The IDF's Twitter Offensive

Friday, November 16, 2012

Transcript

As the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) fired missles into Gaza this week, they did something unprecedented in military history: they tweeted about it. As the fighting unfolded, the IDF carried out a real-time social media campaign, posting justifications, combat videos, and propaganda posters to Twitter and to a dedicated live blog. Bob talks to Noah Shachtman, editor of Wired.com's Danger Room blog, who tries to explain the IDF's logic and put their media offensive in perspective.

Clive Carroll & John Renbourn - First Drive

Guests:

Noah Shachtman

Hosted by:

Bob Garfield

Comments [6]

anna from new york

I was on topic, I was civil (much more than I should have, considering ...) and I was brief. Where are my comments?
Using the descriptive language and calling prostitutes "prostitutes" should be encouraged.

Nov. 20 2012 01:21 PM
anna from new york

But guys, you understand that they will be rewarded (not much, but...) for our comments (well done guys, but next time be more aggressive with ... you whom ... Jews)

Nov. 20 2012 08:57 AM
listener

Does it count as "keeping up with Israel" when there is a "pretty shocking" literal "scalp brandishing" when the Muslim Brotherhood leadership of Egypt and Gaza brandish the lifeless body of a child while "taunting" Israel with a blood libel since evidence suggests that the child was hit by a rocket fired from Gaza and not Israeli weaponry?

Borat-like histrionics are hilarious and chortle inducing for journalists thousands of miles away from where the rockets are landing but for those who spent their lives surrounded by these ferocious words and actions it is somewhat less humorous but no doubt the terrorists appreciate the helpful PR advice.

Nov. 19 2012 11:42 PM
NaturaLee from Teaneck, NJ

Bob Garfield, in this segment on the Israeli military response to attacks from Gaza, made the following statement in reference to Israel. The military reaction was, “in retaliation, it said, for months of rocket attacks from the territory into southern Israel.” Note the phrase "it said".
Why that qualification? Would you use that phrase to qualify U.S. border patrol attacks on Mexican druglords or British response to Irish nationalist kneecappings? There is no dispute that Hamas has fired more than 750 rockets into southern Israel this year and no plausible suggestion whatsoever that Israeli military action has any intention to conquer or expand territorial control. It’s clearly a war of defense. The implication of that phrase is that Israel’s actions may have some other motivation.

In addition, Mr. Garfield’s focus on Israel’s announcements of its warnings on Twitter made the statement that Israel is using “social media so aggressively … taunting the enemy.” “Taunting?” How objective is that description? The Israeli military used Twitter to warn Gaza residents that they need to move away from rocket launch sites, an entirely different interpretation.

What other military has ever given its enemy fair warning about upcoming attacks?

In the attempt to be even-handed, the media can sometimes obscure a clear distinction between the good guys and the bad guys. It seems to me that Mr. Garfield’s report was tinged, not by objectivity, but by a misguided desire to diminish the difference between malicious aggression and a severe but just reaction to violent hostility.

Nov. 18 2012 11:16 PM
NaturaLee from Teaneck, NJ

Bob Garfield, in this segment on the Israeli military response to attacks from Gaza, made the following statement in reference to Israel. The military reaction was, “in retaliation, it said, for months of rocket attacks from the territory into southern Israel.” Note the phrase "it said".
Why that qualification? Would you use that phrase to qualify U.S. border patrol attacks on Mexican druglords or British response to Irish nationalist kneecappings? There is no dispute that Hamas has fired more than 750 rockets into southern Israel this year and no plausible suggestion whatsoever that Israeli military action has any intention to conquer or expand territorial control. It’s clearly a war of defense. The implication of that phrase is that Israel’s actions may have some other motivation.

In addition, Mr. Garfield’s focus on Israel’s announcements of its warnings on Twitter made the statement that Israel is using “social media so aggressively … taunting the enemy.” “Taunting?” How objective is that description? The Israeli military used Twitter to warn Gaza residents that they need to move away from rocket launch sites, an entirely different interpretation.

What other military has ever given its enemy fair warning about upcoming attacks?

In the attempt to be even-handed, the media can sometimes obscure a clear distinction between the good guys and the bad guys. It seems to me that Mr. Garfield’s report was tinged, not by objectivity, but by a misguided desire to diminish the difference between malicious aggression and a severe but just reaction to violent hostility.

Nov. 18 2012 11:15 PM
listener

The sanctimonious media double standard continues. Israel is forever expected to be on the defensive when attacked and never on the offensive whether it be militarily, diplomatically, politically and now technologically.
"Pallywood" media manipulation has been a propaganda fixture of the conflict for years shaping the narrative against Israel and when Israel finally responds with its own narrative shifting it is considered aggressive, disturbing and sordid "scalp brandishing". Twitter and YouTube are just the latest high tech arrows in the propaganda quiver used to fight information and psychological warfare which is evident in all conflicts.
Once again the predictable response from the media is to pressure Israel to stand down and not strike back.

Nov. 17 2012 10:05 PM

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