«Operation Carthage»: Nabil Karoui and lobbyist Lotfi Bel Hadj busted by Facebook

« Disinformation as a service » is how the Atlantic Council described the services provided by Tunisian digital communication agency UReputation to presidential candidate Nabil Karoui during his campaign for Tunisia’s 2019 presidential elections. On June 5, the American think-tank published an investigation carried out by its Digital Forensic Research lab (DFRLab) which exposed the collaboration. Dubbed « Operation Carthage », UReputation’s activities targeted 10 African countries to the profit of four politicians running for president in their countries’ elections. Yet another affair revealing Karoui’s dubious practices, who owns UReputation, the Tunisian PR firm with such global influence?

”عمليّة قرطاج“: بسبب التضليل، فيسبوك يوقع بنبيل القروي ورجل الأعمال لطفي بالحاجّ

“التضليل كخدمة”. بهذه العبارة وصف المجلس الأطلسي الخدمة الّتي أسدتها وكالة الاتصال الرّقمي التونسية UReputation لنبيل القروي خلال حملته الانتخابيّة 2019، وذلك وفق تحقيق أنجزته وحدة البحوث الرقمية التابعة للمجلس الأطلسي (DFRLab)، أطلقت من خلاله تسمية “عمليّة قرطاج” على تدخّلات وكالة الاتصالات الرقميّة الّتي استهدفت عشر دول افريقيّة من بينها تونس لفائدة أربعة سياسيّين مُترشّحين للانتخابات الرئاسيّة في دولهم. وبعيدا عن الممارسات المُريبة لنبيل القروي، لمن تعود ملكيّة وكالة الاتصال UReputation الّتي تجاوز تأثيرها البُعد الوطني ليمتدّ على المستوى القارّي؟

“Opération Carthage”: Nabil Karoui et le lobbyiste Lotfi Bel Hadj épinglés par Facebook

« La désinformation en tant que service », c’est par ces termes qu’Atlantic Council a qualifié la prestation fournie par l’agence de communication digitale tunisienne UReputation à Nabil Karoui lors de sa campagne pour les présidentielles de 2019. Hier vendredi, ce think tank américain a publié une investigation conduite par son laboratoire de recherche Digital Forensic Research lab (DFRLab) révélant cette collaboration. « Opération Carthage », ainsi a-t-il baptisé les activités d’UReputation ciblant 10 pays africains pour le compte de 4 hommes politiques candidats aux présidentielles de leurs pays. Au-delà d’une nième affaire révélant les pratiques sulfureuses de Karoui, à qui appartient UReputation, cette entreprise tunisienne si influente à l’échelle continentale?

A new face for the same “foreign support” to Tunisia

Assessing Tunisia’s resistance to political and economic reforms, the Atlantic Council observes that “old guard networks are present throughout the political system, the business world, and security institutions,” and proposes that Western donors adopt new support strategy to help Tunisia progress in its democratization process.

Marzouki’s Request: Rendering a «Possible Foreign Military Sale to Tunisia» Actual and Immediate

It is perhaps owing to the urgency of his message, the grave threats that political instability in Libya and regional terrorism pose to Tunisia’s political climate in these next three months, the potential dissipation of a democratic alliance in the MENA region, the very straightforward request for military training and equipment, and more specifically twelve Black Hawk helicopters, that Marzouki’s appeal has been so widely diffused across US and international media outlets.
What is pertinent to note is that Marzouki’s request is the precipitous disbursal of materials that the US has already promised Tunisia.