It looks like information is still coming in; this is pure evil. “Homegrown” or not, this is the sort of day that has us reaching for cliches like “we are all Norweigan.” Somewhere, someone is trying to find a way to politicize this–blame it, perhaps, on guns.
Because human nature is not broken, oh no—perish the thought.
In the meantime, pray. Light a candle, if that’s part of what you do.
This was not an act of nature, like the Haitian disaster or the Christmas Tsunami. This springs from the evil in the human heart—and that is something we can fight.
From The World Star:
A homegrown terrorist set off an explosion that ripped open buildings in the heart of Norway’s government Friday, then went to a summer camp dressed as a police officer and gunned down youths as they ran and even swam for their lives, police said Friday.
The attacks killed at least 16 people in this peaceful nation’s worst violence since World War II.
A police official said the 32-year-old ethnic Norwegian suspect arrested at the camp on Utoya island appears to have acted alone in both attacks, and that “it seems like that this is not linked to any international terrorist organizations at all.” The official spoke on condition of anonymity because that information had not been officially released by Norway’s police.
“It seems it’s not Islamic-terror related,” the official said. “This seems like a madman’s work.”
The official said the attack “is probably more Norway’s Oklahoma City than it is Norway’s World Trade Center.” Domestic terrorists carried out the 1995 attack on a federal building in Oklahoma City, while foreign terrorists were responsible for the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks.
The official added, however, “it’s still just hours since the incident happened. And the investigation is going on with all available resources.”
The motive was unknown, but both attacks were in areas connected to the ruling Labor Party government. The youth camp, about 20 miles (35 kilometres) northwest of Oslo, is organized by the party’s youth wing, and the prime minister had been scheduled to speak there Saturday.
A 15-year-old camper named Elise said she heard gunshots, but then saw a police officer and thought she was safe. Then he started shooting people right before her eyes.
“I saw many dead people,” said Elise, whose father, Vidar Myhre, didn’t want her to disclose her last name. “He first shot people on the island. Afterward he started shooting people in the water.”
Elise said she hid behind the same rock that the killer was standing on. “I could hear his breathing from the top of the rock,” she said.
She said it was impossible to say how many minutes passed while she was waiting for him to stop.
Read the whole thing. And go to church or temple this weekend. Or meditate on ways to let light into our lives—because that is what makes us human in the best sense.