Europe Flirts With Breivik's Anti-Immigrant Message

Right-wing politicians like the philosophy, deplore the violence
By Mark Russell,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 26, 2012 3:38 PM CDT
Europe Flirts With Brievik's Anti-Immigrant Message
Confessed mass killer Anders Behring Breivik leaves the courtroom after the trial, Friday, Aug. 24, 2012, in Oslo, Norway.   (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)

The European right has widely rebuked Anders Behring Breivik for his violence, but also thinks the Norwegian killer had something of a point, reports Reuters. Many European conservatives—like Italian politician Mario Borghezio—were already echoing the language of extremists like Breivik to criticize the growing Muslim presence there. "Not all the ideas were criminal," said Borghezio. "It is the man who behaved in a criminal way." But Borghezio's own party apologized to Norway and suspended Borghezio for his words.

Human rights activists, well aware that even moderate Europeans are calling for curbs on immigrant rights, are shocked by the right's pro-Breivik philosophy. "We need our own 'European Spring' to overcome old and emerging forms of racism and intolerance," says one advocate. But conservatives counter that the elite is blindly embracing cheap immigrant labor while ignoring a growing Islamic radicalization in Europe. One thing is for sure: Breivik failed to spark the religious war he dreamed about, even after getting 21 years for his massacre of young white Norwegians. (More Islamophobia stories.)

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