Taliban gets results online, by default
Taliban gets results online
* Brendan Nicholson
* July 28, 2008
FOR all their old-fashioned ideas, the Taliban in Afghanistan are waging a dangerously effective information war using the internet and other modern communications systems to spread their message among tribes people and the international Muslim community.
A new report by Gareth Evans' International Crisis Group says the extraordinary information campaign being waged by the Taliban is driving a dangerous wedge between the Karzai Government, along with its international backers, and the Afghan people.
It warns that along with the traditional shabnamah — "night letters" in leaflets that usually contain threats and traditional nationalist songs and poems — the Taliban are using the full range of media to tap into strains of Afghan nationalism and to create the impression they are much stronger than they are.
Crisis Group analyst Joanna Nathan said the Taliban were adept at projecting themselves as stronger than they were in numbers and resources.
"The Taliban have created a sophisticated communications apparatus that projects an increasingly confident movement," Ms Nathan said. They tried to "wear out their opponents".
She said Kabul and its international supporters needed to respond in a more timely and co-ordinated manner if they were to effectively counter Taliban allegations.
Along with the internet, the Taliban were issuing DVDs, tape cassettes and mobile phone messages to create the impression they were a patriotic organisation defending Afghan traditions.
They also have their own website and statements from their leaders are put out in five languages, with regular updates.
The Crisis Group said the information campaign, complete with exaggerated battle reports, was having a big impact on the largely rural and illiterate population.
The Taliban PR campaign is so effective because they are using 5 languages on the Internet.
The USA is limited to two languages, English and Arabic, even the civilian sector is ham strung by Googles lack of translation capabilities for Urdu and Pashtoon.
The Taliban are lying and spinning the truth and winning the hearts and minds because USA can't even communicate with the indigenous, and if you can't communicate you can't win any hearts and minds.
Gareth Evans' International Crisis Group says the "extraordinary information campaign".
This is so much BS, it is not an "extraordinary information campaign", it is the only information campaign being run in Urdu and Pashto, they are winning by default, not by genius.
THE US MILITARY IS NOT ENGAGING THE ENEMY IN AN INFORMATION WAR ON THE WWW, the Taliban are winning by default.