Twitter wars: NATO and Taliban clash through tweets

We know that politicians and journalists have tweeted their way to their own demise, and we know that others also have gotten themselves in real trouble on Twitter.

But apparently, ISAF and the Taliban are also taking their war to the cutting edge — by fighting in cyberspace, on social media.  (Before I get into the details, a few credits: Kudos to @Transitionland for spotting the encounter. And admittedly, the best home for something like this is BoomTweet, but I just can’t resist posting it here.)

It all began with ISAF tweeting the following about the horrific Kabul attacks that lasted more than 20 hours:

Re: Taliban spox on #Kabul attack: the outcome is inevitable. Question is how much longer will terrorist put innocent Afghans in harm’s way?Wed Sep 14 04:18:29 via HootSuite

To which @ABalkhi, thought to be a Taliban spokesperson, slapped back a response within minutes:

@ISAFmedia i dnt knw.u hve bn pttng thm n ‘harm’s way’ fr da pst 10 yrs.Razd whole vllgs n mrkts.n stil hv da nrve to tlk bout ‘harm’s way’Wed Sep 14 05:06:21 via web

To which @ISAFmedia retorted by citing UN statistics about civilian casualties to prove that the Taliban are, indeed, the bad guys:

Really, @abalkhi? UNAMA reported 80% of civilians causalities are caused by insurgent (your) activities Sep 14 05:15:56 via HootSuite


The sarcasm of the question isn’t lost on @ABalkhi, who replies with his own interrogative — and it’s not supposed to be a trick question:

@ISAFmedia UNAMA is an entity of whom? mine or yours?Wed Sep 14 05:22:00 via web


Update (11:38 a.m. EST): But later, @ISAFmedia came back taunting @alemarahweb — thought to be another one of the several Taliban Twitter accounts — by posting a video of Gen. John Allen visiting his soldiers after the attack.


This parallels — and dare I say, surpasses — the drama of the Tea Party Republican debates that occupy my TV screen nowadays. But beyond the entertainment value, the added advantage is that no-one has to lose their life in this battle. It’s like two elephants fighting and the grass remaining unharmed.

PS: Unlike previous encounters, these two elephants are fairly evenly matched.

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