Tuesday, July 26, 2011 Post By: Grayne Wetzky

My little country

On July 22, 2011 my country was struck by an unthinkable tragedy. The events of that terrible day have been vividly documented all around the world. The terrible horrors of that day has effected everyone, but I am not sure it is possible to convey accurately the impact it has had on the people of Norway

Norway is a small country, 5 million people tucked away in the far north. Our country is blessed in countless ways. It is stunningly beautiful and prosperous almost beyond reason. Norway is also an extremely open and transparent society. We are so few that we are naturally tightly connected to each other. When something like the unspeakable acts of terror is unleashed on our country, it strikes us all as one.

I currently live half way across the world from Norway in Southern California. The distance does nothing to lessen the pain I feel and share with the rest of my country. I cry for my people and my country and the images from my home town tear me to pieces. The shock, anger and pain is too much to bare, yet I have to bare it like we all have to.

In this time of endless sorrow and heartbreak, I am more proud of my country than ever before.

The mass killings sent Norway buckling to it's knees. The first days after the atrocities were marked by confusion, fear, anger and pain. In a country where police officers don't carry guns and you can still run into your elected officials on the street, the violence and destruction was incomprehensible.

The terrorist's goal was to strike at and destroy the open society Norwegians have built. His twisted mind hoping to force changes in legislation and form a more totalitarian state. I am filled with pride when I see how my country has stood up to face these monstrosities.

The killer was not shot dead during the arrest, denying him his 'martyrdom' that he had envisioned. He will not be tortured in jail as he assumes he will be. He was not lynched on the way to his trail as he had expected. Instead he faced a people determined to give even him the fair trail that democracy demands that he receive.

The people of Norway have responded to ultimate evil with amazing courage. We all feel rage and hatred and lust for revenge, but Norwegians has refused to let these feelings define them. Just days after the unthinkable had happened, massive rallies in support of the victims, and of each other, are being held throughout the entire country. In our infinite grief our country is more resolved to protect our values and way of life than ever before.

In my home town Oslo, over 250 000 people gathered to show their support for the victims. This is a massive number, but even more impressive when you consider that Oslo has just over 500 000 people. While the pain of the mass murders will stay with us forever, the sight of 250 000 people gathered in total silence in honor of the victims shows without a doubt that my country will not bow to the delusions of a madman.

Since the attacks I have cried my eyes dry with grief and rage, but when I see a quarter million roses spontaneously lifted to the sky in my home town, I cry with pride for my little country.

  1. jeg elsker deg. beautiful <3

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