In a combination of events that have changed the world in the past week, the Islamic State has attacked two major cities one being Paris and the other Beirut. As the coverage of both has revealed, there is a drastic difference in the ways in which the media and the world as a whole respond to such a crisis in a western centered area versus in an eastern area. As can be seen on all social media platforms, there was a massive and immediate response to the attacks on Paris that left 130 dead, yet the bombing that left 45 dead, a number greatly influenced by the heroics of a few, has gone by greatly unnoticed.
On November 12, 2015, in Beirut, Lebanon, there were explosions that left many without friends and family. It was an attack by the Islamic State, as they later took responsibility. The attacks were carried out by four Syrians fresh out of training, as one who survived the attacks explained.
One of these bombs exploded in Bourj al-Barajneh a southern suburb in Beirut. After this is when the heroic acts of Adel Termos occurred. As has been reported, Termos, father of two, sprung into action with others from the community, helping victims of this initial attack. As they were helping, two other suicide bombers could be seen riding in on a motorcycle, one was shot, but the other got up off of his bike and ran towards the mosque in which people were praying. Termos seeing this followed in close pursuit. He reached him before he was able to get to the mosque and as he was holding him, the suicide bomber shouted “Allahu Akbar” meaning “God is great”. The bomb detonated and killed both of them. These heroics displayed by Termos saved the approximately 200 that were in the mosque.
Beirut is not unfamiliar with such attacks with the last of this magnitude being during Lebanon’s civil war in 1990, yet the response to the attacks has drawn a line between the country and the western world. As everyone was rightfully showing solidarity with Paris through posts on social media, little was said about the bombings or the heroics of Termos. Going forward though, there are calls for a change in the way media addresses the crisis that is currently occurring. It is no longer okay to publicize solidarity with one nation while ignoring another, though it may be in an area in which such crimes are more commonplace. ISIS has claimed responsibility for both attacks and promies more to come in the U.S. and other leading nations, so the way in which these events are reported now will have an effect on later such attacks. There is a call to stand with all who have been affected by this organization of terrorists, and though religious lines have been drawn, particularly in the case of Beirut, these divisions will soon fall as more refugees come from Syria. There is a shared fear of these organizations, yet in both of these events the terrorists have come in as refugees, so there are more questions than there are answers and they are becoming more pressing as promised attacks are coming to fruition.