Al Qaeda's leader Ayman Al Zawahiri is expected to give a series of lectures on the “Islamic Spring” on social media.
The announcement is being circulated on social media. On Twitter, this anonymous user says:
— ⭐مِـحبّــــ العلوانـ (@mhteeg24) September 7, 2015
By the will of Allah, the Islamic Spring series soon by Emir Ayman Al Zawahiri, may Allah protect him
A screenshot of the tweet is included above as such accounts which support militant groups usually get taken down by Twitter after user complaints. According to Twitter Rules, posts which promote violence are banned:
Violence and Threats: You may not publish or post threats of violence against others or promote violence against others.
And Twitter reserves the right to suspend accounts which break its rules:
When an account violates our abusive behavior policy, the actions we take against that account depend on the severity of the violation. We may ask users to verify or provide information, delete specific Tweets, or we may suspend or lock the account temporarily or permanently.
DC-based journalist Zaid Benjamin, who closely monitors jihadist social media outlets, makes a similar announcement, without mentioning the source:
Al-Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri is expected to speak about “the Islamic Spring” in a series of lectures to be released on social media.
— Zaid Benjamin (@zaidbenjamin) September 7, 2015
Also absent from the announcement is where those lectures will be made available.
Stopping militant groups such as Al-Qaeda and its splinter group, the ISIS, from using social media to spew their poison, spread their message, and recruit more adherents, has become an uphill struggle in recent years. Like most platforms, in their terms of service, platforms like Google and Facebook prohibit content that promotes violence, terrorism, and hate speech, and reserve the right to remove it from their sites. This doesn't stop supporters from riding the bandwagon.
A Topsy search of mentions of Ayman Al Zawahiri, in Arabic, shows more than 360 tweets in the last 23 days, many sharing his quotes and fatwas and praising the terror mastermind. One even provides a justpaste link to his books on Jihad.
Egyptian Al Zawahiri, 64, took over the leadership of Al-Qaeda in 2011, following the death of Saudi Osama Bin Laden.
The series of uprisings which have taken the Arab world by storm since the fall of Zainalabiden bin Ali's regime in Tunisia in early 2011 are collectively known as the Arab Spring. Some have coined the moniker Islamic Spring too as the unfolding events of the Arab Spring have given rise to the emergence of Islamic movements, some of whom have worked within the system, like Ennahda in Tunisia, while others like the ISIS have wreaked havoc in the region.
It is not clear which Islamic Spring Al Zawahiri will be referring to. Nevertheless, we can't wait to hear it straight from the horse's mouth, as journalist Sherine Tadros sarcastically points out:
Can't wait.. https://t.co/qOXUP4o4uP
— Sherine Tadros (@SherineT) September 7, 2015