The Terror Attacks Trump Won’t Talk About

By this point all of you have probably seen the Trump administration’s list of terrorist attacks that, in his opinion, weren’t covered enough by the media. It’s a weird list, not only because of the things it includes, like the highly-covered nightclub shootings in Orlando and Paris, but even more so for the things it omits. My co-host Quincy Johnson and I talk about that on this week’s What In the World? podcast.

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You should listen to it! Or I’ll go over it right damn now for you if that’s how you want to play it. Basically, at its core, Trump’s list has one criteria that must be met for inclusion — One of the victims or intended targets has to be a white person. Or, at the very least, the casual reader must interpret it that way. A bus with a few “Canadian tourists” on it could mean anything as far as demographics go, but let’s be honest, we all know the first place our minds go when we hear that phrase.

Google image search results indicate a 50/50 split between white people and sea lions.

As a result, there’s one huge category of attacks that don’t make Trump’s list. Time and again, attacks by ISIS and its cohorts that targeted innocent men, women, and children living in countries like Syria, Libya, and Iraq fail to qualify as being in need of more media attention according to Trump.

The reason for this is obvious. These are the terror attacks that directly led to the refugee crisis the world is facing right now. It’s a lot easier to think of those people as the enemy if you don’t have to think about the fact that they’re in need of and as deserving of protection from terrorist attacks as anyone else. That doesn’t fit the Trump narrative at all.

So, in the name of filling in some of the gaps on Trump’s list, below are some of the yuuuuge terror attacks that didn’t make the cut, along with a few things that made the list instead. However, in the name of keeping this at a readable length, I had to put some limitations in place. This list only includes attacks that occurred in 2016 and killed more than 50 people. Drink that in for a bit when you get to the end of the list. What you’ll read about below is just a sample of what people currently fleeing the Middle East in droves are facing in their home countries. It should serve as a reminder of why “send them back home” is absolutely not an option unless you’re a genuine monster.

Anyway, here goes…

The Zliten Truck Bombing

On January 7, 2016, Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant claimed responsibility for a truck bomb attack that killed 60 policemen and wounded 200 others at a police training camp in the town of Zliten, Libya. Not on Trump’s list. Also, I’m pretty sure we pronounce this as “Zilten” for the entirety of the podcast. Sorry. Maybe if Trump talked about it more we’d have had the pronunciation down by now.

What did make the list?

Paris, France – January, 2016 – Attempted knife attack on a Paris police station. No casualties, attacker was killed before inflicting any injuries.

The Homs Bombings/The Sayyidah Zaynab Bombings

These two attacks happened on the same day in February, 2016.

In one, car bombs exploded in the neighborhood of al-Zahra in Homs, Syria, killing 57 and injuring more than 100.

In the other, a car bomb was followed by two suicide bombings, all within yards of the Sayyidah Zaynab Mosque. That’s newsworthy if for no other reason than because that Mosque is a Shia shrine that’s thought to contain the grave of the granddaughter of the Prophet Muhammad. Well, because of that and also because the attack killed 83 people and injured another 178. The casualties included several children who were leaving school as the attacks were carried out.

Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant claimed responsibility. Neither of these incidents made Trump’s list.

What did make the list?

Columbus, Ohio – February, 2016 – Four wounded in machete attack at a local restaurant. No one killed.

The May 2016 Iraq Bombings

Four separate car bombings in the Iraqi capital of Baghdad. At least 90 killed, more than 100 injured. Islamic State claimed responsibility. Not on Trump’s list.

What did make the list?

For the month of May? Nothing. According to the Trump administration, nothing of note happened this month, at least not as it related to heinous acts of terror. And here’s the thing, people might try to argue that this was omitted because the media did actually cover it a little, but that argument falls apart when you realize he put the Orlando nightclub shootings, the Paris nightclub shootings, and the truck attack in Nice, France on the list. The media covered all of those attacks extensively, so much so that I trust I don’t actually need to provide links to details about any of them for you to know exactly what incidents I’m talking about.

July 2016 Iraq/Kabul/Qamishli Bombings

July was an especially deadly month for terror attacks in 2016. For starters, that’s when the aforementioned Nice, France truck attack happened. Again, that somehow shows up on the list as an attack that deserved a little more media attention. What didn’t make the list was a coordinated truck bomb attack in Baghdad that targeted late night Ramadan shoppers in the district of Karrada. More than 300 people were killed and hundreds more were injured.

In another attack that month, suicide bombers detonated explosive belts among a huge group of civilian targets in Kabul. It was the deadliest attack in Kabul since 2001, killing at least 97 and injuring 260 more.

But wait, there’s more! That same month, 57 people were killed and 171 more were injured when militants attacked Turkish police forces and a government building with car bombs in the city of Qamishli in Syria.

Various groups took responsibility. None of these attacks made Trump’s list.

What did make the list?

July, 2016 – Normandy, France – Priest killed in knife attack

August 2016 Quetta Attacks/Gazientep Bombing

Two especially heartbreaking attacks that happened in August, 2016 failed to earn a spot on Trump’s countdown. One was a suicide bombing and shooting attack on the Government Hospital of Quetta in Pakistan. More than 130 were injured, 70 were killed. The casualties were mainly lawyers who’d gathered to mourn at the hospital where the body of the president of the local bar association had been taken after he was shot dead hours earlier by an unknown gunman. Various Islamist groups claimed responsibility.

That same month, a child suicide bomber targeted a wedding ceremony in Gazientep, Turkey, killing 57 and injuring 66. No one took responsibility, likely because of the involvement of a child bomber, but ISIL is suspected of carrying out the attack.

What Did Make the List?

August, 2016 – Queensland, Australia – Two killed and one wounded in knife attack at a hostel frequented by westerners

October 2016 Quetta Police Training College Attack

Another especially sad attack that Trump doesn’t care about. Heavily armed militants entered a police training center in Quetta, Pakistan in the middle of the night while cadets were sleeping and opened fire. They later took hostages and, after a standoff ensued, detonated two suicide belts. At least 61 people were killed and more than 165 were injured. It was a joint operation between ISIL and a group called Al-Alami.

What did make the list?

October, 2016 – Brussels, Belgium – Two police officers wounded in a stabbing perpetrated by a Belgian national

For More Information

Want to build your own list of terror attacks Trump didn’t mention? I promise there are a lot more to cover, and you can find them, among other places, on this extensive Wikipedia list of terror attacks linked to ISIL. Just as a reminder, the list above only includes attacks that happened in 2016 and claimed more than 50 lives. The full list of attacks Trump won’t talk about is much longer, and you’re lying to yourself if you say you don’t know why they weren’t mentioned.

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