I will be writing a blog on Breivik and the misinformation of connecting him to the Church of Satan as an organization. Until then, I have recieved permission to post Dr. Introvigne‘s response to my previous letter.
Response from Massimo Introvigne:
Thank you for your comments. If you are in contact with (inter alia) Jim Lewis, he can easily confirm to you that in all my publications (including a 600-page manual of Satanism used in a number of Italian and French universities) I have never indulged in slander or defamation of the Church of Satan – my quarrels have been mostly with anti-cultists and moral entrepeneurs promoting moral panics about Satanism.. My text was posted a few hours before your postings at http://www.cesnur.org/2011/mi-oslo-en.html and may have included some factual mistakes I will be glad to correct.
These comments are:
1) “was first made publicly available on the Internet by Kevin Slaughter, an ordained minister in Anton LaVey (1930-1997)’s Church of Satan which, by the way, has a sizeable following in Norway” which I will change into “was first made largely available on the Internet by Kevin Slaughter, who found it on Stormfront.org, a white supremacist forum. Slaughter is an ordained minister in Anton LaVey (1930-1997)’s Church of Satan which, by the way, has a sizeable following in Norway”
2) “In a way, it is not surprising that Breivik had friends even in LaVey’s Church of Satan. The latter became popular in Scandinavia by flirting with right-wing extremists with an anti-immigration agenda and, rather than occultism, emphasized a “rationalist” approach to a celebration of freedom and capitalism largely based on the writings of the Russian-born American novelist Ayn Rand (1905-1982). Rand is listed by both LaVey and Breivik among their favorite authors (of course, this is not to suggest that the Church of Satan had anything to do with the Oslo tragedy).” (note last parenthesis). I will change it into “In a way. It is not surprising that Breivig caught the interest even of a member of LaVey’s Church of Satan, although there is no evidence of any direct contact etc.”
Dr Massimo Introvigne
Again, I will be writing more on the topic, but even with Massimo’s proposed changes he is still “poisoning the well” when it comes to the assessment of Breivik’s motivations. There is no evidence that he was familiar with Satanism as codified by Anton LaVey and represented by the Church of Satan, and even though the parenthetical statement says just that, there is still an implication that the affiliation of someone who found a piece of evidence and produced it freely has an implication on the person who produced that evidence. It may be interesting or even ironic that a priest in the Church of Satan found and made available the manifesto to all comers as an act of “amateur investigation”, but only on a superficial level, as it would have been just as interesting had it been a professional clown or Russian cosmonaut.