Twitter is widely used by ISIS leaders for communicating and recruitment purposes, and recently its leader posted a plea requesting that Muslims join ISIS in its fight against the “disbelievers.” But contrary to his expectations, many Muslims responded with defiance and sarcasm.
Hilarious responses on Twitter
Last week, the militant group released an audio recording of leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi on jihadist social media sites attempting to lure would-be militants. It seems as if Iyad El-Baghdadi, an Arab Spring activist from the United Arab Emirates living in Norway, prompted the Twitter backlash, says a report from The New York Times.
El-Baghdadi posted the translated excerpts from the Islamic State leader’s audio message on Twitter and then persuaded his followers to respond by trolling the extremist group and its online supporters. Since then, Twitter users around the world have been taking shots at the Islamic State by sharing what they would prefer to do instead of fighting for the group.
“ISIS leaders: We urgently call upon every Muslim to join the fight, especially those in the land of the two shrines (Saudi Arabia), rise,” read the translated excerpts by El-Baghdadi.
The responses were hilarious and are worth mentioning. One Twitter user wrote, “Sorry Amir al-Mushrikeen, I’m busy being a real Muslim, giving to charity etc. Also, your dental plan sucks.”
“Too busy being part of a civilised and functioning society. Also, Sherlock S04 in 4 days. I can’t miss the first episode,” read another response.
Internet vigilantes a check on ISIS
El-Baghdadi made a dedicated effort to keep the digital resistance alive. Some of the news organizations mistakenly identified him as the leader of the Islamic State as he bears the same surname as that of the militant leader.
Twitter has been a favorite tool of the Islamic State for spreading its message, recruiting fighters, and threatening enemies. It appears that Muslims like El-Baghdadi are motivated by the insidious threat the Islamic State represents to fight extremists at every tweet.
For quite some time, Internet vigilantes have been disrupting the Islamic State’s online propaganda, and this week’s campaign is the latest in the list.
In March, a Twitter vigilante with the screen name “The Doctor” told the New York Times, “Basically, our work not only cripples their ability to spread propaganda, but also wastes their time.