This paper investigates the online hacking group, the Syrian Electronic Army (SEA), and examines its goals. The study argues that it is not a hacktivist group but is made up of cyber warriors who are closely connected to the Syrian government in order to serve two main goals: serving as a public relations tool for the Syrian government to draw the world's attention to the official Syrian version of events taking place in the country and countering the impact of Syrian oppositional groups. The study investigates the online reaction to SEA by analyzing the comments posted on its YouTube videos in order to better understand the group's aims and strategies and the public perception.

Cyber War, Hacktivism, Middle East, Political public relations, Syria, Syrian Electronic Army (SEA)
dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.pubrev.2014.04.005, hdl.handle.net/1765/63767
ERMeCC - Erasmus Research Centre for Media, Communication and Culture
Public Relations Review: a global journal of research and comment
Department of Media and Communication

Al-Rawi, A.K. (2014). Cyber warriors in the Middle East: The case of the Syrian Electronic Army. Public Relations Review: a global journal of research and comment, 40(3), 420–428. doi:10.1016/j.pubrev.2014.04.005