When the people of Belgium were told that mum was the word during last week’s 5-day security lockdown following the Paris attacks, Belgian Twitter users took to social media to show their support of police via cat images attached to the hashtag #BrusselsLockdown. The movement gained so much momentum and notoriety online that three Belgium Tourism Authorities saw it as a means of capitalization for the country, creating a YouTube promotional video that is quickly being seen (and heard) round the world.
The 21-second video, entitled #BrusselsLockdown, serves as an ode to the Belgian capital, depicting cats dancing amongst Brussels’ most iconic landmarks, such as Atomium and Grand Place, while a saxophone plays wildly in the background. The felines, many wearing black bowler hats, or holding green apples in front of their faces (an homage to paintings by Belgian surrealist René Magritte).
The Tourism authorities say they created the video to show how proud they are of Brussels, as well as the residents of the fine city, who have responded to the crisis in good humor.
“Tourism Flanders, Visit Brussels and Wallonia-Brussels Tourism are proud of the people of Brussels and wanted to give them an extra boost,” said a spokesperson for the European Commission. “Their winking cats evoked great sympathy at home and abroad.”
The European Commission reopened their schools and metro system on Wednesday, with a new addition: patrolling soldiers and armed police.