Saturday, March 7, 2015

Unfunny clown

Shortly before going to trial, the Norwegian mass murderer Anders Breivik assured a psychiatrist that he was an essentially respectable character. Leaving aside a “window of three hours” on July 22nd, 2011, Breivik explained, he had never behaved threateningly to anyone. Inside that window, Breivik detonated a van-bomb outside a government building in Oslo, killing eight people. He then proceeded to the small island of Ut√łya, where the youth wing of the Labour Party was holding its annual summer camp. There, using semi-automatic firearms equipped with laser sights, he slaughtered sixty-nine further victims, most of them teenagers. Then he surrendered, so he could inform the world why all this had been necessary, from a political point of view. When the police made him strip, to confirm he wasn’t wired with a bomb, he grinned and struck a bodybuilder’s pose in his underpants.  

The prospect of spending 500 pages in the company of such a man is not tantalizing ... [read more]