Voices: Amid Paris headlines, don't forget Beirut


LONDON – As I compulsively checked my newsfeeds in the aftermath of the devastating attacks in Paris last Friday night, a new feature popped up on Facebook. My friends in the city, it told me, had checked in safe. I was relieved. Then I thought how useful the tool would have been just the day before, when a bomb, also the work of the Islamic State, had hit my former home of Beirut.

The suicide bomb had killed 43 people in a busy shopping district, the worst attack in Lebanon's capital since the end of its civil war in 1990. But Facebook hadn't deployed the Safety Check for Beirut. Nor had it offered users an easy way to show their solidarity with the country as it had with France, by giving the option of adding the national flag to profile pictures. And while the tragedy in Paris dominated the worldwide news agenda for days, Beirut had made only a few headlines.

Read more at USA Today 

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