(Original post by Meus)
So I'm checking this mornings articles and headlines.
BBC: Scores killed in Norway attacks
No reference to terrorism in main article. One in the analysis.
CNN: 91 Dead in Norway Attacks
No reference to the attacks as terrorism
Fox: 'Madman' Eyed in Norway Massacre
1 reference to it as terrorism, but reassures it has nothing to do with 'international terrorism' twice
Yahoo: Norway Gunman Yelled 'You Must All Die'
No reference to terrorism
New York Times: 91 Dead in Norway, Most at Youth Camp
1 reference to it as terrorism
Al Jazeera: Scores killed in twin attacks in Norway
No reference to terrorism
I recall that this was presented as a terrorist attack widely throughout the media (and the printed press illustrates this) before his identify was known. That's not to say they don't disagree that this was an act of terrorism, but having seen how effective public perceptions are it'll be interesting to see how this is termed in the next few days and weeks; will it be known as terrorism or simply the acts of a 'mad man' on a killing spree?
What perplexes me further is when Islamic terrorism
occurs in the Western hemisphere, or specifically countries are not
Muslim or involved in conflict, it evokes the same conversations which are invariably almost always about the presumed link of a religion with the act of blowing innocent people on the street and yet when the same act occurs in Muslim countries 1000 times more, and takes thousands of more lives in places like Afghanistan, Iraq or Pakistan - it's not noticed. It's not relevant, it' doesn't matter even when its the same type of people doing it. We saw it in the India terrorism thread where people talked about India's problems with terrorism, and because it was usually Pakistanis or Muslim indians the perpeturators, it invariably stoked up the same conversation we tend to have. But yet not a single person mentioned Pakistan's problem with terrorism and how its been worst in recent years. It's being presented, or taken as, that terrorism only happens in non-Muslim countries and thus perpetuates this narrative of a link between Muslims, or Islam, and the notion of blowing people up.
To test this, I created a thread on some forums when a terrorist attack happened. But when it happened elsewhere. 'BREAKING NEWS: Terrorist attack kills 127 in city centre', I titled the thread - although accurate, I knew people would assume it to mean a city close to them (or a European or US city'.
What do you think was the reaction when they finished reading the article and realised it was in Baghdad or Kabul? It was 'Meh'. Whilst it's going to trigger any empathy because we may not be able to identify with Afghans or Iraqis like Europeans or Americans, but importantly It didn't evoke none of the 'Islamic terrorism' narrative that it would have done if even a 10th of people that died in that attack had died in Europe or the US, for example. So it suggested that we don't identify this type of terrorism as terrorism at all, even if it actually is and even if it kills more people.
So in effect, hundreds and thousands can die in one area and be killed by the same people
but when the same happens - even when its small casualties - in another area, by the same people, it's relevant and its judged as a separate entity completely. If it wasn't, it would sink this narrative that this is a conflict of religious ideology. If group X, who are Muslim, indiscriminately kill Muslims in a Muslim country, it's no more than a rolling banner on your TV screen.
But when group X kills indiscriminately others in Europe, for example, it's an agenda that can define elections and attitudes of immigrant communities; it's those Muslims again. It's Islam again.
Anyone here can quote the figure of those killed on 9/11 and 7/7 and that's largely enough to define this entire thing. But not a single person can quote the figure of those killed in even just one year in the Muslim countries these terrorists inflict their greatest focus and their damage on, and yet we'll all claim we know a lil sum'in about this. Why is that.
Although we may not be able to empathise with other people, we're always vocal in our opinions of what motives terrorism. Usually that opinion is religious ideology because we only see Muslim terrorists, making videos citing Quranic verses, attacking Western cities. But we are apparently uninterested in the majority of terrorist attacks in other countries when its evidently not religious ideology, so it leads to a failure of acknowledgement that there are multiple reasons/factors as to what can cause terrorism in general.
Here in this case with the Norway attacks, the man was evidently politically motivated and sought out to murder countless people - even the young, associated with a political party. He was anti-immigration, anti-Muslim and a far-right with supposed admiration for the infamous Geert Wilder - a man who was banned from the UK because of potential to incite hatred. Some here on this forum cried foul because he wasn't able to have his freedom of speech rights, and some saw it as a PC decision to stop him talking about Islam. And yet, when Arab clerics are banned from the UK for inciting hatred, its supported. Why? Because they could inspire terrorists. Here we have a far-right individual subscribing to right-wing rhetoric, is inspired by people like Wilders - but will people see a similarity here? No. If he was named Ahmed, and he said he admired a fundamentalist cleric, then they'd be furious.