Foreign academics conclude on Norwegians and the Breivik trial / News / The Foreigner

Foreign academics conclude on Norwegians and the Breivik trial. There is no doubt Norway began taking a closer look at the society that had harboured an individual capable of such brutal acts after the Anders Behring Breivik trial, a new report concludes. His extremist right wing views seemed so incongruous with a country known for being notably the other end of the political spectrum. This consequently sparked a large amount of research and questioning into how Norwegian society reacted to Breivik, and what effects the trial had on some of the fundamental ideals of the Norwegian justice system.

andersbehringbreivik, utoyashootings, utya, oslobomb, 22july



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Foreign academics conclude on Norwegians and the Breivik trial

Published on Tuesday, 27th August, 2013 at 07:38 under the news category, by Ruby Lott-Lavigna.

There is no doubt Norway began taking a closer look at the society that had harboured an individual capable of such brutal acts after the Anders Behring Breivik trial, a new report concludes.

Courtroom 250, Oslo District Court
Courtroom 250, Oslo District Court
Photo: ©2012 Michael Sandelson/The Foreigner


His extremist right wing views seemed so incongruous with a country known for being notably the other end of the political spectrum.

This consequently sparked a large amount of research and questioning into how Norwegian society reacted to Breivik, and what effects the trial had on some of the fundamental ideals of the Norwegian justice system.

The International Centre for Counter-Terrorism (ICCT) report, released almost exactly a year after Anders Behring Breivik was sentenced to 21 years in prison, looks into what extent the Breivik trial attained the goals of criminal justice.

It also examines what effect the trial had upon Norwegian society. The paper focuses highly on some fundamental judicial objectives, such as rehabilitation and prevention.

Academics looked at just how successful the trial was at fulfilling these goals – particularly in a terrorism trial that received such widespread attention. At the same time, they say they aimed to determine “if a trial can help a society in coming to terms with such an atrocious attack”.

According to the report, a high percentage of random questionnaire participants knew of someone directly affected by the attack. Moreover, more than a third felt like the trial received too much media coverage (an article pointing this out might seem rather ironic).

The perception of the trial is also questioned – particularly in light of Breivik using it as “a stage to the world” – and to what extent televising it allowed him to publicise his ideology, as opposed to highlighting the mechanics of the Norwegian justice system positively.

The authors come to the conclusion that “overall it seems Breivik’s propaganda has led to different outcomes”, as “major newspapers rejected his articles and several anti-Islamic ideologues he admired… refused his proposals for cooperation”.

They cite that major right wing organisations such as the English Defense League “denied links, alleged ideological connections and any ideological overlap with Breivik”.

“When far-right parties held a mass rally in Denmark in April 2012, opposing protesters actually outnumbered them,” researchers say.

The study lastly looks at Norwegian society’s coping strategies, and in what way the trial helped those directly or indirectly affected to come to terms with the kind of attack that had occurred.

The academics’ paper is reportedly the first to specifically look at this response to the Breivik trial, and finds that social interaction and cohesion heightened to deal with the attack. One example listed is when some 40,000 gathered to sing ‘Children of the Rainbow’ song in Oslo shortly after the trial began.

Ultimately, it reinforces much of what Norwegian citizens hoped the trial would achieve: that Norway maintained a successful and transparent judicial system during the trial, consequently helping its society to better cope with the trauma.

Researchers conclude that more investigation could be done to elaborate and review these conclusions. They also say it may be clear that the trial was not flawless, but in retrospect it had positive effects on Norway.

The paper can be found here.



Published on Tuesday, 27th August, 2013 at 07:38 under the news category, by Ruby Lott-Lavigna.

This post has the following tags: andersbehringbreivik, utoyashootings, utya, oslobomb, 22july.





  
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