OSLO, Norway – Confessed mass killer Anders Behring Breivik told a Norwegian court on Monday about numerous instances from his childhood and adolescence when he was supposedly slighted by Muslims, seeming to suggest that these incidents played a role in his radicalization.
Breivik testified that when he was seven years old his friend's Turkish father wrecked his bicycle, and at the age of 15 he was slapped by a Pakistani subway driver for riding on the outside of a subway car.
The court sat stunned as Breivik, who has admitted to killing 77 people in a bomb and shooting rampage last summer in Norway, read a litany of such grievances from a sheet of paper covered in minuscule handwriting.
In 1995 he said one of his close friends had been "threatened" by a Kosovo-Albanian youth while waiting for the tram, and Breivik also heard that the little sister of one of his friends had been cut with a knife — an incident he knew nothing about but still ascribed to Muslims.
When asked by a judge whether he had any positive experiences with Muslims, Breivik responded, "One good thing about Muslims is that they're very loyal."
Breivik also made reference to several past racist-motivated attacks in Norway, such as the murders of Arve Beheim Karlsen and Benjamin Hermansen, both young Norwegian men with foreign roots.
"The police in Norway received free rein to deconstruct the right-wing in Norway after that," Breivik complained.
Hermansen's murder in January 2001 had a poignant resonance in Norwegian society, triggering massive protests against right-wing violence. Michael Jackson even dedicated his 2001 album Invincible to Hermansen, who was 15 at the time of his death.
The hearing Monday was part of the defense's testimony, which included expert witnesses such as a psychiatrist and an academic researcher.
The trial is expected to conclude on June 22, with a verdict to come before the first anniversary of the attacks on July 22.