Skip to main content

Denmark violence

Denmark Shootings_byuh web.jpg

Terrorist Omar Abdel Hamid El-Hussein fired shots at a free speech forum and Jewish synagogue in Copenhagen on Valentine’s Day, killing two people.Kjestine Tatarata, a senior from Denmark studying business, said, “The police found and shot him right outside my old apartment in Copenhagen.” She continued, explaining how this fits in with the Charlie Hebdo terrorist attacks in France. “Since then, we thought something could happen in Denmark. It seems like there is a growing number of radicalized people.” The Swedish artist Lars Vilks attended the Feb. 14 forum, and told CNN he has gone into hiding after escaping unharmed. “He believes he was likely the target of the attack. Vilks, known for his controversial depictions of the Prophet Mohammed, is on an Al Qaeda hit list,” reported CNN. CNN said the drawings depicted the prophet Muhammad as a dog, which is a very offensive gesture toward Islam.According to the report, “A 55-year-old man, identified as a filmmaker by local media, died in that attack and three police officers were injured. Hours later, the same gunman killed a 37-year-old member of a synagogue and wounded two police officers in a second attack outside a girl’s bat mitzvah celebration in central Copenhagen.”CNN also said El-Hussein posted allegiance to ISIS on Facebook right before he went to the first attack. Native resident of Denmark Louise Andersen said, “Personally, I find these cases more frustrating than ever, as we’ve seen the reactions from Muslim extremists to these drawings countless times before. I find it unnecessary to make the point of our freedom of speech further.” Andersen continued, “But the opposite has seemed to happen. Danish people have emphasized more than ever that our freedom of speech and opinion is vital to our society, and that giving that up would compromise the identity of our country.” Olivia Oquist, a junior from Sweden studying marketing, said these attacks were surprising to her. Oquist said, “Sweden is like a vanilla country. We never are really involved in much and so it’s scary when things happen like this because it is so close to home.”Political Science Professor Brian Houghton, who has been a counterterrorism analyst since 1986, said, “Sending a message through violence for a political cause makes it terrorism. We call guys like El-Hussein ‘homegrown.’ According to CNN, he was a Danish citizen with Palestinian origin and a criminal, gang-related history. This is another thing we see quite often; individuals become more extreme, violent, and radicalized after they go to prison.” Houghton continued, “In Paris and Denmark, you have individuals who have self-radicalized, meaning that these people are not members of a terrorist organization. They didn’t go to training camps. Rather, they have gone online, watched videos, and read literature that they agree with, and they start to commit violent acts.”The Washington Times reported that more than 500 people were in attendance at El-Hussein’s burial in February.Uploaded March 5, 2015
Writer: Mackenzie McLeod