On 22 July 2011 a young man named Anders Behring Breivik carried out one of the most vicious terrorist acts in post-war Europe. In a carefully orchestrated sequence of actions he bombed government buildings in Oslo, resulting in eight deaths, then carried out a mass shooting at a camp of the Workers Youth League of the Labour Party on the island of Utoya, where he murdered sixty-nine people, mostly teenagers.
How could Anders Behring Breivik - a middle-class boy from the West End of Oslo - end up as one of the most violent terrorists in post-war Europe? Where did his hatred come from?
A Norwegian Tragedy, Aage Borchgrevink attempts to provide an answer. Taking us with him to the multiethnic and class-divided city where Breivik grew up, he follows the perpetrator of the attacks into an unfamiliar online world of violent computer games and anti-Islamic hatred, and demonstrates the connection between Breivik s childhood and the darkest pages of his 1500-page manifesto.
This is the definitive story of 22 July 2011: a Norwegian tragedy.
Aage Borchgrevink is an eminent Norwegian journalist and literary critic. He has worked as an advisor to the Helsinki Committee for Human Rights since 1993 and in 2004 was awarded the Ossietzky Award by the Norwegian P.E.N. Club for outstanding promotion of free speech.
Preface vii 1 The Explosion 1 2 Bacardi Razz 7 3 A West End Family: Anders Behring Breivik s Childhood 25 4 Morning on Utoya 45 5 Morg the Graffiti Bomber: Anders Behring Breivik s Youth 59 6 The Mother of the Nation Returns to Utoya 94 7 Andrew Berwick and Avatar Syndrome 111 8 The Safest Place in Norway 148 9 The Book Launch 161 10 Survivors 181 11 Rescuers 197 12 What Is Happening in Norway? 210 13 Anders Behring Breivik s Seventy-Five Minutes on Utoya 226 14 Hatred 247 Notes 273 Acknowledgements 287 Index 288