I almost fell of my chair when I heard John Key use the Norway massacre to justify New Zealand’s military involvement in Afghanistan.
He said the killings were part of global terrorism and why New Zealand is in Afghanistan “trying to make the world a safer place.”
The problem is that right-wingers like Anders Breivik generally back the war – and Norway’s involvement.
The Anders Breiviks of this world have cheered on the anti-Muslim dimension of the “war on terror” including the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
While we can’t accuse John Key of being anti-Muslim the reality is that he’s been part of a “war on terror” which has stirred up anti-Muslim sentiment in western nations.
There is some evidence that Anders Breivik was one who became infected with this anti-Muslim sentiment, and that it motivated him to slaughter “soft-on-Muslim” Labour activists.
Some young Norwegian Labour activists may have looked at “terrorism” in a way which seriously challenged Breivik’s mindset. They might have thought we should focus on addressing the poverty and injustice that breeds terrorism in Islamic nations – rather than go to war and trample on people’s right.
If Breivik’s rampage is a part of “global terrorism”, it is more in sync with the terrorism being exercised by the American state with its bombers, drones and its prison camp at Guantanamo prison, than the terrorism of Islamic extremists.