Australia's PM Urges More Effective Propaganda War against ISIL

News ID: 975298 Service: Other Media
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TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Australia's Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has called on the Iraqi government to "mock and disprove" Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant's online propaganda more effectively and more quickly to help the war on terror.

Speaking to an elite audience in Washington, ahead of his meeting with US President Barack Obama on Tuesday, Turnbull said Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) was winning the propaganda war with its sophisticated use of technology and social media, and that needed to be stopped.

"ISIL may have an archaic and barbaric ideology but its use of technology and social media in particular is very sophisticated and agile," Turnbull said in a statement released in Canberra on Tuesday.

"As ISIL uses social media for its propaganda, we must respond rapidly and persuasively with the facts."

"It was clear to me from my recent visit, that the Iraqi government and other anti-ISIL forces are not reacting quickly enough to contradict ISIL's online messages, which have been used both to recruit new fighters and demoralise those who oppose them and we should help them with this."

"ISIL claims must be mocked and disproved as soon as they are made ... the cyber sphere demands reactions as rapid as the kinetic battlefield."

In his speech to the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, Turnbull also cautioned leaders against unwittingly aiding ISIL by blaming Islam or Muslims for the group's actions or accepting ISIL's own overblown rhetoric about its power and achievements, Xinhua News Agency reported.

Such actions only served to further alienate Muslim communities in the west, and increase the likelihood that young men become ISIL sympathizers, even soldiers.

"We should remember that terrorism is a strategy of the weak, deployed against the strong. We should not, as the president observed last week, allow ... ISIL to lead us into exaggerating its power," Turnbull said on Tuesday.

"Today, they want us to turn on the Muslim communities in our midst because it reinforces their narrative to young Muslims that America or Australia does not want them, that they have no future here, that this is not their country too."

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