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Taliban on Twitter

By Jon Sutz

Background: What is the Taliban?

The Taliban is one of the world’s most brutal Islamist terror gangs. Its adherents claim to be soldiers of God, who enforce totalitarian Islamic law (sharia) over Afghanistan’s 39 million people. They allow no dissent, no challenge to their authority, and anyone who deviates from sharia faces severe punishment, often death.

Since August 2021, the Taliban has been hunting and murdering Afghans who worked with the US and Coalition forces – using data, weapons and vehicles that America left behind:

Twitter profits by enabling the Taliban

Since the disastrous US withdrawal from Afghanistan. which enabled the Taliban to take control over the entire nation, Twitter has profited by enabling its senior “government” figures (follower counts are as of April 2022):

Zabihullah Mujahid, Spokesman | @Zabehulah_M33 | 541,200 followers

Qari Yousaf Ahmadi, Spokesman | @QyAhmadi21 | 119,900 followers

Naeem Wardak, Spokesman of the Political Office| @IeaOffice | 356,700 followers

Abdul Qahar Balkhi, Spokesman of Ministry of Foreign Affairs | @QaharBalkhi | 112,200 followers

Suhail Shaheen, UN representative | @suhailshaheen1 | 602,900 followers

But why would the Taliban even want to use Twitter?

The Taliban embrace social media: ‘We too want to change perceptions’ – BBC News, September 6, 2021.

Twitter’s decision to profit by enabling the Taliban

Here are some news items that present information on why Twitter’s management decided to profit by enabling the Taliban:

Why Twitter Allows The Taliban To Maintain Accounts On Its Platform – Yahoo News, August 18th 2021.

Twitter Allowing Taliban to Remain if They Don’t Share Violent Content – MediaIte, August 17th 2021.

Twitter Refuses to Ban Taliban Accounts, Vows to Remain ‘Vigilant’ Moderating Content The Wrap, August 17th 2021.

Taliban allowed on Twitter, as social media debates role in Afghanistan crisis – Sinclair Broadcast Group, August 17th 2021.

Of note:

‘Strikingly sophisticated’ Taliban thrive on Twitter while Trump still bannedThe Hill, August 20, 2021.

Trump barred from Twitter, but Taliban spokesman tweets away – Fox News, August 15, 2021.