"Our answer is more democracy, more openness, more humanity, but without naivety."
-Jens Stoltenberg, Norwegian PM
Norway is a small country, and Friday's atrocities touched us all. We all know someone who were touched by this attack on the basic values of our society.
The terrorist claims to be part of an international group, unified in their hatred against Islam and socialism. His goal was to force the hand of our government to take actions against what he sees as a threat against the Western Christian civilization. He failed. Norway of today is a nation without dividing lines; religion, politics and colour does not define us. Solidarity and humanity does.
Instead of seeding his own hatred in our souls, the terrorist has brought us all together. When I heard that he was of Norwegian ethnicity, and a Christian, I was relieved. How would Norway have looked today had he been a Muslim? It also made me realise that Christian terrorism hurts just as much as Muslim terrorism. We cannot fight intolerance with more intolerance.
I have been reminded of one of our poets, Nordahl Grieg:
Here is your battle plan,
Here is your shield
Faith in this life of ours,
The common weal
For all our children’s sake,
Save it, defend it,
Pay any price you must,
They shall not end it
Please read the whole poem on Wikipedia.
I have never been as proud of my country as I am now.
[Picture source: NRK]