Anders Behring Breivik isn´t one of them.
The morning of July 22, 2011, Breivik got out of bed, left the house, and did his thing. A bomb and assortment of guns left 172 victims with 76 people dead, so far.
Readers of The Source of Terrorism: Middle Class Rebellion recognized the pattern immediately. Breivik is a textbook case of a middle class rebel turned terrorist. Among other things, he underwent the typical accumulation of marginal, intermediate, or transitional conditions, e.g., change of country, divorced parents, step brothers and sisters.
Breivik's father, Jens, was a Siviløkonom (Norwegian professional title, literally "civil economist"), who worked as a diplomat for the Royal Norwegian Embassy in London (and later Paris). His father currently lives in France as a pensioner and has had no contact with his son since 1995. His mother, Wenche (née Behring),was a nurse. He has two half-brothers and two half-sisters, from the previous marriages of his parents. His parents divorced when he was one year old and his mother together with him and his half-sister moved from London back to Oslo. Breivik grew up in the affluent west-end of Oslo... In late June or early July 2011, Breivik moved to the small rural town of Rena in Åmot, Hedmark county, about 140 km (86 miles) northeast of Oslo,where he operated a farming sole proprietorship under the name "Breivik Geofarm." To sum up: a small businessman.
You also cannot think of Oslo without thinking of the Nobel Prize. And you cannot think of the Nobel Prize without thinking of Argentinian author Jorge Luis Borges.
Borges never won the prize, a fact that gave rise to The Eternal Mystery of literature: why?
Like snakes, mysteries travel in pairs. What could the unfathomed, incomprehensible Borges nonprize possibly have to do with the Oslo terrorist attack?
Borges wrote in a short story, "Funes el memorioso":
Había aprendido sin esfuerzo en inglés, el francés, el portugués, el latín. Sospecho, sin embargo, que no era muy capaz de pensar. Pensar es olvidar diferencias, es generalizar, abstraer. El el abarrotado mundo de Funes no había sino detalles, casi inmediatos. ("Funes had leaned effortlessly English, French, Portuguese, Latin. I suspect, however, he didn´t know how to think. Thinking is to forget differences and to generalize, to make abstractions. In the filled-up world of Funes, there were only details, mostly immediate ones.")
I would like to address directly the Oslo authorities in charge of the Breivik case:
You are no doubt presently being flooded with visits and advice from American agents from the CIA, FBI, Homeland Security, etc. You are discovering that your foreign colleagues know a lot about certain things.
However, you are also discovering that there are other things they just don´t get. The reason why has to do with the ideology -- which poses as reason and science -- driving and dominating them.
The worst is yet to come. I´ll go ahead and mention the unmentionable: is it possible that your American colleagues are under the spell of the same ideology that creates middle class rebels, that is to say, terrorists? That terrible question is explored in The Source of Terrorism.
Which brings us back to Borges. As mentioned, I suspect that you, Oslo authorities, right now are busy making the acquaintance of Funes II, III, IV, V... To understand them, we might start by asking: what is it, exactly, that your American colleagues know so well?
What American intelligence agents consider worth knowing is only a mouse click away. Enter "CACI" and you will be in touch with a firm that provides personnel to intelligence agencies. Here is a typical job spec for a position "somebody" wants to fill. It is hot off the press. Curious coincidence: it arrived in my mailbox on July 22, Oslo´s day of terror:
INTELLIGENCE OPERATIONS SPECIALIST 2 (57774) Intelligence - Analyst USA-TX-Fort Worth
Security Clearance: TS/SCI Clearance Status: Must be Current Schedule: Full Time Shift Work: No
Type of Travel: Local, Continental US, Outside Continental US Percent of Travel Required: Up to 25%
Description Duties and Responsibilities: Position is used to fill entry level temporary vacancies and is contingent upon successful transfer of clearance, customer approval, and position availability. Temporary position ends July 2012 Provides analytical and database entry support to USNORTHCOM, USSOUTHCOM, USAFRICOM, or USPACOM. Under general supervision, provides counter terrorism support for all-source analysis of terrorist activities and actions against DOD interests. In addition, provide database entry by maintaining particular structured and unstructured databases used by the command.
Database entry and data extraction (using CAPTIVE, iBase Suite, Analyst Notebook, and CT-AVRS Web software) for the use of intelligence products and analysis is a primary function of analysts. Analysts will primarily be responsible for data entry (70%) of thoroughly analyzed and vetted information from DOD record message traffic in accordance with specified procedures and the data extraction (30%) of critical intelligence information to create charts, timelines, and dossiers on targets of interest in support of Combatant Command requirements or other DoD/interagency requirements as appropriate. Database analysis consists of data mining for unknown linkages of existing information to maintain an integrated terrorism database tracking system using link analysis and other software tools.
Analytical support emphasis is on intelligence analysis of specified targets, counter terrorism, political-military; counter threat finance, biological warfare, chemical threats, procurement, behavioral models, logistical infrastructure, and socio-cultural information. Analytical requirements also entail monitoring current intelligence of specified targets, interface with representatives from other government and intelligence organizations, perform resource allocation to identify and accomplish specific tasks, process current and historical data collected, provide source-directed requirements to guide exploitations or accompany exploitation missions, gain subject matter expertise for all intelligence matters dealing with assigned targets, exploitation of various intelligence disciplines, and participation in the DOD targeting process. Conduct all-source and counter terrorism intelligence analysis to incorporate data from various sources using different data stores that include CT-AVRS, iBase, Multi Media Messenger (M3), Pathfinder, WISE, TAC, and special access programs. Produce finished intelligence products derived from a terrorism database to compose graphical Analyst Notebook charts for nodal analysis, written intelligence products, assessments, formal message evaluations, power point presentations, command briefings, and answers various requests for information (RFI) inquiries.
I don´t know about you, but all that looks like Funes to me.
CT-AVRS? Sounds like something the cat dragged in. TAC? I vaguely remember seeing a bottle of the stuff in the Owl Liquor Store. It was on a shelf next to Night Train and Ripple.
Pressing onward through the fog: PATHFINDER? Makes me want to sing along with Fess Parker and Walt Disney, "Davy, Davy Crockett, king of the wild frontier. Born on a mountaintop in Tennessee ..." RFI? My dog wolfed down a pound of Roquefort and that night deposited something on the rug. WISE? I knew a guy named Wise in St. Louis. LIved a few floors down. Hops shoveler at Budweiser. He and his buddies got drunk one Christmas eve and damn near tore the building down. CAPTIVE? Jean Paul Gaultier, if you´re out there I´ve got a terrific name for a new perfume for women. Naturally, I´d like a fair share of the take; your lawyer meets my lawyer, contract, etc. You can market "CAPTIVE" alongside a new cologne for men, "ANTIHERO." I haven´t seen ANTIHERO in any intelligence officer job spec, but there you have it: all action is imperfect.
English, French, Portuguese, Latin ... Funes, Borges claimed, learned them all. IBASE SUITE, CT-AVRS, M3, TAC, PATHFINDER, nodal analysis: sorry, you´re Greek to me.
Great authors like Borges never pick a name at random. "Funes"? Well, there is an expression, "meterse a funes" -- butt in where you don´t belong. Also, "Funes" has the same root as funesto -- sad, fatal, desgraciado, all with a tinge of secrecy.
In case you didn´t catch the drift, Borges gave Funes a first name, Ireneo. Here he seems to let your unconscious string the beads: Ireneo sounds and looks a lot like Erróneo.
Oslo authorities, I think you get the picture. The endless parade through your offices and conference rooms, hotels and restaurants, of Ireneo Funes II, III, IV, V, is, well, puzzling. Looking the latest Funes in the face, a line from Shakespeare may unpardonably pop into your mind: "Tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow creeps in this petty pace from day to day..." ("MacBeth," V-5).
Oslo authorities, I think Borges nailed the source of your mounting befuddlement and boredom. M3, TAC, CT-AVRS: you are experiencing an endless string of immediate, separate details. Which means, if you want to think, i.e., to generalize and abstract, you will have to look elsewhere then the Funeses you will meet tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow.
So, why didn´t Jorge Luis Borges win the Nobel Prize? The Nobel Committee is not as pristine as you thought. The 5 members of the Norwegian Nobel Committee that picks the Nobel Peace Prize winner, for example, are named by the Norwegian Parliament. Political appointees, then.
Now you know who awarded the Nobel prize to Obama and Kissinger, two men who are responsible for thousands and thousands of Ireneo Funeses and who ...
Wait a second. Literature teachers and students, did we just solve The Eternal Mystery?