“SMILE… you’re about to meet your 72 virgins,” may have been a split-second thought as an ISIS extremist was blown to smithereens  while taking a selfie. Or perhaps another way of phrasing it be careful of those unintended consequences while posting those selfie’s on the internet, because members of the US Air Force 361st Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Group working out of Hulbert Field, Florida, may just be checking out those social media sites as part of their intelligence duties.

And that’s apparently what happened back in February and was publicly detailed this week by the Air Force. In this case it’s with regard to the ongoing fight against the ISIS extremist group currently spreading its influence and control across Iraq, Syria, and increasingly Libya and Nigeria. ISIS is making full use of social media to get its message out as well as recruiting people to their cause, but it has backfired.

A member of ISIS had posted a selfie, with the same person also posting on an open forum detailing the command and control capabilities at the location. A bit of research using the image data revealed the specific location of the building. 22 hours later the Air Force had launched 3 Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM) missiles and destroyed the building. The growing capabilities of drones, the ability to launch a strike from great distance, and the pure stupidity of the enemy sometimes, allows for battles to be fought almost entirely remotely.

It’s worth nothing that the battlefield has changed considerably since ISIS emerged, they are extremely proficient in using social media in recruiting new members, and creating slick videos of their atrocities, and it’s within this backdrop that U.S. is finally stepping up and using the same methods, with devastating consequences for those self-aggrandizing terrorist.

Certainly, you can expect lesser social media activity by ISIS members from now on, or at least you'll only hear from the terrorists capable of turning a device's geo-location feature off.


Washington Times



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