In the decade since 9/11, the U.S. government has used a wide variety of tactics against terrorists. It’s invaded countries where they operated (and ones where they didn’t). It’s tried to win the backing of foreign populations in which the terrorists hide. And it’s sent commandos and deadly flying robots to kill them one by one.
One thing it hasn’t done, until now: troll them.
Within the State Department, a Silicon Valley veteran has quietly launched an improbable new initiative to annoy, frustrate and humiliate denizens of online extremist forums.