Sunday, August 25, 2013

Trending. #Social media is a terrorist’s best friend

Ana Maria Luca..
NOW Lebanon..
23 August '13..

A few years ago, journalists around the world used to wonder if they were the best friends of terrorists. And I remember a time when al-Qaeda linked brigades in Iraq used to send press releases by e-mail to the world’s news wires and television channels to claim credit for their attacks on various targets. It happened all the time in Iraq and Afghanistan.

I felt the same way a few weeks back, when two days after a road-side bomb targeted a Hezbollah convoy in the Bekaa Valley, we received an e-mail from, al-Qaeda linked, Abdullah Azzam brigades claiming that they were responsible for the bombing. The same e-mail was sent to all newsrooms in Beirut.

Yesterday, however, I realized that e-mail is completely obsolete. After four rockets were fired towards Israel from South Lebanon and the Israeli Defense Forces retaliated, no e-mail was sent to any newsroom. But ten minutes afterwards the claim was tweeted. Journalists are not a terrorist’s best friend anymore. Social media is.

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