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Israel's Air Strikes, Possible Gaza Invasion Spark Fierce Fighting With Hamas On Twitter, YouTube

Israel's air strikes yesterday and a potential invasion of the Gaza strip marked by an announcement on Twitter, has spread to a war of words on social media. Twitter feeds from both the IDF and the Alqassam Brigades have been hurling 140 characters of propaganda at each other since the campaign started yesterday. Throughout the day and night, people live-blogged the attack, posting photos on Twitter and turning #gaza and #gazaunderattack into liveblogs.

Footage of yesterday's assassination of the Hamas commander, Ahmed Al-Jabari, went up on YouTube almost immediately. YouTube, however, is no stranger to conflict in the Middle East. The deaths of the U.S. ambassador to Libya and other diplomatic workers in September was linked to an inflammatory anti-Islam video put up by a pro-Israeli Californian.

This, however, may be the first time that the name of a military operation has been turned into a hashtag.

[Ed note: We've inserted the words "possible" and "potential" into this story's headline and opening paragraph respectively, to reflect that an invasion has not yet happened.]