Somali Insurgents on TwitterBy: Julie Griffin - January 9, 2012
Al-Shabaab, a Somali terrorist group, is using a Twitter account as a war strategy in their battle against the Kenyan Army. Below is the latest tweet from the HSM Press, the name the group uses in media accounts.
#KDF despondency; a measure of desperation & despondency intertwinedCutting off telecommunication links to El Adde highlights the level of
The mere fact that this group has a Twitter account may seem surprising to those who may have viewed this small, Islamic militia as being unsophisticated. That is exactly the point. War analysts think that al-Shabaab is trying to change perceptions others may have of them as being like cavemen.
One analyst says, “Al-Shabaab is using Twitter as a platform to help amplify its victories, downplay its defeats and show that it has a bead in modern technology”.
Will Oremus of Slate Magazine, claims that the U.S. government is taking this Twitter account seriously enough to attempt to shut it down.
Although al-Shabaab is obviously using the account as war propaganda, many Americans – who are not terrorists – may be following the account for educational purposes.
Students, educators, and journalists are among the many who are intrigued by the move all different groups are taking towards social media as a means of battle.
The fact that the tweets are in clear, concise English suggests that al-Shabaab is attempting to convey to the world that they are a modern force, and not afraid to battle with words.