The Spokesperson Unit of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) launched a number of social media accounts in Farsi aimed at online users in Iran, the division announced Tuesday.
This week, the IDF opened @Twitter, @Instagram & @Telegram accounts in Farsi.— Israel Defense Forces (@IDF) August 27, 2019
The people of Iran deserve to hear the truth and that’s exactly what we will share.
Iranians can follow @IDFFarsi to see for themselves that they are not the enemy, the oppressive Iranian regime is.
The IDF Farsi accounts were launched on Twitter, Instagram and Telegram, described by Israeli media as the most popular social media platforms in Iran.
Farsi is now the sixth language that the IDF Spokesperson Unit operates in, the others being Hebrew, English, Arabic, French and Spanish. According to Israel National News, these accounts boast millions of followers around the world and serve as “important public relations tools for multiple target audiences.”
The IDF says the decision to set up the Farsi accounts was made in recent months.
English, French and Spanish social media platforms are maintained by Major Keren Hajioff, known for his extensive use of snark in IDF tweets and posts. Hajioff’s controversial posts have resulted in some saying that the IDF has lost "sight of the fact that sometimes it’s a professional organization that is responsible for using deadly force,” according to former IDF spokesperson Peter Lerner, quoted by The Jerusalem Post. It is not immediately clear who will be in charge of the Farsi accounts.
Lerner disclosed he had the idea of an IDF account in Farsi “about 6 years ago.”
"I’m very happy the IDF implemented it," he told the Post.
The creation of Farsi accounts comes amid heightening tensions between Israel and Iran. The two countries have a long history of animosity stemming from Iran’s 1979 Islamic revolution.