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July 18, 2014

ADL’s Terrorism Update Examines Terror Groups on Social Media

The July edi­tion of Ter­ror­ism Update, ADL’s newslet­ter pro­vid­ing news and analy­sis on inter­na­tional ter­ror­ist orga­ni­za­tions and their fol­low­ers in the U.S., is now available.islamic-state-media-twitter-380

The fea­ture arti­cle explores how the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) uses social media not only to spread its messages and recruit followers, including Westerners, but also to empower its supporters to do so as well.

The newslet­ter includes a pro­file on Hamas’s social media use, which has been an ongoing element of its strategy, even as the group continues to target Israelis with rockets.

This edi­tion also includes infor­ma­tion on Hezbollah’s use of WhatsApp, a California-based instant messaging service, recent terror-related arrests in Colorado and Texas, a recent Al Shabaab video calling for “lone wolf” attacks, an American suicide bomber in Syria, and more.

To sub­scribe to ADL’s Ter­ror­ism Update newslet­ter, click on the below image:

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June 11, 2014

Hezbollah World Cup Competition Brought To You By WhatsApp

Update – 6/12/14: As of today, the competition advertisement on Al Manar (see image below), no longer includes the WhatsApp logo.

Hezbollah’s satellite television station, Al Manar TV, has launched an online competition in time for the World Cup called “Expect and Win” that uses the California-based instant messaging service WhatsApp.wolrd-cup-soccer-hezbollah-al-manar-whatsapp

The competition, advertised by the Al Manar TV website, will award a participant who correctly selects the winning team in the World Cup opener between Brazil and Croatia on June 12. Participants submit their selection via WhatsApp and a winner will be selected on June 13.

The competition rules say that only Lebanese are allowed to participate by sending their personal information and selection to Al Manar TV through WhatsApp. The competition is sponsored by a group of local businesses in Lebanon, including restaurants and shops. It is unclear what “reward” the winner will receive.

The competition is the latest example of how terrorist groups like Hezbollah use technology to interact with individuals and engage with a younger generation.

Al Manar TV, which is listed by the U.S. government as a “Spe­cially Des­ig­nated Global Ter­ror­ist Entity,”first began using the WhatsApp service in January of 2014 as a way to reach and interact with their audience worldwide and to deliver breaking news via texts delivered to smartphones.

Al Manar TV broad­casts Hezbollah’s mes­sages of hate and vio­lence, dis­sem­i­nates anti-Semitic and anti-American pro­pa­ganda and glo­ri­fies sui­cide bomb­ings to mil­lions of view­ers in the Arab world, Europe and South East Asia 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

In July of 2012, ADL exposed Al Manar’s efforts to cre­ate free appli­ca­tions for smart­phones avail­able through iTunes and other online stores. The appli­ca­tion was removed from the iTunes store and Hezbol­lah issued a state­ment blam­ing ADL for the removal of its applications.

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January 3, 2014

WhatsApp Hezbollah?

Hezbollah’s media arm, Al Manar TV, which is listed as a “Specially Designated Global Terrorist Entity” is exploiting yet another American technology company to reach and interact with audiences around the world.whatsapp-hezbollah

Al Manar is using the services of a California-based instant messaging service called WhatsApp to deliver “breaking news” via text and to allow its supporters to interact with the station.

Al-Manar broadcasts Hezbollah’s messages of hate and violence, disseminates anti-Semitic and anti-American propaganda and glorifies suicide bombings to millions of viewers in the Arab world, Europe and South East Asia for 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

The Al Manar website has already published selected messages submitted by users of WhatsApp from around the world; some of the messages include statements expressing loyalty and allegiance to Hezbollah Chief, Hassan Nasrallah.Hezbollah, a U.S. designated Foreign Terrorist Organization, has increased its presence on various internet platforms including social media networks such as Twitter, Facebook and YouTube, in recent years. This exploitation of modern technology has enabled Hezbollah to disseminate its messages more broadly and quickly than ever before.

In July of 2012, ADL exposed Al Manar’s efforts to create free applications for smartphones available through iTunes and other online stores. The application was removed from the iTunes store and Hezbollah issued a statement blaming ADL for the removal of its applications.

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