The Taliban takes to Twitter

13 May 2011

The Taliban have found a new weapon – it’s called Twitter – and so far the Afghanistan revels group has attracted almost 1,000 followers on the micro-blogging platform.

From Twitter feed @alemarahweb, the Taliban are understood to be posting nine tweets a day.

According to The Guardian, the Taliban’s tweets are in Pashtu and occasionally in English, with links to stories on the website of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, the Taliban’s shadow government.

What’s interesting, or odd, is the Taliban’s choice of Twitter users it follows. One of the first people it has followed is @Afghantim, a US air force logistics officer working with the Afghan army, and @afghanHeroesUK, a charity supporting British troops in Afghanistan.

Many of the story links are broken because they link to the Taliban’s official website which moves around with regularity because the authorities regularly have it evicted from servers.

In related news as many as 80 people are believed to have been killed in a twin suicide bombing of a paramilitary training center in the northwest of Pakistan. It is believed to have been a revenge attack by the Taliban for the killing by US forces of Osama bin Laden.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years