When Commander Anders Behring Breivik landed on Utoya he knew there were three potential category A traitors on the island, Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Store, former Prime Minister Gro Harlem Brundtland, and the head of the Labor party's youth organization AUF, Eskil Pedersen.
Jonas Gahr Store had visited Utoya two days earlier and was long gone. Gro Harlem Brundtland had left two hours before Breivik arrived. This left Eskil Pedersen as the sole category A traitor on Utoya.
Shortly after the shooting erupted Pedersen and a small group of AUF members boarded the ferry MS Thorbjorn and sailed off. Pedersen later explained he feared the attack was a coup d'etat and that attackers might be waiting for them on the shore, stating in an interview "I thought the entire country was under attack [..] if we docked anywhere we would be killed." It's a good thing Pedersen is not a resistance fighter, as he undoubtedly would have been diagnosed with paranoid schizofrenia for entertaining such ludicrous thoughts.
The captain of the ferry wanted to drop off his eight passengers on the mainland right across from the island and return to the island to save others. However, the AUF members on board the ferry persuaded him to change course and sail off into open water instead.
After transporting the AUF leader and his gang to a location thirty minutes away the captain returned alone to assist in the rescue work after the shooting had ended.
Initially Pedersen was made out to be a hero, with a picture of Pedersen and Stoltenberg being elected as picture of the year.
|Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg cuddling Eskil Pederson|
The mainstream media was initially pressured by the Labor party not to report on the ferry incident, but the online media breached the silence.
Commander Breivik may have failed to execute a Category A traitor, but eliminated one nonetheless, as the only Category A status Eskil Pedersen can now make claim to is that of Category A coward.