2011-07-24 01:25:43Attack in Norway
Robert Way

robert_way19@hotmail...
142.162.27.99

I don't know if there is a thread for this already but I am starting one here. I am utterly in shock about the attack which occurred in Oslo yesterday and it has shaken me down to the very core. I remember when I lived there it was the safest I had ever felt in my life, I was in the city with the lowest murder rate in the world and with the social democratic practices that made it heaven for those who believed in equality and freedom. Yesterday a right-wing christian fundamentalist perpetrated the most heinous act of murder that I have ever heard. The systematic murder of youth on an island outside of Oslo resulted in 80+ young people with bright futures being killed. I am at a loss for words and I imagine many of you are also. I had several friends in Norway at the time and one was walking downtown about 3 blocks away when the explosion occurred. This has got to stop. Hate over indifference only breeds more hate and by categorizing islamists as terrorists all it has done is allowed other forms of terrorism to take hold.

I think that it would be good to have a post on the subject and hopefully a contribution from Oslo. I don't know what the post would say but perhaps for a minute we could stick clear of the climate science subject and talk about something that affects us as people.

http://www.cnn.com/2011/WORLD/europe/07/23/norway.explosion/index.html?iref=BN1

http://www.cbc.ca/news/world/story/2011/07/23/norway-attack.html

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-14259356

2011-07-24 02:20:27
Paul D

chillcast@googlemail...
82.18.130.183

I was wondering about 'Oslo' the chap who is a member here??

It's on BBC 24 News 24/7. There was an commentator on yesterday that the BBC had on about every half hour who was convinced it was Islamic terrorists and he kept saying he had 'information' given to him that proved it. Even when the news about the shootings started coming through and a blonde blue eyed man, He then made an extra effort to justify his claim, with even more special info that no one else had access to.

I actually got fed up with his fantasies and turned over to a different channel.

Looking at the photo of the bloke who did it, you can see why the kids didn't suspect him until he started shooting, he doesn't look like an evil axe murderer.

2011-07-24 03:02:06
perseus

owlsmoor@googlemail...
188.220.205.42

I believe the gun laws are quite strict in Norway (no doubt a point which will be picked up by the Gun lobby) although there are a lot of guns about.  Being a farmer it would have been easy to get the large amount of fertiliser to make the explosive.  It seems to me to have more in common with the Oklahoma bombing being an anti-goverment attack although there may be a religious element to it as well.

This was metriculously planned in advance to overwhelm what was probably the limited or lethargic security available, and allow enough time for the eventual massacre. 

Sometimes, there is no easy solution, bad people are born and bad things happen.

2011-07-24 03:27:02Comment
Robert Way

robert_way19@hotmail...
142.162.27.99

I don't buy the bad people are born argument in this case. There is a predisposition towards hatred of diversity and towards excessive nationalism and unacceptance of others in a certain political wing and this distain for acceptance permeates borders and through time. I'm a little tired of being forced to respect those who respect the least. Look at the states, the right wing is allowed to hate because why exactly? Why are they allowed to infringe on the rights of gays, african americans and other minorities. This is about a man who had a problem with a country that was peaceful and accepting. His hate is mirrored elsewhere and that has to stop.

2011-07-24 03:49:29
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
84.151.39.205

I'm not a gun supporter in general. However, it is outrageous that this guy could hunt and kill people for two hours before the police were able to show up (due in some measure to the confusion caused by the bomb set off in Oslo shortly before).

If this had happened in, say, Switzerland, where most households have a gun, can anyone doubt that someone would have taken him out within 30 minutes or so?

With regards to hate: Actually, it's not possible to prevent people from hating. Sanity cannot be legislated.

2011-07-24 04:01:39Comment
Robert Way

robert_way19@hotmail...
142.162.27.99

Sanity cannot be legislated. It is true. I do feel that there is a link between the hatred we allow in western society and what occurs elsewhere. It is funny because in the US there is Rush limbaugh who just dispels hate on his opponents and then an event like this happens and suddenly it is a travesty as if there is no link between the radicalization of right wing hatred for diversity and violence.

I don't think that having more guns in the country would have helped much. They were on a secluded island for a camp. There's no way firearms would have been allowed there anyways. Norway is not easy to get around for many locations including this one. I think the confusion is a circumstance that is strongly a contributor but I don't see how things could have been radically improved except maybe through use of a helicopter. It is easy to criticize their response when we have backgrounds that are from (at least originally) part of the world where we are used to excessive violence and policing. In Norway and Oslo in particular there is so little crime and so few murders that it was considered unwise to have the type of response forces that other countries may have because of how rare incidents occur. Unfortunately what we had was an individual who exploited these things for his own attack. I can tell you that across most of Canada a similar thing could easily occur eventhough most of rural canada is armed to the teeth. I had been to boyscout camps with tons of scouts and no firearms. Any person could have easily done the same there.

2011-07-24 04:11:00
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
84.151.39.205

In the US, they also don't take guns to Boy-Scout camps; but an attacker could not be assured that he would have such a long time to deliberately hunt and kill his victims; like shooting fish in a barrel.

It becomes clear that countries that are "safe" are safe only as long as everyone buys into the dominant ethic. The first person who decides otherwise cannot be opposed - until too late.

2011-07-24 04:12:34Comment
Robert Way

robert_way19@hotmail...
142.162.27.99

I think that because the region is isolated and only boat accessible that it was possible. My home has 27,000 people spread out over 200,000 km2. It would be very easy to have something like this happen. Frankly home reminded me a lot of the isolated parts of norway when I lived there

2011-07-24 04:12:56Video
Robert Way

robert_way19@hotmail...
142.162.27.99

2011-07-24 12:55:02
Daniel Bailey
Daniel Bailey
yooper49855@hotmail...
97.83.150.37

It absolutely horrible and devastating what happened to those people.

Words simply fail.

 

FYI, Oslo has already commented on this on the SKS Chat thread in the Tech part of the Forum:

http://www.skepticalscience.com/thread.php?t=2333&r=3

2011-07-24 17:27:42
perseus

owlsmoor@googlemail...
188.220.205.42

On a more practical level, it appears that the armed police were alerted quickly but they didn't have air transport to get to the location, so they had to use road transport and a boat crossing which took 90 mins.  I'm not sure if these were being used for the first incident.

If the potential terrorist threats don't justify a helicopters for security, perhaps facilities could be shared with an air ambulance?  Presumably these are more common.

2011-07-24 18:44:00Getting theree in time.
Glenn Tamblyn

glenn@thefoodgallery.com...
121.214.97.184

This, sadly, is where the real world logistics of 'stuff' can never match peoples expectations. One report I saw said that the 'swat' guys reached the scene in 50 minutes from Oslo. That is amazing. Without helicopters.

If you want to use helo's, what are they tasked for at the moment? Where are they? Are they available? How clear is the communications that let you know this is happening on the island? In the middle of responding to the bomb attack in the city? Who is commanding the response. Do we have a terrorism response command centre manned 24/7? If not, how long does it take to spool that up? And then sort the wheat from the chaff? Do you send your 'swat' people, probably 2 dozen at most, hareing off into the countryside rather than staying in Oslo. What about the military? Do they have a similar rapid response capacity, manned 24/7?

That the Oslo Police Swat guys were there 1-2 hours later is an amazing response. Quite literally some guys (I am being sexist here) charging into harms way with 2/10ths of bugger-all information, looking for some obviously 'bad guys' in amongst 100's of panicing teenagers. And they took the guy down. But still alive. Awesome!

I don't want their job!

When the smelly stuff hits the fan, in so many areas of life, we ordinary slob's have incredibly unrealistic expectations of how 'someone' should make us 'safe'. Those someone's have families too who maybe didn't even realise that daddy may not come home tonight because some 'shit' happened today.

At least in wars we get some psychological preparation for what might happen today. With this. yesterday dad was filling out forms, today he went to war. Then he came home to play with the kids! What a mind-fuck. And we expect peoople to do this for a living?

2011-07-24 19:19:54
Rob Painting
Rob
paintingskeri@vodafone.co...
118.92.82.223

I haven't followed this at all, but was Oslo the nearest Police response? 

2011-07-25 00:04:25
perseus

owlsmoor@googlemail...
188.220.205.42

Well Glenn, thought I had addressed most of those points with a practical suggestion.

Perhaps the police are slow.  See this report a few weeks ago

http://theforeigner.no/pages/news/norwegian-police-criticised-for-slow-accident-response-times/

2011-07-25 20:13:17
Riccardo

riccardoreitano@tiscali...
192.84.150.209

I've been in Norway for five weeks some years ago. Since then Norway is my preferred example of what a civil society is. This inconceivable act does not (and should never) even remotely scratch the high consideration I'm sure we all have of the wonderful people of Norway, and I share their grief.

The very fact that it happened in Norway is food for thoughts for everyone. I believe that it is not a problem of social, let alone self, defense even if it might be important to save lives in the short run. It is a social cancer that should not be let proliferate, hate or violence speeches should not have a pass anywhere and anytime. And if even Norway gave birth to a man like this Breivik, no country is immune.

2011-07-25 20:30:32
oslo

borchinfolab@gmail...
90.149.33.182

Hi, everyone :-(

Travelled home to Oslo from hollyday on sunday from western part of Norway (south of Bergen for those who are familiar with the geography).

Everyone in Norway are more or less in shock by the events on friday. My doughter (11) and I watched the incomming reports all night on friday until saturday morning. My girlfriend was at work in Oslo 3-4 blocks away and felt the windows shaking and heard the bang from the blast in the government quarters. She called me right after the blast and they were terrified as no one knew what was happening. The blast was so large that there was roumors that more bombs had exploded - the shock wave went all directions and caused havoc through narrow streets which led the blast wave far away. Friends of her a km a way was litterally shaken to the floor. They stayed in the office for a couple of hours before they evacuated the city center.

The personal stories from people on the island is comming up to the surface as media is allowed to talk to the victims and survivers. The storries are terrifying.

The police was allarmed by the shooting at 15.25 local time, and Oslo police around 15.38 - the guy surrendered to the police without a fight about 16.25 - about an hour later from the first message arrived. The Oslo terror police had to travel by car as they don't have helicopters for other usage than surveilance.

I havn't had time to visit the government area, but it is completly devastated, so the government functions has been replaced with temporary locations.

I'll give an other update later today...

2011-07-25 21:00:00
Rob Painting
Rob
paintingskeri@vodafone.co...
118.93.211.145

Oslo, is Oslo (lol) the nearest Police Station to where the incident happened? What I'm getting at is that if you have a situation where someone is running around murdering people, you don't necessarily wait for the tactical unit to get kitted up, if you are closer and can prevent further loss of life. 

2011-07-25 21:26:27
oslo

borchinfolab@gmail...
90.149.33.182

Rob, the nearest police in Hamar was contacted, but they in turn contacted Oslo terror police to handle the situation. There was one single policeman (in sivilian clothes, and on his spare time) hired to handle issues on the island, but he was not armed to my knowledge, and was one of the first to be killed. As the local police had no idea if there where one or more persons shooting on the island, I guess they felt they where not capable of meeting the situation with proper force, equipment and training. Norwegian police is in general not armed, although every police car is equiped with firearms (only pistols ?) to be used on request - the guy shooting had an automatic weapon and a pistol as far as I know. He went around the island in no hurry and occasionally shouted that everyone should come forward and that they were rescued (he was dressed in a police look). At one point 40 people came forward from their hiding - he started shooting them and when he was finished, only 5-6 people had managed to escape.

Currently the number of deaths on the island is about 86, but the numbers may be reduced (???) a bit according to norwegian police today (perhaps a few have been counted twice). The number of wounded is around 100 (total in Oslo and on the island) and about 10 is seriously wounded. The blast in Oslo caused 7 deaths, but they expect they might find more as the offices are searched again. The blast was just after summer office time (15.00) which was a bit fortunate, as more people in the offices might have caused more harm. The blast it self was in a road with not so much traffic as there are no shops around the area, so there where not that many people in the streets close to the blast.

2011-07-25 21:54:49
Rob Painting
Rob
paintingskeri@vodafone.co...
118.93.211.145

Seems an inadequate response by the local Police, if you have that right. Do they really not have ready access to high-powered rifles? Getting there even 10 minutes earlier could have saved lives.

I expect the Police tactical response is similar in most countries - cordon and contain the scene if there is no immediate threat to life, but when someone is willy-nilly butchering people?

You can't force people to put themselves in harm's way, but seems a piss-poor effort by the local Police. Just looking at their new Police Station online, they must have a few staff there, yet no response capability to an armed offender situation. Sounds like the Oslo Police must have seriously hauled ass to get there in the time they did.

2011-07-25 22:15:57
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
91.33.122.216

It really is a scenario that could have been inspired by the National Rifle Association's (NRA's) most paranoid views: an island with only the outlaw in possession of a gun.

2011-07-25 22:36:39
oslo

borchinfolab@gmail...
90.149.33.182

I checked the story in the news now (just retold from memory listening to the radio on the way home yesterday, they might have said Hamar police, but details are corrected all the time). According to media today it was the police in Hønefoss (closest town) which was contacted, not Hamar (Hamar is to the north of Oslo, and the island is W/NW of Oslo) - they are both relative small police stations, and there is a public hollyday in Norway these days, so I guess they where not staffed up. To my knowledge Hønefoss city might have one or two persons on duty on a friday evening in the hollyday, well certainly not many anyway).

I guess driving from Hønefoss to the island is about the same time as driving from Oslo (although it might be shorter distance from Hønefoss, the roads from Oslo is better - I have been driving this road many times).

The Oslo police arrived 31 mins after (18.09 ?) they were notified (17.38) - the terror police in Oslo was already prepared for any eventualities after the blast (15.25), so I guess they might already be sitting in a car when the message arrived. They spent about 10 min getting into a boat (they had to switch boat as the heavy equipment was to much for the first one), and a few minutes over to the island. The guy surrendered as soon as he was called up on by the police without fireing his weapons (about 18.25) - he still had plenty of amunition left according to the police. The media speculates he had planned the surrender, so that he could follow the havoc he had created.

(timing given in my first message was wrong)

2011-07-25 23:02:58
oslo

borchinfolab@gmail...
90.149.33.182

What I don't understand is why there where no messures taken to protect the island - the blast in Oslo was in short time recognised as a possible terror attack (although caos as of what have happened was present), so those responsible for handling a terror events should have quickly evaluated the situation, and figured out what could be the next move. Mesures was of course taken to protect the prime minister and other officials, but no one had the idea to protect the island with 650 youth on the Labour partys youth camp - the prime minister had visited the camp the day before, and a former prime minister (Gro Harlem Brundtland) had visited the island hours before the attack - the island would surly be on the list of targets - if some bright people had put their heads together, they might have understood that the attack could be on the Labor party in particular, and not generally on the Norwegian government. As Norway is engaged in both Afganistan and Libya, all eventuallities were on the table, so that I guess this clouded the overall picture.

2011-07-25 23:03:55
Rob Painting
Rob
paintingskeri@vodafone.co...
118.93.211.145

"I guess driving from Hønefoss to the island is about the same time as driving from Oslo"

Okay, I retract everything above. Sounds like they did all that was humanly possible.

2011-07-25 23:11:34
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
91.33.122.216

oslo:

Failure of imagination: After all, who would think about shooting an island full of kids? It really is unimaginable.

The man is sick, sick, sick. I don't quite see how this is supposed to further his anti-Moslem anti-multicultural agenda.

2011-07-25 23:19:20
Rob Painting
Rob
paintingskeri@vodafone.co...
118.93.211.145

I don't know much about the incident, but I don't see how authorities could have deduced a kids summer camp as a likely target.

2011-07-25 23:23:33
oslo

borchinfolab@gmail...
90.149.33.182

Yeah, I guess no one could have figured this out perhaps - it is just very, very sad ...

Going down to the city center this evening to see the place and all the flowers and candles laid out in the streets.

2011-07-25 23:25:52
perseus

owlsmoor@googlemail...
188.220.205.42

This is the timeline according to Reuters via yahoo, about 1 hour response from first report to arrival on the scene, although it is possible some time elapsed before anyone outside the island was alerted. 

It seems to me that it was a good thing he didn't shoot at the boat crossing or else he could have held them off quite easily.

1657 - A ferryman gets a message that a policeman wants to be transported to Utoeya island in the lake, Norway's NTB news agency says. Disguised as a policeman, Breivik thereby tricks his way onto the island where youths from Stoltenberg's Labour Party are holding a summer camp.

1726 - Local police in Nordre Buskerud district get a first alert about shootings on the island.

1730 - Buskerud police in turn notify Oslo police.

1738 - Buskerud police formally request backup from Oslo.

1752 - The first police patrol, from Nordre Buskerud, arrives at the area but has to await a boat.

1809 - Oslo police arrive at the area, but need a boat. A boat problem delayed their arrival.

"When so many people and equipment were put into it, the boat started to take on water, so that the motor stopped," said Erik Berga, police operations chief in northern Buskerud County.

"The boat was way too small and way too poor," he said, referring to a police vessel that had been transported to the scene from nearby Hoenefoss for crossing to Utoeya island.

1825 - Police SWAT team reaches the island.

1827 - Breivik surrenders without a fight with police after shooting dead at least 86 people. Police said their arrival prevented further killings on the island, where hundreds of people were staying.

 

2011-07-25 23:44:11
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
91.33.122.216

I guess this guy Breivik thinks of himself as a hero, like Beowulf.

I regard him as more like Grendel.

2011-07-26 00:02:51
oslo

borchinfolab@gmail...
90.149.33.182

Perseus, the timeline from Reuters seems to be correct - the police from Nordre Buskerud (Hønefoss) was at the place a bit before the swat team, but they also got the message earlier - as you can see there is not much difference in real travel time. Not sure how the local police where equiped - they might have waited for the swat team anyhow, if your facing a man (or several as they could not know) with automatic wepons, you better have your gear for the operation available - they could of course not have guessed that the guy would surrender imediately.

Don't think anyone will question the police response time, when you look into the details of the operation - it might be that the terror response team need to be upgraded with a helicopter - the swat team is trained for helicopter delivery, but whats the use when you don't have one available for the purpose.

2011-07-27 00:25:03
oslo

borchinfolab@gmail...
90.149.33.182

Monday was a day for reclaiming the streets from the terror threat and show sympathy for the victims. There was scheduled a march in Oslo city, but it was cancelled as 200 000 met up to participate (picture, before and after, graphics, album) - the crowd was too big to do a march through the city as planned, but the event was very emotional with speeches by the prime minister, the crown prince, and leader of AUF (labour youth leader in Oslo). Major cities in Norway had similair events to honour the victims.

Breivik was presented for the court monday under closed doors (Breivik wanted open doors under the hearing, and requested to have his galla uniform available, which was denied by the court). The court rouling was that he would be detained for the next weeks with strict information policy.

(sorry for bothering the forum with this, but I guess some of you might be interested in the details anyhow - I'll provide information on this if you have questions.

I posted a tip to Think progress on the comments by Glen Beck reagarding the comparison of the youth camp with Hitler youth:

Here is my complete e-mail to Think progress:

-------------------

Norwegians are upset by Becks comparison of the Labour youth camp with Hitler jugend.

The prominent political commentator Frank Aarebrot says the comparison is absurd.

Further he states that this is yet an example on how american voters are mislead.

He says it's frightening that Beck delivers these kind of fairytails. The worst part is that people is led to believe this is objective news reporting.

Aarebrot says the Norwegian embassy in Washington D.C should give a press release on the matter, even if this is not common practice.

Interpreted from Norwegian media (Dagbladet).

http://www.dagbladet.no/2011/07/25/nyheter/utenriks/usa/innenriks/politikk/17453053/

(please use Google translate for translation to english http://translate.google.com/

--------------------------

2011-07-27 02:47:36comment
Robert Way

robert_way19@hotmail...
134.153.162.53

Absolutely shocking he would say something like that...

2011-07-27 03:58:50
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
84.151.30.118

Actually, it was almost an off-hand remark. The full quote can be found here:

http://today.msnbc.msn.com/id/43895169/ns/world_news-europe/

It's pretty convoluted: You get the idea that he doesn't like Breivik, multi-culturalism, Moslems, Fascists or Communists. They are all linked together by his hot air.

2011-07-27 05:12:12
Paul D

chillcast@googlemail...
82.18.130.183

Such political camps are a bit alien to most Brits. I guess here, we have conferences of the youth wings of political parties. Young Conservatives and whatever the Labour equivalent is. I would add that I kept well away from that crap, as a teenager I always felt politically keen peers were dick heads or a bit nerdy.

I think there are similar political camping activities in the US, but they are aimed at older kids (18+).

 

Sinn Fein apparently has youth camps:

http://www.irishrepublican.net/forum/showthread.php?52081-National-Youth-Camp-2010-set-for-Sunny-South-Down

2011-07-27 06:00:03
perseus

owlsmoor@googlemail...
188.220.205.42

Here are some comments in Breivik's manifesto which are all too familiar from extreme right wing blogs.  From Desmogblog

You might know them as environmentalists, enviro-communists, eco-Marxists, neo-Communists or eco-fanatics. They all claim they want to save the world from global warming but their true agenda is to contribute to create a world government lead by the UN or in other ways increase the transfer of resources (redistribute resources) from the developed Western world to the third world. They are using our trust and faith in science to spread lies and hysteria that will allow Marxists to implement socialist ―solutions to a problem that never actually existed.

Whilst it may seem inappropriate to make capital of this under the circumstances, this incident has done no favours for the far right wing movements which promote Climate Denial along with other unsavoury activities.

2011-07-27 07:44:48
Paul D

chillcast@googlemail...
82.18.130.183

In some respects he is correct, there is a socialist domination of environmentalist campaign groups. At least there is in the UK.
However at least in the borough where I live, there is cooperation between the conservative council and local environmentalist groups. Ultimately to get things done, you have to work with those that have different ideas about achieving similar goals.

Often the controlling members of eco groups tend to be socialist and if you disagree with them you can get into extremely heated arguments. There is actually a communist lecturer at the local uni that along with union leaders attends a lot of green events and are very active in green marches. At first if you start participating in these things, you think, great everyone is thinking the same. But sometimes political ideology surfaces or is blatantly obvious, that deviates away from any practical green measures.

It's not that I am against it. It's just that it becomes so stereo typical and frankly unhelpful, when people that are politically in the centre or to the right also want change but have no where to go because of disagreements in how to implement change. And it can be very difficult to work with extremely enthusiastic lefties that probably started an environment group, it's their pride and joy and they have invested interests.

2011-07-27 08:06:09
oslo

borchinfolab@gmail...
90.149.33.182

>Such political camps are a bit alien to most Brits. I guess here, we have conferences of the youth wings of political parties. Young Conservatives and whatever the Labour equivalent is. I would add that I kept well away from that crap, as a teenager I always felt politically keen peers were dick heads or a bit nerdy.

Alien?

How did the brits keep their calm under the air attack in WW2 - by ingesting tea?

I admire the brits for their stamina and their political agenda under WW2, but nothing is achived by staying calm, as we know the brits didn't - by not staying calm the brits kept Germany from landing in GB - I admire the brits for this achievment. The idea of not staying calm might be a thought, although shooting your opponents might be considered a bit over the edge in our days.

2011-07-27 18:03:48FTR
jyyh
Otto Lehikoinen
otanle@hotmail...
85.78.185.254

For the record, political terrorists targeting kids like this one make me seriously reconsider my position of the death penalty. Yes, for those admitting the crime but not showing any remorse. At least this one should be cut off humanity as he himself has done. Send him to Bear Island to build his fantasy Aryan state,

To add, that piece of ***** may consider himself LUCKY to not live in a warring tribal stone age society, as the likes of him would have been sunk to a swamp as a punishment.