Iranian supreme leader's website shares threatening image of Trump
Republican North Dakota State Rep. Tom Kading explains how Big Tech companies restricting users over political speech can amount to defamation.
The homepage of the official English-language website for Iran's supreme leader on Friday depicted an image of Trump golfing from an aerial view with the message, "Revenge is definite."
Screenshot of https://english.khamenei.ir/ (Source: Fox News screenshot)
Twitter suspended one of several accounts linked to Ayatollah Ali Khamenei after it tweeted the same image, telling FOX Business that the account violated its platform manipulation and spam policy, "specifically the creation of fake accounts."
It also removed the tweet for violating its "abusive behavior policy."
It is unclear whether the suspended @Khamenei_site account in question was an official account belonging to Khamenei. Twitter did not immediately say how it determined the account was "fake."
The image shared a statement that Khamenei initially tweeted in December, Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported Friday.
"Those who ordered the murder of General Soleimani, as well as those who carried this out, should be punished," a translated version of the tweet from Khamenei said, according to the outlet. "This revenge will certainly happen at the right time."
The @Khamenei_site account had 8,000 followers while another Twitter account linked to the supreme leader, 2Khamenei_ir, has 880,000 followers and remains active, according to Atlantic Council IranSource Editor Holly Dagres.
Twitter has come under fire for not suspending the ayatollah's account after he shared threatening or violent messages in the same way that it has removed posts or accounts belonging to American politicians -- including Trump -- for making unverified claims about fraud in the presidential election.
Khamenei has tweeted threats of "revenge" against the U.S. from his @Khamenei_ir account in response to the U.S. military killing of Qassem Soleimani, the head of Iran's Revolutionary Guard Corps Quds Force.
The ayatollah also has several tweets on his profile that call for the "elimination" of Israel, or "Zionist regime." In a May 21 tweet, he wrote: "The only remedy until the removal of the Zionist regime is firm, armed resistance."
Twitter has previously said that when political leaders' tweets are about "comments on political issues of the day" or "foreign policy saber-rattling on military and economic issues," they are "generally not in violation of our Twitter rules."
The social media site updated its Civic Integrity Policy ahead of the 2020 U.S. presidential election "to more comprehensively enforce labeling or removing of false and misleading information."
The company permanently suspended then-President Trump due to "the risk of further incitement of violence" after he posted a video to his Twitter page repeating the unsubstantiated claim that the 2020 election was "stolen" following the Jan. 6 Capitol riot.