A Bomb Rocks the Santiago Subway, Inflaming Chilean Twitter

Wave of bomb threats disrupt daily life in Chile -Santiago, 10 September 2014 by Ibar Silva, Demotix.

Wave of bomb threats disrupt daily life in Chile -Santiago, 10 September 2014 by Ibar Silva, Demotix.

An explosion rocked Chile's capital on Monday, September 8, causing a flood of comments on Twitter. The bomb hit a commercial center adjacent to the busy Escuela Militar station in Santiago.

Many Twitter users’ first thoughts were about what effect the attack might have on future security measures:

Now, with the bombing, subway prices will rise $50 to pay for security measures, and people will happily pay.

Others have criticized the mainstream media's coverage of the bombing:

Enough already, of the fear and morbidness generated by the media. The bombing was serious, but not enough for such a fuss, repeating the same thing over and over.

Sow hate and you'll reap chaos…. TV stations and their divisive political “reporting” carry a lot of responsibility in this bombing.

Some Twitter users turned on each other, shaming people who were using the event to crack jokes and spread memes:

I think people are jerks to make jokes about these issues, even more so when there are injuries involved. This could have happened to anyone.

Many Internet users drew connections to other episodes of violence in Chile and elsewhere around the world:

The bombing is worrisome. Think of it! People in Araucania feel the same insecurity and the government could care less.

Imagine! If everyone went so crazy with this bombing, think of how the Palestinians must feel with bombings day-and-night.

Perhaps the online conversation's biggest controversy has been the squabbling among Chile's various political groups, who are eager to assign or avoid blame wherever possible:

I don’t know which is more horrifying: the misfits placing the bombs, or the fascists trying to figure it out.

No true anarchist would cause a bombing against the working class.

This burns me up! Because the leftists cover their eyes and don’t accept that their prez is lousy? They justify the unjustifiable.

Some, like Marcela Rios, are concerned that the bombing could aggravate Chile's already polarized society:

Reading comments about the explosion is truly frightening… delirium and aggressiveness.

The writer Jorge Baradit shared this reflection on Facebook:

No me importa quiénes pusieron la bomba en el metro Escuela Militar. Quienes hayan sido dejaron la agenda a favor de la derecha de este país.

Si fueron de extrema derecha, felicitaciones y no me extrañaría, tienen historia matando a su propio pueblo. Si fueron de extrema izquierda, me faltan palabras para decirles lo imbéciles que fueron. Manga de pelotudos, tratando de derribar el sistema destruyendo un puesto de completos.

Hay una trabajadora municipal, una señora, con sus dedos amputados. ¿Atacar a la clase obrera era el objetivo? Pregúntenle a cualquier trabajador de este país si en los ‘80 le tenían miedo al FPMR, si alguna vez pensaron que podrían atacar a los trabajadores, incluso a civiles cualquiera durante la dictadura.

Hay una diferencia entre luchadores sociales y putos terroristas que dañan a los trabajadores que dicen defender.

It doesn’t matter to me who placed the bomb in the Escuela Militar subway. Whoever it was tipped the scales in favor of the right in this country.

If they were from the extreme right, congratulations and I wouldn’t be surprised — they have a history of killing their own people. If they were from the extreme left, words fail in telling them what imbeciles they were. A bunch of assholes, trying to bring down the system by destroying a hot dog stand.

There’s a city worker, a woman, who had to have her fingers amputated. Was attacking the working class the objective? Ask any worker in this country if they were afraid of the FPMR in the 80s, if at any time they thought the FPMR would attack the workers, or any civilians, during the dictatorship.

There is a difference between social activists and fucking terrorists who harm the workers they claim to defend.

Baradit also wrote on Twitter:

I understand that Chile is angry, on the verge of a nervous breakdown, but what good does it do to shoot at each other.

Baradit's words haven't won over everyone, however. Consider reactions like Emilio Burgos':

While you blame the bombing on the “side” that you don’t like? A deep hatred is being born and bred in those who don’t care about your ideologies.

To follow the conversation, Global Voices suggests the hashtags #BOMBAZO and #EscuelaMilitar.

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