Peshawar school attack: When black display pictures say more than words

Published: December 17, 2014
Army officials and security forces gather near the Army Public School in Peshawar on Tuesday. PHOTO: AFP

Army officials and security forces gather near the Army Public School in Peshawar on Tuesday. PHOTO: AFP

As news of the attack on the Army Public School in Peshawar spread on Tuesday, people from around the world tuned into to social media sites for information and to vent out their feelings.

With words not sufficient, many changed their display pictures to a patch of solid black colour to mourn the tragedy.

#PeshawarAttack quickly became the topmost trending hashtag across the world with over 350,000 tweets and statements from people, heads of state and celebrities.

The tragedy also saw one of the oldest rivalries in the subcontinent being put aside to show solidarity.

Tehseen Poonawala, hailing from Pune, started the hashtag #IndiaWithPakistan

It soon went viral among Indians and Pakistanis who set aside their animosity for their neighbour to express shock, disbelief and grief over the Taliban attack which left at least 141 people dead including 132 children and nine staffers.

It was soon trending with over 21,000 tweets so far. Here are some of the top tweets:

Facebook Conversations

Reader Comments (8)

  • Nikos Retsos
    Dec 17, 2014 - 1:45AM

    The Taliban and other jihadists with the same stone age ideology cannot co-exist in any civilized society not only in Pakistan but nowhere in the planet. Turning a school into a children’s slaughterhouse is such a barbaric act that makes the medieval age barbarians look good by comparison. The Pakistani army must wipe the Taliban out completely from the state in order to establish a homogeneous society where people would respect and help each other, not slaughter each other indiscriminately. I know the Pakistani army raid Taliban holdouts occasionally and kill many lunatics, but the hunt of Taliban must be sustained until peace comes to Pakistan. It has to be a full war, a full mopping of the Taliban from Waziristan and whatever other strongholds they use to regroup and attack after some loose battles with the army. This is a war that the civilized Pakistanis must win. And this lawless and senseless slaughtering of children must be for the Pakistani government the proverbial “Straw That Broke The Camel’s Back!” Nikos Retsos, retired professor, USA Recommend

  • M
    Dec 17, 2014 - 1:59AM

    Instead of holding candle light vigils and venting our anger on social media, let us try to do something productive. Vigils and black display pictures are meaningless. Please go to the nearest blood center in your respective cities and donate blood. Fathmid in Karachi is collecting, while there are countless others in Peshawar. If anyone has any details of blood collection centers in Lahore and Islamabad, please do share. Let us try to find out if there is need of any medicine etc. Let us stand together and help our families in need.


  • ahmed abbas
    Dec 17, 2014 - 2:40AM

    Pakistan is paying a very heavy price for it’s support of America and the West. If the thousands of NATO troops cannot subdue the Taliban it is unrealistic to expect Pakistan to do it.


  • Zahir
    Dec 17, 2014 - 5:31AM

    Vigils and black display pictures are NOT meaningless. It lets hurting souls know they aren’t alone, it joins us all as one.
    Physical acts such as blood donations and medicines have also been done. Try to be a little less dismissive and hurtful!


  • Kazim Shah
    Dec 17, 2014 - 9:51AM

    My 4 daughters are in army public school although not in the school under attacked but I was so confused and in shock that I took my klashankov and went to the school for the safety of my daughtersRecommend

  • Sharmeen Sajjad
    Dec 17, 2014 - 11:29AM

    The child must have said
    “Maa ink gir gayi kapre gande ho gaye dantna mat”
    “Maa shirt mere khoon se bhar gandi ho gayi tum rona mat”
    A serious tragedy…..
    R.I.P shaheed.Recommend

  • Ali ahmed nasir
    Dec 20, 2014 - 7:04PM

    What the heck was that all we want to fight against taliban and wanna finish them and inshallah we will


  • Dr. Arif Rao
    Feb 15, 2015 - 8:53PM

    what is the role of media after the attack?Recommend

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