Are Terrorists Using YouTube to Publish Videos of Murdered American Soldiers?

September 14th, 2006 12:35 AM

A truly disturbing report was filed Wednesday by the Honolulu Star-Bulletin (hat tip to Drudge). It appears that terrorists or terrorist sympathizers are using the website YouTube to post graphic videos of American soldiers being killed in Iraq:

The wildly popular video-sharing Web site has dozens of videos purporting to show individual American soldiers being killed in Iraq, in what amounts to snuff films, overlaid with music and insurgent slogans.

Some of the videos, including ones of American soldiers purportedly being picked off by snipers or being blown up by improvised explosive devices, have been viewed tens of thousands of times each in the past few months. Some are posted in YouTube's "news and blogs" category, but others are listed under "entertainment" and even "comedy."

The article horrifyingly continued:

One shows what appears to be three U.S. soldiers in desert fatigues questioning Iraqi men in a street or alley as young boys mingle around. Suddenly, one soldier slumps to the ground, felled by a single bullet, as the children scatter. In another, a U.S. soldier is standing through the top hatch of a Humvee, then slumps over as the sniper strikes.

Their presence on YouTube shows that insurgent propaganda -- including genuine footage -- already available on more obscure Web sites has seeped in the mainstream of American popular culture, said Eben Kaplan, assistant editor of, the Web site of the Council on Foreign Relations, a nonpartisan think tank headquartered in New York.

And, sadly, continued:

"It is authentic. Most of (the videos) have insignia of Iraqi insurgent groups" and some likely were reposted from jihadist Web sites, said Kaplan, who has written extensively about terrorists' use of the Internet. "That it's being picked up in YouTube does give it a much wider audience."

Kaplan said the Internet is an important tool for insurgents in Iraq, who use it to attract recruits and funding, create a network of sympathizers, and to try to demoralize American soldiers and citizens.

Sometimes you just want to stay in bed, and not turn on the TV set, the radio, or your computer.