Seven Islamic Related Expert Witnesses Refuse to Testify in Breivik Case
Hanna Nabintu Herland | Mullah Krekar | Blogger Peder Nøstvold Jensen (also known as Fjordman) | Islamic Activist Mohyeldeen Mohammad | Islamic critic author Bruce Bawer | Peace researcher Johan Galtung | author: Walid al-Kubaisi
Andrea Muhrrteyn | 4 June 2012 | Aftenposten & Legal Project
Aftenposten reports that four of the expert witnesses due to testify on behalf of Breivik's Political Necessity Defence arguments have refused to testify and will not be appearing in court today.
Furthermore of the original 17 expert witnesses called, only 11 remain. The four witnesses who will not be testifying today are: Mullah Krekar, blogger Peder Nøstvold Jensen (also known as Fjordman), the Islamic Activist Mohyeldeen Mohammad & the Islamic critic author Bruce Bawer.
Chaos began when the religious historian Hanne Nabintu Herland refused to testify, saying she would rather go to prison than testify in the case of Breivik. A letter to Ms. Herland to inform her of the details of Breivik's necessity defence and detailing that ecological expert witness academics consider it their honour and duty to testify on behalf of political necessity ecological necessity activists, such as Greenpeace, fell on deaf ears.
Bawer and Fjordman contacted The Legal Project to help them to avoid testifying at Breivik's trial; and the Legal Project - for some strange and illogical reason - considers their removal from the expert witness list as a “tremendous victory for Free Speech.”
In November last year, the author filed an application to the court and Breivik for an order to “(A) act as Mr. Breivik’s paralegal assistant in aiding him to represent himself in accordance to the Political Necessity defence; by means of research, contacting relevant Norwegian and International expert witnesses to testify to relevant issues documented in his manifesto, research, etc; (B) act as Mr. Breivik’s paralegal forensic psychology advisor in aiding Mr. Breivik to expose the fraudulent allegations against him -– questioning his Mens Real political necessity criminal culpability on 22 July 2011 -- by those practicing political psychiatry , intent on denying Breivik, his Political Necessity Treason trial.” There was no response from Breivik; although it is unknown if Breivik's defenders informed him of the applications submitted to the court on his behalf. The court refused respond to the application, and it was subsequently submitted to the Supreme Court for review; who also refused to address the issue. A complaint of Judicial Ethical violations has been filed with the Secretariat of the Supervisory Committee for Judges.
Aftenposten: Anger Amidst Breivik's Escaped Witnesses
One by one, Anders Breivik Behring witnesses argued themselves out of the witness stand. Breivik's defense team has had enough to contend with in the run up to one of the most important weeks of defending the terror accused 33-year-old.
Originally this week was scheduled for 17 expert witnesses to substantiate Breivik's perception of reality as mainstream in various subcultures.
After a week of noise and confusion from the court regarding whether the witnesses have a duty to testify and which witnesses will and won't be broadcast on TV, they now sit with only eleven of the original 17 witnesses.
The chaos began when religious historian Hanne Nabintu Herland posted an OpEd to Aftenposten on 21 May, proclaiming that she would rather be sent to prison for contempt than be a witness for Breivik.
Breivik's defenders initially refused to waive her right to refuse to testify declaring that she was an a private expert and actually was obliged to testify.
In the wake of Herland's dispute, an avalanche of expert witnesses on the defense list stated their objections to appearing in court in this case.
On Thursday and Friday last week, it became clear that both Najmuddin Faraj Ahmad alias Mullah Krekar, the right wing blogger Peder Nøstvold Jensen, known as Fjordman, the Islamic activist Mohyeldeen Mohammad and Islam critical writer Bruce Bawer had managed to persuade Breivik's defenders to remove them from the expert witness list.
They argued that they believe they have nothing to add to Breivik's case, and would absolutely not to testify, said Breivik's defender.
Breivik's defence concluded that their testimony would not be particularly useful when they are so negative to providing their expert witness testimony.
Additionally peace researcher Johan Galtung and writer Walid al-Kubaisi, who were originally scheduled to testify this week, have been waived and removed from the list.
The great witness escape has created challenges for the defenders, who now have decided to spend more time on Breivik's own explanations and clarifications for his radicalisation.
Movies are not critics of Islam
Fjordman and Bruce Bawer were among the group of Islamic immigration and multicultural expert witnesses who were summoned. Fjordman is considered Breivik's main ideological inspiration is cited by over 300 pages in the defendant's compendium.
In an e-mail to the newspaper Sunnmørsposten Fjordman wrote on Friday that he will not testify because he reacts to the manner in which the defense has treated Hanne Nabintu Herland, and because he is angered that the court refuses to broadcast the Islam-critical witnesses.
“I can not accept and I will tell the court about censorship at the same time as the court censor me,” writes Jensen.
The judges in the terror case decided a week ago that the only witnesses who could be considered experts, could be broadcast, while all those categorized as Islam critics were designated as non-expert witnesses.
The decision has provoked the remaining anti-Islam witnesses and has led to a debate online about the court's exercises of selective expression.
“It is preposterous. All the politically correct witnesses are being publicly broadcast, but none of the non-political correct are being broadcast. When we are completely at the mercy of the media to render our message correctly, and we have, to put it mildly, not very good experience thereof,” says Ron Alte, former head of the Islam-critical organization Norwegian Defence League, now associated with the newly established group of Norway Freedom Party, NTB.
Social commentator and blogger Ole Jørgen Anfindsen, who runs the site HonestThinking, is considering refusing to testify since the broadcast ban was announced.
The defenders, however, argued that he should be declared an expert witness, including providing grounds that he has written a book that is relevant to the topic, but he was still denied.
Anfindsen call the judges decision unwise.
“The decision is presumably unassailable, but there is reason to ask whether the court has placed sufficient emphasis on how politicized this issue actually is. The paradox and the sad thing is that the judges of this case are nourishing the conspiratorial beliefs that some groups and opinions have, that they are are systematically censored.”
Legal Project: Bawer & Fjordman Removed From Breivik Circus
This week, in Norway, there was a tremendous victory for Free Speech – Bruce Bawer and Peder Jensen, Legal Project clients*, were REMOVED by the Norwegian court from the Anders Breivik trial as defense witnesses.
Last summer, Breivik committed a mass murder that left 77 people dead in Norway. He denies criminal guilt, saying the victims, most of them teenagers, had betrayed their country by embracing Muslim immigration to Norway. In his manifesto, Breivik cited many scholars, including Bawer and Jensen, opposed to Islam, Islamism (i.e., racial Islam), and/or multiculturalism.
The Norwegian court had allowed Breivik to call these two as witnesses as part of his "defense that his atrocities were necessary to protect his society from multiculturalism, socialism and an Islamic takeover…(even though) none of this "testimony" has any real bearing on the question of Breivik's guilt or innocence." This defense was initially approved by the court in order "exploit his atrocities, and the horror they have inspired, to advance their own political agendas" which "seek to blame Breivik's atrocities on conservative politicians and bloggers."
Supporters of the Islamist agenda surely would have used these "legal connections" as a catalyst to limit Western speech against Europe's Islamist threat. "Far-right bloggers" were being suggested in the press as having a degree of moral responsibility for "agitating online against Muslims." Secretary-General of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu had publicly declared that Breivik's atrocity "was a result of the rise of the extreme right in Europe and its easy mobility in political circles...the OIC had warned several times against of what might be called institutionalization of the phenomenon of Islamophobia through the involvement of the European extreme right in government institutions and political action." Norwegian Green Party member Oeyvind Stroemmen stated "to me it's obvious that even if he is insane there is definitely a political element."
In the end, through the efforts of lawyers funded by the MEF-The Legal Project, Messrs Bawer and Jensen were removed from Breivik's witness list, which was The Legal Project's goal from the outset. Both Mr. Bawer and Mr. Jensen were very relieved that the whole Breivik trial is now behind them, and they can continue to write about Islam related topics without any legal pressure.
The Legal Project, as an activity of the Middle East Forum, works to protect the universal right in the West to freely discuss Islam, radical Islam, terrorism, and terrorist funding. Our international client list includes journalists, bloggers, authors and politicians.
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