He is blond and blue-eyed and listens to the name of Anders.
This time it is impossible to blame it on "them". It is time for self-reflection.
|Waves of solace
Slowly the shock-waves from Oslo and Utoya are turning into waves of reflections and solace. Through our tear-filled eyes we start to see signs of hope and encouragement. The people of Norway, led by the prime-minister Stoltenberg, is showing the world a path out of chaos and vicious circles of violence and we have to look far to find comparisons. South Africa and Mandela's policies of reconciliation is one of the few examples that comes to mind.
Instead of bombs roses, instead of hatred love, instead of threats of a security-state promises of a more open society.
The contrast to post-9/11 USA is utterly striking. USA had the sympathy of the whole world directly after the attack. But used it to start aggressions and disastrous wars in order to seek revenge and find culprits, and is now left not only with a gaping budget deficit but also with a world looking to USA to see an end of an empire rather than moral leadership.
The July 22 attack on Norway surely is as big a national wound to Norway as 9/11 was to USA. Consider these facts: 1 out of 65 000 Norwegians died in the July 22 attacks. 1 out of 113 000 Americans died 9/11.
The question is; how do you best dress the wounds? By sharing in the sorrow and then turn it into loving and forgiving action or by sharing in the sorrow and then go on a revenge-raid?
Of course it makes a huge difference that the perpetrator is an Anders and not an Ali. We are forced to put the searchlight on our society and what has gone very wrong here. The Ali option opens up the floodgates for our collective projections. That blame-game is exactly what the so called "terrorists" want regardless if they call themselves Christian or Muslim. Creating a chaos to pave the way for an even more volatile society.
(I still have difficulty with the term "terrorist" as it often says a lot more about the describer than the described. Mandela is again a good example. While he was in prison the governments of USA and Britain under Reagan and Thatcher officially labeled him a "terrorist". Now he is generally regarded as a world icon and saint, a feat not shared by those who named him terrorist.)
We have in Europe seen the escalating wave of Islamic/Christian tension the last decades. Sweden has not been spared with Muhammed-cartoons and bombs in Stockholm. And nowhere have we seen signs of hope and openings, rather hardened stances on all sides and raised tensions. How will this all end? With a catastrophic and violent showdown in our suburbs? I can imagine that Anders Behring Breivik's ultimate hope is like Adolf Hitler to write his own "Mein Kampf" in prison while the tensions escalate outside and then finally come out as a hero. One of his first demands as a prisoner was to have writing equipment.
The outcome of the July 22 attack is luckily not in his hands. It is in the hands of all of us. It is a matter of how we respond. With roses and love rather than revenge and enmity. Norway has set an example and responded in a way that could mean the turning of the tide.
From esoteric circles you can sometimes hear that "the light will come from the North". This can be understood as the light will come from a place of darkness and where you don't expect to find it.
Helped by the fact that the bomb was planted by an Anders, and not an Ali we have been given a chance to see a bigger picture. To look inwards and see ourselves and our society and what kind of demons it is breeding.
Next time chances are that the lunacy will come from a brown-eyed Ali.
That will be the real test for our society. To hold back our projections and again raise our roses.
God grant that we learn our lessons and learn them fast.