🇳🇴 Mass Murderer Anders Behring Breivik Sues the Norwegian Government for Breaching His Human Rights
In 2011, a man named Anders Behring Breivik massacred 77 human beings, mostly teenagers. His reason: saving Norway and Western Europe from a Muslim takeover. His role model is Vidkun Quisling, a certified Nazi politician who collaborated with Nazi Germany. Breivik, in his trial, showed no remorse; he even did the “Hitlergruß” Nazi salute hand gesture in court; that was the level of his indifference. The apathy and nonchalance his demeanour displayed throughout the court proceeding shocked the victims and the world.
In the US, we’ve seen how robbery could get you 50 years and life in prison, and some other crimes like fraud and other non-homicidal crimes could land you 100 years. Norway and Western Europe, with the exception of the UK, operate differently. The Scandinavians, including Finland, are some of the fairest countries mankind has ever seen or will ever see. Norway leads the pack for such freedoms, human rights, tolerance, and accepting other cultures.
On the streets of Southeast London in 2013, when two British-born Muslim converts (Michael Adebolajo and Michael Adebowale), who were indigenous Yoruba of Nigerian decent, slayed British soldier Drummer Lee Rigby, the UK government guaranteed that both offenders would serve the full life sentence; however, the judge gave them 45 years each. Both men are likely to never be released, and rightly so, one must admit.
In 2009, Major Nidal Hasan, a US Army major in Fort Hood, Texas, opened fire at his colleagues, killing 13. Hasan was dismissed from the army and sentenced to death; he is currently awaiting execution in Kansas.
Again in the US, in 2013, in Boston, Massachusetts, brothers Dzhokhar and Tamerlan of Dagestan Republic, Russia, planted homemade bombs during the annual Boston marathon, which detonated, killing three people, injuring hundreds, and claiming 17 limbs. One of the brothers died during a shooting with the police as his other brother drove over him, and the other was sentenced to death again.
In 2019, two consecutive mass shootings occurred in two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand. The lone gunman attacked the mosques during prayer and massacred 51 people, injuring forty. Twenty-eight-year-old Brenton Harrison Tarrant from Grafton, New South Wales, Australia, was arrested while heading to a third mosque to continue his slaughter. Anders Breivik of Norway may have served as the Australian’s inspiration, it was claimed. Tarrant was sentenced to life without parole.
Justice, Legal Systems, and Equity
The UK and the US will change laws to reflect heinous crimes for which existing laws provide little justice or sentencing that is deemed lenient, insufficient, or proportionally inadequate. Justice that changes every time a crime is committed to appease public outcry can be subjective to emotions, thus precarious. In Norway, the maximum sentence you can get is 21 years; the Prime Minister at the time when Breivik massacred those poor teenagers insisted that the laws would not be changed to appease the public outcry or Breivik’s crimes, as that would undermine the law and grant Breivik’s wishes. He insisted that Norwegian laws would stay untouched; Norway has operated under those laws, and it is those laws that have propelled Norway to one of, if not the greatest, countries in the world with human rights, freedom, and equality at their very best.
One should applaud Norway for staying consistent, but does staying consistent matter more than applying proportionate justice to crimes of such proportion? Should the US’ or UK’s life in prison, meaning the whole life served in prison, be proportionate to Breivik’s crime? Major Hasan and the Tsarnaev brothers were sentenced to death; was not that the perfect sentence for those who massacred innocent people? The two British Michaels got 45 years to serve without parole; was their sentence weak or fair?
Anders Behring Breivik Received a 21-Year Sentence For Massacring 77 Innocent People
Norway’s sentencing of Breivik drew criticism even within Western Europe and Norway. Many called for the legal system to be overhauled, especially for crimes like Breivik’s. In nine years, Breivik will walk out of prison if the government does not intervene; he will be walking out unrepentant, and there is no evidence to show that recidivism will not apply to Breivik. Why should Breivik be fed in prison cells that look nicer than most people’s homes in Nigeria or sub-Saharan Africa? Why should Breivik own Playstations and other video games, computers, and other luxury items that, again, most people in sub-Saharan Africa don’t? He can study for a degree, sue the government, rant about his Nazi ideology, and basically live comfortably in prison after killing 77 people; this is not justice.
Breivik Sues the Norwegian Government
It can be argued that the Norwegian justice system failed the victims of that sad summer day in 2011. The man who massacred 77 people has sued the Norwegian government for violating his human rights. What an irony! If this is not comedic to you, well, there is nothing left to say. Have Norwegian human rights and freedom gone too far? His lawsuit reads: “That the government has isolated him for 11 years, that he has no contacts with other people except his guards”, his lawyer Oeystein Storrvik explained. Why would a man who hates his people so much for letting Muslims integrate into Norway want to have contact with the same people he hates and massacred? He even applied for parole, which was not granted because he has not shown remorse; in other words, had Breivik been remorseful, he would have been outside on the streets of Norway with an open border to 26 other European countries, all filled with non-white Muslims.
Human rights, freedom, and equality should never be undermined, but there has to be an exception. In the case of Anders Breivik, tougher sentencing should have applied. As a believer in capital punishment, no one qualifies or makes the case stronger than Breivik. Yes, Norway’s stance on human rights, freedom, and equality is remarkable, but a justice system that is not malleable against the height of crimes of unprecedented disproportion, especially in hindsight of Breivik’s case, can be considered a shortcoming that is not reflective of reality.
The American legal system is not fit for purpose; it defies the freedom the Americans like to proclaim, but you cannot praise the US justice system enough for passing down the death penalty to Major Hasan and the Tsarnaev brothers—that, in my opinion, was justice served. Was Brenton Harrison Tarrant’s life sentence without parole in New Zealand justified? Yes, but it did not go further; the death penalty would have been the perfect sentencing. Should the British Michael duo have been given the death penalty? Absolutely yes! Would the UK have reversed its ban on capital punishment if Lee Rigby’s killing had occurred in post-Brexit Britain? I doubt so, but the sentencing would have been much different.
By Ikechukwu ORJI