So it turns out the Oslo killings were carried out by a white Norwegian guy who is apparently a white nationalist. I’m quite relieved this wasn’t the work of Islamic terrorists since it would have only made matters in Europe that much worse. Cold comfort, of course, since this is a sign of the European radical right taking their own violence to a whole new level.
In any case, the violence done in the past twenty-four hours is terrible. It made me angry and sad and it sounded exactly like an Al-Qaeda attack. It’s a very distinct, frightening way of carrying out attacks. European nationalists appear to be copying that MO, which is pretty scary.
So I apologize for rushing to conclusions. But I’ll ask the same question: How do people become monsters?
Also: what James Joyner said.
It’s easy to rush to assumptions especially when you have a strong, emotional reaction to something – and these attacks evoked in me a strong emotional reaction. I’m glad I was wrong, that this wasn’t Islamic extremism at work, but that’s colored heavily by the fact that this appears to be the work of anti-Muslim extremists. Which just means the violence is escalating.