Taleban adopts social media in campaign to ‘clean image’

Taliban forces in Kabul in photo from 31 August

Credit, Reuters

Photo caption,

Taliban forces in Kabul in photo of 31 August; radical group rejected technology and media, but now recognizes their importance

But the Taleban also took another initiative, this one most unusual in the group’s history: its members launched a broad social media campaign.

A network of social media accounts highlighted alleged failures of the then pro-Western government in Kabul, while extolling Taleban achievements.

Tweets reported the group’s most recent victories – sometimes prematurely – and promoted different hashtags, such as (in Portuguese) #crimesdoregimedeCabul (associated with tweets accusing the Afghan government of war crimes, and which was among the “trends” in time it was used); #estamoscomTaleba (in an attempt to garner support) and another that said “God help victory is at hand”.