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Tuesday, December 12, 2023

Videos about Osama's criticism of US surge in popularity online

Videos on TikTok supporting a decades-old letter by Osama bin Laden criticising the US and its support of Israel surged in popularity this week, adding to accusations the company is fueling the spread of antisemitic content. The White House condemned the resurfacing of the letter.
The letter, titled “Letter to America,” was published a year after the September 11, 2001 attacks orchestrated by bin Laden.He defended the attacks saying Americans had become “servants” to Jews, who he said controlled the country’s economy and media. American taxpayers, he wrote, were complicit in harming Muslims in the Middle East, including destroying Palestinian homes. Some TikTok users said they viewed the letter as an awakening to America’s role in global affairs and expressed disappointment in the US.
Early Thursday, a search for #lettertoamerica showed videos with 14.2 million views. By midday, as TikTok sought to block the content, searches for “osama bin laden,” “bin laden letter” and “osama letter” and the hashtag #lettertoamerica yielded no results on the “videos” tab of TikTok, although some videos were viewable with some digging. A spokesperson said TikTok was “aggressively removing this content and investigating how it got onto our platform.” NYT

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