by William Teach | February 10, 2011 9:19 am
They’re only almost 15 days late, but, hey, they’ve got a great message!
It took a while, but the U.S. State Department is now tweeting in Arabic.
With unprecedented political turmoil rocking Egypt and protesters turning to social media such as Twitter and Facebook, the mouthpiece of U.S. foreign policy wants in on the game. Its first message?
(WordPress having problems retaining the Arabic, turns it all into question marks)
(Translation: “We want to be a part of your conversation!”) (Teach: “Recognized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of America’s historic role played by social media in the Arab world and want to be part of your conversation” is the translation I get)
The new State Department Arabic Twitter feed, @USAbilaraby, joins a growing chorus of Twitter feeds describing and commenting on events in Egypt and across the Arab world, where social media is helping to broadcast political ferment.
I can think of a few things they could have said otherwise, something like “we support your protest against your dictator” and “why do you support radical Islam?”It’d be nice if they actually kept the feed going, since the last tweet was 8 hours ago.
The feed, which currently has a scant 161 followers (555 as of my posting time), has passed along messages including President Barack Obama’s statement that the future of Egypt is in the hands of the Egyptian people and Vice President Joe Biden’s demand that Egypt immediately stop harassing journalists and scrap its emergency law.
We should be glad that Sheriff Joe is putting has vast foreign policy experience, you remember, that is why he was picked for the Team Obama ticket, to good use in such a productive manner.
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has directed the State Department to spare no effort to harness the power of the Internet to spread the U.S. message….
What is the US message? Is it that Mubarak should go now, starting yesterday, or, an orderly transition? Is it all the mixed messages, forcing Team Obama to combat a rift between the State Dept. and White House? Is the message much better after all the initial missteps? Maybe it’s all the smart power, which has seen the US standing in Egypt go from 30% to 17%? Just remember, when Obama or Little Bobby Gibbs stutter through some response about what to do with Egypt, one of the Tweets said: “President Obama: There is no room to return to the previous situation. can u donate $3 dollars?”
Crossed at Pirate’s Cove. Follow me on Twitter @WilliamTeach.
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