A video of a man giving an injured pigeon some water in a bottle-cap following the devastating explosion in Beirut is being widely shared on social media.
Journalist Vivian Yee, who is the Middle East correspondent for the The New York Times, said she had gone to check on her neighbourhood two days after the blast ripped through the port area of the Lebanese capital. It was then that Yee, who suffered injuries in the explosion, spotted the man helping an injured bird by giving it some water.
She identified the man as Abdel Salam, a Syrian, who was feeding the one-eyed bird some water by putting it in a bottle cap.
Just went back to my shattered Beirut neighborhood for the first time since the explosion. One of the first people I saw was this Syrian man, Abdel Salam, who was ever-so-gently pouring water into a bottle cap for this one-eyed injured pigeon to drink. pic.twitter.com/JUFJj6nEJC
— Vivian Yee (@VivianHYee) August 6, 2020
The gesture moved many online who said it gave them hope. The video also reminded many about a similar gesture by protesters in Hong Kong, who helped a pigeon affected by teargas last year. “Random acts of kindness help keep the human spirit alive,” said one person.
All it takes is care…❤❤❤ https://t.co/HK7kmos4dZ
— ShaguftaRafique (@shufta20) August 7, 2020
Gives hope that humanity still exists! ❤ https://t.co/jCiDKr4GSg
— Jaweria Waheed (@jaweriaWd) August 6, 2020
Oh, my heart. Didn’t think I had any tears left to cry but there you go
— Sulome (@SulomeAnderson) August 6, 2020
Syrian people have seen horrible civil war, not surprised to see that they are much more empathetic.
— छिपकली के नाना!!✈️ (@me_rukmij) August 7, 2020
Genuine compassion is species blind ❤️❤️❤️ What a wonderful human under unfashionably difficult circumstances.
— Fiona_No_ID_Lady (@No_ID_Lady) August 6, 2020
Life is precious. He understands. He is connected to all living things who struggle to survive. We all would hope to get a loving helping hand in a time of need.
— Allen Kibler (@Kibby71) August 7, 2020
Random acts of kindness help keep the human spirit alive ❤️
— Sue Ranson (@sueranson) August 7, 2020
Thank you for sharing this. No matter how dark and hopeless things can seem, there are still lots of good people and goodness in the world. We mustn’t lose hope.
— Jocelyn Shaw (@MissPhosphorus) August 6, 2020
Wow. There are some really good humans in this world. This kind man is selfless. He is a true hero.
— Kimberle (@Berlesue) August 6, 2020
Kindness is a light that brightens everything it shines upon.
I’m not crying, you’re crying. https://t.co/cWonUUnzpN
— Maaz 🚩 (@MaazPervez) August 6, 2020
I have experienced more kindness, more generosity, more hospitality, more compassion in Lebanon than anywhere else in the world 🇱🇧 https://t.co/02Z3guS4TS
— Josie Ensor (@Josiensor) August 6, 2020
Simple kindness doesn’t cost anything https://t.co/F64KoLKf1b
— mammadee (@mammadee2) August 6, 2020
Yee shared her own experience following the explosion and how the city had come to a halt. She spoke about how the Lebanese were already suffering due to the country’s economy being in shambles and wondered how those affected by the blast would recover.
More than 130 people have been killed in the series of explosions which saw a massive mushroom cloud rise to the skies. Over 5000 were injured and nearly 3 lakh residents were left homeless. The accident is believed to have been caused by ammonium nitrate that was stored in a warehouse.