Mass Murderer with Headshots? – UPDATED

So, what are we to make of this creature who has handed Norway a horrific grief and who managed, it seems, to continue stalking and shooting his unarmed prey for over an hour?

His background and beliefs will be explored extensively throughout the media, but what I can’t help wondering as I look at these pictures of 32-year old Anders Behring Breivik is: were these professionally-done headshots meant for this moment? Did he have them done in anticipation of seeing them splashed all over the world and included in history books?

Did he mean to look as posed as possible for posterity?

Because that’s how it looks to me. Some accounts I’m reading are suggesting that Breivik was an unmemorable sort of fellow who seemed “well-educated” but not especially noteworthy. It looks like he knew he was going to commit a crime that would bring him lasting infamy, and he wanted to prepare for the fame.

I need to find out when those pictures were taking. It wouldn’t surprise me at all to learn that he made sure he had pretty pictures for the press. We live in a media-savvy age where everybody wants to be as star. Everyone wants to be “special.” Is that partly what this evil is all about?

From Brutally Honest: This grainy photo taken from a helicopter shows the killer standing in the midst of the carnage, apparently looking toward his next victim on the lower left who appears to be pleading for his life.

It is horrific. It is evil. It is cause for us all to seek God’s face.

92 people dead, senselessly murdered at the hand of one maniac apparently in the clutches of another evil ideology evil ideology.

This is the assessment of Archbishop Paul Tscherrig, the Apostolic Nuncio to the country. He called the attack a “great catastrophe”, and emphasized Norway is a peaceful country, which is very democratic and free, and this violence is a gigantic blow to the entire population.

“It is madness,” Archbishop Tscherrig told Vatican Radio. “All these actions are irrational, and difficult to comprehend, whether they had personal or political reasons. In any case, it is always an unbelievable thing.”

The press is running with the “right-wing Christian Fundamentalist” narrative with almost unseemly enthusiasm. Those very words appear in the very first sentence in this New York Times report.

The Norwegian police on Saturday charged a man they identified as a right-wing fundamentalist Christian in connection with a bombing in central Oslo and a shooting attack on a nearby island that killed at least 92 people. Officials said the death toll could climb as they continued to search for the missing.

As stunned Norwegians grappled with the deadliest attack in the country since World War II, a portrait began to emerge of the main suspect in the case as a gun-loving Norwegian obsessed with what he saw as the threat of multiculturalism and Muslim immigration.

Is he a “fundamentalist Christian,” though? In what way is this a verified as fact? I’m seeing it all over the place, but while his ideology is pretty clear, I’m not seeing (yet) where he is pronouncing himself a Christian, fundamentalist or otherwise; I’m not reading about church-affiliations. I’m sure if he has written anything that will emphasize his faith, we’ll be seeing it. He may very well be a “fundamentalist Christian”, but as of right now, I see nothing in the press to back it up beyond they’re saying so.

He’s apparently a Mason, though I have no idea what that has to do with anything. Someone, I’m sure, will find it relevant.

Yesterday, credit for the attack was taken by a Jihadi group looking for publicity. Because they wanted to associate themselves with this sort of evil carnage. What sickness!

Meanwhile, as Rick Rice writes: Blood in the water for haters of Christians the world over. The feeding frenzy will begin in 3, 2, 1…

Let’s continue to pray for the folks in Norway. And for our societies and what they are becoming.

UPDATE I: clued in by Jeff Gill on facebook, found Breivik’s comments online and the google translation: A cursory view shows lots of ranting against multi-culturalism, no ranting about Jesus Christ — none of the bible verses and preachifing that one might expect; some disgust with libertarians and, in 2009, some carping about the “modernist” churches…will have to read more.

Ann Alhouse on the information he wanted you to find: “The man knows about Machiavelli. What would Machiavelli post on Facebook before embarking on a massacre?”

Apparently clicked Christian” on facebook. Fundamentalist, though? Do they have that category? I don’t know. I think for some people any “Christian” means “Fundamentalist Christian.” Some of the commenters at Althouse — who saw the page before it was taken down — suggest that it was fake:

He’s a Norwegian nationalist guy. Why is the page in English, and why are the cultural products mentioned (books, TV, games) primarily English-language? I’m assuming the answer for being in English is that he wanted the biggest possible audience for presenting himself, but why the lack of Norwegian content? It seems like the Facebook page, which was very recently concocted, was created for our benefit, as part of his post-massacre publicity package. [. . .] What I find odd is that I got a chance to look at the FB page before it got shut down. There were no friends, no groups just a bunch of posts about music plus the odd interests in movies/games/tv that were 100% American.

It struck me at the time that it was set up like a “spam” site … totally fake for a purpose.

The Althouse comments are very interesting, as usual.

UPDATE II:
Pub Secrets:

Now it appears that a narrative is building that this sociopath acted out of “Christian fundamentalism,” whatever that is. If that takes hold, and I say this as a thoroughly secular person, it would be grossly unfair and a slander against religious Christians because, unlike Islam, their faith forbids just this kind of action and makes it a mortal sin. The Fifth Commandment is, “You shall not murder.”

UPDATE III: Instapundit links here (Thanks, Glenn) and has many others, too, so check him out.

I’ve already had my first childishly spiteful “nyah, nyah, nyah, fundamentalist Christian haters” comment and since it had no verifiable email address attached I spammed it. the comment policy is in force:

5) Expressing the wish that either I or one of my loved ones die or become seriously ill will have you made not welcome here. Also, if you are going to use a fake email address, be a little less obvious than die_Anchoress_die@Diemore.com or @ihateyou.net. If I spot such addresses, they are marked as spam and banned. If, while I am waiting for you to grow up and use your a proper address, I realize that you are a ranting bigot simply looking for an outlet, same deal. My place, my prerogative. I wouldn’t dream of going to someone else’s site and not minding my manners.

I’m not moderating comments yet. If things get out of hand, I will.

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About Elizabeth Scalia