Israel Defense Forces Usher in War 2.0

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War is never pretty and its repercussions are horrific. Most people are naturally against the concept of war and do not tend to support armies that are perceived as invaders. This is where war propaganda kicks in. Its goal is to convince public opinion that a particular military operation is the best thing that could ever happen to the world today. If propaganda doesn’t always succeed in making people fully support a military operation, it still often manages to prevent general outcry and indignation from the masses.

Israel has never really enjoyed global support in its multiple military operations against Palestine. While officials claim that Israel has the “right to defend itself”, it is still widely perceived across the world as a strong, U.S.-backed aggressor that is attacking a weak and oppressed population. However, with Operation Pillar of Defense the IDF came equipped with a new weapon to face a hostile public opinion: Social media presence.

As I stated in the article on KONY 2012, the most effective way of influencing public opinion today is not through CNN or newspapers, but through the internet, especially social media. For this military operation in Gaza, the IDF made full use of its social media outlets and has been actively propagating its message through Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Tumblr, Flickr and a blog. It is the first time that an army of that magnitude broadcasts up-to-the-minute information on its own military operation.

The IDF’s official Twitter account (@IDFSpokesperson) has become one the most important sources of information regarding Operation Pillar of Defense. The Twitter feed relays information such as the time and location airstrikes, links to anti-Hamas YouTube videos and even information on notable kills. While the strategy has certainly succeeded in going viral and garnering world-wide attention , the war-mongering tone of these live updates have horrified many observers. Here’s an article on the IDF’s Twitter offensive.

 

Military Strikes Go Viral: Israel Is Live-Tweeting Its Own Offensive Into Gaza

It’s no Apple keynote. It’s Operation Pillar of Defense.

Screen Shot 2012-11-14 at 3.56.07 PM-615.png

The Persian Gulf War marked a major change in the way Americans experienced combat from their living rooms. It was the first time civilians got to see explosions going off under computerized crosshairs, in grainy black-and-white — a development that led people to marvel at war’s growing resemblance to video games. Then came YouTube. Suddenly, Internet users had on-demand access to a wealth of helmetcam footage — this time in color — taken by soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan. Still, for the most part, you had to dig it up yourself if you wanted to watch.

Now we’ve arrived at the latest iteration in digital warfare: when military operations are liveblogged in real time, and the updates are delivered right to your social newsfeed.

Over the past six hours, Israel’s military has been hammering Gaza with a barrage of missiles. The IDF’s public relations team, meanwhile, has just as steadily been covering the offensive — updating its Twitter handle, @IDFSpokesperson, with the play-by-play on Operation Pillar of Defense. Within moments of the opening salvo, IDF officials announced that they’d killed the top operative in Hamas’ armed services:

The first target, hit minutes ago, was Ahmed Al-Jabari, head of the military wing: idfblog.com/2012/11/14/idf…

Breaking news on social media may seem like oh-so-2009. But livetweeting an ongoing mission is something we haven’t seen before. Minutes after the initial announcement, the IDF posted a video of what it claimed to be the airstrike that killed Ahmed Jabri, the Hamas official:

In case you missed it – VIDEO – IDF Pinpoint Strike on Ahmed Jabari, Head of Military Wing youtu.be/P6U2ZQ0EhN4

The IDF then literally told the enemy to run and hide — an instruction that has so far been retweeted over 2,000 times:

We recommend that no Hamas operatives, whether low level or senior leaders, show their faces above ground in the days ahead.

It gets weirder: In reply to that message, Hamas’ military wing wrote back … on Twitter.

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So now what we’re looking at is a full-on information war being waged over the Internet in addition to in the streets. The exchange is reminiscent of an earlier encounter between NATO officials in Afghanistan and Taliban sympathizers. But that incident was widely read as a tension-reliever in the aftermath of violence, evidence that even enemies could talk reasonably. This, on the other hand — a coordinated PR attack in the midst of battle — feels far more serious.
– Source: The Atlantic

An even more bizarre use of social media in this conflict is the going viral of Instagram pictures taken by young IDF soldiers. The soldier’s smiling faces and attempts to look stylish are in sharp contrast with the horrifying pictures emerging from the Hamas’ Twitter account. The hashtags are also quite perplexing. Here are some of them.

“We’re coming for you gaza! #idf #igers #israel #igdaily #ig_israel #instagood #instamood #iphonesia #iphoneonly #picoftheday #ohb #all_shots #sexy #follow #gmy #gang_family #jj #cute #beautiful #me #webstagram #tbt”

“#istandwithisrael #IDF”

“#me #army

“Ready for war @mayrobichek #war #army #soldier #artillery #fire #friends #cool #sad #israel #idf #instamood #instagood #picoftheday #photooftheday #bestoftheday”

Seeing these pictures while civilians and children are being killed in Gaza have taken aback quite a few observers, but their viral status have still probably helped the IDF’s public perception. They have indeed reached the silent majority (especially the younger generation) that is uninformed/indifferent/neutral about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. In this age of superficiality and appearances, these pics of young and attractive IDF soldiers probably led many young people to identify with them, making them say something like “Hey, that’s the type of pics I post on Instagram all day”.

Of course, during wartime, propaganda emerges from both sides and truths (as well as lies) are communicated to the public. So, as missiles and rockets get launched from both sides and carnage takes place in Gaza, hostilities have spilled over to a brand new warzone: Your social media accounts.

 

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hvns
3 years 8 months ago
Hard stuff to comment. To my mind Jews are the ones hated and attacked not only in this conflict.My grandma saved some of them in holocaust while very few risked to do so.I am still having bad memory how they have been treated in former USSR. Strange, no one is willing to admit that all this anti-Israel agenda is growing throughout the world.Especially in Western Europe and Russia. Prophecies of the Scripture will come true.Russian European Alliance will be as willing to wipe 'em out as Iran-Hamas does. Is it not wise get every fact and check them before taking… Read more »
Gary Busey
3 years 8 months ago

Yeah Israel should just let Hamas bomb them daily!

Singer
3 years 8 months ago

This makes me feel sick.

africanstardust
3 years 8 months ago

I'm kind of surprised at this article. The US retaliated after 9/11, one attack, and they retaliated against the wrong country. But Israel has been attacked consistently over years and years, has tried to find other ways of dealing the the problem, and now they are fighting back and suddenly the whole world goes, "poor Palestine, Israel's being an immature child." No other country would be berated for defending themselves, yet somehow Israel is blamed. What are they supposed to do, let the bombs keep coming? Ridiculous.

blue skies
3 years 8 months ago

To all the clowns defending Israel, in the words of Malcolm X:

“If you're not careful, the newspapers will have you hating the people who are being oppressed, and loving the people who are doing the oppressing.”

Stephen Blackheath
3 years 9 months ago
One under-appreciated factor in the whole complex Israel-Palestine situation is that the western media and US foreign policy establishment is waging a demonization campaign against Israel. If you hear that Israel killed a whole lot of innocent people, there are very sound reasons to be skeptical. As often happens with these things, the US is supporting both sides. It's similar to the demonization campaign against Serbia in the wars in Yugoslavia between 1992 and 2005, and the fake death camps. This was before the alternative media era, so these facts are not as well known as they should be. You… Read more »
mina
3 years 9 months ago

vigilant what would you do if missiles were being launched at your city every day? what would thr US do? you all know how hamas deliberatrly use children faciluties for its porpuses and encourage their people to get injured. not to mention all the false pics posted everywherr. you are conserned about children and women getting killed? why dont you talk about syria. the soldiers are proud to defend our country and hit hamas, very disappointed at you VG

JC Denton
3 years 9 months ago
@mina 95% of all missiles being fired against Israel do not land on populated areas. Their guidance system is non existent. The other 5% that would land on populated areas are intercepted by Iron Dome. People like you never ask yourself why they are firing rockets at you. They are firing rockets because of Israeli economic blockade of Gaza. You are basically starving the people of Gaza out, with the ultimate agenda of commiting mass genocide over all Palestinians so that you will be able to occupy the West Bank and the Gaza strip. We are all aware of your… Read more »
chiefsportlad
3 years 9 months ago

hamas kills his own ppl for playing music and singing ! and the children are carrying machine guns and also killed by their own ppl

Donna
3 years 9 months ago
I stand with ISRAEL. Try having all your various opinions & freedoms in an arab nation, Good luck, cuz it ain't gonna happen. Want to go to an other-than-muslim church in an arab nation? Good luck, cuz it aint' gonna happen. In Israel, you can have and do all those things. They developed a land that nobody wanted. That is until years later when others started to see what the Israelis had done to improve it. Then all of a sudden there are so-called palestinians (made up term) who want their land back. It's a dog & pony show to… Read more »
A random thought
3 years 9 months ago

does not surprise me in the least!

lets all learn something new about Israel

Is = Isis Egyptian Goddess

Ra = Ra Egyptian God

El = Elohim God/Gods

Happy Texan
3 years 9 months ago

VC you are wrong this time. Palestine is not a real country. Israel has the right to defend itself & they have a great defense system that intercepts missles. The author I take it is upset that more Israelies are not dead. This article supports the leftish sheep argument, ironic for a website that claims to be so aware.

A random thought
3 years 9 months ago

I am sorry happy Texan but neither is the STATE of Israel, the place would not exist if it had not of been for the masons and certain western governments, also if one looks at a map of Israel and Palestine back in say the 1940's or so and then compare to a map today you will notice the huge amount of ethnic cleansing Israel has been doing. so to say they have been defending themselves is a joke! i suppose u would call the invasion of Irag and Afgan defending yourself aswel lol

Donna
3 years 9 months ago

Random Thought,

You need to look at more than maps. Palestine was a region no one wanted. No one was from there. There were no Palestinians until the arabs saw they could use them as leverage to get nations on their side to destroy Israel. Arabs say Israel is the little satan and America is the big satan. Whose side do you want to be on? Arabs? Really?

Jackie
3 years 9 months ago
I'm very dissapointed with this article Vilgilant. We all know that Israel has been in constant war with Palestine or other terrorist muslim group who want to swipe them out of the earth. Unlike Hamas, we haven't seen Israel pass out candy whenever they accidentally kill any civilians. It's because of facebook and tweeter we can see the true stories. Please get your facts before posting anything agains Israel. I'm glad the this government is still support Israel on its defense. I'm against war, but sometimes its needed to wipe out your enemies. I hope Israel continues to defend its… Read more »
3 years 9 months ago

not surprisingly, it appears all of these chump Israelis have watched too many movies.

aqsa
3 years 9 months ago

Brave Israeli Soldier, Yonatan Shapira, speaks out about the Zionist Israeli governments crimes.

Read the blog "The Dark History of Modern Day Zionism" – http://choiceandtruth.blogspot.com/2012/11/the-da

Youtube version – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yL4D7NSFN5M&fe

N
3 years 9 months ago

My grandparents are refugees from Palestine, and I live in the US now. All of the lies the media feeds the public disgust me. I've been to both Palestine and the Israel side, and there's an obvious difference between the two. Israel looks a lot like America, while Palestine is filled with crumbling buildings and trash. Israel claims they're defending themselves, but they've killed 130 Palestinians, 27 of them children and one an 11-month old baby boy. 3 Israelis are dead.

Historian
3 years 9 months ago

Ask your grandparents from where they camed to "Palestine" I'm sure you will find out very intresting information….

So there is no enough Israelis killed for ah?

Its 5 for now….. the diffrence I think is simple… palestinians shooting rockets of the population and dont care about the non-combatant loses by they side….

Shaun
3 years 9 months ago

An interesting commentary regarding the Jews in Israel and the other nations!

Shaun
3 years 9 months ago
." Israel has never possessed all the land that God had promised them, and will not until the thousand years of peace. Their establishing themselves in the land as a nation in 1948 after centuries of being expelled from it has been greatly resented by other surrounding nations. Palestinians who had occupied the land, though without any solid form of government, were bitterly opposed when Israel established a government. Though Israel promised them equal status as citizens if they would submit to this government, most of the Palestinians refused this and left the land. Since then they have strongly agitated… Read more »
den
3 years 9 months ago
Well what did tell about the chosen ones then eh? Book Of John Chapter 8 – as Christ damns the Jews ( and NOT JUST THE HIGH PRIESTS AND Pharisees – see notes below) ” Ye do the deeds of your father (the devil). If God were your father. ye would love me; for I proceed forth and came from God: neither came I of myself, but He sent me.” ” Ye are of your father the devil and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning and abode not in the truth,… Read more »
lkp
3 years 9 months ago
Well what did tell about the chosen ones then eh? Book Of John Chapter 8 – as Christ damns the Jews ( and NOT JUST THE HIGH PRIESTS AND Pharisees – see notes below) ” Ye do the deeds of your father (the devil). If God were your father. ye would love me; for I proceed forth and came from God: neither came I of myself, but He sent me.” ” Ye are of your father the devil and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning and abode not in the truth,… Read more »
lkp
3 years 9 months ago

I'm not knowledgeable, however IMO God considers all people equal. I don't think there would be some kind of favouritism towards some.

fromamsterdam
3 years 9 months ago
was salaamu alaikum (Peace be upon you) if we wish to end the Israeli/Palestinian conflict, we need to know who created Israel and why. In 1917 British Foreign Secretary Arthur Balfour penned a letter to Zionist Second Lord Lionel Walter Rothschild in which he expressed support for a Jewish homeland on Palestinian-controlled lands in the Middle East.This Balfour Declaration justified the brutal seizure of Palest inian lands for the post-WWII establishment of Israel.Israel would serve, not as some high-minded “Jewish homeland”, but as lynchpin in Rothschild/Eight Families control over the world’s oil supply. in fact you have a picture of… Read more »
AAM
3 years 9 months ago

Those photos.. Its just shocking. War is not sexy at all.
On a side note. Israel, in the first place has no land nor is a country at all. Thus, the "right to defend themselves" do not apply to them. They dont have any "land" to defend in the first place. Im with the palestines.
& @bepacifiste im glad to know that there are ppl like you in the US.

Fleurdamour
3 years 9 months ago

If this doesn't convince everyone of the connections between fashion, war and media, I don't know what would. I don't think for one minute that all of these photos are candid and legit, either – I am sure some of them are staged propaganda aimed directly at brainwashing young people.

Nick
3 years 9 months ago

War is all thanks to religion. Anyone can agree with that, regardless of their stance on religion.

Jay
3 years 9 months ago

War is because of religion? Name me all of the wars and military conflicts of the 20th and 21st century and tell me how many of them were due to religion…

P.S VC – what happend to my previous comments about the Muslim perspective in regards to the Anti-Christ etc.? Don't tell me they have been deleted?! Don't tell me the conspiracy against Islam is taking place here on VC too?!

Bob
3 years 9 months ago

That is so stupid, war is thanks to nature. War is necessary, people dying is necessary. Its part of being a living organism, you compete and prosper, you compete and die.

Pacifists are dumb blaming death and violence on everything besides the simple act of living.

Fleurdamour
3 years 9 months ago

No it isn't – war is always about resources and power. Religion is just one excuse, a cover to present the people you want to subjugate as inferior and therefore deserving of attack. But it's always really about taking their stuff, their land, etc., or expanding your own power base.

3 years 9 months ago

e.

🙂

3 years 9 months ago
Chazaq: Apologies but that "Khazar" theory is horse shit. I used to believe it myself but on further research, its dis-info. I do believe though that the Zionist Jews, especially the ones of (German and Russian) origin are fake jews. Everything is falling into place. Egypt is already becoming a sharia country run by the muslim brotherhood, same with all the nations that where liberated from dictators. What we are seeing know is the rise of the wounded beast in the book of revelation which is the Ottoman empire. The Anti-christ's kingdom is being re-built with the sole purpose of… Read more »
Hm
3 years 9 months ago

When Israelis in the occupied territories now claim that they have to defend themselves, they are defending themselves in the sense that any military occupier has to defend itself against the population they are crushing. You can’t defend yourself when you’re militarily occupying someone else’s land. That’s not defense. Call it what you like, it’s not defense.
Noam Chomsky

lkp
3 years 9 months ago

Noam Chomsky is one of them. He might try to manipulate the masses by saying that. Like K Marx who was a Rothschild.

Truth
3 years 9 months ago

This will be just like the Egypt propaganda, it will diffuse in a few weeks. This was all political for political agendas. Nothing will escalate beyond the usual in that region. There is more to life than to focus on Israel and Iran.

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