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April 08, 2011

A Beirut-Based Newspaper Raises Questions About Al Jazeera's Coverage

syrian unrest.JPG

Al Jazeera has been the beneficiary of positive press recently for its coverage of the unrest in the Middle East. Even Hillary Clinton offered words of praise for its coverage. Its advocates express the view that Al Jazeera offers more in-depth and "real" news coverage than the American networks. But there is plenty of evidence that its news coverage is skewed by a pro-Islamist and anti-Western ideology.

Michael Young, editor of the Daily Star, an English language newspaper based in Beirut, Lebanon, discusses the failure of Al Jazeera to adequately cover the Syrian unrest. According to Young,

One gets a nagging sense that the coverage on Al-Jazeera and Al-Arabiya is an outcome of political compromises, but also, in Al-Jazeera’s case, of the station’s ideological agenda...

Young further charges,

The hypocrisy of Al-Jazeera, the most popular Arab satellite station, is especially worthy of mention. In Egypt, Libya or Yemen, for instance, the station devotes, or has devoted, long segments allowing viewers to call in and express disapproval of their leaders alongside their high hopes for the success of the revolution. In Syria, nothing.

Read more of Young's take on Al Jazeera's selective coverage.

Al Jazeera is not alone in its failure to give adequate attention to events in Syria. The news media in general is not covering Syria with the same interest as it did in Egypt and Libya. In part this may be due to the fact that the Syrian regime does not allow journalists the same degree of access. But news still gets out for those who want it.

A web site called has been providing a steady stream of information on the unrest.

This is a video claiming to show a street under fire from snipers on April 8, 2011.

Posted by SS at April 8, 2011 03:54 PM


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