Friday, July 27, 2012

Hezbollah on Your iPhone: There’s An App for That

Update: The Almanartv application was removed from Apple’s iTunes over the weekend. However, it is still available for other platforms, such as Android.

In the latest example of terrorist organizations exploiting current technology to spread their violent messages, an application was made available on Wednesday through Apple’s iTunes service providing mobile access to content from Hezbollah’s satellite television station, al-Manar.
Al-Manar's iTunes App

The new free application, advertised on air by al Manar, directs users to various station content, including speeches by Hezbollah leader, Hassan Nasrallah. Al-Manar broadcasts the terrorist group’s messages of hate and violence, disseminates anti-Semitic and anti-American propaganda and glorifies suicide bombings to millions of viewers 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Hezbollah is a U.S. designated Foreign Terrorist Organization, and al-Manar was included on the State Department’s Terrorism Exclusion List in December 2004.

Al-Manar has a presence on other internet platforms as well, including a Twitter account with over 17,000 followers and 51,000 messages.  Other terrorist organizations use the microblogging service, including Al Shabaab, a terrorist organization in Somalia which formally merged with Al Qaeda earlier this year. There are also numerous terrorist support pages on Facebook and other social media platforms.

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