Norway the Victim of Massive Terrorist Attack - Page 2
That being said, Islamic terrorist groups are and will continue to be suspected of the attacks for several reasons. First, while the attack on the summer camp was carried out by what is described to be a white man, thus drawing suspicion away from Islamic groups, the bombings in Olso carried such force and caused enough damage that many believe that internal far-right groups would not have the manpower nor the money to orchestrate such an attack; rather, the bombs most likely came from abroad. Indeed, Norway, a prominent member of the NATO alliance which has been in Afghanistan since 2001, may seem like an unlikely target for Islamic terrorism due to its relative anonymity, but any nation actively fighting against the Taliban is considered an enemy by al-Qaeda and therefore could be a target.
Furthermore, Islamic fundamentalists have already claimed knowledge of and support for the attacks. A militant activist, Abu Suleiman al-Nasser, posting on an Islamic radical online forum stated that the Oslo bombings are "another message arriving in the countries of Europe from the mujahadeen" (Reuters). While the individual could simply be trying to gain attention through such comments, his and others Islamics' actions and statements in support of the attacks could tilt the public opinion in Norway and around the world against the Islamic groups and the terrorists with whom they are so often affiliated.
Moreover, Norway has been considered in recent years a possible target of al-Qaeda attacks due to its position as a NATO state and due to the controversial cartoons published by one of its newspapers. According to Reuters, "...in early 2006, a small Norwegian newspaper angered many Muslims by reprinting Danish cartoons depicting the Prophet Muhammad." While such actions were obviously not carried out by the government, Islamists living in Norway and abroad could have seen this cartoon as a message that Norway must be taught a lesson, one only achieved through violence and bloodshed.
Lastly, while not mentioned specifically, Norway could have been in danger from Muhammar Gadhafi's vows to take the ongoing war in Libya, a war in which Norway is participating as part of the NATO alliance, to Europe. On July 9, Gadhafi stated, "Hundreds of Libyans will martyr in Europe. I told you it is eye for an eye and tooth for a tooth. But we will give them a chance to come to their senses" (Al Jazeera). Through examination of the speech, it appears that Gadhafi is calling on his supporters to use suicide bombs and other terrorists techniques to terrorize and devastate Europe.Continued on the next page