“Let’s face it: We invented the Internet. We invented the social network sites. We’ve got Hollywood. We’ve got the capabilities to blow these guys out of the water from the standpoint of communications.”
Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., backed his colleague’s appeal. “Look at their fancy memes compared to what we’re not doing,” Booker said, displaying examples of jihadist online postings.
Booker is a prolific user of Twitter and a former viral sensation in his own right, as mayor of Newark. He said he knows “something about memes,” and added that “there are easy tactics how to get more voice, virality to messaging that we’re not using as a government.”
Instead, he lamented, the U.S. is spending “millions and millions of dollars on old school forms of media,” like Voice of America.
Sen. Kelly Ayotte, R-N.H., said that the private sector could play a greater role working with the government in any counter-recruitment initiative.