13 December 2011

The Internet Equivalent of a Slap-Fight

Kenyan Army and Somali AQ terrorists are duking it out on... TWITTER!

On Monday, the Islamic insurgent group al-Shabab used its Twitter feed to accuse Kenya of having a history of committing "barbarous acts" toward ethnic Somalis, and cited a 1984 massacre where human rights groups say Kenyan troops killed around 3,000 ethnic Somali men in eastern Kenya.

Addressing more recent actions, al-Shabab's tweets that began last week claimed that Kenyan soldiers in Somalia "flee from confrontation & flinch in the face of death." The Twitter feed also described al-Shabab's own press release giving details about Burundian soldiers killed in an October battle between African Union peacekeeping troops and the insurgents. Al-Shabab claimed to have killed more than 150 AU troops at the time.

The AU only reported 10 casualties although Mogadishu-based security sources say the figure was closer to 70.

Al-Shabab's tweets, written in fluent English, mocked an earlier Twitter posting by Kenya's army spokesman, Maj. Emmanuel Chirchir, that threatened to bomb concentrations of donkeys that might be moving weapons for the insurgents.

"Your eccentric battle strategy has got animal rights groups quite concerned, Major," the al-Shabab posting said.

The Associated Press has determined that both Twitter accounts - HSMPress and MajorEChirchir - are legitimate. It's not clear who is writing the al-Shabab tweets. Several Americans, most of Somali descent, have in recent years joined the group that Washington has designated a terrorist organization.

Chirchir has responded with his own barrage of tweets.

"With Al Shabaab joining tweeter, lets take fight to their doorstep," he wrote. Chirchir accused al-Shabab of stoning an innocent girl to death and chopping off hands. He noted that many commanders have banned bras in their territory, and urged readers to retweet the message in support of Somali women.

That's just so macho.

h/t Doctrine Man
By: Brant

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