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“No one can bomb us into silence”

July 23, 2011

I am writing this with tears in my eyes, and I’m unable to sleep. Today, at 15.20, Oslo, Norway, was hit by a bomb, and a following shooting at a Labour Party youth camp. 17 people have been confirmed dead so far, most of them young teens, and the death toll is expected to increase as the rescue goes on. A 32-year-old Norwegian man has been arrested,suspected of being behind both attacks.

I was at the grocery store when I heard the news. I rushed home to turn on the tv, grabbed my phone and called everyone I know who lives in Oslo, to make sure they were okay. Thankfully, they all were.

It was such a surreal feeling, seeing the videos, news and photos. It looked more like a war-scene than anything else. None of it resembled the Oslo I know.

Then came the news of the shooting at Utøya, and everything just got so much worse. A man dressed as a cop had walked up to a summer camp, pretending he was there to give the kids information about the bombing. A massacre then started.  Kids ran into the water, trying to swim over the shore some 500 meters away. Some of them were shot and killed. Others hid behind rocks, bushes and boulders, hoping to avoid notice. The brother of an acquaintance was there, and he had to hide in a boat, being shot at while trying to escape. He got away unhurt, thankfully. The rescue is still in progress, and people are still missing.

I’m still in shock I think. Things like this just does not happen here in tiny, safe, little Norway. My uncle lives not far from the bomb-site. One of my best friends work in the same area some times. Everything just hit so close to home.

I don’t really know what to think, or feel. I never thought this would actually happen here, though a part of me always suspected it was just a matter of time. Right now, everything is still so confusing. They have, thankfully, caught the man responsible and he’s being interrogated.

Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg gave a beautiful speech, encouraging us to meet terror with openness and humanity, and I’ll close this blog post with some of his words. Them I’m going to bed, hoping the world will make more sense tomorrow.

“Today,we have been hit by two savage and cowardly attacks. Tonight, we all stand together, taking care of each other.”

“You will not destroy our democracy or our commitment to bringing about a better world.
We are a small nation, but we are a proud nation.
No one is going to bomb us into silence.
No one is going to shoot us into silence.
No one is ever going to frighten us away from being Norway. “

(Photos from http://www.dagbladet.no/2011/07/23/nyheter/innenriks/terror_i_oslo/17421146/ )

 

UPDATE: Oh, God…84 teens have been confirmed dead in the shooting at Utøya. 91 dead in total with the bombing..And that’s not even the final numbers…I have no words.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. July 23, 2011 3:51 pm

    It’s terrible… So incredibly terrible, I have no words…

  2. Anonymous permalink
    July 24, 2011 2:05 pm

    All our thoughts and prayers go out to those who lost their loved ones – and to the whole country of Norway.

    Jeg vil uttrykke min dypeste medfølelse til hele Norge.

    Astrid fra Tyskland

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