Jordan is Fighting ISIS. So Why Did the Government Punish a Non-Muslim for Posting an Anti-ISIS Cartoon on Facebook?

Screen-Shot-2016-08-18-at-3.27.58-PMWhy is ‘division’ or Fitna such a serious crime in Islam?

CounterJihad, by Bruce Cornibe, Aug. 18, 2016:

In the West, some  tend to dismiss the threat of Sharia law, claiming incorrectly that it applies only to Muslims.

However, this is far from the truth. Let’s take a look at a recent example from the ‘moderate’ country of Jordan. Nahed Hattar, a Jordanian writer, turned himself into authorities after Jordan’s Prime Minister Hani Mulki called for an investigation of an ‘offensive’ cartoon that surfaced on Facebook.

This cartoon which allegedly shows the “God of Daesh” serving a jihadi in paradise is translated by Anwar el-Iraqi, an Arabic Affairs analyst for the Clarion Project:

In Green: In paradise…

Allah: “May your evening be joyous, Abu Saleh, do you need anything?”

Jihadist: “Yes Lord, bring me the glass of wine from other there and tell Jibril [the Angel Gabriel] to bring me some cashews. After that send me an eternal servant to clean the floor and take the empty plates with you.”

Jihadist continues: “Don’t forget to put a door on the tent so that you knock before you enter next time, your gloriousness.”

Hattar– who is a non-Muslim— said he posted the drawing to ridicule terrorists and their perspective on God and heaven and did not intend for it to be an insult to God.

Another article by Al Jazeera reveals that, in addition to mocking ISIS, Hattar was also exposing the Muslim Brotherhood. The Jordanian Muslim Brotherhood (which has demonstrated support for Hamas) is a major Islamist force within Jordanian society and has been known to stir up social unrest and exploit the anger of Palestinian Jordanians for the Brotherhood’s political gain.

Khaled Qudah, a media expert, explains to The Jordan Times that, “Hattar can be detained pending further investigation for violating article 150 of the Penal Code that bans contempt of religions and also for violating the Electronic Crimes Law[.]” Qudah continues,

What Hattar did incites hatred and sectarianism and may cause division… Preserving national security and social harmony and the public interest comes before freedom of expression even in international law. [Emphasis added]

Outside the context of Islamic law, we might be incredulous about be how a cartoon aimed at exposing radical Islam could be considered a threat to a Muslim nation’s national security.

To understand what he meant in the Islamic context, though, requires a closer look at the words used to describe the offense. The mocking cartoon, Qudah said, “incites hatred and sectarianism and may cause division.”

The incitement of division is a primary concern in Islam, as it relates to the stability of the Islamic regime. This concept is called “Fitna.” In the Historical Dictionary of Islamic Fundamentalism, Mathieu Guider defines it this way:

The Arabic term fitna refers to a division within a Muslim nation (umma) that includes a test of faith that can even lead to rebellion, chaos, or sedition. Historically, it is derived from the first Islamic civil war that occurred following the assassination of CaHph Uthman in 656. This war, which lasted from 656 to 661, was called the fitna. The term has since been used to describe a period when a Muslim community becomes unbalanced and then fragmented.

Moreover, it can mean that a person or group intentionally causes upheaval between people to create a situation to test the peoples’ faith. Fitna is also often used to illustrate a group that has undergone extreme moral and emotional grievances that then may compromise their faith and lead to a greater focus on material or worldly gains rather than spiritual ones.

For example, the Arab Spring has been qualified in Saudi Arabia as a fitna because it can weaken the community from within. The duality that occur s when being affected by a rebellion or a revolution is what can tempt Muslims to shy away from or even deny the authority of the Muslim leaders who are ruling in the name of Allah. Also, the temptations brought on by Western societies are another example of how division can occur.

The fear of fitna by the fundamentalists is a major reason why secular or pluralist governments are forbidden by sharia (Islamic law). The elements of such forms of government are seen to give too much temptation and lead to an inevitable division among the umma. For Islamic fundamentalists, there is only one true party: the Party of Allah (Hizbullah). This is so important because the Islamic state is based on the rhetoric of solidarity and unification. [Emphasis added.]

Especially when we see the seriousness with which this offense is taken in Islam, it’s clear that fitna is a concept that has a lot more in common with what we would consider the “political” rather than the religious.

Another major reason for such laws is essentially to protect Islam – which is why we aren’t seeing Muslims being thrown in jail for blaspheming the name of Christ, for example. Or when a member of Jordan’s Parliament, Khalil Attieh, displayed his hatred of Jews on television in 2014 by stating, “By Allah, it is an honor to incite against the Jews…”

We have seen before how Jordan’s King Abdullah has declared,

I am a Muslim and we are all Muslims, and extremists do not represent Islam. Our duty is to protect the reputation of Islam and Muslims.

Abdullah sees ISIS as on the periphery of Islam and seeks to delegitimize them; however, his government is going after an image that mocks ISIS’s alleged view of God and heaven.

Apparently, ISIS’s views on these matters aren’t as twisted as Jordan claims them to be in regards to Islamic beliefs.

If Jordan is seriously attempting to represent a ‘moderate’ form of Islam, why won’t they make this an opportunity to show how jihadists– who murder people so they can enjoy fleshly desires in paradise while being catered to (as portrayed in the cartoon)– have no place in their version of Islam?

Jordan is essentially upholding blasphemy laws that legitimize ISIS’s radical Islamic ideology. Just how disgusting is this ideology? It justifies the boiling of six men in containers of tar for being “accused of collaborating with the U.S.-led coalition and Kurdish forces[,]” and the killing of twenty-five people by forcing them in a tub of nitric acid for supposedly “spying and collaborating with Iraqi security forces[.]” Shouldn’t these be the guys Jordan seeks to prosecute?

According to Al Bawaba, public outcry over the cartoon ensued on social media and not only were some Twitter users insulted, but also seemed concerned about “civil order[.]” Of course, being in a Muslim majority country they seem well aware of the hyper-sensitivity of mocking Islam, which is ultimately found in Islamic texts:

Indeed, those who abuse Allah and His Messenger – Allah has cursed them in this world and the Hereafter and prepared for them a humiliating punishment. –Quran 33:57

Narrated ‘Ali: The Prophet said, “Do not tell a lie against me for whoever tells a lie against me (intentionally) then he will surely enter the Hell-fire.” –Sahih Bukhari 1.3.106

Jordanian officials like King Abdullah help further advance this sentiment by denouncing insults to Islam like cartoons mocking Islam’s Prophet Mohammad and intimidating those who think about doing such things.

So, we have a supposed ‘moderate’ country in Jordan that punishes Muslims as well as non-Muslims for matters like blasphemy at fitna.

Even in places in Europe Sharia might not be the law of the land but because of fear of Muslim outrage the governing authorities may discourage or even punish those who make offensive or insensitive remarks about Islam – creating de facto blasphemy laws.

Federal Government Authorizes Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube to Censor “Anti-Islam” Speech; Lawsuit Filed

3320334677Center for Security Policy, July 13, 2016:

Today, the American Freedom Law Center (AFLC) filed a federal lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, challenging Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act (CDA) under the First Amendment.

Section 230 provides immunity from lawsuits to Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube, thereby permitting these social media giants to engage in government-sanctioned censorship and discriminatory business practices free from legal challenge.

The lawsuit was brought on behalf of the American Freedom Defense Initiative (AFDI), Pamela Geller, Robert Spencer, and Jihad Watch.

As alleged in the lawsuit, Geller and Spencer, along with the organizations they run, are often subject to censorship and discrimination by Facebook, Twitter and YouTube because of Geller’s and Spencer’s beliefs and views, which Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube consider expression that is offensive to Muslims.

Such discrimination, which is largely religion-based in that these California businesses are favoring adherents of Islam over those who are not, is prohibited in many states, but particularly in California by the state’s anti-discrimination law, which is broadly construed to prohibit all forms of discrimination.  However, because of the immunity granted by the federal government, Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube are free to engage in their otherwise unlawful, discriminatory practices.

As set forth in the lawsuit, Section 230 of the CDA immunizes businesses such as Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube from civil liability for any action taken to “restrict access to or availability of material that” that they “consider to be obscene, lewd, lascivious, filthy, excessively violent, harassing, or otherwise objectionable, whether or not such material is constitutionally protected.”

Robert Muise, AFLC co-founder and senior counsel, issued the following statement:

“Section 230 of the CDA confers broad powers of censorship upon Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube officials, who can silence constitutionally protected speech and engage in discriminatory business practices with impunity by virtue of this power conferred by the federal government in violation of the First Amendment.”

Muise went on to explain:

“Section 230 is a federal statute that alters the legal relations between our clients and Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube, resulting in the withdrawal from our clients of legal protections against private acts.  Consequently, per U.S. Supreme Court precedent, state action lies in our clients’ challenge under the First Amendment.”

David Yerushalmi, AFLC co-founder and senior counsel, added:

“Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube have notoriously censored speech that they deem critical of Islam, thereby effectively enforcing blasphemy laws here in the United States with the assistance of the federal government.”

Yerushalmi concluded:

“It has been the top agenda item of Islamic supremacists to impose such standards on the West.  Its leading proponents are the Muslim Brotherhood’s network of Islamist activist groups in the West and the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), which co-sponsored, with support from Obama and then-Secretary of State Clinton, a U.N. resolution which called on all nations to ban speech that could promote mere hostility to Islam.  Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube are falling in line, and we seek to stop this assault on our First Amendment freedoms.”

AFLC Co-Founders and Senior Counsel Robert J. Muise and David Yerushalmi, along with the plaintiffs in this case, Pamela Geller and Robert Spencer, will hold a Press Call from 2:00-2:30 p.m. on Wednesday, July 13.  To access this press conference call, dial (641) 715-3655 and enter code 111815.

Also see:

The EU is Coming to Close Down Your Free Speech

1455Gatestone Institute, by Douglas Murray, June 11, 2016:

  • The German Chancellor was not interested in the reinforcement of Europe’s external borders, the re-erection of its internal borders, the institution of a workable asylum vetting system and the repatriation of people who had lied to gain entry into Europe. Instead, Chancellor Merkel wanted to know how Facebook’s founder could help her restrict the free speech of Europeans, on Facebook and on other social media.
  • Then, on May 31, the European Union announced a new online speech code to be enforced by four major tech companies, including Facebook and YouTube.
  • It was clear from the outset that Facebook has a definitional problem as well as a political bias in deciding on these targets. What is Facebook’s definition of ‘racism’? What is its definition of ‘xenophobia’? What, come to that, is its definition of ‘hate speech’?
  • Of course the EU is a government — and an unelected government at that — so its desire not just to avoid replying to its critics — but to criminalise their views and ban their contrary expressions — is as bad as the government of any country banning or criminalising the expression of opinion which is not adulatory of the government.
  • People must speak up — must speak up now, and must speak up fast — in support of freedom of speech before it is taken away from them. It is, sadly, not an overstatement to say that our entire future depends on it.

It is nine months since Angela Merkel and Mark Zuckerberg tried to solve Europe’s migrant crisis. Of course having caused the migrant crisis by announcing the doors of Europe as open to the entire third-world, Angela Merkel particularly would have been in a good position actually to try to solve this crisis.

But the German Chancellor was not interested in the reinforcement of Europe’s external borders, the re-erection of its internal borders, the institution of a workable asylum vetting system and the repatriation of people who had lied to gain entry into Europe. Instead, Chancellor Merkel was interested in Facebook.

When seated with Mark Zuckerberg, Frau Merkel wanted to know how the Facebook founder could help her restrict the free speech of Europeans, on Facebook and on other social media.Speaking to Zuckerberg at a UN summit last September (and not aware that the microphones were picking her up) she asked what could be done to restrict people writing things on Facebook which were critical of her migration policy. ‘Are you working on this?’ she asked him. ‘Yeah’, Zuckerberg replied.

In the months that followed, we learned that this was not idle chatter over lunch. In January of this year, Facebook launched its ‘Initiative for civil courage online’, committing a million Euros to fund non-governmental organisations in its work to counter ‘racist’ and ‘xenophobic’ posts online. It also promised to remove ‘hate speech’ and expressions of ‘xenophobia’ from the Facebook website.

It was clear from the outset that Facebook has a definitional problem as well as a political bias in deciding on these targets. What is Facebook’s definition of ‘racism’? What is its definition of ‘xenophobia’? What, come to that, is its definition of ‘hate speech’? As for the political bias, why had Facebook not previously considered how, for instance, to stifle expressions of open-borders sentiments on Facebook? There are many people in Europe who have argued that the world should have no borders and that Europe in particular should be able to be lived in by anyone who so wishes. Why have people expressing such views on Facebook (and there are many) not found their views censored and their posts removed? Are such views not ‘extreme’?

One problem with this whole area — and a problem which has clearly not occurred to Facebook — is that these are questions which do not even have the same answer from country to country. Any informed thinker on politics knows that there are laws that apply in some countries that do not — and often should not — apply in others. Contrary to the views of many transnational ‘progressives’, the world does not have one set of universal laws and certainly does not have universal customs. Hate-speech laws are to a very great extent an enforcement of the realm of customs.

Read more

Pamela Geller: Facebook’s Assurances Of Neutrality ‘Utterly Hollow’

Geller-speaking-moments-before-the-Garland-Shooting-e1433506916264-640x479Breitbart, by Allum Bokhari, June 12, 2016:

Islam critic and American Freedom Defence Initiative President Pamela Geller slammed Facebook in an interview with Breitbart this evening, rejecting their pretenses of political neutrality and urging conservatives to fight back.

Geller’s 50,000-strong Facebook group, “Stop Islamization Of America” was removed from Facebook earlier today, despite being active for over five years, due to allegedly “hateful content.” A few hours later, her own Facebook account received a 30-day ban after she made a post criticizing President Obama for his response to the Orlando shootings.

fb

The timing of Facebook’s sudden burst of censorship – just a day after the Muslim terrorist Omar Mateen carried out the deadliest terror attack on U.S. soil since 9/11 – is hard to ignore. It also casts doubt on the social network’s claims to political neutrality, which the company repeatedly pushed during last month’s “Trending News” scandal.

In an interview with Breitbart, Geller emphasized the need to fight back against Facebook:

AB: Facebook say they took down your page because of their rule against “hateful, obscene, or threatening” content. What’s your response?

PG: It is not hateful, obscene, or threatening to oppose jihad terror such as we saw in Orlando last night. Truth is not hateful or obscene. What is hateful, obscene and threatening is that Facebook is moving to silence everyone who speaks honestly about the motivating ideology behind such attacks.

AB: Why do you think they took the page down now, of all times?

PG: They are in full damage control mode. Orlando showed jihad for what it is. They’re committed to obscuring that knowledge and making sure people remain ignorant and complacent about the nature and magnitude of the jihad threat.

AB: They’ve also banned your own account, for thirty days. Is this the first time that’s happened to you? What are they so afraid of?

PG: No, it has happened before, when I get too close to truths they want to cover up. They’re afraid these truths will get out, and that people will start acting to remove the feckless and traitorous leaders who got us into this fix. They are blocking and banning me now, especially now, when people are looking past the media myths provided by terror-tied groups like Hamas-CAIR.

AB: Facebook spent much of last month assuring the public that they aren’t biased against conservatives. What are we to think of those assurances, in light of what happened today?

PG: They’re utterly and absolutely hollow.

AB: How should critics of Islam respond to this? Protest? Boycott Facebook? Seek out other platforms?

PG: By continuing to speak the truth. Yes, protest. Yes, establish other platforms. But Facebook is too large to be ignored, or to be hurt by a boycott. Facebook quislings must be called out. If voices of freedom and truth leave it, we will have no significant platform. Better we keep up the pressure on Facebook to stop trying to silence conservatives.

AB: Do you think Facebook’s ban on “hateful” content will ever encompass Islamist content on the platform?

PG: Never. As far as the left is concerned, Islamic jihad, Jew-hatred, misogyny, et al aren’t hateful until non-Muslims report on them. Then they still aren’t hateful – only the reporting by the non-Muslims is.

You can follow Allum Bokhari on Twitter, add him on Facebook. Email tips and suggestions to abokhari@breitbart.com.

European Union Declares War on Internet Free Speech

This week, the EU, in partnership with Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Microsoft, unveiled a "code of conduct" to combat the spread of "illegal hate speech" online in Europe. The next day, Facebook suspended the account of Ingrid Carlqvist, Gatestone's Swedish expert, after she posted a Gatestone video to her Facebook feed — called "Sweden's Migrant Rape Epidemic."

This week, the EU, in partnership with Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Microsoft, unveiled a “code of conduct” to combat the spread of “illegal hate speech” online in Europe. The next day, Facebook suspended the account of Ingrid Carlqvist, Gatestone’s Swedish expert, after she posted a Gatestone video to her Facebook feed — called “Sweden’s Migrant Rape Epidemic.”

Gatestone Institute, by Soeren Kern, June 3, 2016:

  • Opponents counter that the initiative amounts to an assault on free speech in Europe. They say that the European Union’s definition of “hate speech” and “incitement to violence” is so vague that it could include virtually anything deemed politically incorrect by European authorities, including criticism of mass migration, Islam or even the EU itself.
  • Some Members of the European Parliament have characterized the EU’s code of online conduct — which requires “offensive” material to be removed from the Internet within 24 hours — as “Orwellian.”
  • “By deciding that ‘xenophobic’ comment in reaction to the crisis is also ‘racist,’ Facebook has made the view of the majority of the European people… into ‘racist’ views, and so is condemning the majority of Europeans as ‘racist.'” — Douglas Murray.
  • In January 2013, Facebook suspended the account of Khaled Abu Toameh after he wrote about corruption in the Palestinian Authority. The account was reopened 24 hours later, but with the two posts deleted and no explanation.

The European Union (EU), in partnership with Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Microsoft, has unveiled a “code of conduct” to combat the spread of “illegal hate speech” online in Europe.

Proponents of the initiative argue that in the aftermath of the recent terrorist attacks in Paris and Brussels, a crackdown on “hate speech” is necessary to counter jihadist propaganda online.

Opponents counter that the initiative amounts to an assault on free speech in Europe. They say that the EU’s definition of “hate speech” and “incitement to violence” is so vague that it could include virtually anything deemed politically incorrect by European authorities, including criticism of mass migration, Islam or even the European Union itself.

Some Members of the European Parliament have characterized the EU’s code of online conduct — which requires “offensive” material to be removed from the Internet within 24 hours, and replaced with “counter-narratives” — as “Orwellian.”

Read more

CENSORED: Facebook deletes a Gatestone author’s page!

icGatestone Institute, June 2, 2016:

Dear Readers,

On Tuesday, the European Union (EU) announced a new online speech code to be enforced by four major tech companies, including Facebook and YouTube.

On Wednesday, Facebook deleted the account of Ingrid Carlqvist, Gatestone’s Swedish expert.

It’s no coincidence.

Ingrid had posted our latest video to her Facebook feed — called “Sweden’s Migrant Rape Epidemic.” As you can see, Ingrid calmly lays out the facts and statistics, all of which are meticulously researched.

It’s a video version of this research paper that Gatestone published last year. The video has gone viral — racking up more than 80,000 views in its first two days.

But the EU is quite candid: it is applying a political lens to their censorship, and it now has teams of political informants — with the Orwellian title of “trusted reporters” — to report any cases of “xenophobia” or “hate speech” to Facebook for immediate deletion.

It’s political censorship. It’s outrageous. And it’s contrary to our western values of free speech, political freedom and the separation of mosque and state. But in another way, it’s a tremendous compliment — the world’s censors think that Gatestone Institute’s work is important enough and persuasive enough that it needs to be silenced.

Well, not if we have anything to say about it. We raised such a ruckus about this attack that the Swedish media started reporting on Facebook’s heavy-handed censorship. It backfired, and Facebook went into damage-control mode. They put Ingrid’s account back up — without any explanation or apology. Ironically, their censorship only gave Ingrid’s video more attention.

Facebook and the EU have backed down — for today. But they’re deadly serious about stopping ideas they don’t like. They’ll be back.

So what should we do? I think there is only one thing we can do: continue to produce our well-researched reports, and to expand our online presence with even more videos!

As you know, just last week we started releasing high-quality original videos, hosted by our Gatestone experts. Our first four videos have already been watched by more than 150,000 people!

It’s a great way to make our research come alive — and as Ingrid’s viral video shows, to get our ideas noticed.

So I want Gatestone’s talented experts to make more videos — a lot more! We need to win the battle of ideas. Can you help?

Each video costs us approximately $500 to produce. But as Facebook’s attack on us shows, they’re worth every penny.

Will you help us do that?

If you can sponsor one video, for $500, that would be a powerful statement of your support for our ideas — and your resistance to the Facebook/EU censorship. But even a $50 gift would be so helpful — if just 100 Gatestone supporters chipped in $50, that’s enough to produce ten more powerful video presentations — any one of which could go viral too!

Facebook and the European Union thought they could shut us up. I want to prove them wrong. Please click here, to help us fight back. Do it for Ingrid!

Yours truly,

Nina Rosenwald
President and Founder, Gatestone Institute

P.S. Click here to see all of our YouTube videos so far. I want to do so many more, and with more of our experts. It’s a great way to spread our message, especially in the age of short, shareable videos. Please consider contributing $50, $500 or whatever you can!

P.P.S. We’ve never been censored this way before. I think it means we’re making a difference. What do you think?

Gatestone Institute is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization, Federal Tax ID #454724565.
Contributions to Gatestone Institute are tax deductible in the U.S. to the full extent of the law.

Twitter and Facebook Vow to Eliminate ‘Hate Speech’

facebook_twitter_intergration

Henceforth only far-Left and pro-jihad views will be allowed.

Front Page Magazine, by Robert Spencer, June 1, 2016:

Could it soon be illegal to oppose jihad terror on the Internet?

AP reported that “the European Union reached an agreement Tuesday with some of the world’s biggest social media firms, including Facebook and Twitter, on ways to combat the spread of hate speech online.”

Not only Facebook and Twitter, but also YouTube and Microsoft, “have committed to ‘quickly and efficiently’ tackle illegal hate speech directed against anyone over issues of race, color, religion, descent or national or ethnic origin. The sites have often been used by terrorist organizations to relay messages and entice hatred against certain individuals or groups.”

Vera Jourova, whom AP identifies as “the EU commissioner responsible for justice, consumers and gender equality,” explained: “The internet is a place for free speech, not hate speech.” She added that the new rules would “ensure that public incitement to violence to hatred has ‘no place online.’” But incitement to violence isn’t all that the social media giants are planning to stamp out: Karen White, Twitter’s European head of public policy, declared: “We remain committed to letting the Tweets flow. However, there is a clear distinction between freedom of expression and conduct that incites violence and hate.”

The problem with both Jourova’s and White’s statements is that they assume that “hate speech” is an entity that can be identified objectively, when actually it is a subjective judgment based on one’s own political preconceptions. And given the years-long insistence from Leftists and Islamic supremacists that any honest discussion of how Islamic jihadis use the texts and teachings of Islam to justify violence and supremacism constitutes “hate speech,” these new rules could mean the end of opposition to jihad terror on the Internet.

Consider, for example, what Twitter does not consider to be “hate speech.” A Muslim named Obaid Karki, @stsheetrock on Twitter, who runs a website headed “Obaid Karki St.Sheetrock’s Painfulpolitics Offensive Comedy Hepcat” and another called is called “Suicide Bombers Magazine” posted this on one of them last Sunday: “Robert Spencer mustn’t [be] featured but lynched from his scrotum along with Zionists scumbags, Pamela Geller, Pat Condell, Daniel Pipes, Debbie Schlussel and JIHADWATCH Jackass duo Baron Bodissey & Geert Wilders for inspiring Anders Behring Breivik to [kill] innocent students in 2011.”

Neither Bodissey or Wilders actually run Jihad Watch – I do — and I didn’t inspire Breivik to do anything, but what is interesting about Karki’s loony message is that he posted this call for me and others to be lynched on Twitter.

Twitter supposedly has a policy against death threats. “The Twitter Rules” say: “Violent threats (direct or indirect): You may not make threats of violence or promote violence, including threatening or promoting terrorism.” I therefore duly reported this one – but as of this writing, it has not been taken down (in fact, Karki posted it along with variants of it several times). I reported Karki’s tweet (which he republished on Twitter several times, and on Monday received this message from Twitter: “Thank you for letting us know about your issue. We’ve investigated the account and reported Tweets for violent threats and abusive behavior, and have found that it’s currently not violating the Twitter Rules (https://twitter.com/rules).”

Read more

Also see:

Killing ISIS with Kindness

The Obama administration lacks a viable strategy for disrupting ISIS' use of social media to recruit members and disseminate its propaganda.

The Obama administration lacks a viable strategy for disrupting ISIS’ use of social media to recruit members and disseminate its propaganda.

MEF, by A.J. Caschetta
Independent Journal Review
March 3, 2016

The persistent and unprecedented failure of the Obama administration to conduct foreign policy in ways that promote American interests is baffling to most observers.

The impulse to offer succor to those who would do us harm became almost too absurd to parody when State Department spokesperson Marie Harf suggested in January of 2015 that ISIS could be disarmed with a jobs-for-jihadists program.

A month later, White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest answered a question on counterterrorism by claiming that the administration was hard at work developing “some pretty sophisticated social media strategy.”

But it appears now that the administration is contemplating an even less confrontational approach – a widespread effort to “Like” ISIS.

This new low point in foreign policy thinking came in the person of Facebook Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg, an Obama insider who was rumored in 2012 to have been on the short list for a second-term cabinet position. In a January 20, 2016 panel at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Sandberg offered what appears to be a new counterterrorism strategy – the “‘like attack.”

This amicable assault occurs when the forces of good wage battle against the forces of evil by flooding their Facebook pages with “Likes” and posting positive messages there. As Sandberg explained, “The best antidote to bad speech is good speech and the best antidote to hate is tolerance.” Illustrating her facile theory with an anecdote about a neo-Nazi party in Germany whose Facebook page was deluged with “Likes” and positive messages, Sandberg concluded triumphantly that “What was a page filled with hatred and intolerance was then tolerance and messages of hope.” Just like that.This new low point in foreign policy thinking came in the person of Facebook Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg, an Obama insider who was rumored in 2012 to have been on the short list for a second-term cabinet position. In a January 20, 2016 panel at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Sandberg offered what appears to be a new counterterrorism strategy – the “‘like attack.”

Facebook Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg, an Obama insider, has a plan for fighting ISIS with “messages of hope.”

Sandberg was very vague on how the “Like attack” would affect ISIS, and her implication that neo-Nazis and Islamists will react similarly to these social media stories betrays a shallow understanding of Islamism. Like her previous campaign to ban the word “bossy” (oddly similar to the Obama administration’s attempts to ban the words “Islam” and “jihad” from discussions of terrorism), any effort to prohibit something solely by proclaiming it prohibited has no chance of succeeding.

It is tempting to dismiss Sandberg’s folly as nothing more than the self-aggrandizing eccentricity of a billionaire tech guru, but she is taken seriously at all levels of the Obama administration, including the Department of Defense. Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter calls Sandberg a friend and says she “has strong expertise in our mission.” Carter has implemented Sandberg’s “Lean In Circles” in the Pentagon. Her ideas are taken seriously by many Democrats, including Hillary Clinton.

The erstwhile New York Senator and Secretary of State, perpetual presidential candidate, and frequent advocate of the oxymoronic “soft power,” appears to be convinced of the thinking behind the Facebook fusillade. The former first lady often claims that effective foreign policy is simply a matter of rejecting what she calls “the clash of civilizations.” In place of the “hard power” implied in “clash,” she has lately taken to extolling the powers of love and kindness.

Her embrace of the pusillanimous outreach agenda has recently become even more pronounced. In a January 6th feel-good interview with Youtube luminaries GloZell, Shameless Maya, and Chriselle Limon Amanda de Cadenet’s Lifetime Network show, she channeled John Lennon with this deep analysis: “I really believe we need more love and kindness and nurturing in our country, and in the world.”

American interests will be far better served if the policy-makers in the next administration abandon the delusion that our enemies can be swayed, even defeated, by a display of our love. John Lennon was wrong: you need more than love.

A.J. Caschetta is a senior lecturer at the Rochester Institute of Technology and a Shillman-Ginsburg fellow at the Middle East Forum.

MILO: Twitter ‘Embarking on a War Against Conservative Points of View’

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Breitbart, Feb. 12, 2016:

Speaking with host and Breitbart News Executive Chairman Stephen K. Bannon on Breitbart News Daily, Breitbart Tech editor Milo Yiannopoulos discussed the suppression of conservative voices by Twitter on the social media platform.

“Why are you beating up Twitter, and why are you saying that Twitter trying to suppress conservative voices, and why is Twitter’s stock in a total free fall because Milo’s taking them on?” Bannon asked. “Are you a bigger, badder guy than Jack Dorsey?”

“Yeah, of course I am,” Yiannopoulos replied mischievously. “I’m absolute convinced that Twitter is embarking on a war against conservative points of view, a war against what we might call ‘Generation Trump,’ the dissident, mischievous voices of the new counter-cultural alternative right wing and libertarian youth.”

“Look at who Twitter employs,” he warned in reference to Twitter possibly influencing the 2016 presidential election. “You know, this guy used to work with Hillary, this guy used to work with Obama…”

“This is why Obama ran the tables with Google and with Facebook,” Bannon agreed. “Let’s talk about Facebook for a second. Why is Facebook suppressing voices in the continent of Europe about immigration. Why is Zuckerberg in bed with Merkel?”

Referring to the story of Facebook teaming up with the German government to censor debate over the influx of Middle Eastern migrants, Yiannopoulos said, “This is what the left does all over the world. They’ll take ridicule and criticism and they’ll rebrand it as abuse and harrassment or hate speech in some way.”

“This mergence of technology and thought control, it’s Orwellian,” Bannon said. “Are you fighting a rearguard action, or can we have victory in this?”

Noting that Twitter is failing and “in its death throes,” Yiannopoulos stated that Facebook is “more of a problem” and “the one we should really be worried about.”

“Why is Facebook more of a problem?” Bannon asked.

“Because the company’s not doing so badly,” Yiannopoulos replied. “Twitter’s influence is waning. We found out this week its monthly active users are going down. The stock price is tanking, partly as a result of their spat with me, I think. I don’t worry too much about them.”

“I do worry about Facebook. I worry about Facebook because it’s not just Facebook we’re talking about, they also own WhatsApp, and they also own Instagram,” he explained. “This company owns the platforms on which young people are messaging one another, and it has shown itself to be untrustworthy when it comes to free speech.”

***

Paul Joseph Watson: “Not ONE single conservative group” is on Twitter’s “Trust and Safety Council”

Paul Joseph Watson joined Faith Goldy to break down the latest from Twitter’s new “Trust and Safety Council.” Who is on this council and who isn’t? In an effort to transform their platform into a “safe space,” the organization is now in the business of censoring free speech and they’ve picked out an army of SJWs [social justice warriors] to get the job done!

Facebook’s War on Freedom of Speech

Gatestone Institute, by Douglas Murray, February 5, 2016:

  • Facebook is now removing speech that presumably almost everybody might decide is racist — along with speech that only someone at Facebook decides is “racist.”
  • The sinister reality of a society in which the expression of majority opinion is being turned into a crime has already been seen across Europe. Just last week came reports of Dutch citizens being visited by the police and warned about posting anti-mass-immigration sentiments on social media.
  • In lieu of violence, speech is one of the best ways for people to vent their feelings and frustrations. Remove the right to speak about your frustrations and only violence is left.
  • The lid is being put on the pressure cooker at precisely the moment that the heat is being turned up. A true “initiative for civil courage” would explain to both Merkel and Zuckerberg that their policy can have only one possible result.

It was only a few weeks ago that Facebook was forced to back down when caught permitting anti-Israel postings, but censoring equivalent anti-Palestinian postings.

Now one of the most sinister stories of the past year was hardly even reported. In September, German Chancellor Angela Merkel met Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook at a UN development summit in New York. As they sat down, Chancellor Merkel’s microphone, still on, recorded Merkel asking Zuckerberg what could be done to stop anti-immigration postings being written on Facebook. She asked if it was something he was working on, and he assured her it was.

At the time, perhaps the most revealing aspect of this exchange was that the German Chancellor — at the very moment that her country was going through one of the most significant events in its post-war history — should have been spending any time worrying about how to stop public dislike of her policies being vented on social media. But now it appears that the discussion yielded consequential results.

Last month, Facebook launched what it called an “Initiative for civil courage online,” the aim of which, it claims, is to remove “hate speech” from Facebook — specifically by removing comments that “promote xenophobia.” Facebook is working with a unit of the publisher Bertelsmann, which aims to identify and then erase “racist” posts from the site. The work is intended particularly to focus on Facebook users in Germany. At the launch of the new initiative, Facebook’s chief operating officer, Sheryl Sandberg, explained that, “Hate speech has no place in our society — not even on the internet.” She went to say that, “Facebook is not a place for the dissemination of hate speech or incitement to violence.” Of course, Facebook can do what it likes on its own website. What is troubling is what this organization of effort and muddled thinking reveals about what is going on in Europe.

The mass movement of millions of people — from across Africa, the Middle East and further afield — into Europe has happened in record time and is a huge event in its history. As events in Paris,Cologne and Sweden have shown, it is also by no means a series of events only with positive connotations.

As well as being fearful of the security implications of allowing in millions of people whose identities, beliefs and intentions are unknown and — in such large numbers — unknowable, many Europeans are deeply concerned that this movement heralds an irreversible alteration in the fabric of their society. Many Europeans do not want to become a melting pot for the Middle East and Africa, but want to retain something of their own identities and traditions. Apparently, it is not just a minority who feel concern about this. Poll after poll shows a significant majority of the public in each and every European country opposed to immigration at anything like the current rate.

The sinister thing about what Facebook is doing is that it is now removing speech that presumably almost everybody might consider racist — along with speech that only someone at Facebook decides is “racist.”

And it just so happens to turn out that, lo and behold, this idea of “racist” speech appears to include anything critical of the EU’s current catastrophic immigration policy.

By deciding that “xenophobic” comment in reaction to the crisis is also “racist,” Facebook has made the view of the majority of the European people (who, it must be stressed, are opposed to Chancellor Merkel’s policies) into “racist” views, and so is condemning the majority of Europeans as “racist.” This is a policy that will do its part in pushing Europe into a disastrous future.

Because even if some of the speech Facebook is so scared of is in some way “xenophobic,” there are deep questions as to why such speech should be banned. In lieu of violence, speech is one of the best ways for people to vent their feelings and frustrations. Remove the right to speak about your frustrations, and only violence is left. Weimar Germany — to give just one example — was replete with hate-speech laws intended to limit speech the state did not like. These laws did nothing whatsoever to limit the rise of extremism; it only made martyrs out of those it pursued, and persuaded an even larger number of people that the time for talking was over.

The sinister reality of a society in which the expression of majority opinion is being turned into a crime has already been seen across Europe. Just last week, reports from the Netherlands told of Dutch citizens being visited by the police and warned about posting anti-mass-immigration sentiments on Twitter and other social media.

In this toxic mix, Facebook has now — knowingly or unknowingly — played its part. The lid is being put on the pressure cooker at precisely the moment that the heat is being turned up. A true “initiative for civil courage” would explain to both Merkel and Zuckerberg that their policy can have only one possible result.

Douglas Murray, a British writer, journalist and commentator, is based in London, England.

***

 

Facebook On Incitement Against Muslims And Jews – A Tale Of Two Responses

224Islamist Watch, by Johanna Markind
originally published at Daily Caller
January 28, 2016

Although Facebook’s ground rules officially prohibit bullying, harassment, and threatening language, last year it received numerous complaints about online incitement. On January 18, Facebook launched an initiative to prevent anti-Muslim hate speech on its German platform. But, according to a lawsuit filed in New York state court and a highly-publicized “experiment,”Facebook has no problem with anti-Jewish incitement.

Last October 20, the German daily Bild printed a double-page newspaper spread documenting racist vitriol posted on Facebook against migrants. On November 10 – days before the Paris attacks – Hamburg prosecutors launched an investigation into Facebook for allegedly failing to remove racist postings. The investigation was reportedly motivated by concern over “how the country’s long-dormant far-right was using Facebook to mobilize” against the influx of refugees. In other words, it was motivated by concern over anti-Muslim and anti-Arab posts.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg vowed to create a "safe environment" for Muslim users.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg vowed to create a “safe environment” for Muslim users.

Perhaps stung by that criticism, mere days after two Muslims murdered fourteen people in San Bernardino, California, CEO Mark Zuckerberg vowed that Facebook would “create a peaceful and safe environment” for Muslim users.

On January 18, Facebook launched a Europe-wide campaign to “thwart extremist postings.” This was part of an agreement it reached with Germany. Steps Facebook has taken include hiring the German company Bertelsmann to monitor and delete racist posts to its German platform and funding non-governmental organizations devoted to countering online extremism.

There was another Facebook-related headline on January 18. NBC News reported that Shurat HaDin (an Israeli NGO modeled on the Southern Poverty Law Center) was crowdsourcing to raise funds for an ad campaign. Entitled “Zuckerberg don’t kill us,” the campaign is part of an effort to pressure Facebook not to continue tolerating posts inciting Palestinians to kill Jews. The recent wave of Palestinian attacks had killed 29 Israelis and injured 289 as of January 18.

According to Shurat HaDin, Facebook actively assists people inciting murderous attacks against Jews to find others who are interested in acting on the hateful messages by offering friend, group, and event suggestions and targeting advertising based on people’s online “likes” and internet browsing history. What is more, Facebook often refuses to take down the inciting pages, claiming that they do not violate its “community standards.” Last October, Shurat HaDin filed a lawsuitagainst Facebook in New York state court, seeking to enjoin Facebook from allowing the incitement to continue.

Shurat HaDin demonstrated Facebook’s bias by conducting an online experiment. On December 28, it set up two Facebook pages, one filled with anti-Semitic and anti-Israel postings, the other with anti-Muslim and anti-Palestinian postings. The NGO then ratcheted up the incitement level with parallel posts to both pages, ultimately calling for death to Jews and Arabs.

Then, Shurat HaDin simultaneously reported both pages to Facebook. The same day, Facebook closed the anti-Palestinian page, stating that it violated Facebook’s community standards.

And the page inciting violence against Jews? Initially, Facebook refused to shut it down. Instead, it sent a message reporting that the page did not violate Facebook’s rules. Only after Shurat HaDin reported what it had done and media picked up the story did Facebook change its tune and closethe page, claiming the page did indeed violate Facebook standards, and that the earlier message to the contrary had been a “mistake.”

Now Israel is working to build an international coalition to pressure social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube to take greater responsibility for content posted on them. Ideas under discussion include developing legislation to prosecute social media platforms for failing to keep calls for violence and hateful materials off their platforms. The idea has reportedly gained traction in some European countries.

Where is Facebook’s initiative to prevent anti-Jewish incitement on its Israel platform? Why is Facebook responding so differently to complaints about incitement against Muslims and Jews? Is it too protective of Muslims, or too callous toward Jews? And how many times will its hypocrisy have to be exposed before it begins applying its “community standards” evenhandedly?

Johanna Markind is associate counselor at the Middle East Forum

Facebook, Sky Pay Jizya to Migrants for Every “Hate” Post, BILD Publishes Lists of “Hate” Posters

Mirants crossing to SloveniaBreitbart, by Pamela Geller, Oct. 31, 2915:

There is a new initiative in Germany that donates one euro for every “racist” (Islam is not a race) anti-migrant comment on the Internet. The “Hate Helps” propaganda campaign is organized by an NGO called Demokratische Kultur (ZDK), otherwise known as the Orwellian “Center for Democratic Action” in Germany. And it’s being funded by Facebook and Sky Germany. They will pay 1€ (euro) for each negative post about immigrants.

Sky Germany is not the same entity as Rupert Murdoch’s Sky News, although Rupert’s son, James Murdoch, is chairman of its supervisory board. Sky Germany mainly broadcasts soccer games and other sports – but even it is jumping into the political realm and bowing down to the new propaganda initiative.

This is essentially a payment of the jizya, the tribute money that subservient and subjugated non-Muslims must pay to their Muslim overlords under Islamic law. In this case, the money goes to various refugee help programs and — get this — an organization that helps people get out of the “nazi scene” (an opt-out scheme).

Meanwhile, the German yellow press newspaper Bild is publishing the names of offenders in the media. Perhaps the thousands of Muslim migrants who have gone AWOL from the refugee camps can hunt them down.

Apparently the spineless, gutless Mark Zuckerberg made good on his promise to German Chancellor Angela Merkel. Merkel had been prodding and strong-arming Zuckerberg to “do something” about the posts and comments on Facebook that oppose the Muslim invasion of Europe. Attending a luncheon on the sidelines of a United Nations development summit in New York several weeks ago, Merkel and Zuckerberg wereoverheard on a live transmission broadcast on the UN website as participants took their seats.

After Merkel confronted Zuckerberg about anti-migrant posts, the Facebook CEO is heard responding that “we need to do some work” on the issue. This is so typical of the elites. They control policy, they control the media, they control the culture — but they can’t control the people. And this makes them crazy. If they could, they would change the people.

The Süddeutsche Zeitung reported that a team of reporters went to the European headquarters of Facebook in Dublin, wanting Facebook to explain why so many “hate posts” were not deleted. In fact, Facebook officials have been sued in Germany because in the opinion of some, Facebook did not do enough against “hate speech.” Now Facebook is trying to improve its public image in Germany by working with the “Hate Helps” campaign.

The whole idea is to intimidate people from telling the truth and speaking ill of the invasion. Who decides what’s hate? “Hate speech” is a subjective category. There is no agreed-upon type of speech that everyone recognizes as “hate speech.” The label “hate speech” is used by certain parties in order to demonize and marginalize the speech of their opponents. The label “hate speech” can all too easily become a tool in the hands of the powerful, of tyrants, to silence those who are standing for freedom.

A couple of days ago, there was a huge controversy about Bild. They took screenshots of what they claimed were hate posts, along with the picture and name from Facebook, and published them. Like a pillory.

They are putting the people’s backs up against the wall and taking down any rational voice that speaks against this tyranny. It’s a recipe for civil war.

They published a list with the “top 10” of “hate posters.” And they meant to publish a list of the worst offenders.

It’s a threat — a warning — letting people know if they say anything against the invasion they will put a target on their heads. The response by freedom-loving peoples should be millions more posts, more tweets. Subscribe to my website, PamelaGeller.com. Share my articles. Overrun the media with the facts. Fight back, print pamphlets, leave them everywhere — build an army of Davids.

Because even with this “initiative,” “hate posts” remain. How many posts are Facebook employees having to deal with? Can’t they keep up? Facebook won’t divulge numbers, but people have lost their jobs as a result of negative “racist” posts, so where is this going?

This is Hitlerian. Pure evil.

***

Pamela Geller has been covering the migrant crisis like no other:

Immigration jihad, or hijrah, is the migration or journey of Muhammad and his followers from Mecca to Yathrib, later renamed by him to Medina, in the year 622 CE. It was after the hijrah that Muhammad for the first time became not just a preacher of religious ideas, but a political and military leader. That was what occasioned his new “revelations” exhorting his followers to commit violence against unbelievers. Significantly, the Islamic calendar counts the hijrah, not Muhammad’s birth or the occasion of his first “revelation,” as the beginning of Islam, implying that Islam is not fully itself without a political and military component. – Pamela Geller

Last week’s coverage of the invasion of Europe:
10/28: INVASION: Situation at Austria’s borders out of control
10/28: FIVE MILLION MUSLIMS march on Europe: “We cannot guarantee the public safety anymore”
10/28: One Out of Two Migrants Go Rogue, “Unaccounted For,” “On the Run”
10/27: Europe now scrambles for guns: Shotguns have ‘virtually sold out’ in Austria
10/27: Lapland Ski Resort and 4-Star Ramada Hotel to Become Permanent Migrant Housing
10/26: MIGRANT VIDEO: “They are sitting in our backyards”
10/25: VIDEO: Village of 60 must accept 1,500 Muslim migrants
10/24: VIDEO: Muslim Migrant CHAOS, Break Off on their Own, Austria Calls in Army, Minister Calls for “a FORTRESS EUROPE”
10/24: VIDEO: Dissatisfied with Their Accommodations, Muslim Migrants in Germany go on Hunger Strike
10/24: VIDEO: Ashura March in Germany with black flags of jihad
10/23: Führer Merkel to Impose Pan-European Asylum, Quota Demands, More Migrants, New EU Taxes, No Borders
10/23: VIDEO: Thermo-vision migrant footage
10/23: ISIS Invasion: VIDEO of Facebook pics of jihadis entering as “refugees”
10/22: Prime Minister Orban: “We are in a deep trouble”
10/22: VIDEO: Drone footage shows thousands of Muslim migrants crossing into Europe, 12,000 migrants arrive in Slovenia
10/21: VIDEO: Muslim Migrants Burn Down Refugee Camp, Take Selfies
10/21 VIDEO: Citizens blockade buses with migrants in Germany
10/21: Converts to Christianity In Migrant Camp Beaten Unconscious With Baton By Muslim

More here …..

Muslim Supremacist Leaders Go After Facebook and Twitter Demanding Islamic Speech Restrictions

facebookBy Pamela Geller:

While jihadists in Nigeria, Congo, the CAR, the Philippines, Syria, Iraq et al wage their bloody holy war against freedom, individual rights and the “other,” their stealth counterparts are waging the same war insidiously but just as fiercely in the West.

Islamic attacks across Africa and the Middle East are not condemned by Muslim leaders in the West. Who is in their crosshairs? Those who oppose the ideology that inspires those attacks. What are they demanding? Imposition of the blasphemy laws under the sharia — “do not offend or criticize Islam.”

Muslim gunmen storm a building in Libya and go”room to room” in their residence at 2:30 a.m. Saturday and asked for identification papers to separate Muslim workers from Christians….the gunmen handcuffed the Christians and drove away.

Just this week:
–Yesterday, Muslim gunmen storm a building in Libya and go”room to room” demanding identification papers to separate Muslim workers from Christians….the gunmen handcuffed the Christians and drove away.”
–Over the past two days, scores of Christians in Nigeria were slaughtered in jihadi attacks.
–Muslims torched close to 1,000 cars in France on New Year’s eve.
–Jihadi commanders in Russia pledge allegiance to Islamic State’s Caliph al-Baghdadi.
— Iranian police arrested 50 women for “un-Islamic” dress.
–Jihad hostage murderer Man Haron Monis delivered chilling religious lectures to packed Sydney mosques.
— A hijabed homicide bomber killed many in a New Year’s triple jihad bombing Kill 7 in Nigeria.
–An instruction manual was published for devout Muslim mothers in the Islamic State: How to raise a jihadi-baby.
–A Muslim brutally tortures and honor murders his 10-year-old daughter for “adultery.”

Here’s the headline in The Evening Standard: “Twitter and Facebook slammed over huge increase in Islamophobic postings.”

And this is what Yahoo News and multiple news outlets are running today without comment. These newspapers will suffer the same censorship they are demanding of us, the individual. Freedom of the press is the first casualty of the sharia.

It is stunning and stupefying. Discredited liar and Muslim extremist Fiyaz Mughal is given an extraordinary platform by the largest and most influential media outlets to promote the sharia and defame the few who dare speak of jihad and its victims.

Mughal and leading Muslims organizations in the US, UK, Canada and Australia want to destroy free speech. Going after Twitter and Facebook would essentially do that. The only place to get news the media won’t cover is here and on websites like this — Jihadwatch, The Religion of Peace, Blazing Cat Fur, Creeping Sharia, etc and YOU: YOU share these news stories on Facebook and Twitter. YOU get the word out. YOU are the soldiers in the information battlespace. YOU are fighting the great fight. Islamic supremacists knows this. They have enormous funds and fanatics pounding away at the freedom we love.

Targeting Facebook and twitter is targeting YOU.

The article is all in Islamic codespeak. “Anti-racism groups” — Islam is not a race. These are Islamic supremacist groups who mean to impose the draconian blasphemy laws of the Shariah on free societies.

Do you think this can’t happen? The UK banned Robert Spencer and me merely because we speak against jihad and sharia. It can happen and will if we don’t fight back. Look at how Facebook and Twitter are kowtowing and groveling to the discredited liar Fiyaz Mughal: “By working with community groups like Faith Matters, we aim to show people the power of counter speech and, in doing so, strike the right balance between giving people the freedom to express themselves and maintaining a safe and trusted environment.”

Read more 

Also see:

If two or more Muslims participate in a gang rape, is it wrong to say “Muslims commit gang rape”? The answer to that question should be obvious. The only thing that’s understated is that it’s only two. All across the world, the overwhelming – yes OVERWHELMING – amount of heinous acts are being committed by Muslims. We’re having difficulty keeping up with Muslim gang rapes taking place in just Europe alone.

Yet, Facebook and twitter are being accused of fanning the flames of Islamophobia by not censoring posts that point out atrocities and crimes committed by Muslims.

Radicalization: There’s an App for That!

generation-awlaki-fb-2dec2014-picture-5-e1418755814427Author Jeff R. Weyers, iBRABO, Jan. 1, 2015: h/t Muslim Issue

In the wake of the most recent attacks in Australia, Canada and the United States the questions surrounding sources of the radicalization is often a topic of concern. With most self starters a good portion of that radicalization is more and more being attributed to material consumed on the internet. As the world watches Daesh (ISIS, ISIL) flood social media with content one thing is very clear about the online battle with the group, we are losing!

The War on Social Media

For corporations that are being used in the proxy online war it will require a shift in how they do business. For Google, Youtube, Facebook and Twitter they simply cannot afford to have their brands associated with the extremist messages that ISIS, Jabhat al Nusra (JN) and Al Qaeda (AQ) foster. They will need to increase their ability to deal with extremist content in a much more effective method. The notion that “we rely on our users to notify us of inappropriate content” is not going to cut it moving forward. Extremist groups are deploying content to social media at a faster and faster pace, one only needs to look at the number of ISIS videos currently on YouTube, Facebook and Twitter to see that. For the vast amounts of money that each company takes in in any given year they will need to consider hiring extremism experts to proactively monitor content. ISIS, AQ and JN actively use branding in their online videos and pictures, and these companies will need to use those branding symbols to more readily identify terrorist content as they have done with child pornography and copy right infringement. From an ethical and social/corporate responsibility perspective these companies will need to do better.

Bilad al Shaam's 100th Facebook Page

This is not to say that some companies like Facebook haven’t been trying to keep up. Perhaps one of the largest battles between Facebook and ISIS has been in their attempts to crush the “Bilad al Shaam Media” pages that have had a continual presence since before the announcement of the Islamic State. The day after the Australia hostage siege Facebook removed the 100th iteration of the popular ISIS page with well over 3000 users (above) . In the same breath ISIS launched three new Bilad al Shaam sites to continue their operations on Facebook. This is a battle of persistence that will require vigilance and continuous monitoring to start to push the groups away from the larger social media companies. To some extent we have already seen this happening with groups like ISIS moving to platforms like justpaste.it and manbar.me (the Arabic version of Justpaste.it). Both sites are anonymous media hosting sites that terrorist groups have been using to host and direct users to content. Another curious trend noticed by several experts is the return to webpage based sites and chat forums like ISIS’s webpage http://www.alplatformmedia.com (below).

ISIS website www.alplatformmedia.com

As has been realized by Al-Shabaab (www.al-qimmah.net) and the Taliban (www.shahamat-english.com) , if you can persist through Denial of Service (DNS) attacks by hackers and governments the worst that will happen is they will have to move servers from time to time. In fact while Canadian troops were in the process of preparing to pull out of Afghanistan in late 2012, the Taliban’s webmaster Adil Watanmal had moved all seven of the Talibans websites to a server in Vancouver, Canada (below). The site which primarily is used for propaganda was also engaged in fund raising activities, thus creating a situation where the Taliban were using Canadian servers to assist in fighting against Canadian troops. These types of blatant abuses have resulted in greater calls for internet service providers (ISP) to track and be aware of the content that is being put up on their servers.

Taliban Websites on Canadian Server in 2012 - iBRABO

Apps in the New Age of Terror

The creation of apps for radicalization is not new. J.M. Berger has previously pointed out how ISIS used the Dawn of Glad Tidings app on Google Play to build the fire storm of twitter support for ISIS. In his forthcoming book, ISIS: The State of Terror he outlines in detail the sophisticated social media strategy of the terror group. Other groups like the Sikh extremist group Babbar Khalsa,  have also used the Google play store in the past with their launch of Babbar Khalsa Radioon Google play.

When we speak about radicalizing potential a group that seems to have gone untouched by Facebook, Twitter and Google Play with a string of social media pages and apps are those under the banner “Generation Awlaki”. Anwar al-Awlaki a highly influential al-Qaeda propagandist and recruiter who was most notoriously linked to the Fort Hood attack was killed in a US drone attack in 2011. His radical preachings however persist as both AQ and ISIS groups have sourced Awlaki in their justification for terror attacks and recruitment to violent jihad. More concerning is that his preachings have reached a cult status amongst extremists and terrorists the world over, having more followers in death than he ever did in life due to the continued growth of social media. In our analysis we were able to locate several instance of the “Generation Awlaki” brand being used on FacebookTwitter and Google play.

Generation Awlaki on Google play

 

Generation Awlaki on Twitter

 

Generation Awlaki Facebook

Examining the users of this content you see a spectrum of individuals along all parts of the path to violent extremism, from the casually interested to the hardcore foreign fighters and terrorist members. The concern of course with these apps and sites is they put recruiters and propagandists in touch with individuals that may be vulnerable to recruitment to the group or adopting the ideological cause. This is one explanation behind the meteoric rise in foreign fighters that has been seen with ISIS coinciding with their unprecedented social media campaign.

Prevention: A Role for Everyone

Radicalization and prevention is a community issue that will more and more involve social media and the need for users and responsible corporate partners to do their part. As we are seeing the police simply do not have the resources to do it all. If we had endless budgets and resources we could follow and monitor individuals around the clock but that isn’t realistic nor sustainable. If we tackle the issue from a medical model it will mean delivering prevention techniques to those individuals at risk earlier in order to prevent the scenes that we saw recently in Ottawa and Sydney. Everyone has a role in prevention and governments at all levels will need to do more to empower the community, religious organizations and parents to recognize what radicalization looks like and methods for preventing it. At a corporate level, with respect to terrorist’s use of social media, with corporations boasting record profits and share prices the argument that they are ill equipped to deal with the problem seems like a weak one to me. It’s time they start engaging with the experts and thinking out of the box on tackling the issues and doing their part.

***

Good resources —>

‘Muslim Mafia’ author: Muslims working with Facebook to silence critics of Islam

135d74c68d744c0a8ba9abf757e3a456The Examiner, By Joe Newby:

On Wednesday, Dave Gaubatz, a former Air Force investigator and author of “Muslim Mafia,” told Examiner.com that he “infiltrated” a Muslim conference held in Detroit earlier this month. While at the conference, he reportedly spoke to a representative of a group known as Muslim Advocates, who said the organization is working “closely” with social media sites like Facebook and Twitter to close down accounts of users critical of Islam.

“They are asking these groups to close the accounts of anyone who is critical of Islam,” he said. “This is considered serious hate speech and should not be allowed on the Internet.”

According to Gaubatz, the representative also said that “anyone critical of Islam and sharia law are haters.” Ditto for those who oppose either the construction or expansion of a mosque in the United States.

“We are experts with deep experience in the courtroom and powerful connections in Congress and the White House,” Gaubatz recalled being told by the Muslim Advocates representative.

“This should be of no surprise to anyone,” Gaubatz said.

Gaubatz also said the conference, which was attended by representatives and leaders from several groups, should have been named the “U.S. Constitution and the 1st Amendment are for MB terrorists and not for American Patriots.” For four days, he said, he stayed at the same hotel as leaders from over a dozen groups that support the Muslim Brotherhood.

He reportedly met and spoke with executives from the Islamic Society of North America and the North American Islamic Trust.

“I was informed that NAIT owned several hundred million dollars of property in America, and has the funding from 400 plus Islamic Centers in America,” he added.

But Gaubatz’ report of collusion between these groups and social media sites like Facebook and Twitter present a clear danger to the fundamental right of free speech and Americans’ ability to freely express themselves online. As we have reported multiple times, Muslim activists have called for global blasphemy bans and an end to free speech in the United States, despite the clear language of the First Amendment.

Last Wednesday, we reported that one page critical of Islam — “Islam Exposed” — was yanked by Facebook after administrators received death threats. Facebook later restored the page, saying it was yanked in error.

On Wednesday, a post at the page advising visitors to avoid hateful speech was removed by Facebook for allegedly violating the site’s community standards. Facebook did not explain why the post was pulled and one administrator received a 30-day ban.

But as we have reported, Facebook routinely turns a blind eye to threats from users with Muslim-sounding names. Last August, for example, Facebook told a conservative female they could not confirm direct threats she received violated their community standards. One threat reported to Facebook was quite specific: “We will kill you.”

Ironically, Facebook has said it supports free speech and reviews all complaints equally.

We contacted both Facebook and Muslim Advocates to verify Gaubatz’ claim and received no reply as of this writing.

Update: A few hours after this article was published, Facebook falsely flagged the link as “unsafe” in what appears to be a bid to keep it from being circulated. We have reached out to Facebook, but have not received a response.

Update #2: Muslim Advocates spokesperson Fatima Khan responded with an email claiming we misquoted their representative, even though we did not. The statement relayed to us was Gaubatz’s recollection, not a direct quote from MA or any of their representatives. We specifically asked Khan about the quote, and about allegations the group is working to shut down social media accounts of those critical of Islam. Khan never responded. The article was flagged by Facebook after our contact with Khan. More on the incident can be seen here.

Also see: