On November 27, 2020, Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, an Iranian nuclear scientist who played the leading role in the Iranian nuclear program, was killed. One of the first reporters to post the news on Twitter was Yossi Melman, an Israeli journalist at Haaretz. In two tweets, first in Hebrew and second in English, he revealed the important breaking news. Below, you will find a screen capture of his English-language tweet, posted at 8:49 A.M. EST:
Shortly thereafter, President Donald Trump, who one might suspect had been aware of the events in Iran before reading about it on Twitter, re-tweeted both Mr. Melman’s Hebrew and English breaking news tweets in quick succession. Below, you will find the President’s re-tweet of the English-language post:
Subsequent to his breaking news tweets, Mr. Melman posted several additional tweets shedding light on what the killing meant for Iran’s nuclear weapons program. Then, at 11:11 A.M., he posted a tweet asking his followers for guidance on a new rumor that he heard – that he had been re-tweeted by President Trump:
I am technological imbecile so pls advise. I am told that Donald Trump is retweeting my tweets on the assassination of Iranian nuclear scientist Fakhirzadeh. I am confused. Is it so?Yossi Melman on Twitter.
It appears that Mr. Melman is not adept in navigating the “cesspool of debauchery” that is Twitter. His life is likely better for it. He is a published author and well-known journalist in Israel; there is no reason for him to rise from the “technological imbecile” level, at least with respect to Twitter. I suspect that Mr. Melman began to wonder whether something unusual had happened with his Tweets when he started seeing thousands of notifications with many of them making a vague reference to President Trump. Congratulations to Mr. Melman on a Twitter news-breaking job well done.
Prior to the President’s re-tweet, Mr. Melman’s most-liked tweet of the week had 111 likes. The tweet that the President re-tweeted garnered approximately 55,900, and several of Mr. Melman’s subsequent tweets crossed the 1,000 likes threshold.
Several months ago, I posted a brief article about The New Leaf Journal’s foremost Twitter success story. In that instance, my article about using The Great Suspender Twitter extension was re-tweeted by the official account for my favorite web browser, Vivaldi. That Tweet garnered several thousand impressions, about 50-60 link clicks, 5 retweets, and 11 likes. While that was a social media coup for the site, Mr. Melman’s Twitter success story is perhaps on a different level. Because I am always looking to learn more, I will work on cultivating The New Leaf Journal’s contacts with various intelligence agencies in order to be on top of international breaking news, especially mysterious explosions and not-officially-explained deaths in Iran. Either that or I will continue working to make sure our site can find readers independent of social media.