web analytics
October 23, 2014 / 29 Tishri, 5775
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post
Meir Panim with Soldiers 5774 Roundup: Year of Relief and Service for Israel’s Needy

Meir Panim implements programs that serve Israel’s neediest populations with respect and dignity. Meir Panim also coordinated care packages for families in the South during the Gaza War.



Home » InDepth » Op-Eds »

Stopping The Bin Laden Of The Internet


The time has come for us to take the new technology available to terrorists seriously. The United States recently crowned Anwar al-Awlaki the newest “most dangerous terrorist in the world.” And yet an American company, YouTube, has been giving al-Awlaki open access to the world’s largest bully pulpit.

In response to this outrageous turn of events, I have begun the battle to remove this man from our airwaves and end his reign of E-terror.

Al-Awlaki had been dubbed “the bin-Laden of the Internet.” I call him the “YouTube Terrorist” for his dangerous and extremist sermons that are broadcast over the web via YouTube. My staff began an exhaustive search of the website and we found over 700 videos of this man preaching his hateful and dangerous message, with more than three and a half million views.

The threat al-Awlaki represents is not just a hypothetical one. His fingerprints have been on many of the recent terrorist attacks on American soil, resulting in the shedding of innocent blood on more than one occasion.

Three of the 9/11 hijackers were documented as attending al-Awlaki’s sermons, and there are reports that two of them even met with him privately.

Major Nidal Malik Hasan, the accused shooter at the U.S. Army base in Ft. Hood, was also a devotee of al-Awlaki’s. U.S. intelligence investigating the attack has intercepted at least 18 e-mails between Hasan and al-Awlaki. In one of these correspondences, Hasan wrote: “I can’t wait to join you in the afterlife.”

The “Christmas Day Bomber,” Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, also had a relationship with al-Awlaki, having met with him and also having admitted that al-Awlaki participated in the training leading up to the execution of his terrorist plot.

In one of his most recent videos, posted just this month, al-Awlaki declares that “Americans are from the party of devils, and no special permission is needed to kill them.”

The obvious question is: If al-Awlaki is so dangerous and has been shown to recruit terrorists and plan their attacks, why is he given free rein on the world’s largest digital platform to carry out his evil work?

It takes YouTube mere minutes to remove videos that infringe on the copyrights of private companies or that contain unauthorized audio tracks. I found it particularly disturbing that YouTube has the apparatus in place to remove videos and yet still has not taken down all those that have been posted by Anwar al-Awlaki.

I have no problem with YouTube. It is a profitable American company that creates jobs for New York, and it acts as a clearinghouse for ideas and stories that reach millions around the globe. But with great power comes great responsibility. In this case, its behavior has been inexcusable.

Last month I wrote to the CEO of YouTube and demanded al-Awlaki be taken off the website. At first, YouTube and its parent company, Google, hemmed and hawed that their policy already included taking down violent and objectionable videos in a timely fashion. I was, however, ultimately able to demonstrate to them that their existing “policy” was failing miserably.

The company has since taken down many of al-Awlaki’s videos and has even created a new system on its website in which viewers can flag videos for YouTube’s attention as being terrorist-related, just as they can flag videos for being inappropriate or infringing on copyrights.

It is, however, too early to claim victory. My office staff has been able to spot new videos from al-Awlaki on YouTube. Al-Awlaki is a vigorous and persistent enemy, perhaps blessed – to our misfortune – with American ingenuity, as he was born here. The fact that he speaks fluent English is one of the things that make him so dangerous.

I will remain watchful over YouTube’s parent company, Google. New media is good for business and the sharing of ideas. However, it opens up a whole new front in the war on terror – one that can be fought inexpensively but requires that we pay close attention.

Anthony Weiner, a Democrat, represents New York’s 9th Congressional district (parts of South Brooklyn and South Central Queens) in the U.S. House of Representatives.

About the Author:


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Stopping The Bin Laden Of The Internet”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Chaye Zisel Braun
Funeral for Chaye Zisel Braun Underway [photos]
Latest Indepth Stories
Keeping-Jerusalem

Judea and Samaria (Yesha) have been governed by the IDF and not officially under Israeli sovereignty


n past decades, Oman has struck a diplomatic balance between Saudi Arabia, the West, and Iran.

The Jewish Press endorses the reelection of Gov. Andrew Cuomo. His record as governor these past four years offers eloquent testimony to the experience and vision he has to lead the Empire State for the next four years.

I think Seth Lipsky is amazing, but it just drives home the point that newspapers have a lot of moving parts.

While not all criticism of Israel stemmed from anti-Semitism, Podhoretz contends the level of animosity towards Israel rises exponentially the farther left one moved along the spectrum.

Myth #1: It is easy to be a B’nai Noach. It is extraordinarily hard to be a B’nai Noach.

The question of anti-Semitism in Europe today is truly tied to the issue of immigration.

Polls indicate that the Palestinians are much more against a two state solution than the Israelis.

Turkey and Iran the 2 regional powers surrounding the ISIS conflict gain from a partial ISIS victory

Emigration from Israel is at an all-time low, far lower than immigration to Israel from Europe.

Leon Klinghoffer’s daughters: “‘Klinghoffer’ is justified as ‘a work of art’…This is an outrage.”

Do you seriously think that as you kidnap our children we should medically treat and help yours?

Sometimes collective action against the heinous acts of the majority is not enough. The world should not only support the blockade of Gaza; it must enforce the dismantling of Hamas.

The Arab Spring has challenged Jordan with the task of gradual reform with regard to its monarchy.

More Articles from Anthony D. Weiner

When President Obama spoke last week of the opportunities presented by the Arab Spring, he got a lot right. His calling out of the Arab states was long overdue and dead on.

But he got some big things wrong.

The time has come for us to take the new technology available to terrorists seriously. The United States recently crowned Anwar al-Awlaki the newest “most dangerous terrorist in the world.” And yet an American company, YouTube, has been giving al-Awlaki open access to the world’s largest bully pulpit.

In what country were you born?

If you are a U.S. citizen born in Jerusalem, you’d better not look for the answer on your passport. That line is always left blank.

The decision by President Obama to sell weapons to Saudi Arabia is wrong.

It was leaked last week that the Obama administration was preparing to notify Congress of its intent to sell $60 billion in high tech arms, including F-15′s and military helicopters, to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

The facts of the flotilla incident speak for themselves – but only to those who are willing to listen. Unfortunately, albeit predictably, the international community seems to care less about what actually happened and more about that fact that it now has an opportunity to engage in what appears to be a global pastime: kicking Israel.

Let’s remember the facts here. Jerusalem is hardly some far-off outpost. It is the capital of a sovereign nation that happens to be our strongest ally in the Middle East and perhaps the world. And this housing decision was months in the works as part of a transparent process that is followed by dozens and dozens of building proposals each year. Think of it as a decision by a local zoning board. This was hardly war and peace.

Contrary to statements by the White House, the natural growth of Gilo, a popular suburb on the outskirts of Jerusalem, is in no way a political statement or a land grab on the West Bank.

On the anniversary of the tragic events that took place on September 11, 2001, we remembered the lives lost of friends, family and neighbors. We also renewed our resolve to rebuild, to bring to justice those responsible, and to challenge extremism wherever it exists.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/opinions/stopping-the-bin-laden-of-the-internet/2010/11/24/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: