What are the Chinese Communist Party's international propaganda goals? How is it faring in the battle to define COVID-19's winners and losers?
Latest in propaganda
Fitna, a Failed Coup and a Squandered Opportunity to Undermine the Islamic State’s ‘Intangible Power’
Editor’s Note: The Islamic State seeks to project an image of strength, and that image has attracted many followers. In the past few years, the above-ground caliphate has collapsed and infighting is growing, but the group still stresses its prowess and leadership in its propaganda. Michael Smith II, a terrorism analyst who specializes in jihadist influence operations, calls for the United States to exploit the Islamic State’s internal dissent in its own counter-propaganda, playing up these divisions to further weaken the group.
Members of the Myanmar military have systematically used Facebook as a tool in the government’s campaign of ethnic cleansing against Myanmar’s Rohingya Muslim minority, according to an incredible piece of reporting by the New York Times on Oct. 15. The Times writes that the military harnessed Facebook over a period of years to disseminate hate propaganda, false news and inflammatory posts.
Editor’s Note: Although Internet comments have made great strides in trying to combat extremist content online, they have a long way to go. In particular, much of what jihadists use for propaganda is non-violent or otherwise doesn't neatly fit material that can easily be identified as terrorist-related and removed. Audrey Alexander and Helen Powell of George Washington University's Program on Extremism call for a more holistic approach that goes beyond image takedowns.
Microsoft and Google have joined Facebook in revealing that Russia may have purchased ads in an effort to manipulate the 2016 U.S. presidential election. Reactions to this news have been a mix of bewilderment and alarm—but perhaps we should not be so surprised. The fabricated news stories and click-bait headlines that dominated social media throughout the 2016 campaign are not a new tactic for the Russians. They are simply the latest iteration of a practice Moscow has used for nearly a century.
Editor’s Note: The Islamic State has long issued a steady torrent of sophisticated propaganda to demonize its enemies, inspire its followers, and advance its cause in general. How does the Islamic State think about its own propaganda efforts? Through serious sleuthing and impressive analysis, Charlie Winter of the International Centre for the Study of Radicalisation has unearthed the Islamic State’s media guide for its own operatives and explains to us its three-pronged strategy.
Editor's Note: The Islamic State produces potent propaganda, inspiring tens of thousands of Muslims to travel to Syria to fight and encouraging other Muslims to launch attacks in their home countries. The propagandists also try to brainwash those unfortunate enough to be under the group’s thumb. Charlie Winter of Georgia State University explores the Islamic State’s internal propaganda mechanisms, offering an in-depth description of its media machine and the dangerous messages it churns out.
Last week at Just Security, Adam Jacobson took issue with our analysis of Guantanamo's role in jihadist propaganda—and challenged our claim, advanced in a prior piece on Lawfare, that Guantanamo actually does not figure prominently in mag