As Turkish forces launched assault in northern Syria, social media users propagated images of Turkey’s soldiers hugging, cradling or feeding children.
But none of those images actually reflected the ongoing offensive in northern Syria. Some weren’t of Turkish soldiers. None of them were recent and some had been taken in other countries.
Experts say the false and misleading posts promoting Turkey appeared to get a boost from a coordinated network of Twitter accounts that amplified the content through trending hashtags and retweets.
The online campaign follows a pattern of social media propaganda that seeks to sway global opinion when controversial, international events erupt.
The images began making the rounds after US President Donald Trump’s widely criticized withdrawal of US troops opened the way for the Turkish offensive against Kurdish-led forces.