US military botches online fight against Islamic State

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) -- A critical national security program known as "WebOps" is part of a vast psychological operation that the Pentagon says is effectively countering an enemy that has used the internet as a devastating tool of propaganda. But an Associated Press investigation found the management behind WebOps is beset with incompetence, cronyism and flawed data. Several people with direct knowledge of the program say it's having little impact.

Several current and former WebOps employees cited multiple examples of civilian Arabic specialists who cannot speak Arabic fluently and have so little understanding of Islam they are no match for the Islamic State online recruiters.

Four current or former workers told the AP that they had personally witnessed WebOps data being manipulated to create the appearance of success.

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