Norway Refuses to Hate or Be Afraid
2012 April 26
Posted by Steve Beckow
Congratulations to the people of Norway, who continue to demonstrate fearlessness and love to the world. Thanks to Edvard.
Thousands gather in Oslo to sing song Anders Breivik hates
Reuters/Guardian, April 26, 2012
About 40,000 people sing 1970s song Children of the Rainbow, which Breivik described as Marxist propaganda
People gather in central Oslo to sing a song hated by mass murderer Anders Behring Breivik. Photograph: Kyrre Lien/AFP/Getty Images
Up to 40,000 Norwegians have staged an emotionally charged singalong in Oslo near the court building where Anders Behring Breivik is on trial for the murder of 77 people in a protest organisers said showed he had not broken their tolerant society.
“It’s we who win,” said guitar-strumming folk singer Lillebjørn Nilsen as he led the mass singalong and watched the crowd sway gently in the rain. Many held roses above their heads, and some wept.
The protest followed several days of defiant testimony from Breivik, who has admitted killing his victims but denied criminal guilt.
The crowd chose to sing Children of the Rainbow, a song that extols the type of multicultural society Breivik has said he despises and one he dismissed during the trial as Marxist propaganda.
People then marched to the district courthouse where Breivik was on trial, close to the site where he set off a bomb that killed eight people on 22 July last year.
Thousands more Norwegians held similar musical protests in towns across the country. The protest came as survivors lined up inside the courtroom to take the witness stand and describe the bombing.
“I was spitting teeth,” said Harald Foesker, who had been at work in the Ministry of Justice when the 950kg fertiliser bomb went off outside his window.
“I felt at once that this was a terror attack on the government building … I called for help but nobody answered.”
He said he lost 80% of his vision and his face had to be restored afterwards, but added he was proud to live in a country that treated criminal defendants with dignity.
Breivik, 33, has called his victims “traitors” who deserved death for embracing leftwing values that, in his view, opened Europe to a slow-motion Muslim invasion.
He has said he felt he had no choice but to strike back, bombing government offices and staging a brutal gun massacre at a Labour party island summer camp that killed 69 people.
Breivik has often used chillingly graphic language to describe his killing spree, but it seems to have taken his comments about the Children of the Rainbow song to touch a nerve in a country that prides itself on a tradition of tolerance and justice.