While Armenia and Azerbaijan fought over Nagorno-Karabakh, their citizens battled on social media

Social media played a significant role in the way that Armenians and Azerbaijanis experienced this year’s brief war. Globally, people could follow military movements, drone footage, respond to statements by authorities and discuss the events. All of this activity provided leaders with instant public opinion that informed decisions.

Whose social media approach worked?

Armenia’s leaders have long been active and accessible online, especially in the 2016 democratic revolution that brought Prime Minister Pashinyan to power. But Pashinyan’s casual approach to social media may have led to muddled posts about the conflict. And there was a lack of coordination between Armenian authorities’ messaging that provided opportunities for misinformation to spread.

Conversely, the Azerbaijani leadership simply blocked or slowed access to social media platforms others during the entire six-week period, stating this was “in order to prevent large-scale Armenian provocations.” Savvy users quickly discovered VPNs to bypass the restrictions.

Azerbaijani officials in

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As China’s military confidence grows, it’s now looking to ‘design’ how war is fought

China is expected to become more proactive in seeking to shape military events as its technology advances instead of following other powers, according to analysts.

But a shift to pre-emptive planning could push China’s neighbours in the Indo-Pacific and the United States to try to counterbalance its moves and possibly prepare for a “pre-war period”, they said.

The change was highlighted in an official publication released this month laying out China’s next five-year development plan to 2025. Xu Qiliang, vice-chairman of the Central Military Commission, wrote that China had to “broaden its strategic approaches to catch up, surpass and accelerate the transition from passively adapting to war to actively designing how a war is fought”.

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He also said China had to give full play to the driving force of reform to build

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