So now we know -- thanks, Blake Hounshell -- that Anders Behring Breivik composed a manifesto before murdering 91 (maybe 92, now) of his fellow Norwegians. He is unquestionably a terrorist. In fact, there is a reason his attacks (bombs in politically resonant areas coupled with simultaneous/near-simultaneous attacks in another politically resonant area, designed to kill lots of people and receive maximum attention) resembled al-Qaida's. Breivik's critique of what ails the world is practically culled from bin Laden's, showing the eerie, ironic similarities between the "Eurabia" crowd and the menace it supposedly confronts.
As Blake notes, Breivik respects al-Qaida, calling it one of few "successful militant organisations" due to its successful "cultural adaptation," whatever that means. Ayman Zawahiri will be pleased to hear it.
If you'd rather not bother digging through the 1,500-page manifesto, Breivik apparently released a video that encapsulates its major themes. It's far more amateurish than anything
al-Manar as-Sahab [d'oh] ever released, but that helps expose the essentially puerile thinking that runs between Euro-nationalist murder and al-Qaida. It's as if Breivik heard his favorite hysterical authors rant about "Islamofascism" so often he decided the concept merited enlistment.
Anyone who's watched and listened to a decade's worth of bin Laden and Zawahiri communiques will notice the familiar themes.
The elites have betrayed and brainwashed the faithful. Much like how bin Laden conceived of the decline of the Middle East, what Breivik considers the cultural rot of Europe isn't the fault of the "authentic" Euros. It's due to a decades-long betrayal by their rulers.
Multiculturalism and "cultural Marxism" does for Breivik what Mideast bandwagoning with the west does for bin Laden: provides each man with a galvanizing sense of victimhood and beseigement. It also writes those elites out of the realm of authenticity, providing a way for their audiences to switch their allegiances over to the "strong horse" -- and also a way to justify killing their targets.
Destroy the apostate regime. The apostate regime will collapse due to its inability to withstand attacks from the principled believers. For bin Laden, the believers are the true Muslims, the vanguard of an Islamic revival. For Breivik, it's the "cultural Marxists" and their media sycophants who've been attacking (!) European nationalists since the downfall of the Third Reich.
Notice the essential point: for both the Islamic supremacist and the Islamophobe, what matters most is winning the battle with the apostates. It's not an accident that al-Qaida kills orders of magnitude more Muslims than westerners. Nor is it an accident that Breivik targeted white Norwegians instead of the Muslim immigrants that so stir his ire. For both, the stated grievance is pretextual. "Before we can begin our Crusade," Breivik states, "we must do our duty by decimating Cultural Marxism!"
We tried to warn you. It's important that neither Breivik nor al-Qaida allow their audience -- potential recruits -- to view them as aggressors. bin Laden liked to release messages giving his targets a last chance to "reverse course" (usually some politically grandiose demand, like the U.S. sever ties with Saudi Arabia). Breivik's video, like his blog, were warning shots.
Islam is stronger than the Enemy. There's a scene in the video where Breivik explicitly quotes bin Laden's theory that the believers will choose the strong horse over the weak horse every time. Breivik sees multiculturalism as the weak horse, and believes that the uncompromising nature of the radical fringe of Islam that he course considers authentic Islam will be the choice of future generations of Europeans. Notice how he respects the caricature of Islam he's constructed -- he's projected onto it the pornographically doctrinaire and martial culture he values. Where can he enlist? (In a Christian, nationalist version, of course.)
But the Enemy is everywhere. Bin Laden dreamed up the omnipotence of the U.S. in spite of what he considered its obvious cultural inferiority -- after all, it managed to dominate the Mideast, didn't it? The same conspiratorial obsession with the "power" of multiculturalists and Muslims focuses Breivik's mind. The Soviet Union collapsed -- yet "cultural Marxism" overtook all powerful Europeans, east and west, for 65 years. The Muslims are on the march, armed with high birthrates, their creeping sharia, that dagnabbit taqqiyya doctrine that lets them lie about everything, their "litigation jihad" and their "drug distribution" (!?!) jihad, etc.
So much of this ressentiment-based critique was on display by opponents of the Cordoba House mosque. I don't believe Pam Gellar and her cohorts are thisclose from being Breiviks waiting to happen, as noxious as their arguments are. But they might want to reflect on how their arguments are closer to the racialism of European conservatism than to the open, nonsectarian religiosity of American conservatism.
What makes a good believer. Who said it, Breivik or bin Laden? "Embrace the principles of our ancestors: Strength. Honor. Sacrifice. Martyrdom." Embrace them or see "our culture and our people perish." The very next slide is a picture of a mounted knight, hoisting a flag, followed by a recitation of ancient martial victories. He might as well have called it Knights Under The Prophet's Banner.