Bjork has been renowned for outside-of-the-box perspective on pop music for several decades now, partially because her Icelandic background affords her a unique foreign take on modern music. Still, a large portion of Bjork’s fans do lie in the United States, and she might have ruffled a few feathers with some recent statements that she made about 9/11.
Bjork was asked about the recent Copenhagen terrorist attack at a Charlie Hebdo rally in a recent interview with French magazine Libération. Her response shifted to colonialism and U.S. foreign policy, as Bjork remarked that she did not think that the 9/11 attacks were much of a surprise given how often the United States has meddled in foreign affairs.
“Iceland was a colony for six hundred years. And, sometimes, colonialists become blind. They don’t measure the impact of their actions. For example, I found it very weird to be here, in New York, on September 11 2001 and to see this whole nation being shocked, surprised. Of course it was a terrible event, and 3,000 people were killed. But seeing the policy of war carried out by the US, you can’t be completely surprised with the result.”
Although the question was posed in reference to European attacks, Bjork expanded it to a critique of worldwide militarization. Intervening in other countries, says Bjork, does have repercussions.
“I’m not saying I have a solution because it seems it’s in human nature to declare war, unfortunately. But peace is also part of human nature. I don’t want to be the naïve one by saying each country should shut down their army, but I’m proud to be part of a country that doesn’t have one.”
Although Bjork’s opinion might not necessarily be popular in the U.S., it isn’t one that’s totally absent from the spectrum of American opinion on the response to 9/11. In fact, Noam Chomsky recently furthered Bjork’s comments when he said that ISIS was partially the result of the invasion of Iraq in 2003, reported Salon.
“[The U.S.] was described as ‘genocidal’ by the respected international diplomats who administered them, and both resigned in protest for that reason. They devastated the civilian society, they strengthened the dictator, compelled the population to rely on him for survival.”
Bjork also commented on 9/11 shortly after the event occurred. The Icelandic singer told Studio360 what the experience of living in post-9/11 New York was like for a foreigner, especially one as high profile as Bjork.
“I remember describing to my friends on my phone that [if] I turned 180 degrees anywhere I was in New York. I would count at least 37 American flags. So it was kind of scary for a foreigner to be here.”
Do you think Bjork’s 9/11 comments were inflammatory?
[Image via Koichi Kamoshida/Getty Images]