Fjordman’s latest essay has been published at FrontPage Mag. Some excerpts are below:
I am currently completing a book about the Anders Behring Breivik case and how I got dragged into it against my will. The working title is Witness to Madness, with the subtitle How I Became Public Enemy Number Two. I was considering dropping the reference to being a “public enemy,” as it might be seen as hyperbole. Yet after the reactions I’ve received since the beginning of June 2013, this title actually seems warranted.
On Friday June 14, I announced on my Twitter account, in Norwegian, that I’d just been awarded a grant of 75,000 kroner to support the completion of my upcoming book about the Breivik case. This grant came from Fritt Ord, which is Norway’s largest and most well-funded free speech organization by far.
I was quite happy to receive it, as it had not at all been certain that I would get it. The decision was bound to cause some controversy, given how controversial I am in Norway, but the mass media reactions once again exceeded anything I had truly expected. A full week after my tweet, the debate had still not died down. A Member of Parliament representing the ruling government coalition blasted the decision and me personally on the state broadcaster NRK. The crux of the debate is: Does freedom of speech apply even to truly loathsome creeps like Fjordman?
On June 18, 2013, the major national daily VG in Norway published a special editorial entitled “VG believe: Our democracy can withstand Fjordman.” This opinion piece was unsigned, but the paper’s CEO and editor-in-chief is Torry Pedersen, and its political editor is Hanne Skartveit. The newspaper claimed that I do not share the fundamental values of our civilization but instead spread unfounded “hate” against Muslims. In essence, they virtually branded me a public enemy. Nevertheless, in the end the paper came out in favor of the decision by a private foundation to support the publishing of my book. VG gave this justification for their thinking:
“Our main argument in favor of supporting the monetary grant from Fritt Ord is that it illustrates the strength of the Norwegian democracy. A man who clearly despises our society and our values is applying for money to be able to continue denigrating this society. This money he will get, because we as a society are confident that we can meet this hate speech in an open terrain. Our democracy can withstand Fjordman, precisely because we have the strength to beat back hate speech and anti-human attitudes. With words as weapons.”
Please note that at the time this was published, my book wasn’t even fully written yet, let alone published, something which I had told the press. My intention is to have the manuscript for Witness to Madness completed by the end of this summer and hopefully have the book in circulation by late 2013, if that is practically possible.
Moreover, it was also known that I no longer live in Norway since I had to flee the country after being partly blamed for the terror attacks of July 22, 2011 carried out by Anders Behring Breivik, a person I have never once met. I have also not been a member of any political party throughout my adult life. So what this editorial in newspaper VG actually said is that the Norwegian democracy is strong enough to withstand a book that has not yet been published, written by a single individual with no criminal record who no longer lives in Norway. I suppose that’s good. Norwegian democracy must be really, really strong to withstand that kind of pressure.
Read the rest at FrontPage Mag.
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For a complete archive of Fjordman’s writings, see the multi-index listing in the Fjordman Files.