Israeli Defence Forces (IDF) have taken to social media -- Twitter, Flickr, YouTube and a blog -- to make announcements regarding Wednesday's military strikes that led to the killing of top Hamas commander Ahmed al-Jabari.
UPDATE: Their first post just 16 hours old, the IDF has created an official Tumblr, uploading graphics that highlight attacks on Israeli citizens by militant Palestinians. A Pinterest account also features photos of IDF soldiers.
From Wednesday: The IDF's official Twitter account, @IDFSpokesperson, has been updating followers with details about the strikes under the hashtag, #PillarOfDefense, using the networking service to publicize and defend their reaction to rocket attacks by Palestinian militants. Their initial post about the strike accompanied a YouTube video showing a birds-eye view of the strike on al-Jabari's car and a satellite photo of the targets.
The IDF followed their announcement with a blunt warning to other leaders of Gaza's governing political party, along with the threat of a ground operation:
We recommend that no Hamas operatives, whether low level or senior leaders, show their faces above ground in the days ahead.— IDF (@IDFSpokesperson) November 14, 2012
All options are on the table. If necessary, the IDF is ready to initiate a ground operation in Gaza.— IDF (@IDFSpokesperson) November 14, 2012
They also defended the decision to strike as retaliation for "a month of frequent rocket attacks" on Israel, as well as their choice of target, Ahmed al-Jabari, the commander of Hamas' military wing, the al-Qassam Brigades:
Israelis living near the #Gaza Strip have been living under fire for the past 12 years.— IDF (@IDFSpokesperson) November 14, 2012
Ahmed Jabari: Eliminated. twitter.com/IDFSpokesperso…— IDF (@IDFSpokesperson) November 14, 2012
As spokesman for a militant Palestinian group in Gaza said that "the occupation started the battle," and that they would "respond very fiercely to their crimes." Al-Jaabari's al-Qassam Brigades tweeted this message to the IDF:
@idfspokesperson Our blessed hands will reach your leaders and soldiers wherever they are (You Opened Hell Gates on Yourselves)— Alqassam Brigades (@AlqassamBrigade) November 14, 2012