What difference will Anonymous make in the fight against Islamic State?

Anonymous, No on 8 Rally, Boston, November 2008 by Tim Pierce

Anonymous issuing a threatening video to the enemies of free society is now an accepted part of every major terrorist attack, and the events in Paris on Friday have proved no different in this regard.

The loose band of hackers and activists wasted little time in posting the following video to YouTube, both in French and English, which many have advertised as a declaration of “war” on Islamic State, which claimed responsibility for the Paris attacks.

“France is shocked by the events caused by terrorism in the capital. We first wish to express our sorrow and our solidarity with the victims the injured and their families.

“To defend our values and our freedom we’re tracking down members of the terrorist group responsible for these attacks. We will not give up, we will not forgive, and we will do all that is necessary to end their actions.”

Anonymous has a storied history in fighting Islamic extremism online, and had a heavy involvement in the events of the Arab Spring in late 2010, helping Tunisians guard their privacy online and publicising the revolution to the outside world.

As far as as Islamic State goes Anonymous has also been busy over the past few years, taking down social media accounts, compiling a list of propaganda websites used by the Islamist group, and even publishing a how-to guide so that sympathisers could help out.

All this was part of Operation Isis, or OpIsis, which Western spooks have criticised for damaging their attempts to gather information on terrorists operating in sympathy with Islamic State.

How valid this complaint is is difficult to ascertain, but whilst fighting propaganda channels is useful is hardly amounts to the “war” that many press outfits have advertised.

Image Credit – Anonymous, No on 8 Rally, Boston, November 2008 by Tim Pierce

Jimmy Nicholls
Writes somewhat about British politics and associated matters. Contact jimmy@rightdishonourable.com

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