opponents of immigration. They offer assistance, and Mr. Breivik lets them in on some of his plans. He becomes the titular leader of the group, and is persuaded to let the newcomers help by commenting extensively in his name on anti-jihad websites. He tells them about his manifesto; they offer additional texts written in English, which he accepts and incorporates into his opus. Mr. Breivik believes his associates when they say their material comes from American Counterjihad sources. In, reality, however, what they turn over to him has been compiled by agents at the embassy. These operatives surf American Counterjihad websites, collect material, write summaries, and compose essays for their new colleague.
Perhaps it is at this point that, by feeding into his own grandiosity, his handlers encourage him to visualize himself as leading a larger group that will rise up and restore European civilization.
When the agents learn of Mr. Breivik’s planned bomb for downtown Oslo, their superiors decide to allow the plan to proceed. Just before the point of execution, the Norwegian authorities will be alerted and the bomb operation will be rolled up. This successful prevention of a major “terror attack” will be dressed up as a triumph of American and Norwegian cooperation in counterterrorism. It will then be presented to a compliant media. The manifesto will be “discovered”, and Mr. Breivik’s connections with the European and American Counterjihad will thoroughly discredit the movement. Meanwhile, the Obama administration will point to the near-tragedy in Oslo as an example of the consequences of “hateful”, “intolerant”, “divisive”, and “Islamophobic” speech, and as an object lesson in why such speech is a danger to every nation’s security.
You know the plot elements well enough to see that events do not proceed as planned. Just as Mr. Breivik’s preparations are reaching their crucial final stages, fate intervenes in the form of Norwegian TV2’s discovery and exposé of the surveillance unit operating out of the US embassy in Oslo. Suddenly the spotlight is turned on the intelligence operatives who have acted as Mr. Breivik’s handlers. The Norwegians among that group are called down to police headquarters for questioning. Although the confidentiality agreements they signed as a condition of their employment forbids the Norwegians to say anything to the police, attention is now focused on their work. This is a major snafu.
The Breivik operation is suspended. Some of the American agents have to be quickly reassigned, and contact with Anders Behring Breivik is cut.
However, Mr. Breivik is no longer interested enough in his former internet haunts to resume online posting. He now has more practical matters in mind. With the assistance of his other contacts in the criminal underground and terrorist groups, he is collecting the materials to construct his fertilizer bomb. And, unknown to anyone else, he is covertly acquiring advanced weaponry for his extramural operation on Utøya.
Anders Behring Breivik’s primary purpose behind his grand ideology of European culture is to exact primitive and regressive vengeance on the ruling Labour Party. The timing of his attack is based on the scheduled appearance of a prominent Labour Party leader at the summer camp on Utøya, but Mr. Breivik allows his terrorist associates to believe that the choice of date depends on the bank holiday, which would minimize casualties in central Oslo. The Islamic terror group would take credit for the bomb.
Now we reach the white-knuckled climax of our fictional account. Anders Behring Breivik executes his diversionary plan in downtown Oslo, doing exactly what the American and Norwegian agents in the surveillance group had intended to stop in the nick of time. The bomb is successfully deployed after all, and then Mr. Breivik is gone.
His Al Qaeda contacts are exultant — they have exactly what they wanted. A new jihad group has been created expressly for the occasion, and it releases a statement on the internet claiming responsibility for the bomb in Oslo.
Shortly after the explosion, the text messages begin coming in from the tiny island of Utøya. At that point, Al Qaeda makes a quick reassessment. The new jihad group is disappeared. The claim of responsibility is withdrawn. They realize they have been played.
The horrific dénouement of our novel unfolds in the woods and on the shorelines of the island, tracked by a news helicopter while the police continue not to arrive. Mr. Breivik — wearing the police uniform he acquired through his underworld contacts — systematically kills a large number of what would have been the next generation of Labour Party leaders. In his solitary and exhilarating moments of power, he obliterates his peers, those he was told he would never be good enough to join. When the police finally do show up an hour and a half later, Mr. Breivik puts down his weapon and calmly surrenders. Later, when he arrives in custody at Oslo police headquarters, he looks exhausted but satisfied. Some would say he appears happy.
In the immediate aftermath, American and Norwegian officials hastily shred papers and conceal Mr. Breivik’s connections with Norwegian and American intelligence. Certain employees are urgently reassigned to positions in other countries. Possibilities of a conspiracy or accomplices for Mr. Breivik are officially played down.
The epilogue of our fictional narrative depicts a scene several weeks later, as Anders Behring Breivik helpfully reenacts his crime on Utøya for police investigators. He’s still cheerful. He’s still happy.
His life’s purpose has been fulfilled: no abusive stepfather (who happens to be a member of the Labour Party) will ever hit him again, beating the boy into helplessness while yelling that Anders will never be good enough.
The Breivik Portfolio is a contrived fictional account. My hypothetical story covers the major known facts of July 22, 2011 in Oslo and on the island of Utøya. More competently imagined narratives may do a better job or present a fuller explanation of the events leading up to Black Friday.
However, no theory involving a “lone wolf far-right psychopath” can ever tie up the major loose ends dangling from this too-perfect list of enemies, the same enemies so quickly and thoroughly targeted in the wake of that massacre. Only a setup — even a partial setup, or a setup gone wrong — can account for the uncanny fit of Anders Behring Breivik’s preferred reading material.
The unfolding of events after July 22 leads a reasonable person inexorably to this conclusion: a setup failed.
“Wait a, minute, Baron!” you say. “How can you possibly say that? The reaction against anti-sharia writers was intense, and large chunks of the Norwegian Counterjihad reportedly shut themselves down voluntarily. From the point of view of those who would destroy us, how can you call this a failure?”
To which I respond: “Sweden, being the most politically correct country in Europe, is a bellwether.”
Immediately after the massacre, the reaction against the Sweden Democrats was overwhelming, and the party was thought by many to have been put out of business. Yet recent polls give SD 6% of the vote, which is remarkable under the circumstances, and higher than it received at the last election. So it would seem that only the elite oligarchs in the government and the media turned their ferocity against the Sweden Democrats — and those elites were already committed enemies of the party; no changes there. Ordinary Swedes were not fooled by the smokescreen billowing over the events in Oslo.
The biggest piece of evidence remains the number of new readers who sought out Counterjihad essays and articles in the aftermath of the massacre. I can vouch for the increased Gates of Vienna traffic, which was unprecedented. The number of new readers at Jihad Watch and Atlas Shrugs — much larger sites than ours — must have been astronomical.
Do you really believe the architects of this setup intended that hundreds of thousands — perhaps even millions — of new visitors would read the archives at Jihad Watch? I don’t.
No, the setup contrived by our fictional conspirators was a monstrous FAIL, a snafu of governmental proportions. Anders Behring Breivik got away from everyone who had planned to use him for their own purposes, even those happy to see a fertilizer bomb explode in downtown Oslo.
Everyone underestimated him, because no one knew his real motive or intentions. They thought they could use him, but he used them instead. Mr. Breivik, whatever else he may be, showed himself to be brilliant, dedicated, focused, and single-minded at Utøya. On that horrific Friday afternoon he accomplished his core mission.
The ripples of what he did continue outwards even now. The consequences will spread and return unpredictably for years to come. Singular historical events share that commonality: ask those who failed to prevent the assassination of the Austrian archduke in Sarajevo on June 28, 1914.
Previously in the Breivik Portfolio:
|2011||Aug||11||Part One: The American Connection|
|16||Part Two: The Chechen Connection|
|22||Part Three: The OIC Connection|