The following is an edited comment I made to an article in the Huffington Post about the recent massacre in Oslo. by a right wing Christian fundamentalist Anders Breivik.
If the perpetrator Anders Breivik had been Muslim, there would have been a huge amount of the usual Islamophobia in the mainstream media. Amazingly, immediately after the massacre, Islamophobia ensued. I think some in the mainstream media were disappointed Brevik was not Muslim. He is a Christian right wing fundamentalist. It would be a change if the mainstream media focused on Christian fundamentalists and the havoc and destruction that they have caused in history. As EinKommunist on Twitter said:
The right wing bastion of reaction on Oslo: “he’s just a nut job!” Yeah, if he was Muslim he’d be example of “growing Muslim terror threat”
The only difference between the perpetrator’s actions in Norway, and the US military industrial complex’s actions in Iraq and elsewhere (http://www.collateralmurder.com/ ) is that the perpetrator’s action is unlawful and considered mass murder and the latter action is regarded as legal and if civilians are “accidentally” killed in war, it is considered “collateral damage”.
Our society has a love of and addiction to violence. It’s no wonder we produce people like this. Breivik may well be a “sociopath”, but what does that make those people (soldiers) in the “Collateralmurder.com massacre? According to US soldiers on the ground in Iraq, these kinds of massacres happen every day.
It’s very easy not to look in the mirror and not look in our own backyards. It’s very easy to point fingers at those who are “not like us”. We like to “otherise” groups (human and nonhuman) and this otherisation causes violence.
Our governments have been one by one been interfering militarily and invading Muslim countries. Drones have been dropping bombs. As Bill Maher so pointedly said in his New Rules segment: “To save time, just tell us the places we aren’t bombing”.
We have been killing civilians by the hundreds of thousands in these wars. Refugees have been fleeing their countries by the millions. It’s no wonder the Islamic world thinks that the Christians are on a crusade. Interestingly, the US and its allies don’t seem to have the same fervour to “protect human rights” in countries which do not appeal to their economic interests.
We need to seriously stop and look at our own western governments for what they are — representatives of the oligarchy. The US, the US military industrial complex and its allies are NOT the bastion of all that is right, free and good. No they are not. The US & its allies are the greatest destabilizing factor for peace in the world today.
And again I repeat: Breivik may well be a “sociopath”, but what does that make those people (soldiers) in the “Collateralmurder.com” massacre?
And the violence displayed in Norway, the violence which is celebrated and a regular feature in media entertainment, the everyday epidemic levels of violence towards vulnerable groups (e.g woman, children, GLBTI community, other animals etc), the violence of imperialist economic wars perpetrated by the US and its allies can be addressed and turned around if we have the collective will. We need a collective will to incorporate nonviolence into every aspect of our lives. We need to speak out and promote nonviolence in society today. We need to be inclusive and recognize other animals deserve at least one right — the right not to be used as property and stop eating, wearing and using 56 billion other animals (not including sea animals) per year for our pleasure and become vegan. If we think speciesism and using other animals as property and the extreme violence against nonhumans this causes isn’t related to the extreme violence we see today towards humans, we are mistaken. It is all related because we are all interconnected — humans and nonhumans.
Nonviolence starts with us.