As Islamist extremists consolidate their control of Afghanistan, at least one member of the legacy media has asked why Twitter allows the Taliban to use its platform to spread its extremist views while it bans former President Donald Trump on the grounds that he could incite violence.

CNN correspondent Donie O’Sullivan, who frequently covers politicians’ use of social media, joined the growing chorus of Americans highlighting the tension in the platform’s implementation of its rules.

“The former [p]resident of the United States is banned from Twitter but the Taliban is not,” wrote O’Sullivan on Tuesday. “Whether you agree with deplatforming or not, there’s clearly some big holes in the company’s policy.”

Twitter permanently banned President Trump after January 6 purportedly “due to the risk of further incitement of violence.” Yet it is home to the “Official Twitter Account of the Spokesman of Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, Zabihullah Mujahid.”

O’Sullivan’s remarks appear to be more critical of Twitter for allowing Mujahid to have an account than a brief for reinstating President Trump. He has strongly criticized the former president and warned of potentially disastrous consequences if any other social media forum gave the president a platform.

On January 8, O’Sullivan told Erin Burnett that the permanent Twitter ban is a “day of reckoning for the role of social media in the United States.” He added, “If Trump goes to a platform” and his supporters follow him “to another platform, that could be dragging them into even more danger — a more perilous situation.”

Yet the journalist and Trump critic immediately received predictable criticism for pointing out the apparent discrepancy in the Twitter policy.

“The former President has done more damage to the United States,” wrote USA Today columnist Michael J. Stern. “I’m good.”

 

Entrepreneur William LeGate replied to O’Sullivan, “Even the Taliban follows the rules on Twitter, unlike the former President. Quit with the BS vapid talking points.”

“That seems like an odd comment from a journalist,” claimed another account.

Twitter’s terms of service state, “There is no place on Twitter for violent organizations, including terrorist organizations, violent extremist groups, or individuals who affiliate with and promote their illicit activities. … Under this policy, you can’t affiliate with and promote the illicit activities of a terrorist organization or violent extremist group.”

As Daily Wire’s Joseph Curl recently reported, “Mujahid’s account is not verified but appears authentic. He has more than 287,000 followers and is regularly cited by major news outlets.” Mujahid tweeted the details of the Taliban’s military conquest of Afghanistan on Sunday:

The city of Parun, the capital of Nuristan province, was also conquered.

Moments ago, the Mujahideen of the Islamic Emirate entered the city of Parun, the capital of Nuristan province, and seized the provincial building, the police headquarters, the intelligence center and all its accessories.

A large number of weapons, tools and equipment in the hands of the Mujahideen.

The Taliban is reportedly hunting and lynching Afghanis who allied themselves with the United States over the last 20 years. Sources on the ground say that Taliban representatives are “going house-to-house and that they sent a transmission out saying they had plans for the people that operated with America,” retired Marine Sergeant Ryan Rogers told Fox News on Thursday. “He told me yesterday they hung three [Afghan National Army] commanders.”

Conservative actor James Woods highlighted the issue on Wednesday, retweeting the brutal details of an execution reportedly committed by Taliban forces in Afghanistan with the message, “But it didn’t jeopardize their Twitter account, did it?”

Mujahid is one of several controversial individuals whose accounts remain active on the social media site. Other examples include Iran’s Ayatollah Khamenei, Venezuelan dictator Nicolás Maduro, and Nation of Islam founder Louis Farrakhan.

But Twitter’s terms of service, which were last updated in October 2020, have a loophole which states, “This policy also doesn’t apply to state or governmental organizations.”

Critics say this double standard proves that Twitter’s guidelines exist to give the company, led by Jack Dorsey, maximum flexibility to include or exclude people at will. “The discussion about their terms of use or their terms of service really is just a smokescreen for being able to do whatever allows them to aggregate the most power on a given day,” Vivek Ramaswamy, the author of Woke Inc., told Fox News.

“It is shameful that Twitter is allowing the Taliban to remain active on their platform,” the Republican National Committee tweeted on Thursday. “Yet, @jack blocks a former [p]resident but allows a terrorist organization on the platform.”

Facebook has already blocked the Taliban’s account on its platform.

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