The hashtag quickly caught on in Israel and was widely circulated by vocal pro-Israel activists. Many see this as a success for the IDF’s account, creating a near-viral hashtag.One might think that the IDF would consider hashtagging an assassination inappropriate, but the IDF Spokesperson’s Unit is known for being focused on gaining traffic.
BREAKING: We just targeted Islamic Jihad commander in Gaza, Baha Abu Al Ata. Al Ata was directly responsible for hundreds of terror attacks against Israeli civilians and soldiers.His next attack was imminent.#JihadEnough pic.twitter.com/h6VXzdwcmz— Israel Defense Forces (@IDF) November 12, 2019
Israel under rockets from Gaza - Live UpdatesIn fact, when the IDF received its one millionth follower, it tweeted a reference to a Jay-Z song, “We got 99 problems but 1 million followers on @Twitter ain’t one.” The IDF's social media platforms, in particular its Twitter page, have become known in the last year for what many deem to be language and writing unbecoming of an army. They often add snark in controversial places, such as assassinations and airstrikes.The IDF is well aware of the unit's soldiers' snarkiness and even had the whole social media team dress as trolls for Purim in April.
The IDF's favorite target when it comes to social media sass seems to be Iran."A #BlackHole isn’t the only thing that sucks light and spreads darkness … COUGH COUGH Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps,” the IDF tweeted.The IDF then created an image of what looked like a pregnant stomach and wrote the word "terror" inside. While the image itself was fairly innocent, the caption is what packed a punch. The team wrote "Iran breeding in the Middle East."
Guess what the IDF Social Media Office dressed up as for Purim? Trolls. pic.twitter.com/sQUjkWa9iG— Keren Hajioff (@kerenhajioff) March 19, 2019
However, not all of the team's snark has garnered negative attention. "I think we can add the IDF Twitter account's snark to the inventory of Israel's lethal arsenal," i24 anchor Eylon Levy tweeted.After Iranian forces fired rockets at Israel from Syria last January, the team tweeted "Iran, you seem to be lost. Here:" with a picture of a map.The tweet was featured in several articles and received an equal amount of praise and criticism.
Iran breeding in the Middle East | || || \| \| \| \| terror || /| /| /| |— Israel Defense Forces (@IDF) April 7, 2019
Sam Sokol contributed to this report.
Iran, you seem to be lost. Here: pic.twitter.com/ByrDyUjWDr— Israel Defense Forces (@IDF) January 21, 2019