Here’s the latest thing we have to worry about instead of the things we really should be worried about, according to The Atlantic’s David Graham:
Hours before the carnage in Paris on Friday, a double suicide bombing ripped through a working-class shopping district in Beirut. ISIS claimed responsibility for the explosions, which caused 43 deaths and hundreds of casualties in the worst bombing to strike the city in a quarter century. Then came ISIS’s attacks in France, which quickly subsumed much of the attention that might have been directed toward Lebanon.
It’s become a predictable pattern: One act of violence in the world overshadows a similar, concurrent violent act, inviting a backlash against this imbalance in scrutiny, sympathy, and grief.
First of all, we should absolutely have a care for the victims of ISIS, wherever they might be. I’ve been arguing for stronger action against the Caliphate from the start, which might have prevented the attack in Paris and the one in Beirut last week. If you’ll also recall, Beirut is where 299 American Marines and French paratroopers were murdered by jihadi suicide bomber in 1983. It isn’t like we haven’t been involved, sometimes directly, in Lebanon’s decades of trouble.
But now comes the part where we must brush aside Graham’s concern-trolling.
Shocking, isn’t it, that Americans might empathize more with the terror victims in a Western capital of our oldest ally than we would with the citizens of a small Middle Eastern country which has been at war with itself for almost all of the last 40 years?
No, it isn’t shocking at all — and neither anymore is The Atlantic’s endless tut-tutting us for imaginary sins.