Norway Killer Wanted to Behead Prime Minister on Camera
(LONDON) — Anders Behring Breivik, who has admitted killing 77 people in twin terror attacks in Norway last summer, testified Thursday that his original plan included chopping off the head of former Norwegian Prime Minister Gro Harlem Brundtland and posting a video of the beheading on the web.
“The plan to was to behead Gro Harlem Brundtland while it was being filmed,” Breivik said in court Thursday. “It was meant to be a very powerful psychological weapon.”
Breivik, a right-wing extremist who claims he committed the July 2011 murders to protest Islamic immigration to Europe, said he got the idea of decapitation from al Qaeda videos.
Breivik said he had also intended to bomb Norway’s royal palace and the headquarters of Norway’s Labor Party. After detonating explosives in central Oslo that killed eight, he stormed the nearby resort island of Utoya, where the Labor Party was holding a youth rally, and shot and killed 69 people.
Testifying at the fourth day of his trial, Breivik explained that he had to change his plans to set off three bombs in Oslo when building a single fertilizer-based bomb proved difficult. He said he chose the summer youth retreat of the ruling Labor Party as a target when he failed to prepare in time for a meeting of journalists and the Labor Party’s annual meeting.
Brundtland had appeared at the youth retreat, but had left by the time Breivik arrived.
Breivik explained that he prepped for the Utoya Island massacre by playing the computer games “World of Warcraft” and “Modern Warfare” for hours daily. He shot his victims with two weapons named after Norse gods.
The confessed killer showed no remorse for his victims Thursday, referring to them as “traitors.” He believes that members of Norway’s liberal elite betrayed the country by opening it to Muslim immigration.
Breivik cried on the first day of his trial, which began Monday, but not for those he killed. He confessed to the murders, and then began crying after they played a portion of a propaganda video he had made in support of his new “crusade” in Norway.
Before the massacre, Breivik posted a 1,500-page manifesto online in which he said he was just one operative in a group called the new Knights Templar that would lead a violent conservative Christian revolution in Europe. On Tuesday, he said the Knights Templar would lead a revolt against “multiculturalist” governments.
The 33-year-old had rejected an insanity defense, saying he considered an insanity diagnosis “the ultimate humiliation.” Though he was found insane in an initial examination, a second team of doctors found him to be sane.
His defense is expected to try to prove his sanity by calling both Islamic extremists and right-wing extremists to the stand during his trial to demonstrate that he is not the only one who believes “Europe is the setting for a war of religion.”
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio