The Taliban Pledges to Take Revenge on Telephone Network Providers
The Taliban are angry that someone else has beaten them at their own game. They've been spreading rumors about their activities in order to throw off media outlets for a while now. This week, word comes that someone else is doing that for them without their consent, and Taliban leaders are angry.
That someone, likely NATO, hacked into their cell phone accounts and sent SMSs to media outlets claiming that spiritual leader Mullah Omar had died. In response, the Taliban told Reuters that they may begin to move their communications over to websites more than mobile phones. That, and they will be taking revenge on mobile operators everywhere.
This uneasy relationship with mobile phones goes back a ways. They're very skilled at using online media for their own ends, but the fact the cell phone services are controlled by network providers leaves too much out of their control. In the past, they have threatened to attack mobile phone operators' towers and offices if networks aren't shut down at night, when they fear foreign troops could track them down.
Indeed, it was a handbook for the safe use of online media that led to the creation of the first AYM conference in New York City in 2008. Marines found this "encyclopaedia" for Islamist militants which, among other things, urged strict precautions when using mobile phones, and some folks decided to create something similar for non-violent activists.
Extremist groups will continue to use new media effectively, which only underlines the importance of continuing to produce and provide guidebooks for those on the other side. With that in mind - share one of our how to guides today!!