SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — Over the last five months there have been dozens of terror attacks in cities around the globe, killing hundreds of people. Can you name ten? Five? Chances are you can name three, and for many observers on social media that’s a problem.

Since the latest attack in Brussels, and following the violent massacres in Paris and San Bernadino, there has been a chorus of complaints on social media sites like Facebook and Twitter that these 3 tragedies received much more media coverage than the rest.

The basic implication is that some terror attacks are more media-worthy than others because some lives matter more.

For example, just two days before Monday’s double-bombing in Brussels, a suicide bomber exploded on Istanbul’s main shopping street, killing 4 and wounding dozens. A week prior to that, bombs exploded in Ankara and Grand Bassam, Ivory Coast maiming and killing scores of innocent civilians. “Je suis Ankara” posts began to circulate on Facebook. Did that meme make it into your newsfeed?

About a week before the deadly massacre in San Bernadino last December that killed 14 people, terrorists descended on a hotel hosting diplomats in Mali, shooting at anything that moved. At least 21 people were killed.

Finally, the day before the city of Paris came under siege by attackers killing 130 innocent people, a pair of motorcycle-riding suicide bombers self-detonated in a open-air market in southern Beirut, killing 43 and injuring at least 239.

There are more, but in these particular cases, social media users wondered aloud why no one on their televisions seemed to care. Yes, there was coverage, but not nearly as much. Where were the flag filters for Facebook profile pictures from Turkey, Nigeria and other countries under attack? Others defended the media, saying these attacks do get coverage, but the public just doesn’t tune in.

Terrorism affects us all. Its violence seems to be getting more frequent and hitting closer and closer to home — no matter where you live. It would be heartless to engage in a contest of tragedies, especially in consideration for the innocent people who have given their lives to a war whose enemy is a moving target.

To propose some quick, perfunctory remedy to the disparities (real or imagined) in media coverage would be naive, but the issue at least merits some consideration. To aid the conversation, here is a list** of some of the deadliest attacks since November in which 10 or more civilians died in cities where terrorists — i.e. men and women — have killed innocent civilians — i.e. other men, women and children — in the name of a religious, political or national cause.

November 1 – Mogadishu, Somalia – Al-Shabaab – 12 dead
November 12 – Beirut, Lebanon – Islamic State – 43 dead
November 13 – Paris, France – Islamic State – 140 dead
November 17 – Yola, Nigeria – Boko Haram – 80 dead
November 18 – Kano, Nigeria – Boko Haram – 123+ dead
November 20 – Bamako, Mali – Al-Mourabitoun AQIM/Northern Mali conflict – 30 dead
November 24 – Tunis, Tunisia – Islamic State – 13 dead
November 24 – Wogom, Nigeria – Boko Haram – 18 dead
November 27 – Dakasoye, Nigeria – Boko Haram – 21 dead
December 2 – San Bernadino, California USA – Islamic State – 14+ dead
December 5 – Laouna Sangu, Chad – Boko Haram – 27+ dead
December 8 – Kandahar, Afghanistan – Taliban – 50 dead (not all civilians)
December 9 – Baghdad, Iraz – Islamic State – 11 dead
December 11 – Tel Tamer, Syria – Islamic State – 60 dead
December 12 – Homs, Syria – Islamic State – 54 dead
December 12 – Borno, Nigeria – Boko Haram – 30 dead
December 13 – Parachinar, Pakistan – Civil War – 23 dead
December 26 – Kimba, Borno State, Nigeria – Boko Haram – 14+ dead
December 28 – Homs, Syria – Unknown/Civil War – 32 dead
December 28 – Maiduguri, Nigeria – Boko Haram – 26 dead
December 29 – Madagali, Nigeria – Boko Haram – 17 dead
December 29 – Mardan, Pakistan – Taliban – 29 dead
December 30 – Kamishli, Syria – Islamic State – 16+ dead
January 3 – Camp Speicher, Iraq – Islamic State – 15+ dead
January 7 – Zliten, Libya – Islamic State – 60 dead (Police trainees)
January 11 – Baghdad, Iraq – Islamic State – 12+ dead
January 11 – Muqdadiyah, Iraq – Islamic State – 20 dead
January 12 – Istanbul, Turkey – Islamic State – 11+ dead
January 13 – Quetta, Pakistan – Taliban – 15+ dead
January 13 – Kouyape, Cameroon – Boko Haram – 12+ dead
January 15 – Eel-Adde, Somalia – al-Shabaab – 63 dead
January 15 – Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso – al Qaeda – 30+ dead
January 16 – Deir ez-Zor, Syria – Islamic State – 300+ dead (not all civilians)
January 19 – Peshawar, Pakistan – Taliban – 10 dead
January 20 – Charsadda, Pakistan – Taliban – 20 dead
January 22 – Mogadishu, Somalia – al Shabaab – 20 dead
January 25 – Bodo, Cameroon – Boko Haram – 28 dead
January 31 – Damascus, Syria – Islamic State – 45+ dead
January 31 – Dalori, Nigeria – Boko Haram – 86 dead
February 9 – Dikwa, Nigeria – Boko Haram – 60 dead
February 13 – Yakshari, Nigeria – Boko Haram – 22 dead
February 17 – Ankara, Turkey – Kurdistan Freedom Falcons – 28 dead
February 19 – Meme, Cameroon – Boko Haram – 24 dead
February 21 – Homs, Syria – Islamic State – 57 dead
February 21 – Sayyiday Zaynab, Syria – 83-134 dead
February 25 – Baghdad, Iraq – unknown – 15+ dead
February 26 – Mogadishu, Somalia – al-Shabaab – 14 dead
February 28 – Sadr City Baghdad, Iraq – Islamic State – 78+ dead
February 28 – Baidoa, Somalia – al-Shabaab – 30+ dead
February 29 – Muqdadiya, Iraq – Islamic State – 40 dead
February 29 – Ntombi, Dem. Rep. of Congo – Islamic State – 13 dead
March 4 – Aden, Yemen – Islamic State – 15 dead
March 13 – Grand Bassam, Ivory Coast – AQIM – 19+ dead
March 13 – Ankara, Turkey, Kurdistan Freedom Falcons – 37 + dead
March 16 – Maiduguri, Nigeria – Boko Haram – 22 dead
March 22 – Brussels and Zaventem, Belgium – Islamic State – 32 dead, so far

(**Source: Wikipedia)


CBSSF.com writer, producer Jan Mabry is also executive producer and host of The Bronze Report. She lives in Northern California. Follow her on Twitter @janmabr.

 

Comments