22.07.11

by Benedicte

There’s an eerie quiet atmosphere that  remains outside. An afternoon on a saturday and I can’t see a soul outside. I can only hear the curch bells in the distance.

For those who follow this blog from abroad, yesterday at 15:26 a bomb went off in the center of Oslo. Blasting out windows all over the city, completely damaging the Prime Minister’s building and several other official buidlings. My brother and I were about to leave from work, when the girl from print comes in and tells us that there’s been explosions in Oslo. I could not quite believe it, I thougt she was mistaken. We turned on the radio while driving towards Oslo, but we could still not fully believe the extent of what had happened.

I rushed inside, turned on the news and was completly strucken by the images on tv. A war-zone, buildings ravaged, people bleeding, glass and rubble shattered all over town, even many kilometers away. I cannot believe that this is how the govement quarter is looking now.

Then, there started to come in news about shootings on one of the Island about 45 mins from Oslo, Utøya. Apparently, a man dressed up as a policeman, had started shooting people at a political youth camp.  There was supposed to be hundreds of people on this island, and now there was a man murdering them in ice -cold-blood. The eye-witnesses stories from Utøya are gruesome, people trowing themselves in the cold water and swimming with bullets flying after them. I can’t stop crying when listening to their stories. It’s devestating.

As more dreadful news ticked in all nigth I  started to feel really sick, fever and blackouts, my body tends to react very physical on emotional stress. My mother decided to come home from their cabin that night, which I’m glad she did. Now I’m with my family in Fredrikstad.

They have confirmed over 85 people dead from the shootings and 7 from the bomb, and still rising. I can’t believe it, I just cannot. Nothing like it, have ever happened in Norway, apparently it’s lists as one of the worst shooting cases in the world.

I knew people who where at the camp, thank goddness they managed to escape. But the whole thing is just surreal. They have arrested the man who did the shootings, and his name and pictures is all over the news, a young norwegian right-extremist. They know very little so far, but it’s been said that he was the one that put the bomb in Oslo, just so that he could start the massacre at the camp unnoticed. But I refuse to give him the attention that he wants, he is not worthy of hate, he is nothing. Thought it is hard not to hate him. I believe we can’t fight hate with more hate. Instead we should focus on the the victims and their families and friends and stay strong together, and condemn such acts of violence.

When I woke up today by a thunder storm, it took a few moment before it all came back to me. It’s almost as if the weather was exspressing the grief so many is feeling now. I have so many questions. Why? How can someone manage to do such a thing? It’s horrifying to me.

In all this I can’t help but to think about people who lives in countries at war, who experience things like this everyday. Why can’t people stop killing each other, we are all beings of the same earth, why can’t we accept each other? It breaks my heart.

“I don’t think security can solve problems. We need to teach greater respect”  Oslo’s Major, Fabian Stang.

My heart and thougths go out to the people who have lost dear friends and family members to this tradgedy, I can’t even begin to imagine how they feel right now.  Please give them all your thoughts and  a  moment of silence.