The media chooses which genocide matter

Why is the attack in France predominant when countries like Nigeria and Lebanon are suffering from similar, if not worse, atrocities?

Under President Omar al-Bashir’s powerful militia lies a bloody battlefield, Sudan.

You may not have heard of it, but I can’t blame you. If you Google “Sudan genocide,” you will not find a single article from major news organizations discussing the 400,000 lives have been lost in the ongoing war.

That’s because western journalism is hypocritical, saying that Black Lives Matter but only the black lives we choose to save.

The terrorist attacks of last Friday in Paris left more than 120 people dead and questions yet to be answered: what is the Islamic State’s next target? Will there be a response to the attacks? What will the UN do about it?

But these are political questions that most ordinary citizens don’t have an answer for.

There is a moral question that has intrigued social media users following the attacks in France, the answer to which may be just as difficult to find.

For the Paris attacks, Facebook implemented something called “Safety Check”, a way of letting people know you are safe after a natural disaster or terror attack. It enables social media users to know if friends and loved ones are safe as well.

“Safety Checks” for Nigerian bombings were only available on Wednesday, five days after the terrorist attacks in Paris.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg posted a message to further explain his decision on his personal Facebook page.

“After the Paris attacks last week, we made the decision to use Safety Check for more tragic events like this going forward,” Zuckerberg said. “We’re now working quickly to develop criteria for the new policy and determine when and how this service can be most useful.”

Zuckerberg alone should not be blamed for this Eurocentric culture that undermines the lives of non-Westernized nations.

It would be anything but fair to assume that one life matters more than the other, and that is why I will not keep bringing up the argument that one European death makes headlines while 400,000 Africans never will.

The truth is that we should be reporting on all of them, because it would be inhumane not to.

Some 6.6 million people are reliant on some form of humanitarian assistance in Sudan, according to the European Commission.

This is the kind of assistance that Europe and the U.S. will hardly provide because their current foreign policy remains narrowly focused on Syria and Russia.

It’s not affecting Sudan alone. According to Genocide Watch, Iraq, Somalia, Nigeria and Myanmar are among the list of countries placed under genocide emergency alert by the United Nations.


The year will be over soon, and some of the most basic humanitarian questions remain unanswered and unsolved.

In the catalog of world issues, you would think mass killings would get a prioritized position. But, humans are a strange species. Thousands of civilians are dying in the hands of war, and we let their lives remain in the shadows of less-covered news.

Opinion Columnist Luiza Braga is a print journalism senior and may be reached at [email protected]


  • Thousands of civilians are dying in the hands of war, and corporate media with their agenda let their lives remain in the shadows of less-covered news.

  • What I’m left wondering is why journalists like you won’t cover how Islam’s core tenets promote violence against all infidels and that for Muslims even different sects of Muslims are infidels. This is why Sunnis are killing Shi’ites who are killing Kurds, etc.

  • As a journalist why have you not addressed the issue that Muslim jihadists created the crisis in Sudan? Why have you not stated that Muslim jihadists were behind every single terrorist act you’ve mentioned in your article?

    • Yeah like the Ongoing Central African genocide.. oh what that is christian’s ethnic cleansing of the muslims minority. Ok the Bosnian genocide from 1992 to 1995… wait wait again christians committing genocide again. The The 1994 Rwandan genocide… er.. ok christians again. My point is that every religion has its mad idiots. David in the bible was an adulterer and murderer. Deuteronomy 17 called for stoning of non-believers. Israel has had more human right violations than China and the list goes on and on. To lump every musilim in with the extremists means you have to lump every other religion in with theirs.

      • Theresa,
        Where does one begin. Let’s start by saying that all religions are as different as they are the same. Buddhism is different than Hinduism just as Christianity and Islam are different just as Judaism is too.
        Some examples of this is Jesus was a nice guy. He preached and practiced charity, turned the other cheek, helped the poor no matter what religious affiliation they practiced.
        Mohammed was different than this. He enslaved. He particularly liked to enslave beautiful women to use for his sexual satisfaction. He stole from helpless caravans and villages to expand his coffers. He led 60 battles against non-Muslims.
        Theresa, do you believe Muslim who pattern their lives on Mohammed will be different than Christians who model their lives on Jesus?
        Another way the religions are different is that they are reflections of their prophets. For instance Christianity has the Golden Rule. This does not mean Christians practice it but at least they have something that is supposed to guide their actions. Islam, on the other hand, has a religion patterned on a greedy prophet, a rapacious prophet, a sadistic prophet, a power hungry prophet.
        Do you seriously think these two religions are more different or more the same?
        And as to your vapid jab at Israel let me just say this. The UN is a Muslim controlled body politic. It ignores ISIS, it ignores al Qaeda, it ignores Boko Haram and the Taliban too. But instead it focuses 90% of its time on teeny-weeny Israel because teeny-weeny Israel has defeated the Arab invaders time after time.
        If Israel was as evil as you insinuate then they would have used their vast armaments to do something really frightening to the bloodthirsty Muslims frothing at the mouth to destroy her very existence.
        Long story short, you have no idea what you are talking about but when did that ever give you pause? (Rhetorical question in case it wasn’t obvious.)

        • Quote me the passages about his life because I have searched and searched and cannot find anywhere in the Koran where it states such things. Yes he had slaves, the whole world had slaves and the old testament condoned it and Jesus never spoke against having slaves. As for the rest, please, and I mean this in all earnestness, link me your sources so I can be educated. Show me you know what you are talking about, otherwise then it will be you that has no idea.

  • As a journalist are you not supposed to inform and educate? Are you not supposed to dig deeper, get to the core issues? Why do you refuse to do this? Are you afraid that Muslims will go all Charlie Hebdo on you if you do?

    Islam’s prophet, considered the most perfect man by Muslims, was a thieving, sexist warrior. He led 60 battles against infidels. He had his men commit unspeakable horrors against infidels. The Muslim holy book, the hadith, informs us of Mohammed’s depravities. His insatiable sexual lust, his taking women as sexual slaves, his stealing his way to power and wealth.

    The Qur’an teaches Muslims to distrust and subjugate infidels, to fight in the name of Allah, to force Sharia law (a cruel supremacist law) upon all others.

    Why do you not dig into this material to better explain to us (as a responsible journalist) these truths and how they inspire and inform Muslims to kill people across the globe including in Paris, Beirut, Nigeria and Sudan?

    • Why not hear about Islam from a woman who grew up as Muslim in the ME? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KXGE2eBUdlQ

      Also, why not pressure Turkey to acknowledge the Armenian genocide?

      And, get Japan to acknowledge its slaughter of 97,000 Russian Christian warriors in the Battle of Mukden, the largest battle ever in the history of modern warfare where Buddhists fought to bring the whole world into the state of Buddhist enlightenment and, also, the Rape of Nanjing where the Imperial Japanese Army murdered an estimated 40,000 to over 300,000 Chinese civilians and disarmed combatants, and perpetrated widespread rape and looting

  • And, if “Black Lives Matter” why not address the genocide of Black babies by abortion? http://www.blackgenocide.org/black.html

    “…Minority women constitute only about 13% of the female population (age 15-44) in the United States, but they underwent approximately 36% of the abortions.

    According to the Alan Guttmacher Institute, black women are more than 5 times as likely as white women to have an abortion

    On average, 1,876 black babies are aborted every day in the United States.

    This incidence of abortion has resulted in a tremendous loss of life. It has been estimated that since 1973 Black women have had about 16 million abortions. Michael Novak had calculated ‘Since the number of current living Blacks (in the U.S.) is 36 million, the missing 16 million represents an enormous loss, for without abortion, America’s Black community would now number 52 million persons. It would be 36 percent larger than it is. Abortion has swept through the Black community like a scythe, cutting down every fourth member.’…”

  • What about the lives of Mexicans killed in the drug wars? “The Staggering Death Toll of Mexico’s Drug War” July 27, 2015 Frontline PBS: http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/frontline/article/the-staggering-death-toll-of-mexicos-drug-war/

    “‘…Last week, the Mexican government released new data showing that between 2007 and 2014 — a period that accounts for some of the bloodiest years of the nation’s war against the drug cartels — more than 164,000 people were victims of homicide. Nearly 20,000 died last year alone, a substantial number, but still a decrease from the 27,000 killed at the peak of fighting in 2011.

    Over the same seven-year period, slightly more than 103,000 died in Afghanistan and Iraq, according to data from the United Nations and the website Iraq Body Count…”

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