Al-Jazeera, October 17, 2017
More than 300 people were killed when a powerful bomb blast ripped through Mogadishu, Somalia’s capital, on Saturday.
The attack marked the deadliest assault the country has ever witnessed.
Somalia‘s three-day national mourning period for the victims is coming to an end, with around 300 more people also injured in the blast.
Dozens are missing, hospitals are running out of blood and anger is growing.
But social media users have asked: Where is the collective outrage?
The attack in Somalia came little more than one week after a deadly mass shooting in Las Vegas, but many noted a quieter response to events in Mogadishu.
“The world is unfair; social media can attest to that. 276 died in Somalia and we aren’t doing the same thing we did when it was Las Vegas,” tweeted Eke van Victor.
“We mourn with Somalia. 276 dead. 300 hurt. We confess that our tears are often limited to the West. Forgive us. We long for peace with you,” said Eugene Cho.
“You should be as devastated about the sheer loss of life in Somalia, as you were about the senseless killings in Vegas,” wrote Stacey Dooley, a British television presenter.
Some were also concerned by the low level of media coverage compared with other horrendous attacks.
Commentator and law professor Khaled Beydoun noted that a bomb attack in Manchester, a northern British city, was covered more widely. “The # of people killed in Somalia yesterday was 10x more than the # killed in Manchester in May (230 to 22). But it got 100x less coverage,” he tweeted.
Itayi Viriri, spokesman for the International Organization for Migration, questioned why the Somalia attack did not make an impact on social media sites or with entertainers, who often tweet their support and condolences for attack victims.
Clint Smith, a PhD candidate at Harvard, tweeted: “Imagine if 250+ ppl in the US or UK or France were killed in a truck bomb. That’s what just happened in Somalia. They deserve to be mourned.”
“More than 200 killed in a blast in Somalia, no twitter trends/headlines, proof tht world is governed only by power politics not by humanity,” said Pakistani actor Hamza Ali Abbasi.
More than 200 killed in a blast in Somalia, no twitter trends/headlines, proof tht world is
Some users suggested that the world cares more when attack victims are white.
“Y’all only care with your little hashtags when it’s rich white people,” tweeted Lucas R.
“Perfect example of how global solidarity only comes into play when white people die,” said user @lex_looper.
“500+ casualties. The West cares about terrorism when a POC attacks white people, but is silent when the victims are POC. #Mogadishu #Somalia,” said user @InvictaVis.