Belgians respond to Brussels terror alert by flooding Twitter with cat pics
This weekend, Belgium was placed under the highest level of terror alert due to an unspecified "serious and imminent threat."
Brussels, the country's capital and home of the main seat of the European Parliament, is on lockdown Monday. The city's schools, universities and subway system remain closed as authorities scramble to locate individuals they fear could be planning Paris-style attacks on their city.
But, instead of giving into the fear, Belgiums have responded with a defiant showing on social media... by flooding it with tons and tons of cat pictures.
Oh yes. The stream of cat pics was sparked when the country's federal police made a request on Twitter for the public to maintain silence about the ongoing counter-terror operations on social media, for fear of alerting potential targets of the raids to police movements.
Par sécurité, veuillez respecter le silence radio sur les médias sociaux concernant les opérations de police en cours à #Bruxelles. Merci— Police Fédérale (@PolFed_presse) November 22, 2015
With the hashtag #BrusselsLockdown, users flooded Twitter with cat pictures and cat memes, in a powerful gesture that showed they wouldn't lose their sense of humor over those individuals who will try so much to take their lives and ways of living. The flood of cat pictures also effectively buried any legitimate intelligence on police movements that might have been shared.
A reminder to relax and counsel each other.
They also poked fun at your predicament.
They even poke mock updates from their authorities.
"This, dear outsiders, is how we fight terrorism here," tweeted Brussels resident Gilles Bordelais. "We haz kittenz!"
People around the world are taking notice, and they admire Belgian's resolve.
Belgian federal police also appreciated their efforts. On Monday, they tweeted a symbol of their gratitude: a big bowl of cat food "for the cats who helped us yesterday."
Well done, Belgians. If we change our way of life due to fear from terrorists, they win.
“Rousseau pounced. Men who dislike cats were tyrannical: "They do not like cats because the cat is free and will never consent to become a slave.” ― Robert Zaretsky, The Philosophers' Quarrel: Rousseau, Hume, and the Limits of Human Understanding
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