Our Norwegian correspondent The Observer has translated an MSM article about the ethnic Norwegian Al Qaeda terrorist who has drawn so much attention over the last few days. The translator includes this explanatory note:
The “Blitz” movement mentioned in the article is a violent anarchist organization established in the early 1980s. Drammen is a city approximately 40 kilometres west of Oslo.
The translated Dagbladet article:
This is the Norwegian male who has been trained by Al Qaida
He always kept to himself, according to sources associated with one of the mosques frequented by the 33-year-old.
Drammen/Oslo (Dagbladet): The Norwegian male who has undertaken terrorist training in Yemen converted to Islam in 2008 after being loosely affiliated with several organizations on the political Left in Norway. After converting he withdrew from these and began avoiding his old friends.
Read the full story about what was a normal Norwegian male with a clean police record until 2007 in the print edition of Dagbladet.
The 33-year-old is a former leftist radical with a clean police record, born and raised in the Oslo region. His parents are white ethnic Norwegians, and one of his relatives works in a department of the Norwegian government. The 33-year-old is married to a diplomat’s daughter and used to belong to the Blitz movement in Oslo. According to his CV he has spent time in the building industry and worked in a kindergarten.
Sources in contact with Dagbladet confirm that the 33-year-old and a small clique of conservative Muslims have on several occasions attended the Rabita Mosque in Calmeyers Gate in Oslo and a mosque in Drammen. The Rabita Mosque is run by The Islamic Council of Norway and is one of the most renowned mosques in the country.
Both King Harald and Crown Prince Haakon visited the mosque in 2009.
The mosque has additionally arranged several highly publicised seminars about Islam in Norway. It also has a Koran school for children, arranges language classes in Arabic, lessons about Islam and the Koran and has its own scouts group.
“I have had my suspicions about who he is and I have seen him in the Rabita Mosque on several occasions,” says the leader of the Islamic council of Norway, Bazim Ghozlan (47) to Dagbladet.
Quiet and reserved
The Rabita is a large mosque that is open 24/7. Most Muslims in Oslo have attended it at one time or another.
“We know that he has studied Arabic in Yemen, but we have no knowledge of him belonging to any special cliques within the mosque and we have a fairly good knowledge of the people who come here. He is a quiet person who has never had any formal position or responsibilities in the mosque,” says Ghozlan.
Dagbladet has learned that whenever the 33-year-old showed up he kept to himself: he arrived, prayed, cited Koranic verses and then left. Dagbladet was also told that the 33-year-old disappeared couple of months ago and that he hasn’t been seen in the mosque since.
The counterterrorism department of the PST [security police] are monitoring the smaller Islamic extremist groups in Oslo and Drammen that have links to several different Mosques.
They are so-called subgroups whose members have extreme anti-Norwegian and anti-Western views.
Dagbladet have been informed that agents from PST have contacted members from these groups and attempted to establish dialogues with those individuals about whom the security services have concerns.
Dagbladet was told that several of the individuals who have been radicalised by these groups have given the PST the cold shoulder. These members, who are closely monitored by the PST, are not interested in talking with the security services.
Sources that have an extensive knowledge of the PST tell Dagbladet that it’s almost impossible to know what is going on inside these extreme Islamic groups, the main reason for this being a lack of resources within the PST.
The PST’s preventive work with extremist Islamic groups in Norway is described as difficult.
Afterword from the Baron: The PST is low on resources because it has expended so much of its time, talent, and treasure on impounding the socks of right-wing bloggers and similar crucial security operations.