James Fallows is outraged over this item in the Washington post by Jennifer Rubin that said in part:
Some irresponsible lawmakers on both sides of the aisle — I will point the finger at Sen. Saxby Chambliss (R-Ga.), who sits on the Senate Armed Services Committee and yet backed the Gang of Six scheme to cut $800 billion from defense — would have us believe that enormous defense cuts would not affect our national security. Obama would have us believe that al-Qaeda is almost caput and that we can wrap up things in Afghanistan. All of these are rationalizations for doing something very rash, namely curbing our ability to defend the United States and our allies in a very dangerous world.
Fallows says the following:
No, this is a sobering reminder for those who think it’s too tedious to reserve judgment about horrifying events rather than instantly turning them into talking points for pre-conceived views.
he closes by referring to the piece as “false and hysterical”
Strangely enough he didn’t have a bad thing to say about this piece by Max Flecher called Al-Qaeda’s problem with Norway
It’s natural to wonder whether al-Qaeda, the world’s most famous terrorist organization, might have been involved. But why would the group target Norwegian government infrastructure? Last year, after several immigrants to Norway were arrested plotting terrorist attacks on behalf of al-Qaeda, Thomas Hegghammer and Dominic Tierney wrote “Why Does Al-Qaeda Have a Problem With Norway?” for TheAtlantic.com. Here are some snippets:
There are several theories about why Norway would be on al-Qaeda’s hit-list — but they raise more questions than answers.
Somehow neither this article nor the one it quotes manages to earn the epithet “false & Hysterical”.
I’m sure the fact that it appeared in the Atlantic has nothing to do with it.
One can critique the lack up an update by this time (although it’s possible that like I was yesterday she is away from a pc, after all some of those other posts might have been scheduled) but the False & Hysterical business and the demands for an “Apology to the world” seems to be yet another example of what the Anchoress has been describing:
The press is running with the “right-wing Christian Fundamentalist” narrative with almost unseemly enthusiasm. Those very words appear in the very first sentence in this New York Times report.
Is he a “fundamentalist Christian,” though? In what way is this a verified as fact? I’m seeing it all over the place, but while his ideology is pretty clear, I’m not seeing (yet) where he is pronouncing himself a Christian, fundamentalist or otherwise; I’m not reading about church-affiliations. I’m sure if he has written anything that will emphasize his faith, we’ll be seeing it. He may very well be a “fundamentalist Christian”, but as of right now, I see nothing in the press to back it up beyond they’re saying so.
He’s apparently a Mason, though I have no idea what that has to do with anything. Someone, I’m sure, will find it relevant.
Strangely enough I seem to remember when home-grown jihadists have been arrested in the US, the press has studiously avoided mentioning religion but now the left seems to be going all in. As Clayton Cramer puts it:
But it does seem plausible that this guy was the equivalent of Timothy McVeigh.
I do think it will be interesting to watch how leftists who make excuses for Islamic terrorists (being victims and all that) will make no such excuses for this guy.
Also I suspect you will not see anyone Christian groups giving out cakes or naming schools after this fellow, I expect to see stuff more like Pam Geller:
SIOA and SIOE declare our sympathy for the victims and relatives of the victims of the heinous mass murders in Norway. We denounce the attacker and reiterate our dedication to the defense of free societies and opposition to all vigilantism and violence. Attempts to link us to these murders on the basis of alleged postings by the murderer mentioning us are absurd and offensive. Our work is and always has been wholly focused upon defending humane values and freedoms. There is no way that any sane person could possibly conclude that committing mass murder of children would advance the principles for which we stand. And if he was not sane, then any imputation of responsibility to us falters on that basis. Islamic jihadists and supremacists routinely invoke Islamic texts and teachings to justify violence, and thus those teachings are and should be rightly held up to scrutiny; by contrast, our record of support for human rights and the dignity of all human beings is consistent and unbroken. This murderer should be punished to the full extent of the law; any attempts to tar freedom fighters with his actions is deplorable.
This would be the same Pam Geller that my caller on the show today tried to use to link the killer to the tea party.
One might almost think there is a factor of relief that after so many false starts they finally managed to find a story that fits the template they have stored for years. There is odd oddity however:
he didn’t belong to any known factions in Norway’s small and splintered extreme-right movement and had no criminal record except for some minor offenses, the police official told the Associated Press.
Althouse has an interesting take:
A Facebook page matching his name and the photo given out by the police was set up just a few days ago. It listed his religion as Christian and his politics as conservative. It said he enjoys hunting, the video games World of Warcraft and Modern Warfare 2, and books including Machiavelli’s “The Prince” and George Orwell’s “1984.”
So, this is the information he wanted you to find. Assuming he set up this page and he is the murderer, these statement could either be precisely true, deliberate misinformation, or something in between.
The man knows about Machiavelli. What would Machiavelli post on Facebook before embarking on a massacre?
ADDED: Of course, disinformation is a big theme in Orwell’s “1984.” I’m tempted to say that the cues that his statements are lies are so strong that they suggest paradoxically that he is not lying.
I find it kinda odd that the facebook stuff was only set up a few days ago, usually people like this are all over the net, perhaps as the Anchoress suggested:
what I can’t help wondering as I look at these pictures of 32-year old Anders Behring Breivik is: were these professionally-done headshots meant for this moment? Did he have them done in anticipation of seeing them splashed all over the world and included in history books?
Did he mean to look as posed as possible for posterity?
My guess? I’m figuring this fellow has his own manifesto and we will almost certainly hear it at his trial, we still don’t know if he was working with anyone or not, but I’m used up my allotted quantity of speculation, but I suspect that the anti-anti’s will be running wild on this for a long while.
Update: Charles Johnson posting with tweets from CAIR as his credible source. I never thought I’d see the day
Update 2: Michelle Malkin has a question for Mr. Fallows:
More to the point, to whom and for what shall Rubin or I apologize? To Mullah Krekar? Ansar al Islam? To the other jihadi groups and operatives who supported and applauded the attacks under the assumption that it was a fellow Islamic militant?
That’s a good question, I wonder if he has a good answer.