Je suis Charlie

This is a very interesting piece written by my brother, Randeep Sangha, on the flawed nature of our ‘western’ media. You can find more of his work at 

https://theramblingmedic.wordpress.com

Please read and share….

Like the majority of the world, I was shocked and devastated to see the news transpiring from Paris this last week. An innocent life lost at any point is a travesty, but in the name of religious extremism, it feels a little bit more damning.

Understandably, there is a sense of national unity, dare I say ‘International Unity’ – we all saw the pictures of thousands of people marching in the streets of Paris, and what a wonderful sight that was, to see so many people ‘protesting’ in unison. So much so, a number of international leaders had joined in – and good on them.

But the dust has almost settled, and France itself will no doubt become a lot more stringent on its defence policy, fighting terrorism etc. I’d be surprised if the UK’s terror threat alert levels aren’t set to be raised. However, interestingly, I’m just a tad more intrigued in the news coverage of this whole thing.

On the day prior to the 17 people being massacred in Paris, 3000 miles south, another act of ‘terrorism’ occurred. A girl, identified no older than 10, detonated an explosive in a busy market place in the Borno State of Nigeria, Africa’s most populous country.

20 people died, dozens more critically injured. Media attention? Minimal. In fact, whilst the horror of the Paris killings still dominate BBC News headlines, the killings in Nigeria aren’t even covered on the BBC web page.

Furthermore, only a week ago, Boko Haram pretty much desolated Baga, a city in the same aforementioned Borno State. 2000 people are reported to be dead, with an approximation of 30,000 now homeless. It got to the point such that people actually swam into nearby rivers and lakes, some drowning along the way, just to escape their homes.

On Sunday, a front page spread of an unnamed national broadsheet covered the events in Paris in detail, but allocated the terrors in Nigeria to an A6 spread – on page 7.

Just imagine the outrage, if thousands of Parisians – men, women and children, were fleeing into the River Seine. Imagine the newspapers the next day. But at the time of writing this, I’m struggling to find one major news organisation to have any events in Nigeria spread through any of their respective leading stories.

Work that one out.

In no way am I stating that one particular act of inexcusable terrorism should take more precedence than another, but I wholly agree that no life is more important than another.

I also want to know why it is deemed a hell of a lot more newsworthy that what happened in Paris should overshadow completely what happened in Nigeria. Or why anything that happens in ‘the West’ should in any way overbear what happens in the ‘3rd world’. In my opinion, the BBC should have ran with ‘Paris Killings: You could have been on holiday there…”.

Satire much?

We, unfortunately, live in a generation of ‘hash-tags’ and ‘likes’. Depressingly, it doesn’t take a genius to work out which countries’ devastation would garner more shares and likes on social media.

I’m not even going to go into what is happening in Syria, or in Israel/Palestine. Or why no-one talks about the kids that died in the school in Pakistan anymore. Or even if anyone even remembers the girls that were abducted by the Boko Haram a few months ago. The list is pretty much endless.

I’ve read a lot of articles stating that it the fault of the Nigerian authorities, as to the reason why there isn’t much reporting. I’ve also read, cynically, that the victims were ‘black’ and not ‘white’, or that Africa is thousands of miles away whereas France is a stones-throw away.

Irrelevant.

The media, or the ‘free-press’ not only have a duty to report, but also to inform the masses. Something, in my opinion, they’re not doing.

Imagine if you’re home was incinerated, your loved ones burnt in front of you.

Terrible right?

Imagine if the world turned a blind eye and didn’t want to care.

Sorry Nigeria, but no one is marching for you.