Tidbits of Arabic News translated into English

Monday, October 21, 2013

AlJazeera is a Caricature

(October 18, 2013)

The BBC Arabic was doing its weekly round-up of the top stories, one of which was some sort of fight between the Egyptian and Ghanaian soccer teams. I'm sure the Ghanaian side has no clue what is going on; the fight is probably just something made up in some Egyptians' heads.

According to the conversation with the news analysts at the table, she said that Al Jazeera was egging the fight on through its coverage. After discussing this for a while, one of the news analysts said "Al Jazeera has become a caricature" of the news. It does not really report the news, it is just trying to push its own agenda. Note: it was not a BBC Arabic employee that said this! Just one of the news analysts at the table. Here she is:

But you can also note that the BBC Arabic presenter moderating the discussion (in the red pants) did not question or dispute the point in the least!

And then, the same news analyst said: when it comes to Al Jazeera, the news on its Arabic versus English pages is completely different. The English page is somewhat objective, while the Arabic page is basically propaganda.

I've noticed this. Last year when the American ambassador was killed in Benghazi, there was a tribute of sorts posted to him on Al Jazeera's English page, talking about his accomplishments. The Arabic page said nothing about the ambassador specifically except that "President Obama condemns the death" and then, quotes from Obama praising his life. Now, for Arabs who read Al Jazeera, if the American president is giving you praise, that is probably a bad thing that leaves a black mark on your reputation.

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