In the past few months, YouTube has made an unprecedented move to censor political outlets which they claim promote hate speech or extremist content. However, as Julian Assange just pointed out last month, peaceful anti-war politicians like Ron Paul are also being snubbed out in the name of controlling the narrative. But now, there is evidence of something even more insidious happening.
Footage of coalition strikes against the Islamic State — arguably the world’s historical view of the war — has been getting not only demonetized, like we reported before, but deleted entirely.
To be clear, this is not propaganda. It is official coalition videos, released by the US Central Command and International Coalition for Operation Inherent Resolve, that are being deleted or having age restrictions applied to them.
As if deleting the world’s only public record of the ostensible war on terror wasn’t bad enough, actual extremist content is rife across the web. Jihadist propaganda remains easily accessible as official records of war are scraped from history. A conspiracy theorist may start to question exactly why that is.
RT notes that as the Ministry of Defense (MoD) in Britain denies civilian casualties in Syria and Iraq while bragging over the death of 3,000 jihadists, the importance placed on the videos as official documents of war is paramount.
Activists and monitoring groups have called on YouTube owner Google to act swiftly, accusing the tech giant of censoring war footage.
“We’re back to square one with @Youtube censoring conflict videos,” Airwars said on Twitter, Thursday morning.
“These are officially released videos of conflict against ISIS – permanently archived by us as a record of war, with original descriptions,’ Airwars noted, clearly illustrating that censorship is entirely unnecessary.
As an urgent need for @Youtube @TeamYouTube to get their counter-extremism AI sorted. Legitimate conflict archives are being censored.”
The two videos in question, from 2015, relate to air strikes on IS.
As RT reports, one video, which was age restricted, shows a VBIED (car bomb) being taken out in Fallujah, Iraq.
Another, which was removed, shows an attack on an IS “finance distribution center” in Mosul, Iraq.
“Though other sites have experienced significant ongoing problems with YouTube’s AI, this is our first problem since August 10. YouTube has now deleted one further archived Coalition video from our channel and has age restricted another,” Chris Woods, director of Airwars, told RT.
“Both videos were originally run on the Coalition’s own channel with no issue. We can see no logical reason for these videos – among hundreds archived by Airwars – to be affected.
“Whatever YouTube’s aim here, in reality it is censoring key conflict videos which should instead be permanently archived for posterity.”
While there is no direct evidence that YouTube is working directly with the government, the methods employed by Google’s media giant are serving to whitewash the destruction caused by coalition strikes while propping up jihadist propaganda in the interim. One doesn’t need to be a rocket scientist to figure the result of such methods.
One case, in particular, highlights both of these aspects — suppressing US war crimes while protecting ISIS.
Alternative geopolitical analyst Mimi Al Laham, who goes by the name “Partisan Girl,” revealed on Twitter that one of her YouTube videos was flagged and removed upon review in July. “It documented US military airdrops falling into ISIS hands,” She wrote. “Truth is graphic content.”
The notice from YouTube claimed the video was removed because it violated the platform’s Community Guidelines. In addition to the video’s removal, Partisan Girl also received a “strike” or penalty on her account—a YouTube user can receive up to three “strikes.”
The title of the video was “US airdrops weapons into #ISIS hands – #Syria Ayn Al Arab,” and the reason YouTube gave for removing it was that it contained “violent or graphic content,” that was posted in “a shocking, sensational, or disrespectful manner.”
As TFTP reported, while a video of the U.S. military dropping weapons right into the hands of ISIS may be shocking to some, it is hardly sensational. In October 2014, the Pentagon admitted that the U.S. airdropped weapons to ISIS that were reportedly intended for Kurdish fighters in Kobani, Syria, and insisted that “the wind” was to blame.
Through employing these various soft censorship techniques, YouTube is effectively manufacturing the narrative. When certain opinions are suppressed while others are promoted, this is a de facto form of social engineering.
The establishment must control the narrative in order to control the people. Once society begins to question the status quo, those in power risk losing their grip. Make no mistake, what we are witnessing on YouTube right now is a move to silence the peaceful opposition to war. Sadly, social justice warriors and the PC police are cheering it on because their political enemies are also being silenced. These folks would do well to remember that their speech will be next.
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